1. Bio/Description/ CTA.
Have a clear written bio, it should say briefly what you do and where you want your customers or follower to go, meaning what should they click next, – a call to action to your website, Facebook group, blog or anywhere else you want to lead them. The best thing is to get them to your site, and get them to sign up to your email list. This is often done by a offering a free gift like this quick guide you just downloaded, but that is another teaching in it self. I am using emoticons to make my bio more eye catching You do not have to use as many as I do but you can use some to spice up your profile. I am a multitalented/multi passionate entrepreneur so my bio would state more than one field of interest/profession.
Tobias Michel is a videographer and multimedia designer and his profile has a clear message about who he want to work for and what he is doing. He also has a free gift to give away as a CTA (Call To Action)
Then there is my other Instagram account about health and food tips @oustandinghealth (which is quite new) that has a different CTA and no website at the moment. If I had a product to sell, I would put that in as a link. (More to come later).
Use a strong and easy to remember username, no underscores or numbers. If the account is about you or you are a sole entrepreneur who uses your name in your business, then use your name. I use mine.
3. Privacy Setting
Never ever set your profile to private if you want to reach followers or customers. It is okay to start a private profile to make your profile nice and add pictures before you start. But DO NOT keep your profile a secret to potential followers and customers.
4. How to start
Start your account with 9-10 pictures. Make them look clean and smooth and bring a nice feel to them. Make sure they represent your brand. People evaluate your 2 last rows for business purposes. The examples below gives a good branding for their businesses. They are not multi passionate entrepreneurs but have one niche.
You need good photos in order to stand out, but you do not need to be a professional photographer. You can use your smart phone, Iphone 6 (s), and other new smart phones have really good cameras. The trick is to use good light and mostly light backgrounds. Whitespace and white backgrounds always do the trick! Practice and more practice you will make you better at it. Tip: Do not take selfies with the toilet or toilet paper or similar in the background. Just don’t! Backgrounds are everything. (Toilet rolls aren’t ;) ).
Try to use the same filters and you can delete all the other filters that you do not use on your phone. Practice to find what filters is best for your brand/account.
7. Have well written text to your pictures.
That will grab peoples attention. Tell your story with words. Show it with the picture. Tell why your followers should like your photo (or video) without asking directly for it. There are people on Instagram who engage more by their texts than photos. That’s a way to stand out too!
8. By all means have a profile picture of you.
Don’t be a logo, be a business with a face. Remember people buy from people they trust, like and know. This goes especially for solo entrepreneurs and freelancers that are not a big corporation.
9. Does it fit your brand?
Make sure that your post aligns with your brand. If it doesn’t fit, don’t post. If you are a personal trainer focused on fitness content and you just bought a new house – ask yourself: Does it fit?
10. Style guide
Are you sticking to your style guide? If your business has a style guide, like colors, fonts, ways of representing the brand, use it on Instagram too.
Instagram Photo Tips
By Tobias Michel of www.tobiasmichel.com
1. Chose one subject to focus on (not 50 different things at once)
LEFT: Simple and good: A phone on a desk (a bit too dark though)
RIGHT: Nice overview, but neither the bird, the flowers or the tower is the center of attention
2. Find enough light to brighten up the subject (or try to use Instagram’s editing features)
LEFT: Good – RIGHT: Too dark
3. Fill the frame with your subject
LEFT: Good: The meal is filling the frame of the entire image.
RIGHT: Not good: This is neither a picture of a meal nor of a table. It is something in-between.
One medium, two close ups and one overview picture together make for great collages (now build-in into the Instagram app – or use one of the may free apps)
5. Play with depth
Depth: The obvious use is to have a foreground subject close to the camera (like a face) and a little off to one side, with something in the distance filling the remainder of the frame and telling a story. (Like walking off the stage after a workshop with the next speaker behind me)
A more unusual example is this picture of a, at first, lonely Michael Jackson imitator on the street – with a huge crowd reflecting in the window behind him. (The MJ imitator is the foreground close to the camera, the crowd is in the inverted distance)
6. Symmetry is sexy!
7. Diagonal lines are more exciting to look at than straight lines
Sometimes tilting the camera makes for more interesting photos – usually it is better to keep the camera / phone straight but move around and find a spot to take a picture where the subject and background form diagonal lines.