Updated: Dec 6, 2021
What is your brand's core messaging? Take your time and think deeply about this question. When people engage with your brand, what is the standard message or theme you want to come across? How would you like customers to feel? What do you want customers to think when they come across your page? Your core message sets the tone for content creation and strategy. It will help you understand the dos and don'ts of your brand.
Plan, create, schedule and post. Plan and design your curated content at least one week to two months in advance. Creating quality Instagram content and running a business is time-consuming. Give yourself some breathing space by creating content ahead of time. We understand the complexities of building a brand and building or running a business. That's why we decided to develop customized Instagram templates for side hustlers, solopreneurs, and small businesses.
Make sure you schedule your posts ahead of time as well. You can schedule your posts using Hootesuite, Sendible, Canva, or Instagram Creator Studio, which is free. On Instagram Creator studio, you can schedule posts as well as IGTV. Your Instagram posts should be consistent in terms of messaging and frequency. Think about how often you want to post your curated content, whether it's once a week, twice a week, three times a week, and so on.
3. Know your Target Market
Have an idea of who your target market is. Then create content that is relevant to your brand and target market too. The goal is to attract your tribe through engaging content that resonates with them. Furthermore, you want to nurture those relationships and eventually build a community that not only buys your products or services but they are indirectly your brand advocates. Write down who your ideal customer is, what do they do for a living? What are their pain points? What are their interests? When you know your target market, you'll know what kind of content they like. Use Instagram Insights to learn more about your target market, for example, the time/days they are active, gender and location. In addition, study the posts that have the most likes, saves, shares, or comments. That's the type of content you should create for your brand.
An Instagram bio is like a 20-second movie trailer or 30-second ad. It gives your customers a sneak preview of your Instagram business page. It's your opportunity to capture the attention of your target market. Have you seen Beyonce performing live? The bio is the Beyonce of your Instagram page. Here's the bio for @wearelumine
We are a creative company with a mission to build meaningful connections. We encourage a people-centric approach to business.
5. Name and Username
Are you a brand with a small number of followers? Make sure your username is your business name or brand name. Change your name to what you offer. Then, if people search for something, your page will come up in the search results. For context, our username is @wearelumine. Under the name, we have marketing, business, and lifestyle because that's the focus of our business. So if someone searches for any of these three, our page will come up. However, your name and username can be homogenous if you're a big brand with a solid online presence.
Hashtags are the Search Engine Optimization, aka SEO for Instagram. You know, on google, when you search for how to your brand on Instagram and all the relevant search results come up. Instagram hashtags are similar, and they accomplish two things. Firstly, they help the Instagram algorithm understand the content on your business page. Second, it helps your ideal customers, clients, or target market find you. When using hashtags, make sure you use hashtags relevant to your brand, services, or products. Play around with the hashtags and find the ones that work for your business. We also recommend using hashtags for your niche. For example, if your own a skincare brand, your hashtags could be #insetbrandnameskincare #skinvestment #skincareenthusiast #foodforskin #skincareinfluencer.
7. Instagram formats
As we all know, Instagram comes in five different formats: Instagram posts, stories, Instagram reels, IGTV, and Instagram live. These formats are great because they cater to different types of people. Instagram Live is great for customers that like "one-on-one" real-time interactions, a sense of community, and IG live is great for engagement. Instagram posts are great for readers and those who like visual aesthetics. Instagram reels are great for people who don't like long-format content, and they want content that entertains. Instagram stories are also engaging, and they are great for launches, announcements, or newsworthy content. Choose the best format for your brand and try to use it consistently. We recommend trying all the Instagram formats to amplify your brand if you have time and resources.
8. Instagram Promoted Posts
Have an Instagram ad budget to promote your high-quality/high engagement posts, services, or products. Instagram ads help you reach potential customers who may not even know about your brand. They can also help you to get leads or sell your products. First, choose a post you'd like to promote; select the call to action. Instagram ads have three calls to action: Instagram profile visits, drive traffic to your website, or people to contact you. Set a daily budget and the duration for your campaign. Instagram gives you an option to choose an automatic target market based on the accounts that follow you, or you can create your target market. We recommend the latter as it allows you to customize your niche.
9. Be patient, remain focused and open-minded
Social media can be very tricky and unpredictable. Don't be attached to the outcome or reactions or non-existent reactions of the content you create. Sometimes you make the best content you've ever created, and you have low engagement. At times the post that you think it's not up to par has the most attention. There are a lot of factors that affect high engagement on posts, such as luck, shareability, or strategy. Focus on what you can control and let go of what's beyond your control. The right customers for your brand will find you. Detach from the reactions and remain focused on your vision. Why did you start your business? The answer to that will be what will keep you grounded and resilient throughout every season of your journey as a business owner.