Maximize Instagrams Other Features
Instagram has built a whole slew of features for us so that the platform is robust. But also, so that we never find the end of ways to discover other content, right? Like I was saying earlier, Instagram wants to keep you in their app. They wanna keep us using their app. So what better way than to give us multiple rabbit holes to fall into. So, I wanna kinda go through some of these and talk about why they're important and how you can use them. Geotags are essentially the location tags. So you have here, this is a friend of mine. A photo that he, a post that he made. So at the top you see his username. Right below his username, you see the geotag. So that is essentially the location tag. That is where the image was taken. And if you click on that geotag, it takes you to other photos that have been also geotagged that same location. And the statistic that I found is that photos that have geotags have about 79% more engagement than those without. So that's a really powerful way of getting...
your photo discovered. I know that, all the time, I mean, I did it here. This was a photo conference that we were at together. I went to that El Capitan Canyon geotag so that I could see all the other photos that have been also shared from that location. Because I wasn't just interested, I could've clicked on the hashtag for the camp, or the conference, if I wanted to see other conference photos. But what I wanted to see was what that canyon looks like during other times of the year. This is in Santa Barbara, just outside of Santa Barbara, that's close enough for me to take a weekend trip there. Do I wanna go to Santa Barbara and stay there for a weekend trip with my husband? I don't know, what does it look like? Click on the geotag to find out. So geotags are incredibly important. People tags versus @-mentions. So right now there are two different ways that you can sort of mention other people in your posts. So @-mentions are things that you are literally typing into your caption. So I'm writing this in. When I start typing @-k-a-t, it's gonna start auto-filling based on people that I follow, right? So he probably did that when he did this. He was selecting who to people tag. I'm sorry, selecting who to @-mention as he was typing his caption. In addition to that, though, what you can do is use people tags. So all of thee black tags on the image are people tags. And clearly they're not all for individual people. It's basically any account, right? So you're tagging that account. The difference between the two is that if you people tag them, those images will show up if you go to that person's profile and you go into the section of photos that that person has been tagged in. So in essence, the people tags on the image therefore result in more discoverability by other people. So I can go into Creative Live's Instagram account, and I can say, show me the other photos that Creative Live has been tagged in. And then see who the other instructors are. Like if another instructor has come in and posted a photo and hashtagged it or people tagged it, sorry, then I can find it that way. If you are just @-mentioning in the caption, that notification gets sent to the person who just got tagged. But you know how Instagram gives you your little notification list? So like, this person liked your photo, this person tagged you in a photo, et cetera, et cetera, that list is, I think, a hundred pieces of data long. So, if more than a hundred people, or if there have been more than a hundred actions on your photos or account, then that @-mention is gonna get pushed out, never to be seen again, right? So it's possible that, if these people that he @-mentioned hadn't checked their phone recently and they have a lot of activity on their account, it's possible that they never even saw this, which kinda means that this is, this is what will give them a little red notification saying "Hey, you've been tagged in this photo, "maybe check it out? "See if you still wanna be tagged in that photo or not?" And then also it stays there unless the person removes their tag. So it makes another, it gives you another, it offers another way for your photo to be discovered. So what he has done here, the reason I chose this image to share with you, is because I wanna talk about relevant people tagging and some of the people that you should think of, or accounts that you should think of when you're hashtagging an image. So, of course, the obvious one is the person in the photo, right? So that's the one right in the center. The conference that we were at, it was called Yeah Field Trip so he tagged them, of course. It's kinda relevant. It was a photo taken at their conference. And then these are other things. So, it's a film shot, shot on a Leica camera. So he tagged some Leica accounts. He kinda works for them or works with them a lot. So I think that, you know, they know who he is and they kind of recognize that, oh hey, this photographer that we work with is tagging us in images. But also, if any of us are just Leica fans, have no idea who he is, if we go to one of these Leica accounts and say, huh, who's using Leica cameras, who's tagging them in photos? We can go and discover his image. He processed the film at Indie Film Labs so he's tagging them and then separately he's tagged this person who is a hair and makeup artist, who was there for that shoot. So everybody who is tagged in that photo is relevant in some way. Or every account that is tagged is relevant in some way. And I think that's really important. I noticed that, you know, I have a good number of followers and what happens to me is that I get tagged in all sorts of photos that I'm not in, that are not related to me in any way, shape, or form. I think with the hope that it results in their photo being more discoverable. What it really means is that I get annoyed, I probably block them, and I definitely remove myself from being in that photo. So I untag myself in all the photos that are not relevant for me. You can actually, if that's a concern for you, you can actually have it so that you can approve the photos that you're tagged in before they show up on your feed. I haven't done that yet. So far, this is working for me. But, who knows, maybe I'll change it. But when you're the one making the tags then, or doing the people tagging, just make sure it's relevant and that you're not doing too many things that don't make sense for your image. I think what you see a lot of times is people tagging brands in their photos. And I think that's totally fine and relevant. And I think that it can help you maybe get noticed by the brand, on one hand. Say you're a photographer, and you really do a lot of adventure photography. And you start tagging REI and Patagonia and whoever else in your photos. That's great and all. It gets it pushed into that feed of people, of images that they've been tagged in, but those are massive companies that are probably, you know, it's kinda like the hashtags that are too popular. That's just gonna get pushed down so far that it may not actually be seen by anybody. It might not help you at all. And a company like REI or Patagonia might be so big that they don't notice you honestly. There're so many people doing that same sort of thing for those companies that you're basically giving them free advertising for nothing in return. So think about that as well. Not that I'm opposed to it, per se, but just think about whether or not it actually does benefit you as a user or as a photographer or as a person who's making those tags. What you might want to do, kind of the same thing with the hashtags is like, pick something that's not so big. So maybe a small business who would really appreciate the little extra boost that you're giving them by mentioning them in your post or by tagging them in your posts. Instagram Stories, what you can do now. I'm gonna do a whole section on Instagram Stories right after this but, with Instagram Stories it can be, it's just kind of another touchpoint for you, another way for you to interact with your audience. Sometimes, like I was saying with the algorithm, your photos might not get seen. But maybe your story gets seen. 'Cause it shows up in a different place on the app. So, Instagram Live as well, can also provide a different way for you to communicate directly with your followers. And then one last thing. Oh, direct messaging is actually another touchpoint for you. So if you're using it, I'd suggest checking not just the messages that you're getting that show up with the little notification, but I think what happens is, if you're not following a person, they can still message you, but it shows up in this Other messages folder and you get a little notification inside your Direct Message inbox. So just check that every now and then, especially if you have a small business. I find that, excuse me, I wanna message some companies sometimes, like for instance, I had to do the screen shots of this commerce feature that I showed you earlier and I originally had a company chosen that I really wanted to feature. And I messaged them, but they're a bigger company. So I messaged them and it was days and I just, it's been days, I still haven't heard back from them. Just 'cause I think it's like, they're big, they have other stuff to do. They might not think to check their little Other messages or Other inbox messages. So, you know, as far as I know, they haven't seen it and may never see it. So be on top of that and this other thing is a side note, not necessarily that will help you for discoverability, per se, but it's a really wonderful tool that Instagram has provided us. You can now bookmark your images that you're, not your own images, you can bookmark any image you want that you're interested in and saving. And then you can create little collections of those as well. So it's kind of like your own personal Pinterest board. Yeah, so it's nice. It's like a Pinterest competitor, I think.