Photo sharing app Instagram first launched in 2010 and was an instant hit amongst social media users, just two years later it was acquired by social giant Facebook for $1 billion dollars. Today, Instagram is used by millions of individuals and organisations to share updates, information or their interests with their followers.
The app isn’t just for photographs, users also have the ability to share video clips, stories or reels and can stream themselves live to their followers. Filters and music can be added and hashtags are often used on content to help users find more items in the same theme.
Whether you are setting up your first Instagram account or creating a new page of your pet, interest or business, here are a few tips to help you create an engaging Instagram profile:
Decide on your theme and what images your account will revolve around
One of the first things you need to consider when creating your account is the theme that your content will follow. Having a consistent theme running through all your posts will help to gain more followers and help you make decisions about what to post and when.
When deciding on a theme, you might want to begin by looking at the types of posting categories that are popular on the app and which ones interest you. Perhaps you have a knack for interior design or a pooch that is a natural in front of the camera, whatever you choose, make sure it is something you enjoy and have knowledge about.
Once that is decided, you can begin to think more about your page’s aesthetic. Will all of you images and videos have the same filter or collection of filters? Perhaps you want to use a certain colour scheme or borders or eye-catching graphics to make your profile stand out.
Also, with a bit of careful planning and coordination you can post a series of images to create a larger picture on your grid. This is often used by businesses to draw attention to their messaging or new product release.
Smartphone vs. professional camera
Next up, you will need to think about what type of smartphone or camera device you are going to use to capture your content. There are benefits and cons to both cameras and smartphones and your choice will be impacted by your budget, technical ability and personal preference.
Cameras on the latest smartphones on the market are often great quality and have a number of settings, such as speed and focus that you will find on a professional DSLR camera. As most of us already possess these devices, using a smartphone can save a lot of money and stick to using something you are already familiar with.
They are also great for speed and convenience as you can take images and videos within the Instagram app and upload them within seconds.
On the other hand, the best professional cameras do capture noticeably better images and give users more control over the settings they wish to use. You can go one step further and use professional editing software to remove blemishes within your images and fix lighting issues.
Learn about the algorithm and smart use of hashtags
If joining your following and getting high engagement is your goal then you will need to research how the Instagram algorithm works and what types of posts reach the highest number of people.
The captions and hashtags you use are just as important as the visual part of your content. Users often search for the topic or category they are interested in through hashtags and so it is important you include ones that are relevant to your post.
With a little bit of research and forward planning, anyone can create a successful and engaging Instagram page.