House Party makes it easy to have a party in your own home and get exclusive access to awesome products for you and your friends. We provide the fun, you provide food, your friends and feedback and promise to have an amazing time.

How to: become an Instagram pro

In recent months, we've tackled a variety of topics in our "How to" series, like how to decorate for your House Party, how to take great videos, and how to make your application as strong as possible. Today we're looking at a popular but perhaps still under-utilized social network: Instagram. Even if you don't use it, you've probably heard of Instagram: it's the photo-editing and -sharing app that Facebook bought for a cool $1 billion back in 2012. These days, Instagram has around 200 million monthly active users. Why so many? For one thing, it's easy to use; anyone can download the app and pretty quickly start making their photos look better by applying one of a range of built-in filters. It's also easy to share your Instagram creations with your other social networks, like Facebook and Twitter. Since including photos and videos is one of the best ways to get people to notice and engage with your posts on any social media platform, this is a great tool for spicing up your posts everywhere. Even if you don't share your Instagram photos and videos to other platforms, though, you can still build up a distinct community within the app itself. Just like with Twitter, you can follow people (and be followed back), and you can include hashtags in your posts to let users with similar interests find you. (Try searching for, and using, hashtags for the things you're interested in, whatever those may be: #brunch, #puppies, #MadMen - you name it.) If you're new to the app, try to find not only your friends but also some of your favorite celebrities, athletes, news organizations, etc.; it's a great place to see some real-life, behind-the-scenes peeks that you might not find elsewhere. Let's look at how to actually use the app. Once you open it, you'll see five tabs at the bottom. From left to right, these tabs let us:

  • See what the people we follow are posting
  • Find other users and hashtags
  • Post a photo or video of our own
  • See who has liked or commented on our posts
  • See our profile

instagram image 1

If we go to the middle tab, we can post a photo. Once there, we can either take a new photo from within the app or upload one that's already in our photo library. We're going to take try taking a photo of Slinky Dog. Clicking the blue circle takes the photo:

instagram image 2

After we've taken or chosen a photo, this screen lets us apply a filter. By scrolling through the bottom icons, we can see all of the filter options and choose the best one. We can also adjust other settings, like the photo's brightness, using the small icons above the filters:

instagram image 3

Finally, the next screen lets us add a caption (don't forget to include any relevant hashtags!) and choose which other social platforms to share to:

instagram image 4

Easy, right? If you want to get really fancy, there are a lot of third-party apps that help you enhance your Instagram experience in different ways:

Finally, we'd be remiss if we didn't put in a plug to follow House Party on Instagram. You'll find Party Pack photos, behind-the-scenes snapshots and more. We'll see you there!

instagram image 5

 

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