The potential Instagram has to help make your business a success is huge…if you use it right. And today I’ll be helping you understand how to create an Instagram marketing strategy that will help you do just this.
An Instagram marketing strategy guides you through how you should be using the platform. It covers what you should be posting, who you should be targeting, conducts crucial market research, helps you build a community on the platform, and promotes your business.
Instagram has so much potential for businesses to get clients from and raise brand awareness. With over 2 billion active users on the app, there’s plenty of opportunity for you to grow your business on Instagram.
Sadly, it’s not as simple as just posting a photo, sharing it and hoping it’ll get traction. Long gone are those days! As a business, you want to be more strategic with the way you’re using the platform and how long you spend on it – as we all know how easy it is to get stuck down the scrolling drain.
In this blog, I’ll be sharing with you a step by step process on how to create an Instagram marketing strategy for your business. But, of course, if this sounds a little tedious for you or you’d rather have someone help you, get in touch here and let’s see if we’re a right fit to work together!
Without an Instagram marketing strategy, you’ll have no guidance on what to post, you don’t know who your target audience is, you don’t know how you should be talking to people (informal or formal?) or who your direct competitors are.
Whenever you feel lost on Instagram, you’ll want to revert back to your strategy so you can regain that focus.
Simply put, you need create an Instagram marketing strategy to get clarity and feel confident in knowing how you should be using the platform to benefit your business.
This will depend on where your audience are hanging out, what your business sells etc. but the likelihood that you will be able to market your business successfully on Instagram is high…but being creative with photo and video matters!
For example, if you’re better at writing and telling a story through written content, perhaps LinkedIn or Twitter is more beneficial to you.
Instagram is a social media channel used by millions of people so your business has access to a massive audience. Because it’s a highly visual platform, it’s a great way to be creative, get more personal, and be authentic. You can showcase your product or service in many engaging ways that will appeal to your target audience. But until you test, you’ll never know what your audience engages with the most.
Now let’s get into the juicy bit!
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the thought of creating a strategy for your business on Instagram, here’s a brief overview as to what you should be including inside it!
Tip: Create this in a document somewhere and make sure anyone in your team who has access to your social media can view this. It’s super important you’re all on the same page!
Firstly, before even thinking about the marketing strategy, you want to define and set your goals for Instagram marketing. What do you want to achieve from promoting your business on Instagram? Maybe you want to use it as a tool to raise brand awareness, drive traffic to your website, increase engagement, or generate leads and get clients. Set these out very clearly.
Now, you want to conduct your market research, a.k.a competitor analysis. You want to identify who your direct competition is and monitor them regularly. See what’s working for them, how are they engaging with their audience, what are they doing differently to stand out amongst others? Add as much detail as possible.
This is where you want to build out your audience personas. Create profiles, name the person, include their demographics, what their interests are, where they hang out, what brands they love etc. And then you want to go even deeper and create an empathy map for them. Describe what they’re currently feeling; what’s their heaven, what’s their hell, what are they doing, feeling and saying. Make sure you relate this back to your offers!!
Think about how you want to communicate with your audience. Do you want a common theme in your copy? For example, Stephanie from By The Way Creative relates a lot of her stuff back to coffee and it works just perfectly.
Are you going to be quite formal in your content, or more informal and chatty? Do you want to be swearing, or keep it PG only? If there are certain keywords you want to be known for, make a list of them.
Based on your goals and target audience, you’ll now need to develop a content strategy. Inside this, you’ll want to include the types of content that you think will be most effective and engaging with your audience. I highly recommend breaking your content strategy down into sections, for example; Connection, Education, Inspiration and Promotion.
You’ll also want to think about your content pillars. These are essentially categories or themes created under your business that’ll help you organise and create your content. Look at your offers, what you do and create 4-6 pillars that you want to create content around. For example, mine are Instagram, marketing, mindset, and visibility.
Collaborating with influencers is a great way to reach wider audiences, but it has to be done right. This will only apply for a handful of businesses so you may not include this in your strategy.
Before diving straight into contacting influencers, you want to do your research. Who has a strong work ethic, who has an audience that fits in with your demographic, what is their tone of voice, who’s values align to yours…? All of this research needs to be done so that you’re not putting money down the drain. This needs to benefit you as well as the influencers.
There are a couple ways to work with influencers; paid collaborations, host giveaways, gifted service, Instagram takeover, brand ambassador. Work out which way will benefit you the most, contact influencers that you think are the best fit for the business, and go from there.
