Content planning for Instagram can be tricky if you don’t truly understand the concept of Instagram. And if you are using Instagram for your business, you NEED to have a clear understanding on why it is important to master your content plan.
You can spend hours and hours searching for content and posting content, and not being able to attract the audience you need because of the type of content you’re posting.
I actually set up my content for the week every Sunday. I take time to plan out my week and look at my goals and incorporate my content into my schedule so that I am not wasting time searching for content and more importantly, I am not wasting time on social media, which let me tell you…. IT IS very easy to do!
If you’re stuck and unsure of what you should be posting on Instagram, here are a few elements to keep in mind to ensure that your content is benefiting you and your brand.
Know Your Purpose
You should know WHY you’re on Instagram and WHAT you’re trying to accomplish with this social media platform. Are you trying to build brand awareness? Generate leads? Build influencer relationships? What’s the end goal?
Your purpose should dictate your content. If the purpose of your account is to sell your products, then you should be regularly posting photos of your products – that’s pretty straight forward. But that doesn’t mean basic product photos on a white background that you would most likely see on a website – Instagram is a VISUAL platform so if you want to sell more of your products from Instagram, they need to look good! Use styled images to help people envision what it would look like to have your products in their life.
If you don’t sell physical products, then think about what your audience would want to see or learn before they hire you or before they visit your blog / website. People aren’t in buying mode when they’re scrolling through Instagram. No one says, “I need a tulle skirt so I’m going to go buy one on Instagram” or “I need a health coach so I’m going to go search for one on Instagram” – that doesn’t mean they won’t come across a tulle skirt they love or a health coach they trust on Instagram, but it’s probably not the reason they opened the app to scroll through.
So even though your purpose may be to “get more design clients” – that doesn’t mean your posts should all be “I’m a designer, hire me!” – but what you can do is share posts that allow your followers to get to know you as well as how you can help them so that you can build that know-like-trust factor that can lead to your followers becoming paid clients.
If you’re not clear on your purpose, you’re going to have a hard time figuring out what to post and you’re probably going to have a hard time growing your following as well.
Know Your Audience
One of the reasons why I love Instagram more than the other platforms I use is because it feels like the most personal network of what is currently out there.
If you’re the face of your brand then your Instagram content is probably going to be more personal. People want to connect with people, so it makes sense to share behind the scenes content and personal stories that help people relate to you as a business owner. Some people may share mostly business-related content plus a little bit personal content mixed in. Some people may share mostly personal content with a little bit of business mixed in. Some people may split it completely 50/50. There’s not a right way because what works for me or you may not work for someone else.
If you’re trying to find the right balance between personal and professional content, remember your purpose. If your purpose is getting clients for your graphic design business, then most of your content should be related to that. If your purpose is getting more people to read your blog, then you should be regularly sharing your blog posts. If photos of what you ate for breakfast or what you wore on Friday night or what your kid did at school aren’t related to your purpose, then don’t share them.
Know Your Brand
Keeping your purpose and your audience in mind, your Instagram content should also be on brand. When someone comes across your Instagram account, they should be able to recognize your brand from the rest of your online presence. So when you’re crafting your content make sure that the colors, patterns, style and your voice are all aligned with your brand. The last thing you want to do it is confuse people by sharing off brand content just because you felt like sharing a random photo.
Finally, an effective Instagram content plan is going to involve consistency. Consistency in style, your voice and your branding is important, but also consistency in content. That doesn’t mean you need to share the same thing every day, but there should be a certain level of consistency so people know what to expect. That could mean every Tuesday you share a tip or every Saturday you share a behind the scenes photo of yourself or every other post you share a quote. By creating consistency, and potentially even creating a visual pattern, you are more likely to draw your audience in and keep them engaged.
I hope this helps you have a better understanding of how to master your Instagram content plan. I would love to hear or see what you've done!
With Love | Nikki xo