In the last lesson we published our first post, talked about carousels and boomerangs and also learned how to promote the account. You should be proud of yourself: you have a fully optimized business account ready to develop your brand! Now we can move on and post more. But in order to do this, you need to have content and understand it. That is what we are going to talk about today. After this lesson you will become a real Instagram content monster! We are also going to discuss how to draw a posting schedule, prepare the content and what exactly to write about.
REMEMBER ABOUT INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
You should not use the content of others without permission when you represent a company. If you are not sure you can legally use a photo, better replace it with the one you’re absolutely sure about.
We recommend carefully reading the Instagram rules before posting. Intellectual property is covered in good detail there.
In a nutshell, the rules are as follows:
▶ do not use the content, if you do not have a conditional permission from the author;
▶ only the photographer has rights to the photo;
▶ trademark and logo belong to the owner.
If you violate these rules your account will simply get blocked!
This is also true for reposts. As a matter of fact, a legal action can be brought against you even if you posted somebody’s photo indicating who it belongs to. It rarely happens, of course, but you need to be careful. If you want to repost some photo to your feed, ask its author’s permission first in direct or in comments. And make sure to take a screen of the conversation!
If you are a photographer, you can freely post any of your pieces on your account. Others can repost them to their accounts following the same rules. Granted, few users abide by the intellectual property rules on Instagram, but that is exactly what we want! Let them violate the rules and take your photos so they spread all over the Instagram network and the people who like it visit your page and follow you. It is a great advertisement, don’t you think? Just leave a watermark in the corner of the photo or state in the description that it is free to use, but it is necessary to leave a link to your profile. Perhaps, somebody will play with the book and ask for permission directly. It is very easy and convenient to communicate on Instagram. Never ignore an opportunity to double check and get permission.
Here are the key rules:
▶ Follow the people whose content you use. Always name the authors of photos or text to avoid conflicts due to use of others’ materials, in some cases leading to blocking Instagram accounts.
▶ Use a special app for editing. Here is another method you can easily exploit. There are many editor apps to easily change the size of a photo, crop it or change colors. You can change any photo any way you like and get by intellectual property rules.
▶ Use photo stocks. You can use photos from public photobanks, where you can get millions of photos for free or for a small fee. There are many such wonderful sources like Pixabay, Gettyimages, Imgur, etc.
HOW TO SHARE POSTS
Assume you get permission to use third party content. Let us get back to our account and show how to share posts of other people and tag them, paying respect to their work. There are many similar apps for reposting on Instagram, you can download them from the App Store or Google Play. Choose any one you like, then go to your Instagram and copy a link to the post you like. The app will add a name of the account you repost to the photo and will copy the caption from the original post.
CONTENT CHOICE PRINCIPLES
Some people are afraid to start posting on Instagram because they do not know what exactly to post. Some are afraid that their personal page can damage their business by showing them in an unfavorable perspective. We will tell you what to post to win the love of your followers and attract new ones.
There are a few rules that can always help you to understand the principles of choosing content for Instagram. We are going to explain them one by one. But first you need to remember: business must be humane! Many commercial accounts lack human touch, there is no personality behind them, and the audience better reacts to lively accounts.
Instagram is a living social network, and we recommend to act like a living person and talk on your own behalf. This is an excellent opportunity to share a bit of your life with others, be a little more open, but keep it professional.
Create your personal brand. Make up your own style for the people to recognize you and notice you among others. Your style can be cheerful or strict, depending on the nature of your business. You can also present information differently. But once you have made your choice, try to stick to it. You should shape and predict the expectations of people.
FIVE TYPES OF SUCCESSFUL CONTENT
There are five types of successful content in total. Whichever you choose, it will work just fine!
Show the ways to use your products. Ask people to send photos of them using your products or services. It will make the product more lively. Propose to use your brand hashtags for such photos. It will help other followers to find more feedback and you will get the right to use those photos, by the way, because using a hashtag means a conditional permission to repost.
2. Behind the Scene
You can post photos of your project’s internal life, yourself at work, photos with colleagues, in an informal environment, office daily life and so on. People like those kinds of photos because they make your business more transparent and help to build trust.
You can post funny quotes or memes about your business. There is always room for a few jokes. Do not go too far with it if you do not want to turn your profile into a humorous public!
4. The Topic of the Day
You can dedicate one day a week to certain content. For example, your employees’ or brand stories. Post photo stories about your company with a nice decoration on Mondays.
5. Here and Now
It is also possible to post photos of what you do at the moment. Stories format is excellent for that. You can capture your company’s brightest work days or interesting moments of your personal life. Both are equally interesting to your followers.
And a few more tips:
▶ Do what your audience likes.
Post something others might want to repost: interesting, outstanding and original. Many people post their photos with pets, and that is always adorable and cute. Posts like those generate many likes. Everybody likes entertainment. You cannot always shower your followers with serious and useful content. A little diversity never hurts anybody.
▶ Be free
And what is even more important, do not restrict yourself! You need to express yourself: this is the only way to stand out and tell compellingly about your life and business! If you restrict yourself, you will not be able to find what your audience likes and become better. Do not be afraid to post something strange or incorrect, because you can always delete it later. Try something new, watch through and analyze your previous posts. Note which ones received more likes and try to create more of the similar content!
Now we are going to explain how to get the best results for your business by making small adjustments to the schedule and posting time. You need to set the right posting frequency to make your audience respond and grow faster.
First, let us try to understand how often you need to post on Instagram.
There is no definitive answer to that. Everything depends on the kind of business you are in and what your audience expects from you. But the rule of thumb is to post at least 2–3 times a week. People must see you are active on Instagram. If they do not see regular updates, they start to unsubscribe little by little. The upper limit is 21 posts per week, three times a day. Post more often, and it will be received as garbage jamming the feed.
Be more thoughtful, do not post at random just for the sake of quantity. People will stop following you if your posts lack variety and are mundane. Start with the minimal amount of posts per week and watch the followers’ response and if the new ones appear. When the number of followers increases and you start to see interest in your account, you can begin to post more, up to 4–5 times a week.
Choose an appropriate time to post. To do that, look at the chart before you. This is data of 60,000 different posts on Instagram and distribution of likes they get depending on the day they were posted on. It shows that the day the post was made is not very important. Posts on Wednesdays got the most likes and posts on Mondays the least. But the difference is neglectable, literally 18–20 likes.
So if you have decided to post once a week, choose Wednesday. And if you post more frequently, it does not matter much. Better think of the time you post. Look at the chart again. There are three optimal time intervals to post. 12:00, 15:00 and 21:00 in your time zone. Test and post at different times. You will see when you get the most likes/comments.
We recommend using Iconosquare to collect statistics. This app is a perfect tool for account management and it will provide you with a detailed account analysis. You can track what posts made at what time got the most likes and comments.
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