The Seven Steps You Cannot Afford to Miss!
An Instagram account needs to feed two things – the human mind and the algorithm. With intense competition on every niche than ever before, it is vital that your Instagram page directly speaks to the target audience in an engaging manner. But when competing for user attention alongside 25 million other businesses, producing compelling content is not that easy. So how do you create high-quality Instagram content that compels and converts? We take you through our triple-tested method (tried, tested and trusted) to produce killer content, so you can allure in new users and keep the existing one glued to your feed. Let’s get into it!
Table of Contents
Know your audience
One of the apparent factors most brands tend to overlook is the basis of their audience. So, the fundamental step in your journey to produce catchy content on Instagram is to understand who will be reading and engaging with your posts. There will be little use for your followers (and you) if you keep producing irrelevant content. And it could even result in your downfall.
One billion of us use Instagram, so your brand needs to cream out the most relevant audience to have meaningful success. To do that, the critical step is to conduct audience research. Try speaking with your existing customers and followers and see why they follow your page. Enquire into their likes and dislikes about your posts in order to gauge what is working best and what type of content you should avoid. The information you get may be somewhat limited, but the little insights you receive will be real, first-hand and invaluable for your next step.
Give value to your audience
The vital thing to note here is that Instagram is a visual platform. So, you need to inspire, entertain and give value to your followers and the potential new ones. This all seems a bit complicated to achieve in a single post, so let’s break things down.
You need to look deep into your brand identity and produce content that will delight your potential customers. Whether you are a personal brand or a large organisation, you need to be true to your established brand identity in your posts. For example, a company like The North Face has adventure and thrill-seeking as their brand identity.
So, you need to plan the type of image you want to portray in your content. It can be inspirational, humorous or even educational. People recognise brands with these subtle identities, so you need to feed people’s imagination.
The second most important thing when giving value to your audience is not to sell hard. That’s right, not selling attracts and keeps the followers engaged way more than just giving price lists and product information. If a customer is interested in a purchase while on Instagram, they usually direct message (DM) you or take the effort to click the link on your bio to find out more. Adding funny, inspirational and engaging posts true to your brand identity are considered as valuable.
Create a theme and stick to it
Now that you understand your brand’s audience and know how to give value, the next step is to maintain that. Seemingly straightforward, being consistent in your Instagram and keeping a brand theme could make or break a brand. Therefore, you need to set the perfect theme for your IG page right from the start. A consistent theme will help build loyal followership that expects a specific type of imagery from your posts. Of course, this does not mean that every post has to be uniform and monotonous because, strangely enough, followers except a bit of variety too!
To make it easy to understand, when we refer to a ‘theme’, it means the tone of voice. How would you approach the customer on your website, stationery and other marketing material? Similarly, you need to keep a consistent tone of voice that resembles your brand image in a broad sense. Consider using a similar toned filter or using the same hashtag in most of your posts.
Plan your content
After laying your groundwork, the final step before actually getting onto the drawing board is to plan your publications. Although it does not sound as significant at first, social media platforms like Instagram have algorithms that monitor publications’ consistency to funnel user engagement. So, whatever approach you take, you need to feed the algorithm just as much as you provide for your fan base.
Planning can take place at two stages. First, you need to prepare the posts that you aim to publish in the coming week. They can be your photos, customer stories or memes (if you use them) – so, make sure to have a variety of posts ready to work with. Secondly, you need to be consistent with the actual publication. Instagram tracks your behaviour and usage, so you need to be consistent in your publications. It is never a good idea to publish three to four excellent posts in one week and post nothing the following week.
Use the right tools to produce high-quality content
This is where you get to the nitty-gritty part of your post. You have done the groundwork and planned the content and now rearing to get on to the drawing board. But where do you start? The best starting point is your images. This is especially true if you are a personal brand, as your followers would like to see more relatable content. However, to keep the fans engaged and attract new ones, you need to produce images and content of the highest calibre.
Thankfully, there are online tools that help you achieve that. One of the best platforms for images is Canva which allows you to edit and create posts for free. However, the paid version offers a lot more options, including premium-grade stock images. For detailed editing, it is always going to be Adobe Photoshop. However, you need to have the requisite graphic design knowledge to get the best out of Adobe products. To produce videos, another online tool is VEEDIO. Again, as with Canva, it is free to use, but you will find many more options on the premium version.
Quality usually gives value to your audience. Therefore, your post should be helpful and inspirational to the viewer so that they can take something away from it. Remember, the algorithm monitors how we interact with posts. So, the longer a user stays on your post, the bigger the chance of it being boosted across the platform. Consider creating carousel posts where you can give valuable tips, tricks or even share experiences.
Write a compelling caption
It is never a good idea to stuff your valuable caption space with a bunch of hashtags. User engagement is likely to increase significantly if you engagingly provide helpful information. (No need to remind ourselves again that the algorithm bots are watching!) Write up your caption in a relatable, light way so that the person reading it gets glued to the story and develops interest. Getting this right will be a journey full of trial and error, so do not be afraid to try new things in your caption or introduce something out of the ordinary.
Of course, hashtags are important, but you need to include only the most relevant ones. As we mentioned above, there is no harm in adding a hashtag that goes hand in hand with your brand image if you have one. If you are struggling to write a killer caption, ask a friend or colleague to review what you have written or hire a content writer. Now you should be ready to publish your high-quality Instagram post.
Engage with your audience
After doing the groundwork, planning, designing, caption writing and publishing, the story does not end. You need to make sure you lead and continue to inspire your follower by continuously engaging with them. If you have a significantly large followership, you may not be able to respond to every single message or comment. However, your engagement gives out a message that you care about your customers and positively value the followers on your page.
There are other ways to keep everyone engaged. Consider running polls or competitions on your page. It is an excellent way to boost brand awareness and maintain loyalty. Even captions like “tag a friend” can go a long way in getting your existing followers engaged.
Now that you know all the essential steps in producing high-quality Instagram content, why not try and create something and let us know how you did? If any of the above sounded a little too complicated, reach our design team at Rocket Safari, and we’ll guide you on the highest calibre Instagram content.