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Jul 20, 2021

Avoid These Common Mistakes When Taking Photos for Social Media

Written by Matt Layman

Posting pictures to your social media feeds is one of the best ways to generate engagement and awareness about your business. Whether you’re a construction company showcasing the latest project or a restaurant displaying your tastiest dishes, providing enticing visuals to your audience is useful for attracting people to your business. However, if it’s not […]

Posting pictures to your social media feeds is one of the best ways to generate engagement and awareness about your business. Whether you’re a construction company showcasing the latest project or a restaurant displaying your tastiest dishes, providing enticing visuals to your audience is useful for attracting people to your business.

However, if it’s not done correctly, it can be counterproductive to your brand and your social media goals.

Here are a few common mistakes people make when posting photographs on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and more, and the easy ways to correct them.

Mistake: Crooked Photos

You might look through your camera’s viewfinder or your phone’s screen and see all the elements you want to include, but you might be ignoring that things are all leaning at an angle.

Get your photos aligned properly! If you get it a little crooked when you take the photo, and you don’t have the chance to re-take it, at least adjust the photo on your phone or computer’s photo editor to straighten it out.

Whether you’re taking the photo or editing it after the fact, you can use references within the photo to let you know whether the photo is perfectly upright. Whether it’s a horizon in the background, a telephone pole, or a seam where two walls meet, you can use objects within the photo to tell you whether it’s aligned.

Mistake: Including Unwanted Elements in the Picture

Perhaps you own a construction company and you’re taking a picture of a remodeling project you’re about to complete. That’s great content for your social media followers!

But make sure you don’t have stray equipment, a spilled paint bucket, or even a subcontractor in the photo who might not want to be pictured. It’s best to keep your photos clear of everything but the subject you’re intending to show to people. This will help make your photo more effective in conveying your message, but also keeps people from seeing you as disorganized or unprofessional.

Mistake: Blurry Subject or Poor Lighting

Listen – Not everyone is a professional photographer, and not every location has ideal lighting and circumstances. Sometimes you’re forced to take photos at an awkward angle, or while people are moving around, or in the dark. 

But don’t let less-than-ideal circumstances be a reason that people can’t clearly see what you’re trying to show them! And in some cases, poor photos could make someone see you as unprofessional or uncaring about details.

It’s best if you don’t post a photo unless it’s clearly visible, in-focus, and has good lighting. Here are some tips to fix those issues:

  • Blurry photo? Try taking it again! If you’re having trouble keeping the camera still, most modern smartphones have timers on the camera app that will let you set a camera down on a stable surface, take the photo, and then let go of the phone for a few seconds while the image is recorded.
  • Your photo also might be blurry because it’s too far away, the lighting is too poor, the subject is moving, or other issues. Try to identify the problem.
  • Poor lighting? Try again with your camera’s flash turned on, take the photo from a different angle or at a different location, or turn on more lights if they’re available. Lighting will not only brighten the appearance of what’s in the photo, but it will also allow your camera to have its shutter open for less time, which makes it less likely your image comes out blurry.

Mistake: Poor Backdrop/Context

Some businesses might need to “stage” photos – Think of a restaurant preparing a dish for a photo to place on their menu or show on social media.

So the chef prepares a beautiful meal, it looks very appetizing, but it’s on a styrofoam plate on top of a 30-year-old laminate countertop. That’s not ideal.

Instead, pay attention to the peripheral details. Put the food on a ceramic dish that looks inviting and worth leaving the house for. Maybe put the plate on a nice patio table where a tree and some grass are visible, but out of focus, in the background.

Your photos should match the tone of your business, and your business shouldn’t strike a tone of laziness or lack of aesthetic. Put thought and care into what context your product is being portrayed in.


In the life of a busy business owner, it’s hard to spend lots of time on photos. But even taking just a couple of these tips into consideration can make a difference in how your audience views your business.

doneWebs is available to consult with you on your digital presence and even help run your social media for you. For more info or to get started, visit donewebs.com.

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