Social media is far more a communicative tool than for the self-obsessives posting pictures of what they ate for last night’s dinner (you know who you are!). In the right hands, social media can communicate as a second language with visual power becoming the core of modern universal conversation.

Like the power of brand identity, imagery plays a significant role in how we can identify and perceive the very nature of a business. You have heard the saying ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’, well, first impressions do generally count – whether we admit to it or not.

The great thing about images is that they can convey what sometimes words can’t. They are universal in their language and understanding. In fact in 2015, The Oxford Dictionary’s Word of the Year wasn’t a word

but that of a symbol with a face of tears of joy – otherwise known to all as one of those small text message pictures we have all succumb to sending in recent years - an emoji.

OK so social media sites like Instagram might not be for everyone. You may already be struggling with your time management on a couple of other social media sites already but before you condemn it to social media hell, consider the possibilities of having such a site could benefit your business from…

If you can’t say it – show it! Sometimes it is just down to time. You may already have so much going on that finding time to write a long-winded post isn’t possible. This is where posting a picture could save that time and get your message across effectively. After all, words are just words, whereas pictures, they can convey emotions, thoughts and provide a reality to our audience.

Instagram Over 40 billion images get shared by over 400 million active monthly users. The social media platform is showing signs of significant growth over it’s six year life span.It has over 50% more engagement power than the likes of Facebook and 120 times more engaging than Twitter.

OK, so it takes more than publishing a few nice pictures.You need to get creative, don’t over-complicate your message but also have a strategy in place. Treat your business on Instagram like you are telling a story through pictures. Show development - exploring the particular strengths of visual media will help you develop your Instagram identity and help you build an audience.

MARCH 2017 9

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