Groove on Up


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Written by Alex McCann

We’ve covered the basics of Instagram in our previous 2 articles. Now we want to take a deeper look at some of the more advanced features to really get the most from the platform

In this issue we’ll be looking at some Advance Instagram tips such as Instagram Stories, Poll, Engagement, Photography Tips and using Instagram Insights to help you increase business



Stories are the modern day status updates

Whilst our generation has grown up with the idea of text based status updates that document our life and have a level of permanence, stories are what the younger generation have grown up with and are designed to mimic real life conversations

Stories only remain for 24 hours and once they’ve disappeared, you simply have the recollection of it (and like a conversation people remember the update in slightly different ways).  Instagram stole the feature from Snapchat and what they allow you do is give a behind the scenes glance at real life.  If you imagine the main feed as a curated look at magazine perfect images – stories are less glossy and more real.

Using stories adds a level of authenticity to instagram at the same time as giving an urgency to updates as people rush to watch before they disappear.  The big bonus of Instagram stories is they’re GPS tracked so you can often find yourself reaching outside your own audience if it gets put in a Stories Collection.  For more on Instagram Stories.


A new feature added to the Instagram Stories section of the app.  Instagram allows you do A/B style polls that encourages engagement within the app


Which Colour Guitar Do You Prefer?  Who Is Your Favourite Rolling Stone? Mick Or Keith

Importantly you can see who has voted so it takes the anonymity away that has plagued Twitter Polls in the past.



It’s often forgotten that Instagram is an engagement platform like any other Social Media platform.  It’s not just post your own content and disappear.  There are various opportunities to engage on the search function including:

– People

– Tags

– Places

Let’s say for instance there’s a Guitar Expo on at a local guitar shop.  People on Instagram will tag their photos in that venue and you can use the search to discover new people and have conversations with them.  Conversation drives both awareness and relationships.  And both are essential in building business



The quality of your images is everything on Instagram – your feed will live or die by it.  If I could suggest one thing to improve the quality of your photography it’s simply be observant of others when you’re out and about socially.   Look at those people in restaurants who take photos of their food – look at the time they spend, the different angles they will shoot from and the way they use natural lighting often rather than flash.

Food photography is an art and skill – take the same dedication about your craft when it comes to your own photos.  Once you’ve taken a selection of photos that you’re happy with look at the basic editing options on your phone – sometimes the different between a good and great photo is a look at the light and colour editing options on your phone.

And if you’re looking for a more professional editing suite look at the likes of Snapseed and VCSO.



Last but not least we need to look at Instagram Insights.  If you can measure something you can improve on it.  Think of Instagram Insights as a basic version of Facebook Insights,  it shows Demographics and your Post Activity.

You can work out what posts are performing best and if there are patterns in terms of days / times posted; subject of posts; hashtags used and so on.  Once you know what works for your audience – you can concentrate on giving the audience exactly what they want

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Alex McCann

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