Ever since its launch some ten years ago, Instagram has been on a roll. The photo-sharing app designed for smartphone users met with an unprecedented response because it was the first of social media platforms to be fully visually-oriented and managed on the fly from the phone. It now ranks among the most popular social media platforms globally, right after its parent, Facebook, and YouTube, with more than one billion monthly active users.
With photos being central to Instagram, users emphasize the relevance, quality, and composition of the images posted on it. With cutthroat competition among brands vying for their target audiences’ attention, businesses have to all they can to make their posts pop to grab the maximum eyeballs – making your images stand out with their brilliance is among the most effective tactics.
Some tips for transforming your Instagram photos into growth engines for your business.
Avoid Using the Instagram App to Take Photos
Even though using the native app provided by Instagram may seem logical, it is invariably far better to take the photos with the app provided in your smartphone, according to Forbes. The drawback of Instagram’s photo app is that it does not permit you to zoom into the subjects and automatically crops all the images into squares. Moreover, most smartphones allow you to take photos with preset exposure levels with the HDR function, which is impossible with the Instagram camera app.
Spot Your Subject in the Center of the Frame
Conventionally, we are accustomed to taking photos in either the landscape more or the portrait mode; however, since Instagram photos have to be necessarily square, you need to be able to rethink the way you shoot photos. For example, the rule of thirds that photographers use to place subjects in an imaginary grid of nine equal parts does not work, and a square photo where the subject sits right at the center.
Humanize Your Photos
Users always try to find some human-interest angle in the photos they view, which is why photos that include people, especially their faces that convey some emotion or the other, are more effective in attracting eyeballs in the flood of posts on the Instagram feed of users. A study by Georgia Tech and Yahoo Labs established that a photo that includes a human face is 38% more likely to get a like and 32% more probable to attract a comment that those without a face. If you find your posts not getting the engagement you were hoping for, you can use blastup for a pittance by engaging a social media marketing agency.
Keep the Camera Steady
To take a great photo, you need to have a steady hand. You should buy a portable tripod that you can place easily wherever you like or even consider a GorillaPod that can be anchored to virtually all surfaces like trees, ledges, fences, tables, or whatever is available around you.
By using a tripod, you can prevent motion blur from spoiling your shots. However, if you find yourself without a tripod, you should look around you to identify something that you can use to support yourself; it could be a tree, a bench, a boulder, or any other steady object.
A tripod gives you the additional advantage of using remote timers to get yourself in the photo frame without having to worry about propping up your camera or phone so that it does not topple over and get damaged.
Don’t Compromise on the Focus
If you want your Instagram photos to engage your target audience, you will need them to be exceptionally clear and sharply focused. Most smartphone cameras are pretty ordinary, and it is not wise to use the zoom function since all it does is enlarge the image digitally, not optically, which leads to the image losing focus.
However, if you have a high-end smartphone or are shooting your photos with a separate DSLR camera, you will have an excellent lens and optical zoom feature at your disposal. It is usually better if you try to get closer to your subject for a good shot. Lighting is of great importance. By tapping your phone screen when in the camera mode, you can get a sharper focus.
Pay Attention to the Photo Composition
It is how the photos are composed that catches the attention of users on Instagram more than anything else. While you can access lots of resources about the theoretical aspects of photo composition, you can use your aesthetic sense to guide you regarding the angle of the camera, the inclusion of the background, the symmetry and balance, as well as the effect of the lighting.
Good photographers can analyze the scene with their naked eyes, pick out the subject worthy of highlighting, isolate it from the clutter, and make it the subject of attention for the viewers of the image.
Edit the Photos to Maximize Their Impact
You can make a significant difference to the appeal of the photos by editing them after shooting them. Various studies have shown that photos that have been processed with filters catch the users’ eyes more and generate more engagement. While the Instagram app allows you to perform the basic edits; however, if you take the help of the innumerable third-party photo editing apps, it can open up a whole new world of convenience. Make good use of the filters to give your photos a distinctive look.
Typically, photos with filters that give them a warm look, better contrast, and greater exposure seem to be more favored by the audience. However, it is always better to use restraint because, by over-processing your photos, they are likely to lose clarity.
If you are serious about making your Instagram photos speak loudly, you can think of using professional photographers’ services. However, be sure to give them a comprehensive brief regarding your objectives.
However, even if you are shooting with your own smartphone or a camera, you should be clear about why you are shooting a particular subject and whether it will fit your marketing objective. Losing focus of your marketing objectives can lead your campaigns astray.