Geotagging Instagram photos (or anything else for that matter) is almost like giving away your address. It immediately raises privacy concerns and those are very legitimate concerns too.
The recent update to Instagram’s iPhone and Android apps made browsing photos easier and better with the Photo Maps feature where you can view your geo-tagged photos on a map. Despite users voicing their concerns, geo-tagging is an optional feature like it used to be, and if used wisely, it can give the community and the Instagrammer some benefits.
Here’s how you can create a Location Page on Instagram as explained by the Help service on the site. But how can you the user be selective about geotagging and use it where appropriate? Let’s look at three ideas:
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Start an Instameet and Make New Friends
Instameet are meetups organized around Instagram walk-arounds and other common interests that has to do with mobile photography and of course, Instagram. You can browse to www.meetup.com/instagram and find a meetup going on in your city, then click Count me in. You can also be pro-active and start one yourself.
To find fellow Instagrammers in your city, you have to fall back on the location tag. Search hashtags (for e.g. #london) to see if places near your town are mentioned. Connect to the people who’ve posted anywhere near your city or town and direct them to your city’s meetup page. Very soon, you could have a community started and ideas being thrown about.
Create Your Own Time Capsule
Taking inspiration from interesting projects like Fourist and This is Now, you can create your own collage of memories on a Photo Map. Taking time-spanned photos of locations and geotagging them gives you a perspective of how your world is changing in small ways. You can enhance your mobile photography project by giving it some context with geotagged information. For instance: a simple Instagram project could be to show how developmental work is progressing in your city and how it is affecting the lives of people caught in it.
Use it To Promote Your Business
Famous brands like Starbucks, Burberry, Selfridges and many more are making creative uses out of Instagram. Real-world retail stores are stimulating interest by posting pictures of their stores and sharing their locations with geotagging. Starbucks uses Instagram to create buzz around its retail stores that are spread around the country. Recently, Bergdorf Goodman used its shoes, Instagram, and the landscape of Manhattan to create an “interactive map of shoe fanaticism”. Find out how brands are using Instagram on its blog.
If you have a small business, you can reach out to customers and engage them with geotagged pictures of your store or wares. Or set up an event and advertise it with Instagram.
From the simplicity of meeting new friends and creating your own memories with a photo time capsule, to the complexity of branding your business, Instagram can be used in interesting ways.
Does any other alternative use cross your mind? Do you use geotagging with your Instagram photos?