Finally, you want to make sure you’re monitoring your performance on Instagram. This is how you’ll find out whether you’re making progress towards or achieving your goals, you’ll be able to see what’s working and what’s not, and make adjustments to your strategy as needed.
Remember that social media is all about testing. Make sure you’re constantly testing new methods to showcasing your business as your audience will react to different things in different ways. Have fun experimenting!
You’ve created your Instagram marketing strategy by this point, but there’s probably still a few things you need to fine tune before you fully get going.
Your profile is like a shop window. You have approximately 3-5 seconds to grab someone’s attention, so I highly recommend you spend some time on this. Is it obvious what you do, who you’re targeting, and what is it you’re currently promoting? I’ve written a detailed guide on optimising your profile HERE.
You want to understand what type of content your audience engages with so make sure you utilise different Instagram features; is it photos, videos, lives?
I’d also have a separate guide on how you’ll show up on stories. It doesn’t have to be too detailed but it helps to maintain consistency across the whole platform. What fonts and colours will you use, how will you promote your services, will you incorporate gifs?
Ideally you want to have some highlights on your profile that cover the following;
About – get personal with your audience and share a little about you and why you created your business
Services/Work with me – Share all the ways in how people can work with you. Go in detail as to who each service is for and what benefits they’ll get from that service.
Testimonials/Results – What are your clients saying about working with you? Make sure you’re frequently asking for feedback or results so you can shout out about this on your Instagram!
Freebies – If you have any freebies, add them to a highlight. People can’t resist a free download packed with lots of information…plus, it gets them onto your email list – win win!
FAQs – Are there any questions that come up frequently from your clients/audience? Put them all in a highlight so it’s easy for them to get answers.
Make sure you don’t miss this out (as I know lots of people find it a tedious job). You want to make sure you’re responding to all comments, reply to stories, send DMs when appropriate (NOT to pitch a cold sale). This is essentially how you’ll be building a community.
This is something I will say time and time again, but you have to maintain consistency to see growth on Instagram. People want to see and hear from you, especially if they’ve decided to follow you. They’re here for a reason so don’t go quiet for weeks and then show up once and repeat.
I hear you, being consistent can be tricky. But you’re hearing it wrong…consistency doesn’t mean constantly. You’ll quickly burnout if you’re on Instagram 24/7. Instead, I want you to create a schedule for Instagram that works for you. The way you run your business on Instagram will look different to everyone else. Stay in your lane and focus on your own growth.
Your Instagram strategy will look different to everyone else’s. Never copy anyone else’s because it’s not authentic and people will quickly pick up on it.
The strategy should be reviewed frequently (I’d recommend once a year) and adjusted accordingly. Your business will grow and change over time so keep this in mind.
There’s no question that reels are dominating Instagram and have been for some time now. I was one of the ones that initially refused to create reels; they weren’t for me, I didn’t want to show my face and I knew it was such a time consuming process which put me off completely. However, over time I’ve found a process that works for me, batch create reels in advance so I’m not spending all my time on them, and I’ve worked on my confidence and stopped thinking about what other people thought.
Saying all this, I can totally understand why people won’t want to show their face in reels and pretend to dance, point, or lip sync… it can be cheesy, I know! Plus, not every business will want themselves in their content and that’s totally understandable.
So if you’re reading this knowing you should be using reels in your Instagram content, but want a workaround where you don’t have to show your face, here’s 5 Instagram reel ideas you can create without being in front of the camera!
Screen tutorials are a great way to show your audience how to do something. Some of the most useful and easy consumer reel content that I see on my feed is just phone recordings or computer recordings. There’s no need for all this fancy ass editing because at the end of the day, you want to educate that person to do this thing and if you over-edit something it can actually distract your viewers away from the actual message or tutorial. Sometimes simplifying is more effective.
Method: I recommend using a tool like Loom, Zoom or a screen recorder that may be an application on your desktop already to do your screen recordings. If you’re using your phone to do this, then it’ll most likely have a screen recorder installed (but make sure you have the microphone turned off unless you’re doing the voiceover as you do the tutorial). You can then use software like Canva to add it into a mockup and edit it. With the voiceover, you can either add this to the video in a separate app or you can just add it into Instagram straight away.
Another popular way to use reels is through drawing tutorials or simply writing on a piece of paper. You can see an example here of how this has been done. I’m sure you’ll agree when I say this is quite an effortless way of creating a reel. It’s quickly consumed, an easy way to portray a message, and doesn’t take too much time to create. If it’s deemed to be successful with your audience, you can brainstorm ideas and batch create these all in advance.
