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The evolution and popularity of various social media platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and Facebook have brought about significant changes in the society and the way in which people view themselves.
Today, the majority of the people at a crowded place will be busy with their mobile phones as if they are cuddling a newborn. This has forced experts to think seriously about the impacts of Facebook and common platforms on individual lives.
Even in the field of politics, it has an important role to play as it helps the parties to acquire votes. It has altered the business operations in many ways and big corporate houses use different social media platforms for promoting their products.
The increase in usage of social media has increased the social introverts within the UK and also all over the globe. Constant dependence and usage of Social Media have minimized virtual interaction and lowered the level of social intellect individuals have.
At the time of our research on “What are The Pros and Cons of Instagram?”, we found a video about “how social media drastically affects us” which is worth watching. ?
Today, there are more than 2.3 billion users of social media all over the globe. Most of the corporate houses have multiple social media platforms and 70% of people become uncomfortable on not getting access to such profiles.
Today, one of the most popular social media networks is Instagram. However, everyone does not know about it. It is unknown to people who are not accustomed to social media usage.
It is a social networking service that can be used free of cost for sharing videos and photos. It was launched in the year 2010 in October on iOS and then was extended to Android devices in the year 2012 in April.
Just like Twitter and Facebook, on Instagram also, the user has a news feed and a profile. Any video or photo that is posted is displayed on the user’s profile. Your posts will be visible to other followers in their personal feed.
In the same way, you can also see the posts by other users that you have followed. It is just like Facebook’s simpler version focusing mainly on visual sharing and mobile usage.
You can easily interact with different users on this social networking platform by private messaging, tagging, liking, commenting, following them, and by being followed by others. Photos viewed on Instagram can also be saved.
Just like any other social media application, Instagram permits the following users in whom you are interested. The homepage will have a number of feeds which are the current posts by the people you have been following. It is your choice to comment and like these posts.
Apart from the videos and photos that can be seen permanently on your page, the app also has an option for posting Stories. This feature is quite similar to Snapchat. Stories are nothing but a series of video clips and photos. They are available for viewing for 24 hours following which they will expire automatically.
Apart from all this, the app also has options for direct messaging which makes it possible to chat with close friends privately. Different profiles can be explored by you to find interesting things. Details about the app have been given below.
Looking for a place to gain popularity? Yes, it is Instagram for you. The app makes the world glittery and nice and makes everyone loom beautiful.
However, no app comes with shortfalls and it is the same with this app. Thus, the advantages and drawbacks of the application have been discussed below so that you can understand Instagram in a better way.
Reasons for Using Instagram
The presence of multiple social networks might force you to think about reasons to use Instagram.
The basic idea behind the app is the exchange of photos which can be easily clicked with the help of a smartphone. You need not carry a camera wherever you go because you just need to click a picture, apply some filters and you can just move ahead.
Some users are not bothered about doing any photography and act like ‘lurkers’ on the app which is also acceptable. A lurker can be defined as an individual who does not make any posts but simply follows others.
Celebrities have also started using Instagram to share their lives with the help of stories. Thus, Instagram is by far the best way to stay in touch with your friends securely.
Some people are using Instagram as an advertising platform also where they build a large follower base and share photos mainly to develop a following. After this is achieved, they market their products for making money or start promoting their blog for marketing purposes.
Instagram as a Valuable Social Network
It has already been said that Instagram has a visual appeal which is why everyone using the app aims at finding and sharing the best videos and photos.
The profile of every user has a ‘Following’ and ‘Followers’ count representing the number of individuals being followed and the number of users who have been following them.
The profile of every user comprises of a button that can be tapped for following them. A user profile that has been marked as private will have to approve any requests that pop-up.
A profile that is marked as public can be found and viewed by anyone along with the videos and photos that have been posted in this profile. You must mark your profile as private if you want your approved followers to view your posts.
It is great fun to interact on the posts that come up on the app and it is equally easy to do so. A post can be double-tapped to add a comment or simply like it. There is an arrow button that can be clicked for sharing the post with others in the form of a direct message.
The search tab allows you to find your missing friends, find interesting accounts that you can follow and browse posts that are recommended for you. There is a search bar right at the top which can be used for searching particular hashtags or users.
Instagram for Business vs. Personal Use
Instagram boasts of more than 25 million business profiles but the 1st step on the app is to have your own personal profile. Now the question is about the need to set up a personal profile before setting up a business profile.
