How To Properly Market on Instagram Part One: Content Themes

Instagram is one of the major players on social media and has been for a long time. But if you’ve been living under a rock, here’s a breakdown of the app: it’s a photo (and now, short video) based platform where you have the ability to post publicly or privately for audiences of all sizes. On this platform, you can gain followers who will see your posts in their feed and, by using hashtag and engagement strategies, your content can also appear on the Explore page, a page filled with posts from accounts (even ones the user may not be following) that the Instagram algorithm has predicted the user would like to see. 

The demographics of Instagram, like many social media platforms, do tend to skew younger. More than half of the users are below the ages of 34 and it ranked third in popularity among teens (after Snapchat and TikTok). This is important for understanding the audience for your Instagram posting; it’s not just about crafting your branding, you should also be positioning your branding for younger demographics. 

Instagram can be used in a variety of businesses, ranging from the food and beverage industry to the travel industry. As long as your product or service can be advertised visually, it can be advertised on Instagram. 

Related: Instagram Marketing Tutorial

How Most Companies Are Marketing on Instagram

Many different companies are taking wildly different approaches to Instagram right now. This means there are a wide array of opportunities for your brand! Here are the major themes: 

  • Surrealist and Aesthetic Content 
  • Informative and Education Content
  • Customer Facing and Shopping Content 

Surrealist and Aesthetic Content

One route to go for your branding is to use your Instagram feed as a place to display the aesthetics of your company. Instead of just using Instagram as another online store, you can really tap into what your brand means and how you can represent that visually. A great example of this is the seltzer brand Recess.

Recess decided to market their sparkling water as a “feeling” instead of as purely sparkling water. So, they took their Instagram in a deeply surrealist and abstract direction. Their feed is filled with shots of their seltzer cans getting X-rays, sitting on a couch watching a movie, even getting ready to go skiing. This is both comedic and visually interesting, two big ways to engage your audience. Even though their posts are all particularly outlandish, they make sure to consistently stick with their branding colors and fonts. This creates customer recognition, the most important tool when crafting your social media presence. 

Informative and Educational Content

A great example of this type of educational content is our client Plant Cell Technology, a biotech company producing tools for tissue culturists. 

Their IG feed is a mix of videos of their lab cultures, user-generated cultures, and infographics about tissue culturing. This social strategy is great for creating a community with your customers; when you provide valuable information that helps to educate your audience, they’ll be more likely to turn to you when beginning the journey with whatever service or product you are selling. This method can also create synergy between your social accounts, giving yourself the ability to reuse content and comments from one social account as content on another. 

Consumer-Facing, Shoppable Content

One of the most popular Instagram strategies is the tried-and-true IG shop method. This is pretty straightforward: using your Instagram as another online shop. This works well if you don’t have a website set up yet or if you just want to use your Instagram to promote your products. 

A company doing this well is the kitchenware company Our Place. Our places uses a mix of promotional shots and user-generated content to promote both the feel of their company and the products they are selling. When scrolling through their feed, you can see how their wares would fit into your own kitchen and home. 

Choosing the best type of content strategy will help the Instagram algorithm promote your content to the right niche audience. This in turn will result in conversions into sales and a growing following. Additionally, deciding which route to go down is very dependent on your branding and how you will start marketing your products online. 

So now you know which themes you’re going to build your feed from, what’s next? Implementation. Stay tuned: we’ll talk about implementing Instagram marketing in our next blog!