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Why You Shouldn’t Be Afraid to Try Instagram and Snapchat

July 31, 2014

By Carol Amato

Most of us are skeptical to try new things, especially in this age of scams and ‘stuff’ that wastes your time. But, if you didn’t sign up with Twitter back in 2006 – don’t you wish you had?

Those who did test the waters now have a huge advantage of an awesome following over those who waited to see if it would catch on – hindsight is 20/20.

Sometimes you might just get a strong feeling in your gut that you should try something out, but lack the courage to do so. Maybe you should rethink your hesitancy to try new things – because waiting might make you miss out on some very good opportunities!

Why You Shouldn't Be Afraid to Try Instagram and Snapchat

 
I feel that way about a couple of applications – Instagram and Snapchat – and I want to share with you why I think that they’re worth your time and effort to check them out and use them wisely to help grow your business.

If you think you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, think again because I’ve had Instagram for a while and enjoy it, and just got Snapchat and am having a blast with this little app!

What You Should Know about Instagram

Unless you’ve had your head in the sand, you’ve probably heard about Instagram and have maybe checked it out. But, do you know how it’s growing by leaps and bounds and what you can use it for?

Basically, Instagram is a popular application that works much like Facebook –  it lets you use photos that you take on your iPhone or Android and manipulate them by editing and captioning after you upload them.

See another valuable post:  How to Snap and Share Instantly On Instagram

Last April, Instagram launched an application for Android and was immediately snatched up by Facebook. Now, Instagram boasts over eighty million users and more sign up every day.

Instagram isn’t just for those of us who take pictures of our dogs’ antics or special recipes we’ve made and want to share – it’s for online entrepreneurs who want to share images and have dialog and build relationships with others in our communities.

Instagram is a great way to share, create and find those who have similar interests as you. You can build your client list quickly by using the visual format that Instagram provides for social and business interaction.

Instagram does have a desktop application available for download.
Connect with me on Instagram.

instagram profile

This is the view of my Instagram account on my computer.

You can import friends from your other social media accounts such as Facebook and Twitter and immediately see what they’re posting from your Instagram newsfeed. Plus, Instagram is so easy to use – and, it’s free – that it’s a no-brainer for you to check it out and see how it could work for you. 

Click to tweet Why You Shouldn't Be Afraid to Try Instagram and Snapchat

Snapchat – Another “Must Try” App

Another app on my list of having the courage to try is “Snapchat,” and I’m really enjoying this little app. Not only is Snapchat fun, but it can also be useful in your social media business pursuits. This photo-messaging app was released for Androids in November, 2012 and hasn’t looked back – adding new features and much-requested privacy settings.

Why You Shouldn’t Be Afraid to Try Instagram and Snapchat

Developed by Stanford University students (at the time), Jonathan May and Evan Spiegal, Snapchat is used to snap photos and take videos to which you can add drawings or text and then send them to a list of recipients. These “snaps” can be set with a time limit on how long they can be viewed and after the time expires, the snaps are hidden from the recipient and deleted from the servers.

Some great features of Snapchat include:

  • Tell your story with the photos you take. You can add captions, videos and much more to tell your story. 
     
  • Set time limits on your snaps. You determine how long your photos/videos can be viewed. After your recipients view, they disappear. 
     
  • View the status of your snapchat. You can easily see if your recipient(s) have viewed your snapchat by swiping at the left of your message. If the recipient’s name shows as “white” name, they’ve seen it. 
     
  • Filter features (Smart Filters) can be accessed. Smart Filters lets Snapchat gain access to your current GPS location and adds temperature, time and current speed to your photo if desired. 
     
  • Replay and front-facing flash are available. These settings are great for “selfies” and to make a decision about sending the snap. 
     
  • Privacy settings available. Even though you can rest easy that your videos and/or images will be destroyed after the time you set for viewing, you can also select who can view your snaps with the “Settings” feature and block others. 
     
  • Live chat with or without video. You can use Snapchat to view and join a conversation from a text message that someone sent or chat with a person when you’re in the “live video chat” mode.
It’s easy to download the latest version of Snapchat, and you’ll love how it helps you converse with others (great way to brand your product or yourself).

If want to download Snapchat to your computer, you could check out iSnap or iSnap Pro (5-star rating), which is the unofficial client for Snapcat. It’s free and can be added through a Chrome extension (100% javascript).

