Instagram is huge. One billion people access the platform each month. As a result, its functionality as a marketing tool is practically unrivaled. However, creating an Instagram strategy that works and profits your brand doesn’t come naturally. It takes practice, a keen eye for design and copy, and a willingness to dig in and experiment until you find out what works.
We’ve been through the process. Now we’re sharing with you our top tips for creating an Instagram presence that commands authority and showcases your brand in an irresistible way.
1. Define your goals for your Instagram Strategy
You’re interested in using Instagram for a reason – and it goes a lot deeper than simply having an account! Think about what you want to accomplish through your Instagram account. Remember that the more specific you are about your aim, the more likely you are to hit them! Here are some good goals that Soulheart uses:
- Create brand authority
- Highlight a portfolio of our work
- Provide value to everyone interested in digital marketing
- Get new followers and engagement
- Attract new potential leads
Your goals might be different – and that’s OK! The most important thing is that you know why you are using Instagram so that you can tailor your use of the platform appropriately.
2. Decide on a brand aesthetic
Instagram is all about visuals. It’s a photo-sharing platform, after all!
This means that you should think seriously about your brand aesthetic. What kind of style do you want to have? Do you want to be pretty and feminine, jarring and dark, urban and sophisticated?
Once you have a style defined, break it down into things like color, font, images, and other visual elements that you will use in your posts. This will make sure that all of your posts showcase your brand’s signature aesthetic.
3. Decide on a brand voice
While Instagram is all about visuals, the captions – and any words in the visual component – matter. Just as you defined your brand aesthetic, you should take some time to think about what you want to accomplish with your captions. Do you prefer conversational or formal? Serious or funny? Practical tips or entertainment?
Once you have a few descriptors that you’re aiming for, break it down into further elements. Will you use contractions? Is there a catchphrase that you want to include in your posts? Any ideas that you want to reinforce to your audience? Thinking through these will make sure that your post not only looks like your brand, but also sounds your brand’s voice.
4. Create a posting schedule to use in your Instagram Strategy
Instagram algorithms stronger favor brands that post frequently – at least every day. Because of this, it’s a good idea to have a posting schedule laid out so that you’re not working from scratch every day. Soulheart features certain types of content – tips, free resources, blogs, videos, etc. – on particular days. This ensures that we have a balance of promotional content, practical tips, and information about ourselves as a brand.
This also helps us schedule our posts in advance (we use buffer). It’s not a guessing game – the schedule ensures that we have the right balance of content and post frequently enough to keep the algorithms working in our favor.
5. Post at the right times
You can have a great post, but if you don’t post it at the right time, it won’t get any traction. If you want to truly see results, you’ll have to make sure that you post when your audience is most likely to see it.
Knowing when to post, however, is almost down to a science – and Soulheart has cracked the code. To learn the best times to post across the major social networks, download our free ebook: The best social posting times.
6. Interact with your audience
Instagram is all about connections. And nothing makes a stronger connection than actively reaching out to your audience and talking to them!
When someone comments on your post, write them back, even if it’s a simple thank you. It will make an impression. If someone repeatedly likes your posts, follow them back as a thank you. Take questions through your stories and respond to them. Make an effort to engage your audience – and they’ll be more likely to engage back.
7. Constantly evaluate your Instagram Strategy
Instagram algorithms are constantly changing. This means that you should be constantly evaluating and asking questions!
Keep an eye on your engagement. Watch for any unexpected upticks in your followers number. When a post is unusually successful, figure out why! Continually monitor for any sudden changes and be sure to investigate any surprises.