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Instagram: why bother?

30 September, 2015

Instagram logo banner
Is Instagram worth bothering with? asks our guest blogger Mark Longbottom this week.

Does it matter if everyone you know is or isn’t on Instagram? That’s the usual focus when people start seeing a social media platform take off.

But what’s important with Instagram is it’s visual value in showcasing you or your brands personality and everyday culture. And the numbers speak for themselves.

Instagram has now overtaken Twitter in terms of its number of users and now has 400 million users [source: Mashable]. This is up from 200 million in April 2014. With Twitter on 300 million in April 2015, up from 255 million in April 2014.

Those statistics may come as a surprise to many who still view Instagram as just being about “pretty pictures”. Even the co-founder of Twitter was recently reported as saying “I frankly don’t give a shit if Instagram has more people looking at pretty pictures.”

Looking past the childish bickering you’ll see why it’s worth bothering sharing your pretty pictures, or even your not so pretty pictures.

With Instagram like any other social media platforms you should find what works for you and then how that sits with your networks and communities. Failing online is not a bad thing, experimenting publicly and showing more about yourself and the brand is a good thing.

Mark Longbottom Instagram account

People like to engage, and relationships build not from pushed adverts but by connecting lifestyles and feelings: images are wonderful for provoking emotions good, bad and ugly.

Your visual personality on Instagram will be seen by some of the 400 million users, none of whom you may know. If this is the case, to increase your reach, simply embed your Instagram feed on your website, adding current content daily to make your website more interesting and inviting.

But if you’re completely new to Instagram, how do you get started? Here’s my simple 10-step guide:

Getting Started on Instagram

  1. Create your named or branded profile ID for the url, name can be different.
  2. Add a brief but informative bio, use a couple of relevant #Tags
  3. Upload a portrait or logo that can be seen when reduced.
  4. Check all settings and connections to other platforms.
  5. Spend time understanding the interface and functions.
  6. Upload the Repost app on your phone
  7. Set up and save on your phone sets of #Tags
  8. Follow relevant people and brands view/review activity
  9. Start posting and reposting adding text and #tags from day one.
  10. Keep enjoying engaging on Instagram as part of everyday life, not as an after thought.

More Instagram inspiration…

Here’s a slideshow that focuses on how to use Instagram and enjoy engaging with like-minded (as well as non-like minded) people.

If this has sparked your interest in finding more about Instagram for business or pleasure, I will also be talking about Instagram at Leeds Business Week 2015 on October 16 at the Leeds Google Digital Garage. It’s a free event, which you can register for here.

Mark Longbottom LBW15 talk leedsbizweek

Jonny will also be giving free digital marketing advice at Leeds Business Week. Find out more about his #LeedsBizWeek talk here.

This week’s guest blog post is by Mark Longbottom a Social Media Consultant and Director of the creative network, Platform58. Follow Platform58 on Instagram and Mark on Twitter

  • […] recent Instagram blog post by Mark shares his tips on getting started, and a link to some of the slides from his Leeds Business Week […]

    1. […] recent Instagram blog post by Mark shares his tips on getting started, and a link to some of the slides from his Leeds Business Week […]

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