Method: The best way I would create these is by using a tripod so that you are hands free to do the actual drawing. Make sure you’re in an environment with good lighting so the video is good quality and readable. Place the tripod in a position (this may be above so it’s looking down to the paper, like a flat lay, or at an angle) and keep it in this position throughout so you get a seamless looking reel. If you want a filter on Instagram for the video, apply this and then use the Hands Free option to record (be aware of the time limit!) or simply use your own phone camera to video. Once the video is completed, think about how you want it to look in the reel. Do you want it sped up/slowed down? If it needs any extra editing, I highly recommend using the app InShot. I use this for all my reel editing.
Warning: This can be quite a long process to create.
Stop motion is effectively taking many photos of you or an object doing something and converting it into a video. I’ve seen some really clever videos doing this, check out this one from Sand Visuals, and this one from Collette Peri. If you give this a try, I’d love for you to share it with me! I always love watching these kinds of videos.
Method: For these videos to work quite seamlessly, you want to make sure your phone/camera is in a fixed position (maybe use a tripod) so the frame stays the same and it’s just the subject moving. This will be easier if there’s a second person to help you but to take the pictures you can either set it on burst mode so it takes lots of photos in seconds (and the second person can do this for you). Or you can set your timer on your camera (phone settings may be limited for this) to take photos every 0.5 second. Once you’ve got all your photos, it’s time to edit them. If you’ve used a camera, you can use video editing software like Adobe, or there’s plenty of Stop Motion specific softwares out there.
Using any of the ideas I’ve mentioned above, you can easily apply a voiceover. All you need to do is mute the original video and record the voiceover separately. You can do this either inside the Instagram app or using a voice recorder on your phone. If you’re not showing your face, another way to build the know, like and trust factor is through your voice.
One other popular reels trend is photo collage, which is very popular amongst photographers (shock). This is an effective way to showcase your work instead of just your classic grid post. This would work great if you’re a product based business. You could use it to showcase a specific product, for example if you have a Christmas related product then you can share this around Decemeber time.
I did a version of this HERE and briefly showed my face at the beginning, but this could easily be replaced with a photo of your product/service.
Tip: With any of these videos, I always use InShot to edit the reel so I can get the timing of the images spot on. It will depend on the music you’re using, but I prefer to use music that I can time each photo to the beats like I have in the example above.
And there you have it. 5 Instagram reel ideas that don’t require showing your face or being in front of the camera. Now you have no reason to avoid using reels as part of your strategy.
If you want to start creating reels in your business but have no idea where to start, don’t want to be the actual one to create them and just outsource, why not hire an Instagram manager?? I’d love nothing more than to see your business skyrocket through reels. Check out my offers here!!
Your Instagram bio is like your shop window. You have about 3 – 5 seconds to give the reader a reason to stay on your profile and grab their attention. It should be very easy to understand what your business does/sells just from having a glance at your bio.
And I believe there are certain things you need to include in order to achieve this. Ready to find out what you need to include in your Instagram bio to make it stand out?? Here’s 10 things you shouldn’t miss out!
Let’s start this out real simple, but you’ll be surprised at how many people miss this. It’s the most important factor to add into your bio and that is your name. People want to connect with people so it’s a little awkward when they want to pop into your DMs and can’t address you by name. Either add it into your bio name or bio description.
Make this RELEVANT! Either use a picture of you (because people like to see who it is they’re talking to) or use your logo. Make the photo of you clear by either having a plain background if it’s a photo of you, or increase the size of the logo to make it readable for everyone. There are simple additions like making a border around your profile photo which can instantly make it stand out more.
Where you click ‘edit profile’ on your Instagram page, you’ll see the first fillable section called ‘Name’. This is where you want to add in what you do, your business title or possibly your business name. This part of your bio is searchable so if you’re a Brand Designer you will pop up under the search results for this if you add it into this section of your bio. So think carefully, this is really important. You can’t change it more than once within 2 weeks so if you do change it, make sure it’s definitely what you want it to be.
Now you have just 150 characters to tell your audience about your business. Make it clear, attractive and leave the audience wanting more. This (along with your content) is what will make people to connect with you.
Superpower? This is what you are KNOWN FOR helping your clients achieve. How do you help them get from A to B? What transformation can you give them for their business? Just remember you only have 150 characters so try to make this statement short and snappy, or break it down into a few bullet points.
You should always have a call to action added into your bio which leads to the link you’re using at the time. This can obviously be changed depending on what it is you want to promote at the time. For example, this could be a freebie you’re wanting people to sign up to, a waitlist for your next program, booking a service, or simply how to contact to work with you.
