The Instagram coach, author, iPhoneographer and social media influencer, talks about fake reviews, favourite podcasts and more.

Former NHS speech therapist, Sara Tasker quit her day job to turn her internet passion into a blog, Me & Orla and business. She started off documenting her life with a photo a day and is now an Instagram expert and coach with over 200k followers on Instagram. The Yorkshire-based photographer, writer and creative business consultant hosts a popular podcast Hashtag Authentic, offering advice for creative business owners online. Earlier this year, Sara published a bestselling book called book Hashtag Authentic: Finding creativity and building a community on Instagram and beyond.

We are delighted that Sara is on the judging panel of The Good Web Guide Awards 2019. When judging the entries, Sara will be looking for 'Something with a spark. I've got a special interest in anything that's helping people solve problems or meet a need - whether that's simply offering brilliant entertainment, helping people find the best products or creating new waves in community or social justice.'

Here Sara talks about fake reviews, her favourite podcast and advice to a beginner blogger.

My favourite website… Probably Reddit - It’s a gateway to all the best (and worst) things on the internet, once you know how to navigate it.

My favourite app… Instagram - Naturally, closely followed by the photo editing app VSCO.

My blog of choice… Wait But Why - This is probably a surprising choice for somebody as visually motivated as me, but I love a long read, and something that gets me really thinking.

My internet hero… Jon Ronson - His book, So You’ve been Publically Shamed is a lone, but essential voice of reason against internet pile-on culture and the court of social media.

My favourite podcasts... are in constant flux - Currently I like iProcrastinate, Dispatch to a Friend and In Good Company with Otegha Uwagba.

My most recent buy online… A dreamy gauze kaftan from a tiny company in Mexico - Found via Instagram, of course.

Book just downloaded/ read... The Book You Wish Your Parents had Read by Philippa Perry.

Favourite tweeter… Dolly Alderton - She could write a book of her Twitter one-liners!

Favourite instagrammer… Oh gosh it changes daily! Currently in love with everything @errer_ who shares her life and work in Japan.

Social media allowed me to meet… Mark Hamill, aka Luke Skywalker from Star Wars. I’m still swooning!

Standout online memory... Seeing my book, Hashtag Authentic make it into the top 30 book chart on Amazon. I took so many screenshots, just to prove to myself it really happened.

My pet hate online... fake reviews - Once you know how to spot them you’ll see them everywhere - Amazon, Makeup Alley, even Reddit. It takes all value from online feedback.

My advice to a beginner blogger... Be unapologetically you. Everyone else is already out there. Your unique voice is the best asset you possess.

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Portrait image: credit Chris Tubbs

June 2019