The reason is that there are professionals who prefer sticking to their own Instagram profiles. Nevertheless, if additional contact options, advertisements, and Instagram Insights are significant factors for you, then you must try to switch using Instagram for your business purposes.
One of the extraordinary features of Instagram is Instagram Insights. Here, professionals using the app for business purposes can acquire a lot of information regarding the audience and followers who react to their posts. The data acquired in this way helps business proprietors to relate their marketing strategies online to get the expected results.
Users can easily contact you through the contact tab placed below your business bio profile. This helps in saving a lot of time in seeking details of the required contacts or wait after posting a comment until it is viewed.
If you are using Instagram for business purposes, you can also add links to your Instagram stories which will motivate the viewers to follow the links.
What are the Pros and Cons of Instagram?
Pros of Instagram:-
1. Attractive Interface
The Interface of Instagram is its largest advantage. However, some consider it to be messy and slow due to its enormous visual content. On the other hand, some consider it as organized and neat when compared to Facebook.
Your profile never gets flooded with information that is difficult to process at times. It is a platform that helps you in organizing your profile efficiently giving it an attractive appeal. The primary reason why people have started the option for Instagram is its visual appeal.
2. A Good Visual Medium
Instagram is best utilized for the sharing of photos. You can share everything you do, wear, or places you visit on the app with the rest of the world.
There are numerous filters that can be used which enhance the beauty of everything shared by you. Adding a filter helps in adding more glamour and charm to the photos shared by you.
However, you must refrain from using them always as sometimes you must maintain your originality as well.
3. Marketing Promotion
Initially, Instagram served the only purpose of connecting with other users but today it acts as an effective way to promote marketing activities and strategies.
Renowned brands market their products on their profile page and newly launched startups use images to create their market base.
People like artists and models can also exhibit their work and develop their fan base. Thus, today Instagram is a significant platform for the marketing of social media.
4. Amazing Application for Travellers
Travelers consider Instagram as their newfound love. It has a geo-tagging function that allows you to post pictures along with the location where they were clicked. Also, it is easy to view the photos that others have shared and were present at the location the same as yours.
Contrary to Facebook, this app has a clear concept about whatever they present to their users. Along with filters and photo-sharing, one can also share live streams and videos.
Stories that are shared on the app disappear automatically the next day. Instagram is quite smart as it offers a number of extra functionalities through apps such as Photo Grid and Boomerang.
Instagram has the best privacy policies when compared to any other social media platform. Anyone who wants their photos to stay private will have it so.
The privacy settings of the app cannot be bypassed in any way. The profile picture of every user is strictly private and cannot be downloaded by any other user.
7. Business Profile on Instagram
Any brand owner or influencer can easily switch to a Business Profile from their personal profile on Instagram. However, you would like to know the benefits of doing so.
Any business owner who is willing to promote anything on Instagram must have a simple and easy process by which people can establish contacts with you. This is possible via the Contact tab in the business profile of an individual.
Initially, when Instagram was designed, users had to limit the video’s length posted by them for less than a minute. However, Instagram TV/IGTV installed later brought about a change in this policy.
You can easily upload your lengthy videos on IGTV which makes it amazing. This has also taken the level of entertainment on Instagram to new heights. Today, users can view innumerable videos on Instagram such as trailers of new movies, funny videos, etc. Thus, IGTV has taken the app to a new level.
Also, you are the one who decides what will happen when a user clicks on that button. You can allow the users to see your location, make calls via that button, and also email you to get in touch with you.
Links can be associated with your Business profile when you have a list of 10,000 followers or more. In this way, the viewers can be directed to your landing page easily.
9. Representing your Business Visually
Today, visual representation of your brand has become an easy task with the evolution of apps like Instagram. You can post appealing images of the products you deal with to attract customers.
This is because it is human nature to get attracted to photos rather than simple word texts. Nevertheless, you need to do much more than simply post a luring image.
A description field is provided and your post must utilize it well. A post attracts more viewers when it is linked with a catchy caption and significant hashtag.
10. Higher Engagement Rate
Contents posted on Instagram promise a higher rate of engagement because of the huge number of users active on the app.
The survey indicates that Instagram today has the largest number of active users when compared to any other platform like this. Instagram has a 70% higher engagement rate than Facebook. Apart from this, it has a 9% higher growth rate of followers than Twitter.