This is crucial and not one to forget about. This is the link that your CTA in your bio description will lead to. This link ideally wants to be your website because you can then track the traffic that is coming through from your Instagram bio. I suggest creating a page on your website which is a list of important links that you want to promote at this time and add it to your Instagram bio. And the URL could be something simple like /links or /Instagram (see my example here). There are sooo many third party apps out there to use to also present links to your website but this sometimes doubles the customer journey, and people sometimes go a little crazy with the amount of links they include as a lot of these apps give you unlimited links. It does depend on what you prefer but I’d highly recommend keeping it linked to your website.
Make it super easy and obvious as to how people can get in touch with you and make contact with you. You have the option to add your email address, phone number or WhatsApp Business phone number. If you are happy for people to contact you through either of these ways, then add them to your profile.
This may not be relevant for every business, especially if yours is solely online, but I still think it’s useful for people to know where you are located. Some people may be picky with the location of the people they want to work with, especially if it includes different time zones.You don’t have to be too specific with location, it can just be the state or county if you wish.
Another way to give your business title is through categories. This could be useful if you have something else you want to include in your bio Name but still want to include your job title.
Instagram gives the option to add an action button so it’s easy for people to book a service of yours straight from your Instagram profile. However, the apps they integrate with are limited (most I’ve never even heard of) so you may find that this isn’t beneficial for you. And don’t go out of your way to change your systems to use one of these apps as you would probably want people to message you before they book anything with you.
Your Instagram bio may change frequently, especially if you’re niching down, changing what you’re promoting for the month, or have changed your business model slightly. Whenever you decide to change your bio, come back to this blog post and remind yourself what you need to include in your Instagram bio to attract your ideal clients, drive traffic to your website, and make those all important sales.
If you need help with this process, book in a power hour with me and let’s nail your Instagram bio together!
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Have you recently noticed a drop in engagement and wondered if your content on Instagram is engaging the right people? ? Are you getting fed up with putting a mixture of posts out but still not getting the results you really want?
Before you go mapping out your content plan for the next 90 days, we’re going to take it right back to the basics. In this blog post, I’ll be sharing with you my 9 step process you need to go through FIRST in order to create engaging content that speaks to your ideal client.
Firstly, I want you to read this carefully:
Your vanity metrics (we’re talking follower count, the amount of likes and comments you get) DO NOT define how successful your business is.
Of course, you want to increase your engagement rate so that your content is pushed in front of more ideal clients, but please don’t put too much pressure on yourself to increase the vanity metrics. Clients will come to you if you’re putting out the right content for them.
Now, let’s dive straight into my nine step process you should be doing before you make another piece of content for it to lack engagement yet again.
Your content will be all over the place and not directed toward anyone if you don’t know who you’re talking to and who you’re wanting to nurture and eventually work with. Ideally you want to read back any content you create, put yourself in your ideal clients shoes and ask yourself if it resonates with you.
This will be linking to the first step as you want to do this along with creating your ideal client profile. The things you want to find out include their current struggles, what they want more of and less of, what’s stopping them from making a purchase, and what will motivate them to make the purchase. Of course, you can dive a lot deeper than this. There are lots of resources online to help you go through this, just give me a shout if you need pointing in the right direction.
What’s your mission statement? It’s a brief description that tells people exactly what you do, who you help and how you can help them transform their business from A to B. A little exercise to figure this out is to look back at your ideal clients pain points, write down a few things that they’re feeling before working with you, and where you want them to be after working with you. If you already have clients that can give you testimonials or feedback, use this to help create this statement.
Here’s a little bit of practical work you can do. Conducting your own content audit of your account is crucial as it’ll tell you what is currently working, what’s not working and what is missing. This way you can create more of the content that your audience is engaging with and you know they’ll need.
If you haven’t already, you can download my FREE content audit below.
Utilise Instagram to find out what your audience are wanting to know and what are they currently struggling with. You can do this research simply through Instagram stories, creating a questionnaire and asking people to fill it out for you in exchange to win something (like a voucher or 1:1 session with you), asking your current clients, looking at your competitor’s posts and which are getting the best engagement and why. There’s plenty of ways to do this and it’s the best way to get results/ideas for content as it’s coming straight from your audience.
The majority of your content that you want people to save needs to be evergreen content. Evergreen content is a piece of content that will remain relevant for a long period of time. For example, I could share 5 ways to create a killer caption, and know that this will still be relevant in 6 months time (in fact, I did create a post around this here…and it’s still relevant!!)
