From its beginnings as a popular photo app, Instagram has grown into a popular social network. With a focus on visual content, users can post photos, videos as well as Instagram stories, and use IGTV and Instagram Live for their content. If you want to post content in a visually appealing way and generate interaction, you should know Instagram’s image photo and video formats.
An Instagram profile picture is like a representative for your company, allowing it to be easily recognised. It is the first impression that you give to your customers to catch their attention and steer them towards your profile and content. You therefore absolutely have to choose a profile picture that is serious, convincing, reflects your company, and complies with Instagram's guidelines.
How can you change your Instagram profile picture? (iOS/Android)
Your Instagram profile picture will be displayed differently depending on the end device used. Most users browse Instagram with their smartphone. If you want to change your profile picture using your smartphone, you must tap on the bottom right of the screen to go to your profile. Once there, you will find a field called ‘Edit Profile’, which is the same on both iOS and Android. Tap here, and then tap ‘Change profile photo’ under your picture. You can then change your picture or add a new one.
Be careful with the blue plus sign under your profile picture on iOS smartphones. This does not let you change your profile picture. Instead, it lets you post a new story, video, or Instagram reel.
The right design – what to bear in mind when choosing a photo
Your Instagram profile picture should make it obvious at first glance what kind of company you are and what content your profile will show. The obvious choice would be to use your company logo as your profile picture. However, if you want to do this, you need to ensure that your logo is still recognisable in a small format and that any text can still be read. Instead of your logo, you can also use a picture of your company or one of your products. A single person standing in front of a company also comes across as a professional portrait.
If you don't yet have your own website to go with your Instagram profile, you can use the website builder to make your own website quickly and easily.
There are a few basic tips to consider when selecting your profile picture. You should use a relatively simple design that is easily recognisable and that perfectly represents your company. Make sure the design is centred, has natural lighting, and has an appropriate background. You may edit your picture with editing software, as long as you make sure that it still looks natural and fits in with your Instagram’s aesthetic. For your profile picture, you can either use a timeless design that will always be relevant, or you can adapt your picture based on the season, special events, or ongoing social media marketing campaigns. Influencers love this, as it shows that you are regularly active on Instagram.
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File sizes and shapes – Instagram’s guidelines
As well as the design of your picture, its size, resolution, and format are also crucial. As a general rule, you can add pictures in both JPG and PNG format. PNG files do stand out, however, as they can be compressed with no loss of quality in the image. In terms of the size of your Instagram profile picture, you can follow Instagram’s official guidelines. The size of your profile picture will vary depending on the end device used. Below are the optimal dimensions for your picture:
- Smartphone display: 110 x 110 pixels
- Desktop display 180 x 180 pixels
Your Instagram profile picture should therefore have a minimum image size of 200 x 200 pixels. This leaves you a little wiggle room to crop the design as you want or to compress the image. This way, your profile picture will look great and be easily recognisable in all Instagram profile picture sizes. If you want to save time and energy, you can also import your Facebook profile picture in just a few quick clicks. However, your accounts will have to be linked for this to work.
If you want to add a new profile picture to Instagram, you need to make sure to always follow Instagram’s guidelines. This way, you can avoid any unpleasant surprises or serious consequences. You can only upload pictures to Instagram if you own the rights to them. That means pictures that you have taken yourself or that you acquired the rights to. You also are not allowed to infringe any personality rights.
The cream of the cropping – how to get it right (smartphone/desktop)
When you add a profile picture to Instagram, it will automatically be cropped into a circle. You absolutely need to take this into account to make sure that important parts of the image are not cut off. We recommend that you choose a square image where the focus is in the middle. You can adjust the cropping of the picture both when you upload a new profile picture or by changing a picture you already uploaded. This is particularly easy and simple to do using a smartphone:
- Press one finger onto the picture.
- Slide your finger left, right, up, and down to change the image cropping.
- Press two fingers onto the picture.
- Draw your fingers closer together or pull them further apart to change the zoom on the circular crop.
You can make changes to your profile picture using both your smartphone and your desktop. To do this in the desktop view, click at the top right of your profile picture to select ‘Profile’ and then ‘Edit Profile’. In the next screen, click the blue highlighted text ‘Change Profile Photo’ and add a new profile picture. However, please note that you cannot manually change the cropping of the image in the desktop view. You can only do this using your smartphone.