With over 1 billion active users, Instagram is without a doubt one of the most far-reaching social media networks that you can use for marketing purposes.

Instagram has shown itself to be a viable advertising opportunity for businesses today and is showing no signs of slowing down. In fact, Instagram advertising revenue will surpass $ 20 billion in 2019, an exponential increase from 1.86 billion in just three years.

If you are new to Instagram for your business, you are missing out on a ton of opportunities to increase brand awareness and reach wide audiences. Fortunately, with enough time and effort, implementing an Instagram strategy can be relatively easy.

However, if you’ve never used the app, you may get discouraged by the first question that probably comes to mind: How do I post my first picture?

If you’re ready to post a picture on Instagram, you’ve come to the right place. Here we have created a quick and easy guide on how to post on Instagram to ensure you can get your audience’s attention with Instagram marketing.

How to post on Instagram

  1. Tap the + symbol at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Select a photo or video from your library – or take one in the app.
  3. Crop the picture.
  4. Try a carousel post.
  5. Choose a filter.
  6. Edit your photo.
  7. Enter your caption.
  8. Use hashtags for fine tuning.
  9. Day friends.
  10. Add your location.
  11. Play with emojis.
  12. Share the post on other social media platforms.
  13. Edit the post.

How to post on Instagram

Consistent posting on Instagram can help businesses resonate with their audiences and grow better, but getting it right is just as important. Here’s how to post on your Instagram account step by step.

1. Tap the + symbol at the bottom of the screen.

Instagram post icon on the home screen [+]

See the plus sign [+] in the picture above? This is your starting point. Do you see this contribution from our cultural account? This is your end point. Click the plus sign and you are ready for the next step below.

2. Select a photo or video from your library – or take one in the app.

Instagram will show you the photos that are already saved on your phone. Select one of these to post. Alternatively, you can click “Photo” or “Video” below to take a photo or video in the Instagram app yourself, if you don’t already have a picture to use.

When you have selected an image, click “Next” in the upper right corner.

Instagram Gallery Photo Picker

3. Crop the picture.

You’re not limited to just one square picture on Instagram. You can also share horizontal or vertical images. To see more of your picture, pinch the screen of the photo you selected from the library screen.

Crop photo on Instagram by pinching

Although Instagram allows vertical and horizontal options, the images still have to fit in certain dimensions. You may need to crop a small piece of your photo to make it fit.

4. Try a carousel post.

Do you have multiple photos and do you want to highlight them all? Instagram allows you to do this with its carousel feature.

Instagram

When you tap on a photo or video, first tap the icon just above your photos on the right, which looks like stacked squares. Once you tap on it, you’ll see a number in the corner of every picture or video you tap on. This number indicates where the content will be displayed in the carousel.

5. Select a filter.

Instagram offers 24 filters – scroll right to read your options and click on one to preview how your photo will look. (For more information, check out our ultimate guide to Instagram filters.)

Instagram filter

6. Edit your photo.

You can also click Edit in the lower right to adjust contrast, brightness, and more.

Instagram Photo Editor

When you’re done, click “Next” in the top right corner.

7. Enter your caption.

Get creative and add a nice, interesting caption to your photo. Since text can help optimize your post in Instagram search, writing something can only benefit you.

Instagram caption

8. Use hashtags for fine tuning.

Instagram’s search function allows users to search for hashtags. So make sure you include relevant hashtags in your caption. If someone searches for a hashtag that you put in your caption, they may find your post as well as others containing the same.

9. Tag friends.

Would you like your friend or his followers to see a photo you posted of the two of you? Tag them!

On the post page, you can click “Tag People” to tag other Instagram accounts in your post. Alternatively, you can include the handle (or the username that starts with an @ symbol) in your label.

10. Add your location.

If you’re on a fun vacation or at a neat event and don’t want to include this information in your caption, there are other ways to mark where you are. On the post page, tap Add Place to add a location to your picture (making it easier for people to find your post).

When you post a picture or video with a location, it will appear between your name and the content block in the feed.

11. Play with emojis.

Emojis are fun and can make your caption more eye-catching. If you know some relevant emojis that might go with your post, stick them in the caption area.

For example, if you are posting a vacation photo, you could add a beach umbrella or airplane to show that you have flown somewhere.

Don’t go overboard and post emojis just to post them. Obviously, if you post a bowling emoji along with a photo of a beach, it doesn’t make sense to people. By posting 20 emojis loosely related to a post, all you can do is tease your followers or score them as desperate.

12. Share the post on other social media platforms

If you’d like to share your content on other connected social media sites (like Facebook or Twitter), just slide the bar from left to right.

When you’re ready to post, click Share in the top right corner.

Instagram share post

Instagram saved designs

If you’re not ready to post right away, you can save it to your Instagram saved drafts too. Just go back to the filtering and editing step, tap the back arrow in the top left and select “Save Draft”.

13. Edit the post.

Typos happen to everyone! If you’ve just posted something and notice an obvious misspelling, don’t panic. Simply tap the three dots to the right of your name and then tap “Edit”.

Instagram post edit menu

Now that you know how to post on Instagram, it’s time to create content for the platform and connect with your audience. If you are a company or brand, you want a solid strategy for building engagement and awareness.

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in November 2019 and has been updated for completeness.

Instagram templates