Snapchat has many features that other social networking apps don’t have – and it’s worth a try.

What About You?

Are you curious about Instagram but haven’t created a free account yet? How about Snapchat, do you use this new app, and if not, why?

Is it because of overwhelm, busyness, fear, or just lack of knowledge?

I certainly don’t want to lose out on any opportunities that give an advantage for building new relationships, helping others, providing value, and also getting traffic to my site. It’s not just for the younger crowd!

I’m carolamato3 on Instagram and on Snapchat, I’m carol-amato. If you like, put your Snapchat and Instagram info in the comment section below, and I will connect with you…

carolamato-edited

Take Care,

Carol Amato

 
Click to Tweet:

  •  Take advantage of getting in early with Instagram and Snapchat. [Tweet]
  •  Why you shouldn’t be afraid to try Instagram and Snapchat. [Tweet]
  •  Rethink hesitating to try Instagram & Snapchat or you’ll lose out. [Tweet]

 





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  • Dan

    I use Instagram and Snapchat all the time, but never thought about actually implementing them. Great idea.

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hi Dan,

      Well, congrats to you! You’ve already taken action and are in the know, that’s fantastic! How old are you, by the way, if you don’t mind me asking?

      Thanks for the kind words – much appreciated!

      I am just beginning to explore Snapchat and am building my friends list. Will be interesting to see the results I get.

      Thanks for stopping by to share your thoughts and hope you have a wonderful rest of the day. :)

      – Carol

      • Dan

        My username for both Instagram and Snapchat is damato1005.
        And I am 21.

        • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

          I’m 53, if you must know… LOL :)

          I’m sure there are more younger folks who use Instagram and Snapchat, but there are a lot of ways to connect using these resources, so I think it’s all good.

          Hope you have a great evening.

          – Carol

  • http://www.adriennesmith.net/ Adrienne

    I don’t use either of these Carol, shock right!

    I’m not a big cell phone user although the photos I take now are with my phone. But I don’t like accessing sites using my phone mainly because I’m so use to the computer that I just prefer it so much more. So I don’t access Facebook, Twitter, nothing on my phone because when I am out and about I’m not back online checking things.

    If I could access these through my computer I might give them a try but since I can’t you probably still won’t see me on there anytime in the near future.

    The way I look at this is I can’t be active full-time on every single social media platform so I chose the ones I enjoy the most that I know my audience is on and I stick with them. Maybe I’m wrong but I’m only one person and this is just the best I can do!

    Man, I’m tired just thinking about all of that now! LOL!!!

    Have fun though and I’m sure you are.

    ~Adrienne

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hi Adrienne,

      I completely understand what you’re saying about not accessing sites with your phone. I didn’t access sites using my phone very much until this year.

      I am like you, I MUCH prefer the computer, but since we travel a good bit, I’m thankful I can use my iPhone to access everything. The phone is more difficult because of how small it is, but I refuse to get an iPad or Tablet… My laptop is good enough, and I would just take that if I wanted. My husband has an iPad, and I sometimes use it to read Kindle books. :)

      Guess what? I just edited my post above due to your comment!

      Why? Because Instagram DOES have a desktop version, and I neglected to make that clear the first time, so I just edited. ;) Can’t thank you enough! It’s amazing how you get clarification as to what you missed by what is said in the comment section.

      That’s what that picture is of – my Instagram profile on my computer – I took a screen shot of it and put it on my blog post so people would know what the application looked like, then I linked the picture to my account so people could visit my Instagram.

      You’re absolutely right about not being able to be on every social platform, I couldn’t agree more!

      I’m wanting to increase my span, so am spending some limited time (have a schedule) on these new platforms in order to reach out to new folks.

      It’s fun, and I’m learning new things, and will know what everyone is talking about. I can’t believe the Instagram pictures I see on Facebook now…tons!

      I truly hope you have a very special long weekend as you take some time off, Adrienne – thanks so much for your comment, really appreciate you coming over.

      Take Care,
      – Carol :)

  • asgonzales

    I used to do instragram but never try snapchat but reading this and seeing the features I will try this. I think it will be a good and very interesting. =)

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hi Adrian,

      Yes, I can understand that because Instagram is older than Snapchat, so that stands to reason.

      It is a lot of fun, so look me up and let’s connect…

      Hope you have a great evening.