Cons of Instagram:-
Addiction to social media platforms! Is it something new? I do not think so. The story is the same with this app. Toxic addiction is what is affecting the majority of the population with respect to Instagram.
95% of the population is simply glued to this app throughout their day. Inactive users called lurkers are simply busy on the app by viewing what others have been posting. This is the sheer wastage of time and nothing else.
At the time of our research on “What are The Pros and Cons of Instagram?”, we found a video about “Here is Why You Should Stop Using Instagram” which is worth watching.
It has clearly been stated that Instagram by far is the best available platform for promoting your brand and products. However, it is a fact that crossing the limit is always harmful which is also true for this app as it is flooded with an unbearable number of sponsored posts and advertisements.
The reason behind this is that both individuals and companies are allowed to exercise promotion on the app by spending very little for this purpose. This should not be bad but it has become a pain as an advertisement pops up after every few posts.
3. Fake Life for Most of the Users
Instagram is an app that gained popularity over a very short time period as it has the power to make people popular overnight. This became evident with the sudden rise in teenage celebrities.
Users started getting fame just for posting something and getting an innumerable number of followers for doing so. This encouraged people to fake the lives they actually shared on the app for gaining fame. Thus, the need for getting fame and validation is very toxic and it is affecting teenagers the most.
4. Limited Number of Features on the Web
Users who are aware of the web version associated with the app know that the app lacks a number of significant features. The app has its users addicted to the app and cannot access it web version easily.
Nevertheless, with passing time, the app is adding on some of the features on its official website also such as stories. However, every feature cannot be expected on the web.
5. Availability Limitations
Initially, Instagram had been designed to function only on iOS and Android systems. Many technical experts have tried to design online access or online version for the app but the experience one can have with the original app can never be compared.
This limits the Instagram users with respect to marketing as it becomes difficult to reach an individual who does not have a smartphone.
6. Technical Limitations
Instagram has excellent features and interfaces but it has a number of technical limitations as well. It has a terrible web version because the platform is suitable only for the application version.
Its images are not suitable for every kind of shape when compared to Facebook. Also, it has a global privacy setting that cannot be changed for photos of every individual.
7. Con Artists and Deceiving Users
Users who have been using Instagram for marketing their products and services must be aware of the liars and con artists present on the application. Anonymity is also a boon and a bane with respect to online profiles.
Sometimes, it can be advantageous, and sometimes it can be disadvantageous. It is easy to alter a picture such that its appearance can change completely. A thief can simply cheat you by acting as a buyer who can acquire goods without making any payments.
8. Posts on Instagram do not Support Clickable Links
Captions on Instagram must be limited between 125-150 characters and becomes even more limited when you have to lead this caption beyond Instagram.
Now the question revolves around why is it so. This is because a link cannot be added within a caption as you will never be able to click on it. Users cannot include any link on Instagram expecting the users to highlight copy and then paste it on any other browser as this is not possible.
This becomes challenging for users on an app willing to view the feeds and simply tap on posts liked by them. Thus, you will have to think of some creative alternative than links to let users visit your business page other than Instagram.
9. No Copyright to the Pictures
People can levy copyright infringement when any other user tries to take credit for the work actually done by them. On Instagram, your followers and the ones who search for your hashtags can easily access the videos and pictures posted by you.
It seems useful for seeking potential clients but can also become a disadvantage in some cases. People can access the work done by you, copy it, and represent it as their personal work.
Avoiding or Using Instagram!
Today, one of the most amazing social media platforms is Instagram which serves as an excellent place for sharing photos and browsing the world closely.
Nevertheless, a lot of caution must be practiced while doing so because by now you have to come to know about all the advantages and disadvantages of the app. Some behaviors like hunger for fame and validation and addiction to some app are quite toxic and you must try to avoid them in every circumstance.
If you keep this in mind, Instagram will be good to you and you simply pass your leisure time on the app.
You must consider Instagram as the last resort for satisfying your needs of online marketing. This is because it helps mainly in boosting the rate of engagement, developing contacts with your targeted audience and interacting with your kith and kin.
However, if the app turns out to be highly advantageous for you it must not overwhelm you. This is because there are innumerable drawbacks of marketing through this platform.
In spite of the app drawbacks that have been given above, it is still the best social media platform within the current market. You must focus on using these features effectively so that you can boost your business activities in many ways.