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Photography: Mastering Instagram

Instagram has been exploding with new users and continues to grow even stronger for every day that passes. Because of its intense focus on photography as a platform there is no doubt that every person with a passion for taking pictures should shift their focus to trying to succeeding on Instagram. We’ve covered this topic before but in much less detail, nonetheless worth reading. Maybe you work as a professional photographer and want to increase your online presence as a way of gaining recognition and a steady stream of new customers, or you casually take pictures with your iPhone or Android phone. We think that everyone can benefit in someway by creating an engaging Instagram profile. With Instagram’s astounding 600 million user base and with a 100 million of those just joining in the past 6 months there’s great opportunity in connecting with other like-minded creatives, establishing relationships directly with the artistic industry or just getting that next paid gig.

In what way do photographers benefit?

We’ve been in contact with a few of our clients that are actively using Instagram as a platform to publish their photographic work. Here’s the summary of their thoughts:

Getting recognition for their businesses

Most people realise that spending money is necessary in order to make some. All of our clients have found it beneficial to use some kind of automation tool so that they can save more time to actually master their art. All of our clients have also gained back the investment that they did put in. Gaining attention to your business on Instagram can be bothersome especially for small businesses that don’t have a dedicated team taking care of the socials. If you have a website for your portfolio see Instagram as an extra way of gaining traffic to your site, and if you don’t then use your profile as a portfolio like many other Instagrammers do.

Finding others to connect with

Instantly search and find millions of other profiles that Instagram suggests is a great way to connect with other photographers that share similar creative pursuits. Some of our clients just couldn’t stop talking about how important it was to find other people that are on the same level of creativity. It massively changed the way they worked and made the passion they have for photography burn even more intensely. They found other photographers, artists, models, stylists and friends.

Letting the creativity flow on a digital canvas

Most of our users just liked the fact that Instagram acts as a completely free canvas where everything is worth posting. It acts as a ground for quick feedback as well, see the likes trickle in as soon as you post something with comments arriving every few minutes. Maybe something isn’t worth keeping in your portfolio but it sure is worth posting on Instagram, the community might change your mind. It’s the community that makes Instagram awesome and full of life.

Being creative

Because Instagram is used through your smartphone the amount of detail that can be observed through an image or video is a lot less. This simple fact removes a lot of the stress that photographers and creators experience in choosing the right pictures and when editing. You can focus on the message or the bigger picture instead of being stuck on insignificant specifics. Instagram is also super-beneficial for those that don’t have editing skills, for those that can’t use Photoshop for example. You can easily use the built-in functionality to add the final touch to your uploads through filters and a whole lot of different settings. Some of the things that they let you do is adjust brightness, contrast, warmth, saturation and sharpness. If you feel that Instagram is limiting your creativity try one of these apps:
  1. Adobe Photoshop Express - Android | iPhone - Free
  2. Pixlr - Android | iPhone - Free
  3. VSCO Cam - Android | iPhone - Free
  4. Photo Editor by Aviary - Android | iPhone - Free
  5. Afterlight - Android | iPhone - $0.99
  6. Enlight - iPhone - $3.99
Remember that Instagram allows images and videos in both landscape and portrait formats (up to 1.91:1 for landscape and up to 4:5 for portrait).

Getting more followers and likes

Most of us are probably interested in making that follower count go up or get more praise each time we post something, that’s why it’s important to talk about tactics that increase followers and likes. Many just use Instagram and put their hope on luck that they someday will get the recognition they deserve. What the majority neglect is using actual strategies that the biggest accounts and profiles use. Sure, luck is a major part in getting super-famous but why not increase all chances of getting there without spending much time or money? Before getting into the actual methods I really want to stress that buying followers will do you no good, because real followers can’t be bought. One of the most important strategies that is often underrated is an efficient hashtag game. This is something that is worth learning thoroughly, most people think they already do - nothing couldn’t be further from the truth. Learning proper use of hashtags requires no extra effort once you know the ins and outs. Make sure you know how to do your own hashtag research so that you don’t have to rely on other people’s lists. If you’re in a hurry and don't have time learning hashtag researching then you can find some awesome tags for the winter season right here. When you like and follow similar profiles and content the chance of them doing the same is massively increased. Even if they don’t, they will at least check your profile out. By engaging with others you get the opportunity to showcase who you are and what value you can offer. It is a crucial cornerstone in any social media marketing campaign, so you should make good use of it as well. Use an automation tool to do the work for you while you’re off social media. If you haven’t noticed yet, that’s exactly the service that we’re offering. You could do it manually or be smart and invest a dollar per day so that Gramista will automatically engage with people for an entire day. If you’re interested in learning more tips and tricks make sure to regularly check out our blog. Another article that might help you get more understanding of what works and what doesn’t can be found here. Best of luck. Gramista Team out!