      – Carol :-)

      • asgonzales

        Ok Carol see you on SnapChat.

        • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

          Did you add me? I don’t see you on there…

  • EquiTraining

    Great post on Why You Shouldn’t Be Afraid to Try Instagram and Snapchat. I get frustrated with Facebook and could be better served by the simplicity of Snapchat and Instagram. Thank you.

    Melina

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Ciao Melina!

      Thanks very much, glad you enjoyed it. I know what you mean about Facebook, it’s very ‘noisy’ and sometimes it’s a bit hectic. I keep getting added to groups I don’t want to be in! LOL

      I simply remove myself… Snapchat and Instagram are very simple and mainly for images and video, which is cool.

      You’re welcome, Melina, and I appreciate you taking the time to stop in and share your thoughts.

      Take Care,
      – Carol :)

  • daniel imbellino

    You hit the nail on the head in terms of waiting too long and missing out! Me and a friend jumped on Google+ just days before they first released their communities feature, and now we operate some of the largest and most engaging of all communities on the platform. You have to get moving quickly when new technologies and capabilities emerge. If you don’t, someone else will, and you’ll lose out entirely.

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hi Daniel and welcome to my blog!:-)

      What a wonderful testimony you have about being willing to take a risk and dive into something to test the waters– and I know you’re very glad you did.

      Yes, we need to move quickly, however, sometimes it’s a little hard to have the discernment to know which ones to jump on which ones to leave behind as there are so many, and we don’t have time for everything.

      You were very smart, because you saw that anything owned by Google (usually) is a good investment of time and effort and sometimes money.

      Thank you so much for coming to share your story, which validates my point, it’s very much appreciated.

      I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

      – Carol

      P.S. Found you on Twitter and am following you there. :)

  • http://redwinemag.com/ Dr. Diana Hardy

    I love both apps, I am getting so much traffic with the help of both apps. I have sold 76 copies of my magazine through snapchat and instagram.

    Both are fantastic apps. Thank you so much for sharing this post.

    ~Dr. Diana Hardy

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hi Dr. Diana and welcome to my site. :)

      Wow, that’s good to hear, and I’m really happy you’re getting such great results with Instagram and Snapchat. Congrats to you for putting yourself out there, learning the new platforms, taking risks and thriving!

      You’re welcome – so glad you enjoyed it. I appreciate your comment and hope you are having a beautiful Saturday.

      Take Care,
      – Carol :)

  • http://www.gauraw.com/ Kumar Gauraw

    Hi Carol,

    Being in the personal branding arena, I surely secured my Instagram place as soon as I knew about it. However, I have not been very active on using the platform. Partly because I didn’t feel connected with the platform and I am more comfortable with the big 3. However, I do see the potential and I will keep a tab on them so I can pick up whenever I need to.

    Snapchat certainly sounds interesting. I am going to check it out because I don’t have it on my iPhone :-) Duh!

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on both these Apps! Have a great Sunday!

    Regards,
    Kumar

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hi Kumar,

      Great to see you today. Smart idea to secure your place on Instagram, that’s for sure. I had to add a number to my name as it was already taken when I jumped on board.

      Ah – comfort…You mention the comfort word. lol I know, you’re telling me? I force myself outside of my comfort zone in order to achieve things for myself and my business on a continual basis, but I do understand about comfort.

      Snapchat is really cool. I’m a complete beginner and only have a few friends. When you get yours going, look me up! :)

      Thanks for stopping by to share your thoughts, and I hope you have an awesome day!

      – Carol

  • Angela McCall

    Hi Carol,

    I have the instagram but not the snapchat. However, I don’t use the instagram all the time, only once in awhile. If my iPhone isn’t broken, I would give it a shot on snapchat, so maybe later.

    So you can tell a story on Snapchat, sound like my kinda thing. I’m big on stories. I always love making little comics of some sort specially with my pets.

    Anyway, I’m still awake and it’s 3:02 AM here. I just drop by just to check on you quickly. We should talk soon later. Have a great evening…I mean morning…

    xoxo
    Angela

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hi Angela!

      Yeah, I had Instagram for a while before getting Snapchat. Oh, bless your heart – what’s the status on your phone? Are you getting the screen replaced or what?

