I take photos of anything that I find interesting, in an artsy way of course. Instagram had been one of my favorite apps around and with (an old) iPhone 4S having a great camera + Snapseed and other free photo editing apps I can assure you that my photos are great! #HumbleBrag

This platform not only allows me to share the world my creation but has also been my marketing tool for the past years. I’ve learned over time that there are important elements necessary for an Instagram photo to add dollars in my pocket – here are six of my Instagram Marketing tips:

1. Design Your Photo

Instagram filters, sure! But do not solely rely on them. Before capturing the photos of your products, take in consideration proper angle, lighting, and photography effects. These seemingly inconsequential details have a significant impact to your product’s image. Carefully plan out the color schemes you will use to present your photos. They should be consistent with the image and story you are trying to portray. For example, if you are selling vintage products, use the brown hues or black and white.

For grabbing more attention, try adding texts. These texts can be keywords, short phrases, or quots that are related to, and add meaning and context to the photos. Never ever put texts that do not seem to have any connections with the photos at all, the unrelated texts will just confuse the viewers. Moreover, do not go overboard and put too many texts and distract the visitors. Your primary goal in adding text is to highlight your photo.

2. Use Captions

Sometimes, texts on images are not enough. Giving a little background about your photos through the use of captions would add to the visitors’ interests. Captions need not be over-detailed. The best caption should just take a few sentences to a paragraph. Make your captions reasonably long and sensible. The readers get bored easily with captions that look like a novel. Be sure to check your grammar too. The construction need not be fancy. Effective captions can be short, simple, and direct.

3. Add a Call to Action

What is a call of action? In marketing, this is a statement/ question/instruction addressed to the audience to provoke an immediate response. The most common call of call to action is: “Find out more.” By adding a call to action to your photos or your captions, you increase your viewers and readers’ enthusiasm in your posts. This is also a good way to further interact with them. Your comment box will surely be lively as you add a creative call to action.

4. The URL in your Bio

Unlike Facebook or Twitter, you cannot post a clickable link on your Instagram post. The only place to put that is in your profile. Make use of it by putting the address of your landing or sales page. And in following tip #3 you should call your followers to click the link on your bio.

5. Use Hashtags

With all the information in the social media site, people use hashtags (using a number sign in front, followed by texts and numbers) to label their posts according to topics. Hashtags are highly useful when one wants to search the social media site such as Instagram for only a specific topic or product. Make your posts searchable to the public by adding appropriate hashtags under relevant topics.

As an example, if my target clients are those who love dogs, I would use the hashtags that have the word “dog” in it;

#ILoveMyDog
#MyCutePuppy
#DogOfTheDay
#DogOfInstagram
#DogOwnerProblem

and so on.. you get the point.

Not only will this increase the range of your potential clients but you are also one step closer to engaging to your very target market. See tip #6

6. Do a Hashtags Search and Pay Attention

Oh how I love hashtags, they make segregation of the market so easy. You can maximize it by doing a hashtag search and engage with those who use them on their posts. Here’s how I do it:

  1. I’ll go to each of these people’s profile and like two to six posts that I “really” like.
  2. on those same photos that I liked I will live at least three comment
  3. and I will @mention the person in one of those three comments I made

Once I got their attention I will then build a relationship with them and along the way I may convert them into my customer. The key however, is to be real and give value to these people.

Easy peasy right!? Apply these important tips and your number of engagements and “likes” will significantly increase. Do them consistently and you will get noticed by new potential customers over time.

Follow me on Instagram for some visual poetry ;) @ramboruiz

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