We all know that visual content is a real attention grabber, and one of the most successful platforms to capture the attention of online audiences is Instagram. Research suggests that Instagram will become even more popular in the years to come!
More businesses are leaning towards the use of Instagram as their main social media platform, with 69% of marketers planning to increase their organic activities on Instagram over the next 12 months! Here’s why:
- Most Instagram users are Millennials and Gen Zs, which make up the majority of online consumers today
- Instagram has a mobile-friendly interface
- Marketers find Instagram better for branding
- Users can explore and get discovered more quickly because of the use of hashtags
- Most posts on Instagram are positive and inspirational
As a business, how can you utilise this platform? Are you doing enough to get your message across but at the same time keeping up with the trends?
Make It Pop!
One of the keys to gaining higher engagement rates on social media is highly compelling visuals. It takes effort to create a visually stunning feed, and it’s not only about simply posting any photos or videos at random.
How do you pick the right ones and carefully plan your Instagram posts? Here are some tips from our Social Media team:
Know What Your Brand Is All About
Your image posts need to have a similar look and tone with your branding.
For example, if you use teal and grey as the main colour scheme in your branding, then try applying this look and feel to the images you post. You may even apply the chessboard effect (alternating between dark and light) to create an extra layer of consistency throughout the feed.
Master The Art of Curation
Do some visual styling. When planning the order of your posts, visualise how your entire feed (profile) will look. Are the colours balanced? Do the tones of each post look uniform or work well with each other? Does it look consistent?
You may even cut a large image into smaller pieces so that different posts can form a bigger picture on your feed, like a puzzle!
A good example of this is Coca-Cola’s Instagram feed. For their social media campaign of their partnership with most-watched series on Netflix set in the 80’s, Stranger Things, they used these 80’s themed posters of the ‘New Coke’, videos that looked like it was shot using an old VHS camera and of course, the upside down Stranger Things font and visual style.
Schedule Your Posts
Use social media tools to plan and schedule your posts. Choose the ones that would best fit your marketing workflow, needs and budget.
- Preview App allows you to see in Instagram’s grid view what your feed will look like. You can see all your scheduled posts in one glance. You can drag and drop your posts around.
- Later is an Instagram tool that allows you to schedule your posts and stories. If you’re working in teams, you can also share your drafted posts with your teammates.
- Gain is like Later minus the feature on scheduling stories. It also allows other team members and clients (if you’re an agency) to easily leave notes and approve the drafted posts and send them to be updated or scheduled.
Reveal What Goes On Behind The Scenes
While you want to curate the best version of your brand on the feed, your brand still needs to stay ‘human’ and grounded. Share what goes on behind the scenes (BTS) to make everything happen and further interact and create relevance with your followers!
If you’re a photographer, for example, and you’ve just posted your most recent work, then post some behind-the-scenes shots as well! To avoid “killing the look” it’s generally more ideal to post them via your Instagram Stories, unless you have BTS content that’s just as high quality as the images you use for your feed!
Make Your Team The Stars
Show off your employees! It’s an easy way to share the pride your team takes in the work they do, and also helps to humanise your brand! Share photos of them at work or having fun together. Showcase your company culture. Hootsuite is an example of a brand that does awesome work with their employee experience.
Never, EVER, Use Staged Stock Images!
Stock images are a huge NO, especially when they’re overly staged and unnatural! Some companies would rather buy stock images than hire professional photographers, but what they don’t get is that bad stock images are really bad for their brand. Here’s why:
- There is no authenticity.
- It’s not subtle – always looking too staged and forced.
- Models are overused.
- It doesn’t show anything unique about your brand!
Consistency Is The Key!
Your posts have to streamline its tone of voice with your brand. Follow the brand styling guidelines. Pick photos that would reflect your brand. Use a specific filter, so that when a person sees your profile or your post, they immediately know that it’s your brand they’re seeing. If you’re using videos, then apply the same formula.
Keep it consistent, but also make it diverse. Find a diverse range of topics to post about that would be relevant and useful to your target audience, and accompany them with compelling and eye-popping visuals.
Create content that adds value to your Instagram audiences’ lives, while spoiling them with a constant feast for their eyes 😉