Guide Day 4
Day 4. Creating Killer Content.
Today we’re talking all about creating quality content. This is a vital step because even if you do everything else correctly, your page will fail if you do not make quality content. Making quality content consistently is necessary to turn potential followers into avid supporters of your page.
So let's figure out how to make quality content!
P.S. Because this step is so important, we’ve packed a lot of info into this email. While you don’t have to incorporate EVERYTHING you see here into your Instagram strategy, maybe pick one or two things that jive with you the most, and stick to them for the long haul.
That being said, let’s find out exactly what options you have...
We have already established that we must first decide upon a specific niched theme and develop our brand’s identity. Since those two bases have been covered, it’s time to start making quality content.
[Day 4/7] Creating content that encourages engagement.
If you want to amass thousands of followers on Instagram, you have to be willing to invest a fair amount of time into crafting unique Instagram content. After all- the quality of your content is all that really matters to your followers! Every person or business has boundless potential to create great content, but it is difficult to know where to start and what kind of content to share. We’re here to help.
What to post?
The most important part of any Instagram content creation strategy is to decide on what kind of content you will produce and remain consistent. This is easier than you think. We break this down into what we call content pillars:
a) Content Pillars:
A content pillar is a type of post that recurs on your page. Some examples of content pillars that you can rotate to create content include:
Featuring a follower (this helps build relationships with your followers)
Fun (like a niche related meme, joke, reveal your personality)
Educational content (tutorials, explanatory captions)
Behind the scenes content (packaging products that are ready to be shipped, a picture of you working on editing photos on your laptop)
You'll want to decide on 4-6 main "pillars" to rotate. For example: Monday- some behind the scenes content. Tuesday- a how to video. Wednesday- a niche related meme or joke. Thursday- a customer testimonial. Then repeat your pillars starting Friday. Creating content is easier when you already know the type of content you need to post for that day.
How to Post?
Every piece of content you post should fit in with your account’s style. As briefly mentioned in our previous email, every post should have your branded style. Now we will go more in-depth on how exactly to make your content have a unique style.
b) Make your content have a unique style:
Your content’s unique style is an important element that potential followers will see when they visit your page. Style involves:
Color Palette: Picking out a cohesive color palette will help make your feed consistent and focused. However, having a color palette does not constrict you to only using 3-4 colors. Instead, it can be more like having either vibrant colors, pastels, black n white, etc. Doing so will give your posts a familiar feeling.
Filters: Make sure that you stick to the few you have chosen. Having a different filter on every single one of your Instagram post makes your page look a bit disjointed, like mismatch day in school.
Fonts: If you decide to post quotes or overlay text onto your photos, make sure to keep the fonts consistent across the board so your followers begin to familiarize themselves with your brand. Try using Canva for content creation. It’s a free graphic-design tool website that uses a drag-and-drop format. It’s very user-friendly for adding text overlays to pictures.
All of your posts need to fit with a content pillar you selected and be the same style to stay well-branded. When you have designated content pillars and a consistent style, you know what kind of content you are going to post and your followers know what kind of value to expect from your posts. This keeps them coming back for more.
Without content pillars and style, your page will resemble the kitchen junk drawer- lots of mix and matched posts that really need to be cleaned up.
Once you’ve established your content pillar and page’s style, you can begin to…
Make original content!
Original content is photographs you took and edited yourself or a quote or saying you came up with. Creating quality original content will make your account skyrocket, but it does take some time to make original content. To make the best use of the original content creation process, document the process to get more content out of a single endeavor.
Many people work very hard on a single project just to post one picture of the result. Great, now you have *one* Instagram post & you're left scrambling to come up with something else to get your daily, quality Instagram post up. Documenting the process will allow you to stretch out one post into many pictures.
For example, if you are an artist on Instagram, a part of documenting the process would be posting a picture of new drawing that is halfway done. If you are a business owner, document the process of finishing a new product line to build anticipation for your followers. If you’re in the fitness niche, post about the process of meal planning rather than just your finished containers.
My point is, if you're struggling to come up with content, be sure to 'tell the story,'
instead of just the end result.
Even with documenting the process of original content creation, it can difficult to have a quality post up every day that your followers can derive value from. So, it is smart to:
Have a mix of original and reposted content
Not all of the content you post on your Instagram has to be original to see tremendous growth. Reposting content is okay because your followers have not already seen everything the internet has to offer that surrounds your niche.
