First things first: What is Instagram?
Instagram is an online and mobile social tool that allows you to create and share photos and videos. You can share these photos and videos either privately on the app, or publicly on a variety of other social networking platforms. Instagram is a completely visually-based platform, focused on sharing photos and videos, so it’s a wonderful fit for a creative person like you!
Why should I be on Instagram?
Instagram is a great way to reach consumers and publicize your business. With over 500 million daily active users, Instagram usage is second only to Facebook! As a florist, you’re in a perfect position to share beautiful images of fresh flowers and arrangements every day. Using Instagram will allow potential customers to see just how spectacular your arrangements are!
How to Use Instagram:
- The first thing you’ll need to do is download the Instagram app on your smartphone.
- Once the app is installed, you will be able to create an account in one of two ways:
- Connect through your Facebook account
- Sign up through your email
How Do I Get Started with Instagram?
The bar across the bottom of the app contains five buttons that allow you to navigate. From left to right, you will see: Home, Search, Camera, Activity, and Profile.
Home: If you’re following other Instagram users, this is where you will see a feed of their posts.
Search: Browse other Instagram users or enter search terms to find people, businesses, or topics.
Once you enter a search term, you can tap on People, Tags, or Places to filter your search. For example, try entering “florist” and tap the “Tags” option. You’ll see a variety of posts that might interest you; just tap “Follow” to add each user’s activity to your home screen! They’ll be notified that you’re following them, which also may encourage them to follow you back!
Activity: Includes two different content streams. Tap “Following” to see the activity of users you are following. Tap “You” to view your most recent notifications, including who has liked or commented on your photos.
Profile: View the photos and videos that you have posted and edit your your profile. When editing your profile, you can change your name, username, and profile picture, as well as add a short description. We’d recommend including your company name, phone number, and website URL in your description.
Creating content: To post a new photo or video, tap on the Camera icon. This opens your phone’s camera and allows you to either take a new photo or video, or select from your existing photos.
After you select or take a photo, tap “Next” to start editing your photo. You will see three buttons: Lux (at the top), Filter, and Edit.
- Filters: Tap each option to add a stylized filter over your image. Tap on the selected filter again to access strength controls, where you can make the filter more or less visible on your image. Filters allow you to customize your image in a unique way, so you can make your snapshot into bonafide art!
- Edit: Here you’ll find many options to modify your image, including: adjust (to rotate or straighten), brightness, contrast, structure, warmth, saturation, color, fade, highlights, shadows, vignette, tilt shift, and sharpen.
- Lux: This “smart” filter can be used to adjust the contrast and saturation of your photo.
After you have adjusted your photo or video to your liking, tap “Next” again to access the final step. Here, you can write a caption, add a location (such as your shop), and select more social media sites to share your photo to. Linking your social media accounts a great way to reach users across multiple platforms with only one post, saving you time!
Complete your post by tapping on the “Share” button, and you’re all set!
How Do I Get My Photos Seen?
We bet you’ve heard this term very often lately: Hashtags! It’s a good idea to include relevant hashtags in your caption. Hashtags are a great way to allow other users to find your content.
- Hashtags such as #florist, #flowers, #unique, are examples of hashtags that might be relevant to your business.
- By tapping on each hashtag, users can see other posts using the same phrase.
You can take your Instagram account a step further by opening your Profile page and tapping the gear icon to access your settings. Then, tap on the “Switch to Business Profile” option. You’ll be prompted to connect Instagram to your business Facebook page. Once completed, you’ll have access to additional options (such as a “Contact ” button for Instagram users to directly reach you), as well as comprehensive analytics!
How Often Should I Post?
Posting photos or videos to your account several times a week will, over time, help build your company’s web presence and can lead to more orders for your business. Instagram is still an underused platform by businesses, when compared to Facebook and Twitter, which means that starting now is a perfect opportunity for you to get an advantage over your competitors! Above all, Instagram is a great way to give your business a unique and appealing personality: Don’t forget to have fun with it!
For more help and further questions on how to use and navigate Instagram, head over to the Instagram help page!