So, you have your brand-new images in hand, how are you going to put them to use to really enhance your Instagram feed? I have been obsessed with my Instagram feed for some time, it’s not by any means perfect but I certainly have some obsessions that I can share with you if you are looking to up your game in this department.
Let’s start with why it is important to have a well curated Instagram feed. I am a visual person and when I stumble across a new profile that has amazing imagery then I am going to be hooked.
Images are a hugely powerful tool that can engage (or disengage) a potential customer in seconds. If your feed has great images, is also well organised, colour coordinated and tells a story then you are onto a winner and I would be pushing that follow button immediately.
If I find an image interesting then I will read the caption to see what it’s all about, otherwise I don’t bother (harsh, I know) but it’s all about grabbing people’s attention and you are going to do that with the image and not the caption, so here are my tips to creating your best Instagram feed.
USE AN INSTAGRAM SCHEDULING APP
This has been a life saver for me, an app where you can upload all your images, schedule your posts and preview what they are going to look like in your feed once posted. There are plenty of these programmes out there and it’s just a matter of finding the one that works for you. I use Later which also posts to Facebook and Pinterest and it has a great desktop option (no one wants to type out those long captions on a phone), not to mention the great blogs and tutorials they offer. The paid version also allows you to schedule more than one Instagram account so if you run multiple accounts then it’s a huge time saver. Once your post is scheduled you can check the preview and see what it’s going to look like in your feed, brilliant, no more guessing game! I have really noticed the improvement in my feed since I’ve been using the app.
GET BUSY WITH INSTAGRAM’S ARCHIVE FEATURE
This is an amazing feature as you can basically remove your whole feed if you wanted to start afresh. I went through my feed and removed any images that I didn’t like, any old images that no longer reflected my style and anything that didn’t look good sitting next to each other in the grid. Be tough, it is a great way to be able to create the feed you want with very little effort and if you feel like you have made a mistake you can easily reintroduce that image to your feed, simple.
PICK A THEME OR COLOUR PALETTE TO SUIT YOUR BRAND
I hear this piece of advice so often and I’m a little jealous of accounts with a constant theme or aesthetic running though their feeds. I work with such a wide variety of clients from beauty products to food, they all have completely different brand aesthetics and this means it’s impossible for me to stick to one colour palette or theme. If you don’t have this same dilemma and you are using Instagram to build your own brand story then chances are you already have a pretty strong “look” that you are going for. This look can be created with the use of a certain colour palette, your brand colours perhaps, a monochrome scheme, a pink theme (yuss!). I also love accounts that change their colour theme every week, again I have tried to do this with my own feed but it just doesn’t work for me. Maybe you are more of a minimalist and your theme is loads of white space with just a small selection of beautiful objects. You could choose to create a dark and moody theme for your food styling images, really making those ingredients pop – the options are endless! This is a great opportunity to tell your story and convey your brand’s message to your followers so make the most of it.
HAVE A PLAN OF ATTACK
Instead of posting randomly with no real purpose, plan your posts and ensure they always relate to things that are happening in your business. I have to admit this is not something I have always done. I have long been a big fan of the random posts but I feel like that was a bit confusing to my audience. Have days allocated to promote deals you have going that week, introduce a team member, feature a product, a little behind the scenes of your business in action. This helps keep your account focused and tells people what they want to know. It also saves you a bunch of time when scheduling as you already have your themes in place.
REPURPOSE YOUR CONTENT
There are so many ways you can use your images, they are certainly not done with just because you have posted them once on Instagram. Keep it consistent and use the same image in a number of different forms, that way you are really getting your money’s worth. Here are some ideas based on what some of my current clients have done with their images:
*Hero images on website
*Crop or zoom in on details (while maintaining the quality of course)
*Use images with space to add text and promote sales, competitions, mailing list, etc
*Place text over top and create a cool Pinterest graphic
*Use for a Facebook ad
*Create market stall graphics and backgrounds
*Pull up banners
*Instagram grids showing a range of images together that tell your story
*On your blog then with text overlay to promote blog posts
*Postcards and thank you cards for when people shop online with you
*Print advertising and articles
*Profile images and banners for social media
SOME OTHER THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN PLANNING YOUR INSTAGRAM FEED
I mentioned earlier that I obsess with getting my Instagram feed just right. If you are anything like me and notice all the small details then here are some of the things that I consider when planning my posts for the week.
I never use the same background twice in a row. One day it might be a coloured background, the next day might be textured or dark. This adds texture to my feed and makes each individual image stand out as opposed to just blending together in the grid. Of course, this may be different for you if your theme is based on the same background.
If I post a really ‘busy’ image one day then I try and counteract that by posting something more minimal the following day. I aim to ensure my feed doesn’t look overcrowded and this is a great way to combat that.
I have so many different types of images and I always try to get an even spread of colour, dark backgrounds, food etc so that my feed looks balanced. For example, all the dark images should not be on one side.
I try to spread out the themes so if I posted a food photo yesterday then today it might be flowers or beauty products. This shows variety so my followers are aware of the range of products I work with.
I consider the types of images I have posted as well so if today I post a relaxed style flay lay then I’ll post a well-aligned organised image in the following days, again this shows my range and keeps my feed balanced and interesting.
So, there you have it, with all that to think about it is remarkable that I get anything done at all! If you are not a details person then ignore that last section and just have fun with it, the most important thing is that you tell your story, that story is what people are there to see. Does anyone else have obsessive Instagram grid rules they like to stick to? I would love to hear them, comment below!
I hope this was helpful, until next time.