      Yeah, you would do well on Snapchat because you’re so artistic…

      Oh, sorry you couldn’t sleep – wow, that’s late. I stay up late sometimes although am trying to change to early in the morning and early to bed. We’ll see how that goes. LOL

      I really appreciate you coming by to share your thought, my friend, and hope you have a great rest of the weekend. :)

      Take Care,
      – Carol :)

  • http://www.aha-now.com/ Harleena Singh

    Hi Carol,

    This sounds interesting! :)

    Yes, I’ve heard of both, but didn’t know that there are even desktop versions to these, so was always running away from them. That’s because quite like Adrienne, I’m another one who rarely uses my phone and mobile and prefer working on my laptop or desktop, it’s so much quicker and easier this ways. Nor am I much of a person who spends time on taking pictures etc, though Instagram’s coming up in a big way and turning out to be a great social networking site, perhaps might be getting better than Pinterest shortly.

    My kids know both of the apps as they are so quick on it, but I still need to learn it from them, though as you mentioned that it can be used on the desktop too, I’d better find the versions and check them out – that’s a real surprise I’d say!

    Thanks for sharing this with us. Have a nice week ahead :)

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hello Harleena,

      Yes, they are very interesting and isn’t it amazing how our children are so quick to learn the new technologies and platforms so quickly.

      I prefer the computer as well so was pleased a few folks who are using them for business have stopped by to comment to say it’s very profitable for them.

      I’m new to Snapchat and only have a few friends, but have enjoyed Instagram longer. Little by little, inch by inch, but I’m sure glad I registered accounts with my name when I did and have profiles with my website listed as well.

      Always something new on the horizon but these are biggies and not going away, that’s for sure.

      How many children do you have, Harleena? I have three grown ‘kids’ and the youngest is a senior in college. :)

      I really appreciate you coming over to check out the post and for taking time to share your thoughts, I appreciate your insight.

      Hope you have a fantastic upcoming week and I’ll see you soon.

      – Carol :)

      • http://www.aha-now.com/ Harleena Singh

        Hi Carol,

        I have two daughters…mine aren’t all that grown up as yet – as the younger one is still in school in her 11th, while the elder one has just started college and pursuing her Dental studies to become a dentist, which would take another 3 years to complete. Nice to know about your kids….and being grown up and independent, gives you more time in hand I guess. Waiting for that time myself now :)

        • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

          Hey Harleena,

          That’s wonderful! Very exciting time for your girls. What a wonderful profession your daughter has chosen…much need in the dental field.

          My son has been home for the summer, and will return to Florida in about 30 days for his very last semester, then return back here in PA. We’ve only lived here one year after having moved from Florida, so it’s a little difficult for him because all his friends are in Florida.

          Nice to know about your family too, and thanks for sharing. :)

          Take Care,
          – Carol :)

  • http://www.bloggingfromparadise.com/ Ryan Biddulph

    Hi Carol,

    I just followed you on Instagram. It’s a fun, easy to work network, it’s just that I’m searching for the 25th hour in the day to squeeze it in.

    Right now I may update IG once every 2-3 days. It takes a second to post a photo and a minute to Like other images and chat for a bit so definitely no excuses.

    IG also works quite well for my travel photos; again, between writing for my freelance clients, blogging, networking and still doing all of our travel stuff I’m learning to squeeze it in.

    As you said Carol we should be present on as many networks as possible. Enough to make an impact so you can appeal to people through their medium of choice. This is the great secret to smart leveraging; join up, maintain an active presence and you’ll meet new folks across different channels.

    Thanks for the nudge Carol. I’m checking Instagram now ;)

    Have a fun week.

    Tweeting in a bit.

    Ryan

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hi Ryan,

      So glad to see a comment from you – you made my night. :)

      Thanks so much for the follow – and rest assured, I am not on there very much, but limited time. But it’s very good to get an account, set up your profile and use it when you can. Great!

      Just do what you can, but it helps to have a schedule, maybe 3-4 social media 3 days per week and several others 3 days per week or whatever works for you.

      Also, wanted to let you know, that I had a bit of trouble commenting on your guest post at Sylviane’s – it finally went through, but double posted, so two duplicates are in moderation. lol weird things have been happening to me in the last few days with comments, but such is life in cyberspace sometimes.

      Thanks so much for your encouraging comment, Ryan – it means a lot!