Your reposted content, just like your original content, has to fit into a content pillar and fit the style of your Instagram account. So, If you’re going to use a famous quote that is relevant to your niche, make sure to post the quote with your brand’s font and with a background color that fits the color palette you’ve decided upon for your nice. If you’re going to repost an image that fits into a content pillar, make sure to add the filter that would make that picture fit your brand’s style.
As always, if you’re going to repost content, always credit the originator in the caption of your post, which leads us to an often overlooked part of content creation...
Writing captions that encourage engagement
When it comes to writing captions, take your time to make sure they are well thought-out. An important thing to note is that captions cut off in users' feeds after three to four lines of text. So be sure to include the most essential information first to make sure your followers get your message.
How to encourage engagement using captions and comments
To encourage engagement in the captions section of your posts, include a call to action in the caption. A call to action is one of the best ways to increase the shareability of your Instagram post and engage your followers. Examples of common calls to action include encouraging your followers to tag a friend or share their experience.
To increase engagement and build a relationship with your followers, occasionally respond to people’s comments to make it like a conversation.
How to encourage engagement using hashtags in your captions
When it comes to using Instagram hashtags, it can be a bit of a touchy subject; some people hate them, and some people love them a little too much. Everyone agrees using the right combination of hashtags can help you expose your brand to large and targeted audiences.
In order to be successful with hashtags, it’s important to be strategic about your hashtag usage. Instead of using Instagram’s most popular hashtags (#love, #likeforlike, etc), it’s better to use the top Instagram hashtags that have an engaging community behind them and are specific to your niche. The narrower the scope of the hashtag, the more engaged the users are.
You've probably noticed when you post only very popular hashtags that your post gets drowned out in .5 seconds. If you regularly get about 100-500 likes, it's unlikely your post will get into the top nine posts for a hashtag with over 20 million posts. The higher the total number of posts a hashtag has, the more competitive the hashtag is and the harder it is to reach the top nine posts.
How to find precisely the right combination of hashtags for explosive growth
Make sure that the hashtags you use are semi-popular, we define semi-popular as 100k to 500k total posts. The competition from these semi-popular hashtags is lower, so you will be more likely to reach the top nine in them. The engagement you receive from being in the top nine of these semi-popular hashtags will help you get into the top nine of a popular hashtag, one with 500k + posts.
Have a bank of 30 hashtags that are specific to your niche and post 3 - 5 hashtags in the caption of every post. Rotating hashtags is better for Instagram growth than posting 30 of the same hashtags every time. If you use all of the same hashtags on every one of your posts, Instagram's algorithm will make your post undiscoverable in those hashtags.
For example, let’s say you’re a graphic designer. Instead of just tagging #art (which has over 300 million posts), you could instead tag #graphicdesigncentral (only 400,000 posts) and #digitalartwork (only 300,000 posts) to reach a more targeted audience of people who really love graphic design. Using semi-popular hashtags like #graphicdesigncentral and #digitalartwork will help you stand a chance of making it in the top nine for #graphicdesign (20 million posts) and #graphicdesigner (4 million posts). This is the best way to use hashtags to get a lot of targeted engagement on your posts.
So, now let’s have a recap. It’s day four. You’ve decided on your specialized niche, shaped your brand’s identity, and learned exactly how to make quality content to really grow your page. Marketing and spending time to attract new followers will now be worth your time once you have a plan for these important initial steps.
Which begs the question… now that your page is on it’s way to being awesome, how do you get people to come across your page in the first place? We’re almost to the juicy parts (we promise).
But there’s one thing you’re going to want to look at before promoting you’re newly awesome page, and that’s your current engagement rate. You need to have a healthy engagement rate before moving forward with promotion, or your efforts will be wasted.
The good news: If you’re applying all of our advice to a new account, you won't have anything to worry about, because the engagement rate on a new account is naturally healthy. But you’ll still want to know what an engagement rate is, so you can prevent your own engagement rate from going south the older your account gets.
The bad news: If you’re applying our previous advice to an older, established account in an effort to revamp it, you’ll most likely need to work on your engagement rate before moving forward with promotion.
A little confused? That’s ok!
We’re going to talk all about engagement rate in our next email. Everybody who owns an Instagram needs to be familiar with what engagement rate is.
We’re giving you an exclusive private lesson… so don’t miss out!
Talk to you soon,
- Engagement Genie Team