Keep Calm and Stop With the Duck Face

Here are some things I never need to see on Instagram ever again. Like, ever.

1. The meal your significant other cooked for you. As if I’m not already hyper-aware that I am standing over the kitchen sink, alone, eating a can of tuna—the only thing distinguishing me from a cat being that I am fully upright—now I have to see a filtered snapshot of the mushroom risotto your boo made. (It’s always mushroom risotto, isn’t it?) Please stop.

2. Duck face selfies. Ladies, remember Susan B. Anthony? That poor woman did not march in a pair of panty hose so that we could one day contort our lips in a super weird, annoying way, and then share it all over the damn Internet. Please stop.

3. Iterations of “Keep calm and carry on.” Keep calm and immediately call non-emergency personnel. Keep calm and replace the toilet paper. Keep calm and forage for berries. Straight up, if I see one more version of this, I’m going to be anything but calm. Please stop.

That felt good.

Now, here are some socially acceptable ways to use Instagram—a photo-sharing social network—if you have an apartment community account.

1. Signs of summer. Take photos of blooming flowers, the swimming pool or the fountain you just turned on for the season. 

Do not have residents take bikini selfies through the bathroom mirror. You know, just nothing to do with the bathroom ever, is a probably a good rule.

2. How you’re going green. Appeal to eco-friendly renters by snapping photos of recycling bins, reusable cups (in place of plastic water bottles and Styrofoam cups), earth-friendly cleaning supplies and anything else that makes your community green.

3. Pets in your community. Just be sure to ask for permission first—some humans are very protective of their pets! People love pictures of cute animals. Search Instagram for (regrettable) hashtags like #catsofinstagram or #catstagram to see proof. Plus, sharing pet photos on Instagram is a great way to show that you really value your furry residents.

I find this very annoying, but I have no soul and do not particularly love dogs, so disregard my opinion on this one.

4. Your all-star staff. Your employees are a key element of your community. Share a group photo of your team or photos of individual employees on the job. It’s a great opportunity to add a personal, human element to your community.

5. Your community events. Holding a canned food drive for the local food bank? Take a photo of all the items you collect. Planning a resident appreciation BBQ? Snap a photo of the buffet table filled with delicious treats.

6. Local landmarks. Snap photos of things that make the neighborhood look more attractive and unique. Add a photo of that great new sandwich shop down the street or the popular park down the block. These types of photos will give people a better idea of what it’s like to live in your neighborhood.

So remember—Keep calm and Instagram on.

For more, check out Social Media Insider in the June issue of units Magazine, which mails June 10.

Lauren Boston is NAA’s Staff Writer and Manager of Public Relations. Unsurprisingly, she writes a lot—most often for units Magazine and as a weekly blogger for APTly Spoken. She enjoys making people laugh, sharing embarrassing childhood stories and being the (self-proclaimed) Voice of the Apartment Industry. She welcomes feedback, unless it’s negative (in which case, please keep it to yourself).