The Future of Instagram: How to Create Winning Posts in 2023
Social media has become an incredible marketing tool. It allows you to build brand awareness, influence prospects, and drive returns at every opportunity. It is now a crucial place to build relationships with new customers and develop them with existing ones. It is also a field that is constantly growing at a rapid rate. One in three people were active on social networks last year, and it has now become impossible to deny that social media offers an incredible opportunity to find, connect, and engage with your target audience.
Instagram is a social media platform that enables users to share videos and photos with their followers. Since it was launched in 2010, Instagram has become one of the most popular social media platforms, with over 2.35 billion monthly active users. The platform has also become increasingly important for brands, with 90% of Instagram users following at least one business account.
One of the reasons Instagram is so important for brands is because of its high engagement rates. Instagram boasts an engagement rate that is 54 times higher than Pinterest, 10 times higher than Facebook, and 84 times higher in comparison to Twitter. Additionally, 130 million Instagram users tap on shopping posts every month, making it a valuable tool for e-commerce businesses.
In terms of demographics, Instagram is particularly popular among younger audiences. 71% of Instagram users are under the age of 35, and 59% of users are between the ages of 18 and 29. This makes it a valuable platform for brands targeting younger consumers.
With that being said, below in this Instagram post guide, we’re going to take a look at the future of Instagram and how you can capitalise on this by creating winning posts in 2023.
Why Is Instagram Good for Marketing?
Incorporating Instagram into your marketing approach should be a no-brainer for your company. After all, if one billion people use Instagram every month, with 500 million using Instagram Stories each day, it doesn't make sense not to. With engagement numbers as high as these, it's vital that you learn how to create an Instagram marketing strategy to connect with as many engaged users as possible in 2023.
Your Instagram marketing strategy for 2023 could be the difference between your business having a good year or a great year. If you want to grow your business, creating high-quality and engaging content on Instagram is more important than ever before. With more competition in the world of social media, audiences are very aware of things they like and, more importantly, what they don't like seeing in their feeds. Remember, they won't hesitate to quickly remove any content that doesn't appeal to them.
This means that in order to create high-quality Instagram content, you'll need a strategy in place for planning, shooting, editing, and posting all your content. Consistency will be key. You need to be able to regularly produce and post content that your audience is going to engage with. Once Instagram's algorithm picks up that you're creating content that connects closely with your audience, it will then put you and your future posts in front of new audiences, creating a greater chance of reaching a wider range of people who may be interested in your products.
Instagram Marketing in 2023
So, why use Instagram for marketing? Instagram will be one of the biggest social media marketing trends in 2023. With an almost identical split between male and female users, the app sees around 63% of people log onto it at least once a day. It's expected that these users will spend an average of 28 minutes a day on the platform, with 200 million people using it to visit at least one business profile on a daily basis. This is a huge market for you to tap into.
As a predominantly visuals-first platform, Instagram is the perfect social media platform for brands that focus on aesthetics, such as food companies that want to show off their tasty creations and fashion brands hoping to get their styles trending. There are several key reasons that Instagram suits these companies well, namely:
- They can create beautiful online catalogues on their feed that present their products in a desirable way
- The app's two-way engagement allows them to reach out to and communicate directly with their customers
- Hashtags allow for easy targeting of those who align with the brand's messaging
- Product tagging encourages purchases
- Influencers prefer Instagram, and the right one in collaboration with your business can lead to a powerful brand ambassador
All this sounds like a great opportunity, but it probably leads you to ask one very important question: how can I grow my Instagram in 2023? Here are 5 tips for Instagram in 2023 you need to know.
1. Establish a Consistent Theme
The first critical step to running a successful Instagram account is planning your content. Defining the look and feel of your profile will need to be taken care of before you can even start posting. There are a number of different traits you will have to consider, such as:
- What are the colours you will be using?
- What filters will you be applying?
- What is the type of content you'll be posting?
- How can you make the visuals reflect your brand?
- Will you be having pictures and videos with people, or do you prefer to just showcase your products?
- Will animation be incorporated?
Fashion brands like Lacoste and Fjällräven are great examples of different fashion styles being instantly accessible because they've clearly defined the feel of their Instagram content. In the case of Lacoste, they stick to a very regular colour palette, usually on a white background and heavily reference their relationship to tennis. All of these are defining traits associated with the company, so Instagram reinforces these in a visual manner. For Fjällräven, their clothing is all about being worn outdoors and getting closer to nature. Therefore all their images are taken in rugged landscapes and involve people being active in a wild environment; they are either hiking, climbing or camping and fully encapsulate the type of person that Fjällräven are trying to target.
2. Plan Your Content Effectively
Once you understand what you want your Instagram profile to look like visually, you're set to start developing your Instagram content strategy and planning the actual content itself. Before considering different types of content, think about what you want to achieve with your Instagram marketing in 2023. Are looking to increase more sales? Is the goal greater overall engagement with the brand from users? Do you just want to increase your followers?
