Holly Kosec

Four Instagram best practices

taking-picture-of-foodRecently, I attended a webinar that covered some of the best practices in Instagram based on popular posts. The examples were from a bunch of different kinds of users and in all kinds of industries—although food was a pretty common theme, of course.

But even if you aren’t sharing pictures of delicious food, there are a few takeaways I pulled from the webinar that anyone can use in their Instagram posts.

1. Composition:

Posts that did well had subject matter that immediately grabbed your attention. I saw good use of contrast and texture, and attention to depth-of-field. I didn’t see a lot in the way of Instagram filters, really—just well-executed photography.

2. Engagement:

It’s important to respond to commenters, where appropriate, to encourage engagement. Using questions in the image description can prompt engagement, and hashtags are important both for driving engagement and to help new (potential) followers find you.

Featuring landmarks that locals will recognize is also helpful, in your images, hashtags, or even in the published location of a post!

3. Hashtags:

Speaking of hashtags, look at what others in your industry are doing to get an idea of popular hashtags in your field. You can ride the high of one-day-only hashtags, like #nationalcheesecakeday.

If you want to know more about hashtags, you can check out our PixelTV episode on hashtags—but ultimately, it’s all about what works best for your audience, which brings us to experimentation.

4. Experimentation:

Your audience is going to have similarities with the audience of other people in your field, but at the end of the day, you know your audience better than anyone else. Figure out what works for them by experimenting with different times of day, different kinds of posts, and different hashtags.

On Instagram, as on other social media platforms, the end goal is to help people get to know, like, trust, and value your organization. Focusing on these four things can help you accomplish that goal.

If you’re on Instagram, what else have you found to be helpful?

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