When you’re a beginner, it may seem as if social media marketing is not so complicated. It’s not for some people but when you don’t really know what you’re doing, it actually is. So on this post, I’m going to share Instagram for beginners. Basically, everything you need to know to get your Instagram account started and rollin’.
What is Instagram?
Since you’re already reading this post, I’m assuming you already know what Instagram is. But I’ll tell you anyway. If you search on Google for “What is Instagram?”, it’s going to give you this result. “Instagram is an online mobile photo-sharing site that enables its users to take pictures and share them either publicly or privately on the app, as well as through a variety of other social networking platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Flickr.”
It’s such a long definition, I know. But I’d like to focus only on the first few words. Instagram is a mobile photo-sharing site. That’s it and that’s all you need to know in the basic of it of course.
Browser vs Mobile App
“Mobile”. That’s the word you have to remember in this section. Instagram works well when using the app. Though you can open the website on an internet browser, there are some features which you cannot do with this tool, like uploading a photo, which is the main thing you are supposed to be doing on Instagram. So basically Instagram is a mobile app. So before you can get started, be sure to download the application on your phone.
Like I said in the definition of Instagram, it’s a photo sharing platform. So that answers the question of what you need to post on this social media platform.
But it shouldn’t just be any photos, it needs to be of high quality. Recently, when I got serious about growing my account, I decided to post quality photos that Instagram users would like. Now, before I publish the photo, I do a quick review of it and ask myself, “Would I like this photo if it weren’t mine?”
Even for photos that I am yet to post, I place them in one separate folder on my phone and every now and then, I’d do the same review. If I don’t like the photo, I would just delete it from the folder. That would keep me accidentally posting it in the future.
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When Instagram was new, the only size of photo you are allowed to share on it is a square. If you have a rectangular photo, you’re going to have to crop it. But then Instagram evolved and now it’s allowing a flexible size and shape of photos to be published on the platform.
But there’s one thing many Instagram users does not notice. It’s an app so most of its population are online on their phones with, I would give an average size of maybe 5inches (more or less). That means photos are being viewed on small screens and so the smaller your photos are the harder they are to view.
So what does it have to do with the shape?
Well, if you notice, Instagram does not auto-rotate so the app will stand vertically no matter how many times you turn your phone. That means the landscape shape photos that are published are limited to the width of the screen so they are usually smaller. The portrait shape ones or long ones are easier to be seen from the bunch so try posting more of those instead.
Taking photos is not the only step you need to take. Instagram promotes post processing, especially by playing around with the contrast, saturation, brightness and more features. Instagram also promotes the use of filters. So before you hit the post button, try post processing.
You can even try that with other apps that can have more features in editing photos without having to transfer them to your laptop. Try downloading VSCO cam, Instagrid, or Photodirector. Then let your creativity loose.
Curation is another thing you want to be concerned about for your Instagram account. A lot of users have found this magic, which makes their profiles looking awesome and followable.
Curate your Instagram content by giving each of your photos the same feel. This gives the impact to other users that you own all your photos, despite the fact that you do. Try using the same filters for all photos. Or try taking photos that are mostly a white theme or the same color. When you look at your account as a whole on your profile, you’ll notice that it will look way more professional and attractive.
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Hashtags are very popular on most social media platforms and the norm on Instagram is adding a dozen of it to a post.
What I usually do is add the hashtags in the comments and not the definition of the photo, though it doesn’t make any different, I just like it looking clean because normally, comments are hidden.
One thing to note about using hashtags is you need to be sure it’s related to the photo your sharing. If you’re posting a photo of food, you can use #foodie or #foodporn. Don’t use unrelated hashtags.
Another note is to do research before using a hashtag, especially for the uncommon words because sometimes they are used by groups or companies that you have nothing to do about.
To lessen the number of hashtags that you use, research for those that are popular and used regularly and but not those are overly used because the probability of your post getting seen is going to drown in all the others using the same hashtag on Instagram.
Instagram is a social media. Just like Facebook, Twitter, and every other social networking sites, this is where you get social, which requires you to engage with other users. Interact with them by following, liking, commenting, and even sending them a direct message. The more you engage with other users, the more they engage with you.
Following is one of the main causes of marketing and Instagram is one of the social media platforms that can surely provide followers to your business or website because of its number of users.
I’ve just shared with you the basic things you need to do to grow your following on Instagram. Here’s to summarize that.
Be sure to use the mobile app.
Post high-quality photos and post them as regularly as you can. Make sure your profile and photo collection looks great.
Don’t be afraid to use hashtags, but use them with caution.
Last but not the least, engage with other users.
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There’s one more thing I want to note. Instagram has a repost feature, you’ll need the separate app for it but it is allowed. When doing this, make sure to credit the original owner. Or better yet, don’t post any photos that are not yours because you never know what copyright license they may be under and you could get yourself into some trouble.
So by now, you have learned the basic things you need to know when starting your Instagram account. Now get out there, take pictures, post, grow, and be passionate about it. Enjoy!
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