How does a local 21-year-old amass an Instagram following of more than 300,000? Read on as we chat with her for our annual blogger issue to find out how she got started, what inspires her, and where she plans to go with it.
Amassing more than 300,000 in just a handful of years. The work of a celebrity, marketing agency, or Fortune 500 company?
No, Cincinnati-based 21-year-old
Kinsey enjoys reading, her cats, and plants. But most of all, she loves writing. Everyday, she says, she adds to her growing list of potential captions for future Instagram posts, saves poetry and song lyrics in her Notes app, and works on her movie script.
“I think my love of writing, even though I don’t consider myself good at it, is why I started my blog,” says Kinsey.
In addition to her love of writing, she also likes taking photos. “I hoard photos,” she laughs. “I have two 64GB flash drives that are filled with photos from all over many different years. I have so many photos and videos in my phone. I take them all the time, from 10-second clips of waves crashing against rocks in South Carolina to photos of my plants and their growth updates.”
Today, Kinsey is the owner of an Instagram account with 304,000 followers, an account that has become her little corner of the Internet where she gets to express herself and share the things she loves. “I cover topics that matter to me as well as things I enjoy or have fun with,” she says. “I’ve discussed everything from mental health, addiction, breakups, and other troubles in hopes that it can help as well as relate to others who may be going through similar challenges. Writing is like a therapy for me, a great way for me to let things out and work things out. As well as document the fun things like beach vacations, road trips, and other things in the works.”
Kinsey first learned about Instagram from her uncle at Christmas in 2010, but didn’t start the account that she has now until around 2012, and she didn’t hit 10,000 followers until March 2013.
While she says she’s not sure how she’s accumulated as many followers as she has, her family and friends say it’s because she’s so relatable to a lot of other girls her age. “I post photos from mini road trips, college parties, the obligatory selfies, pictures with other influencers, and beach vacations,” she says. “I’ve used it as a digital scrapbook to document highlights about my life and it seems like people enjoy virtually flipping through me.”
When it comes to her favorite Instgram post thus far, Kinsey says that her favorite photos was one she took on 4th Street in Cleveland. “I took it last August when I was up there for a Shawn Mendes concert with my sister and mom,” she explains. “We made a road trip out of it and as we were walking around before the concert I just quickly snapped this photo. I loved it so much I actually made it my laptop skin.”
Her favorite posts on her blog are any of the ones featuring Kodak film from her trips. She says Kodak film has become a tradition for all of her experiences. “I always bring one camera for myself and one for my road trip partner – or leave one out at parties for people to take photos with of the night,” she says. “I develop them weeks later, then show them to all my friends and family. They are never amazing but I love all the photos dearly because people seem to be more careful about what they take photos of with a Kodak when its film is limited.”
Kinsey wants to use her Instagram account to continue to share her experiences with her followers. She wants to document her trips to new locations, try new things, and post fun things she has going on in her life. “I also believe our city has so much to offer and I am excited to be discovering more of it as well,” she says. “I’ve lived here all my life but still haven’t covered every corner of Cincinnati.”
Kinsey says that right now she’s entertaining the idea of taking graphic design classes and marketing in the hopes that she can help others achieve their goals with their social media accounts. “No one really told me what to do and how to get this following, I just used trial and error,” she says. “I’ve been able to help out family and friends with their accounts, so I’d like to be able to help out more people too. I have also rented a small studio space where I am setting up for more upcoming projects, as well as setting up a space in the dining room of my new apartment too”
To learn more about Kinsey, follow along on her Instagram. There you can see constant stories, posts, and sneak peeks of upcoming projects she’s working on. You can also see new content on her blog at www.sophiekinsey1997.com every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. “Plus, that’s where I’ll be announcing any new places you can find me,” she says. “And, if late night laughs and cat videos are your cup of tea, you can add me on Snapchat at SophieKMan.”