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Every business needs to be active on social media to be relevant in today’s digital world.
So if your company is on social media, it’s a safe bet that you’re uploading photos to your profile on a regular basis. Pictures and other visual elements will improve your marketing strategy.
But it can be challenging to find the right pictures to post.
Let’s say you want to upload at least one new picture to a social platform each day. That’s 365 images per year.
Lots of businesses don’t have a library of that many original photos. So they just take a random picture and post it to their profiles last minute without putting too much thought or effort into it.
This is going to be a major problem for your business if you’re using a similar strategy.
Everything you share with your followers on social media must have a purpose. In order to get the best results from your campaigns, everything needs to be high quality.
Fortunately for you, technology has advanced to the point where you have a professional quality camera in your hand or pocket in nearly all waking hours.
You don’t need fancy equipment to take great marketing photos. All you need are some basic photography skills and inspiration for your subject matters.
If the photos you add to social media don’t look professional, it’s going to hurt your brand image. That’s why I identified these 12 tips to improve your social media marketing photos.
1. Create balance with grid lines
The rule of thirds is one of the most basic photography skills that you should get familiar with.
This technique will improve the composition of your photos and create balance, which is more visually appealing to anyone who sees the picture.
Your smartphone allows you to enable grid lines when you’re taking a photo.
The grid is very simple. It’s just two vertical lines and two horizontal lines that are all spaced apart equally.
You should position your subject matter and anything important in your photo where those lines intersect.
An amateur photographer just centers everything on the screen. But that’s not as appealing.
By using the rule of thirds, the image has more room to breathe.
Just look at all of the open space in the skyline above. This puts more emphasis on your subject matter.
Plus, people are used to this tactic being applied in professional photography, whether they realize it or not. So when someone sees a photo without the rule of thirds applied, it will automatically not seem as attractive to them.
2. Find symmetry
Symmetry is another visual element that we are just naturally drawn to.
So if you have the opportunity to capture symmetry in an image, you should definitely do so.
Here’s a great example of a photograph with symmetry.
It’s simple, but it works.
Now, take a moment and imagine what this photo would look like if it weren’t taken from this angle.
If the camera was positioned slightly to the left or right, the symmetry would be lost.
Sure, it may still seem like a nice picture of a walkway going out into a clear ocean on a beautiful day. But capturing the symmetry elevates the image and brings it to a more professional level.
Your pictures need to stand out to draw attention from your followers.
If it looks like an amateur is taking all the photos, it will reflect poorly on your brand. We both know you don’t want that to happen.
3. Crop instead of zooming
Another rookie mistake that I see people make all of the time is using the zoom feature.
Manually zooming in on a subject is a big no, unless you’re using a professional camera to take pictures.
But like I said before, that type of equipment is unnecessary. Your smartphone will capture pictures that are good enough to post.
However, once you start zooming, it damages the quality of the photo.
Instead of zooming, just get closer to your subject. If that’s not possible, don’t worry about it. Take the picture from where you are and use the rule of thirds to improve the composition.
After the photo is taken, you can just crop the image to your liking.
Here’s an example of how to do this in Adobe Photoshop.
For the most part, you shouldn’t need to do this on your computer. You can crop photos directly from your smartphone.
Notice how even though this picture is being cropped, the rule of thirds is still being applied.
The reflection in the water is also a nice touch, but we’ll talk more about that shortly.
4. Embrace natural frames
Framing your image is another basic photography skill. No, I’m not referring to developing your photo and putting it into a wooden box.
Sometimes subject matters are perfectly positioned to be captured within a natural frame surrounding it.
Any time you have the chance to use a natural frame, you should take advantage of it.
Here’s a simple photo of an airplane wing that has a natural frame.
This image is perfect for so many reasons.
First, if you try and get too close to the window to take the picture, you’ll end up getting a glare. Second, the wing by itself is just too boring.
By adding the window to the picture, it elevates the quality of the picture to the next level. You get the see the lighting changes and the shadows as the natural light from…