How To Use Your Photos On Instagram


I remember when a friend once told me if he could just put up quotes on his Instagram because he didn’t want to take the time to take photos. While this can work for some brands, it doesn’t work for everyone. Especially if you’re an entrepreneur trying to sell a service or a product. If your Instagram is all about inspiration, then I would say go for this method. But quotes don’t convert your followers into paying customers and when’s the last time you looked at an Instagram account that had just quotes.

Instagram’s platform was meant to share photos with others. It’s a photo-centric platform. It has since changed some features to include more than just photos but it has still kept its original origins. Which means, we should respect that as well.

So what does that mean for you?

I believe every Instagram account is unique. You can gather inspiration from others, but there’s really only one you and only one of your business. Your Instagram feed should express exactly that. You’re brand and personality. But the real question is how do you do that.

Your photos instantly stop a person from scrolling. Your caption will keep a person on your feed and a potential follow. There’s a number of strategies and methods that you can find on Pinterest and while they can help you get started and gain some traction here are a few steps to help you keep that momentum going.

Using the photos you create. Meaning you either took them yourself or you hired a photographer to help you curate photos for your social media. My general rule of thumb is to have about 20-30 curated photos of my own. I may not use one each day but this gives me a variety to change it up through Instagram, FB and on my blog. I generally post curated photos about 80% of my feed.

Using stock photos. I don’t post stock photos on my Instagram unless it’s a stock photo I took. That’s because I’m a photographer and I want to showcase my work, not someone else. BUT for those of you that are not photographers, this is your permission to use stock photos. Take caution to use these sparingly. If I’m working for a client, I try to only use a stock photo for every 8-10 curated photos.

Graphic Quotes. Or what my teenage son would call a meme. Graphic quotes are when someone just uses a font to write out a quote and post these. I love using this to share a quote that resonates with me or a lesson I’ve learned. I would use these maybe once a month. Unless you’re going for the only graphic quotes or lessons look on your Instagram feed, stray away from using this too often. Also, there’s nothing wrong with ONLY using this on your feed. But if you’re going to be a graphic quotes Instagram, stick with it. There’s nothing worse then someone posting 30 graphic quotes then trying to post photos. It looks random and unorganized.

Sales Graphic. Essentially, if you’re a business or entrepreneur, you’re going to want to sell a product or service to your audience. For instance, I sell lifestyle mini photoshoots and branding photoshoots. Others may sell essential oils, baby clothes or even courses on online marketing. Whatever you’re selling, there’s a cheesy way to do that makes you look like a used car salesman and there’s a tactful way to do it. Here are some tips I’ve used to sale on Instagram;

  1. Start a campaign where you give them a tidbit into your product or service each week in a post, Instagram stories and even think about doing an Instagram Live to answer any questions your audience may have about the product. Don’t be discouraged if no one shows up for your Lives. Be consistent with it and eventually, they will come. Have a list of questions you think they may have an answer those on your life. That way, they’re still getting insight into your product or service.

  2. Post questions and answers on your Instagram post. “Do you struggle with getting dinner on the table? Well, I did for years until I got fed up with fast food, processed meals, and unhealthy options. So I created a meal plan you can easily follow and I’m offering up for $x.”

  3. When you do a post that sells something, think about engaging on Instagram before and after you put the post up. Also, think about doing an Instagram Stories before and after as well. This will get help to attract your audience to your posts when it’s fresh.