Instagram is the #1 way I drive traffic to my website right now. I really thought that would never be the case because a year ago, I didn’t even have a plan for my Instagram account! I wasn’t really using it to promote my business, I was really just sharing snapshots of my life with the 900 followers I had at the time. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that, but I realized that I needed to start using Instagram to grow my business, and I needed to do it FAST before Instagram started mirroring Facebook, in terms of the algorithms.
Remember the good ol’ days when you could post a pretty photo on Instagram and your followers would see it, there was no algorithm filtering what they were seeing, or ways of blocking them from seeing what you were posting at all? Yeah, me too. The good news is that you can use the algorithm to your advantage! Your followers can still see your posts, you just have to put a little more work into your IG account that will create an engaging audience!
Right now we’re going to dig into how to brand your Instagram account. If you’re not sure what personal branding is, or you’re not using it in your creative business, please go back to *my post on this subject last week* and then return here!
Branding is SO much more than your logo and website colors, my friend. Your branding should create an experience for your followers on Instagram, and should either attract or repel your ideal clients. You want your branding to be bold and very much YOU (if you have a personal brand) so that you will find people who are really exciting about following you and will engage with your posts!
You can start building a strong, branded foundation for your Instagram account today! Take a few minutes, go to your account and consider these questions below that will help you map out the plan for your Instagram feed.
1 What are my branding colors?
2. What vibes do I want to give a potential new follower when they see my grid?
3. What is the purpose of your account?
4. What do I tend to post a lot of?
With these things in mind, I’m going to talk about how you can brand your Instagram feed. It’s pretty easy, it just takes a bit of work and planning, but I know you can do it!
Pay attention to what you are currently posting. Is it images of your work, personal images, flatlays, or a lot of white space? To keep Instagram fun, you want to post things that you can excited about! I personally love images with white space, and I tend to LOVE photographing and posting flatlay images, so I do a lot of that!
Consider the colors you’d like to incorporate in your feed. Your list of colors can be as long or short as you’d like it to be! What your followers want to see is consistency in your feed. For instance, I manage 2 Instagram accounts right now that look very different. My Biz + Bubbly account revolves around all things pink and bubbly:
While my Morgan Anderson Photography account reflects more of my personal brand that loves white space and neutrals with the occasional pop of color!
In addition to what colors you’re sharing on your feed, the style of photography you share is also very important! Consistency is key in all areas when it comes to your grid! Whether you’re sharing a photo of your professional work, your products, a behind the scenes photo, or you in a lifestyle photo for your feed, they should all look seamless together. That means if you love moody photos, try to share those across the board. I prefer light and airy photos, so I photograph my personal flatlays the same way I would photograph a wedding day.
If you have an account that depends on imagery of others, you can do your best to be selective of what you share on your Instagram account. The Rising Tide Society does this with their Instagram account. They have essentially curate their feed based on what other people in their community are posting. As you can see below, their Instagram feed is a great reflection of their website and branding. So, if you have to post images other people are taking, I would try to choose images that will make your feed look consistent and feel branded. I know this can be hard for makeup artists and hairstylists, but you don’t have to share every image a photographer gives you! Feel free to add the images that don’t fit in your Instagram feed to your website gallery, a blog post, or a Facebook Business Page album!
If the purpose of your Instagram account is to covert your clients into customers, remember you must allow them to know, like, and trust you before they are going to sign up for your new course, book you for their wedding, or book a coaching session. For every post you share about your products or offerings, I encourage you to share 3 posts of value with your followers. You can do this by sharing tips and tricks, sharing an excerpt from the blog you just posted, or sharing a bit about YOUR story. Your followers want to get to know the person behind the pretty. Having a branded feed will help get them through the door, but you have to lead them to becoming a client and your biggest cheerleader!
I hope this helps you start branding your Instagram feed and attracting the kinds of followers you want! Be patient with this process. I’d love to see how you’re branding your feed, so please drop your link and thoughts in the commons!