Obviously there are other content types you want to be sharing in your content plan but these two particularly work if you want your audience to save your content. Inspirational content could include sharing your story, a quote you live by, or a business win…and the educational content could be a how to, checklists, top tips and hacks, or guides. The list of ideas can be endless! I’d start by looking at your content pillars and brainstorming ideas under each of these that can be listed under inspirational or educational content.
We’re diving a little deeper now but I wanted to include this as it’s super important! In every single piece of content, you need to be adding a call to action. You’ll see at the end of this blog post, I’ve asked you all to come join me on Instagram and DM me if you found this helpful. And you’ll find I do this on everything I put out there; social media posts, blog posts, emails, webpages…everything! Your audience needs to be told what they need to do next. If they want more tips, ask them to follow you and turn on your post notifications; if they need help and want to outsource, tell them where to go on your website; if this post was helpful, ask them to tag a friend in the comments who would also find it helpful. The list of calls to action is endless! And don’t forget, it doesn’t always have to be a selling call to action, it could simply be a question that you want people to answer in the comments.
To make the process of creating content less time consuming, I’d highly recommend designing a bundle of branded social media templates that you’ve tried and tested already and know will appeal to your audience. I use the PRO version of Canva to create any marketing asset in my business. I’ve had it for about 5 / 6 years now and it’s definitely a tool I couldn’t live without in my business. Ultimately, you can always get a designer to create templates for you so you can quickly make a copy of the template in Canva, edit the content and schedule or post it.
And voila! I gave you a lot more information there than I intended on giving but they’re all super important and I want you to get this process right from the start. And I’ll be here every step of the way to help you in creating content that connects, nurtures and converts your audience! In fact, I have a free download for you which has 100 content ideas, so you’ll no longer get stuck with what to post next. Grab it here!
Want to make sure you’re nailing your content strategy? In this blog I’ll be sharing with you the mistakes you need to avoid in your Instagram content. And to avoid making these mistakes in the future, I give you some advice on how to fix them!
Keep reading and take note of any you think you’re doing right now. We want to avoid these as they could have an impact on your content performance, and it will look like you don’t know what you’re doing.
Let’s dive right in!
Before you go running round the house panicking about finding different hashtags for every single post, don’t worry. Apart from branded hashtags, you want to avoid using the same 30 (or however many hashtags you’re using) in every post. It won’t help you grow your account or reach new audiences. Hashtags don’t do all the work for you, your content does that, but they do help push your content out there to new people and potential ideal clients.
My advice would be to spend some time each month or quarter to review your hashtags and research more. Make sure you keep them categorised under each content pillar in your business and add them into a spreadsheet or keep them somewhere safe so it becomes easy to choose them when creating new content. If you really want to get on top of your hashtag research, I highly recommend investing in Flick.Tech. Flick is a great system that helps you analyse and review your hashtags in great detail. It makes the process easy for you, giving you accurate analytics of each hashtag you use in your content and allows you to group the hashtags you want to use regularly. Click here to check it out.
Instagram now has different types of video, grid posts, guides, collaboration posts, stories, live video…the opportunities for creating content are endless! This can be a little overwhelming at first but choose one format to start with, that you may not have tried yet, research into how your competitors are using them, and have a go.
Let’s take reels, for example. We all know how big reels have grown since Instagram released the feature in 2019, and they are a great way to grow your account and reach new audiences that don’t even know you exist yet.
And don’t forget to take a look at your existing content and repurpose it using a different format. This is an easier way to create content for your socials, just by using the content you’ve already created and that resonated with your audience.
Calls to action need to be included in every single piece of content you post but stick to just the one. Having too many calls to action will confuse your audience and they’ll end up not taking any action because they won’t know which route is best for them to take. It’s overwhelming when you are asking a lot of your audience, so keep it simple and stick to the one.
The aim is to make your readers think you’re speaking directly to them, as if they were in the same room as you just having a conversation. Read this blog back to yourself, who am I writing it for? YOU. There’s no ‘everyone’ or ‘they’ or ‘people…it’s all about you.
Instagram content is now searchable by keywords, so you want to be making sure you’re constantly using keywords you want to be searchable by.
How to fix these issues? It’s simple. Do a content audit of your most recent posts to find out if your content plan is working and targeted towards your dream client. If you don’t know where to go to do this, click HERE to download my FREE content audit! It helps you understand if your current content plan is spot on, or if it needs some work, and I show you how you can fix any issues.