How to take a really great Instagram photo!

Doctor Digital, I want to do amazing Instagram posts! What hacks can I use to step up my snaps?

Doctor Digital Says

Instagram has proven itself to be an excellent tool for building a brand and communicating with followers about your business in a visual way. It works twofold in its power when you regularly post images that capture the hearts and minds of your audience and when people engaging with your brand, especially those with their own influence and following, endorse and advocate your products or services.

It isn’t as simple as snap and post. While Instagram is undoubtedly an ‘in the moment’ and authentic channel for your images, there needs to be strategy behind what and when you post, and the quality of your pictures.

Beginning with the technology, as Instagram is designed to be used from the app on a mobile device, ensure you have a smart phone or mobile device with a decent camera. The majority of smart phones are designed for their social applications as much as their capacity to make and receive calls, so this is your starting point. Being able to post directly from your phone is the key for those special moments in your business/brands life that speak directly to your people in real time.

The images themselves need to have a consistent feel to them so your followers know that at a glance they are seeing a post from your brand. Be selective about your content and how it delivers on your brand message, keeping that concept front and centre of your choices and linking image with your offerings. Start to train your eyes to look for moments that capture something special, unique, funny, poignant and interesting and be ready to strike when the moment arises. Where possible pay attention to the light and the composition of the image to ensure that you visually speak to your audience right away.

The filter feature on Instagram makes most photos that much better, use as an enhancement rather than a dominant feature, and look for external apps that you can use with your shots to add some magic to what you’ve already created. White space is also a great technique to add in to the mix and give your followers eyes some gentle relief. Find naturally well lit white walls and use them to backdrop your focal point and make it pop, especially if you often use ‘busy’ photos. Consider trying out different lenses that come with your phone or camera and invest in a waterproof case for underwater, snow and rain shots. Bad weather equals some pretty amazing and unusual image opportunities.

While Instagram is all about the image, a great caption and the right hashtags can be a strong pull for catching the eye and capturing a particular trend or segment. Think about your captions and craft for maximum impact, ensuring of course that your words are consistent with your brand and the picture.

Likes are a good metric in terms of engagement with your followers, but chasing likes based on what is popular or trending on Instagram can lead you to copy rather than create. Watch what you do that strikes a chord with your tribe, and where you see patterns of consistent appreciation, keep doing that. Soon enough you will be a shooting star for your brand - and an influencer in your own right.

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