      Hope you have a great rest of the week. :)

      – Carol

  • http://inspiretothrive.com/ Lisa Buben

    Carol, I’ve been on Instagram a long time but not Snapchat, I will have to connect with you there and try it out some more. I’m not sure if I have the latest version either so I will check that out. And I didn’t know it could be downloaded to our desktop, that’s great too! Thanks for the inspiration to get back to it Carol!

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hi Lisa,

      So glad we’ll be able to connect on Instagram, and when you get Snapchat, don’t forget to add me. :-) I’m having a blast learning it. :)

      Congratulations on your 4th year anniversary, Lisa – and many more!

      Hope you have a great Wednesday and thanks for stopping by to comment.

      – Carol

  • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

    Hi Sunday,

    Nice to hear from you. Yeah, well – the advertising is more geared for the younger crowd, and I’m sure the majority of the users are under 20, but hey – you’re right, it’s definitely for young and old. I mean, you should read a few of the comments on my blog about people having success with it, astounding!

    I only have a few Snapchat friends, so if you get an account, please add me.

    Thanks for stopping by to share your thoughts, I really appreciate it.

    Have a good evening.
    – Carol

  • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

    Hi Vivek,

    Welcome to my site! Yes, sometimes you just have to get in there and do it! As you take the plunge and learn Instagram, it will come easier for sure.

    It’s the same way with Snapchat. :) I was a little hesitant as well, but definitely enjoy both platforms now, and it’s just plain smart to secure a page on their sites for branding too, and learn to use it little by little.

    Have a great day and thanks for stopping in to give your opinion. :)

    – Carol

  • http://www.beamoneyblogger.com/ Muba Mi

    Hi Carol

    Hmmmmm. “Nothing is permanent in this world; everything be changed but change is permanent”.

    Who knew how monumentally Twitter would be popular when it was started in 2006.

    The results of first election of Obama were first broken at CNN and Twitter quoted it but in second election CNN quoted a tweet of Obama to announce the results. This is the growing popularity of social media.

    Just one year ago Instagram was taken as very techie type of addition in the list but now it has become quite user friendly and people are fully supporting it just because we have to accept the change and adjust ourselves in the changing scenario as change is always permanent.

    You very amazingly defined both the Apps and the first impression I got reading your post you not only use them but fully enjoy them. This is the sign of a successful online entrepreneur that she enjoys her work.

    Thanks a lot for sharing this wonderful post which is perfect from all aspects and very relevant and important information you put into it in a very simple way.

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Hello Mi Muba,

      It’s so mice to see you here.

      Yes, it’s amazing how things get shared so quickly on Twitter and all social media these days.

      Instagram has evolved quite a bit, you’re definitely right about that, and I couldn’t agree more that change is permanent. :)

      This article was designed to take what may be mystifying for some and make it understandable and approachable for all, so thank you very much for your kind words about the way I communicated it – I so appreciate this.

      It’s wise to stay on top of what’s happening and grab a spot on these all important social media platforms. We certainly don’t want to be left behind.

      Thanks for stopping by to share your thoughts, Mi Muba, and I look forward to visiting your blog soon.

      Hope you’re having a wonderful Wednesday so far.

      – Carol

  • http://sylvianenuccio.com/ Sylviane Nuccio

    Hi Carol,

    I’ve started using Instagram recently, but it’s giving a headache login every time I do, and don’t have any idea why. And what’s more is that I don’t know how to use it well with my phone, so all of these make me not using it, but I guess I’ve got to get my head around this somehow.

    I don’t think I had ever heard of snapchat, but what a cool name. I will give it a try. Anything to extent our wings is good, right? I only wish I had more time.

    Thanks for sharing with us the benefits of those snap shot tools :)

    • http://www.carolamato.com/ Carol Amato

      Ciao Sylviane,

      So happy to see your face! :)

      Yeah, I don’t use my phone much either, that’s why I’m glad there is a desktop version.

      I have more friends now on Snapchat, so if you sign up, please add me. lol It’s a lot of fun, and is wise to get your name on an account, and fill in your profile for your brand.

      You can always go little by little, inch by inch. :)

      I really appreciate you coming by, my friend, and you got that right – anything to extend our wings is a good thing!

      Time, well….Just schedule a couple times per week, for a few minutes maybe?

      Okay, take care of yourself and see ya soon.

      Ciao,
      – Carol

  • http://sylvianenuccio.com/ Sylviane Nuccio

    OK, never mind I did get it now. Just don’t know how to upload my avatar now.

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