These goals are crucial because they inform the content you publish on Instagram. This should focus on the day-to-day planning of posts as well as the overall yearly content. It should be a mix of images, videos, Stories, photography and anything else you can think of. This variety of content, whilst still adhering to the content theme you've instilled, will keep your Instagram interesting and vibrant as well as avoiding being repetitive, which usually leads to a decrease in engagement from your followers. Madewell is a great example to take Instagram inspiration from. Their content rel="noopener noreferrer" is tailored to the different seasons, both in regard to the clothing itself and the variety of colours they use in their shots. This attention to detail helps them stay relevant throughout the year and target people with the appropriate products at the right time of the year.
If you're a company that feels like it might need support with this, bringing in a fashion eCommerce agency like Appnova will go a long way in helping you achieve your goals.
3. Leverage the Right Hashtags
Hashtags are a very important part of Instagram because the right hashtags, combined with the right number, can help you quickly reach a wider audience and attract more followers. When first starting out, you will need to experiment with the different numbers of hashtags you include in your posts and track how they affect your results. Pretty soon you'll be able to find the right number of hashtags that work best for your brand.
Research your hashtags before you use them and try to go beyond which are the popular ones at the time. If there is simply too much content associated with your hashtags, it's easy for them to get lost in the sheer amount of other posts latching on. Like everything else on Instagram, your hashtag usage should be a mix, utilising different types like popular, niche, and location hashtags. Doing this well will get more eyes on your posts in no time at all.
4. Collaborate with Relevant Influencers
There's a reason so many companies incorporate collaborations into their marketing strategies: they work. Adding influencer marketing into your overall Instagram strategy will help raise brand awareness, add to your follower base, and ultimately, drive more sales.
Influencers are viewed as a trusted source of information to their followers, and when they recommend a product or service on their Instagram page, it has a greater level of authenticity and credibility than if it was just coming from the company itself. As well as this, it comes with the distinct advantage of offering direct access to a target market.
When an influencer has a close connection with a specific market, for example, vegan food, workout supplements, or make-up, they are seen as an authority on that topic to their followers. This instils their recommendation with an added level of trust that just can't be found with a random celebrity who is arguably more famous. By partnering with relevant influencers who have an engaging and authentic voice, your business is well placed to target people who are already interested in your sector.
5. Use High-Quality Elements
(Obviously) Due to Instagram's focus on looks, everything you put out there should be very high quality and visually appealing. This includes everything from the lighting of a shot and the type of camera you use, to the editing done in post. If your content isn't to a very high standard, people will just scroll by your posts and find competitors with more appealing content.
Presenting your products in a premium light will not only make them seem more appealing, but it will also make your brand's Instagram page more attractive. As such, it's definitely worth spending that little bit extra, both in regards to time and money, to ensure that everything is as high production as possible. Think of it this way, would you prefer to buy from a company with fuzzy or poorly lit pictures, or one with high-quality imagery that shines a light on all their products' best features? It may seem obvious and self-explanatory, but on Instagram, the smallest blemish can have the biggest impact.
6. Use Instagram Stories
Instagram Stories offer an excellent platform to share more casual, behind-the-scenes content with your audience.
Here's why you should use them:
- They provide a great way to increase engagement with your audience. You can use features like polls, questions, and quizzes to encourage your followers to engage with your content and provide feedback.
- Instagram Stories appear at the top of the Instagram app, making them one of the first things that users see when they open the app. This can help keep your brand top of mind for your followers.
- Instagram Stories provide an opportunity to showcase your brand's personality and share more casual, behind-the-scenes content with your audience. This can help build a stronger connection with your followers.
- They offer an excellent way of sharing time-sensitive content that may not be relevant after 24 hours. For example, you can use Stories to promote flash sales, limited-time offers, or events.
- You can use Instagram Stories to drive traffic to your website by adding a "swipe up" link to your Stories. This can be a great way to promote blog posts, products, or other content on your website.
So, how can you use Instagram stories effectively?
It's important to use high-quality visuals that are appealing. You can use a variety of visual elements like images, videos, animations, and stickers to make your Stories stand out.
Keep it short and sweet
Stories on Instagram are meant to be short and snappy, so ensure your content is concise and to the point. Try to deliver your message in a clear and concise way to keep your audience engaged.
Use interactive features
Instagram Stories offer a variety of interactive features like polls, questions, and quizzes. Use these features to encourage your audience to engage with your content and provide feedback.
Add text and captions
Adding text and captions to your Instagram Stories can help provide context and make your content more accessible. Use text overlays or captions to explain what's happening in your Story and provide additional information.
Consistency is key when it comes to using Instagram Stories effectively. Try to post regularly and at the same time each day to keep your audience engaged and build a stronger connection with them.
7. Schedule Your Instagram Posts
Scheduling your posts on social media can help you stay organised and consistent with your content, which is key to growing your following and engagement.
Here are some tips for scheduling your Instagram posts effectively:
Use a scheduling tool
There are several Instagram scheduling tools available that allow you to schedule posts in advance. Some popular options include Later, Hootsuite, Buffer, and Sprout Social. These tools can help you save time and stay organised by allowing you to plan your content in advance.
Consider your audience
When you schedule your Instagram posts, it's important to consider your audience's behaviour and preferences. For example, if your audience is most active in the morning, you may want to schedule your posts to go live in the morning to maximise engagement.
Plan your content in advance
Before scheduling your Instagram posts, it's a good idea to plan your content in advance. This will help you make sure everything you post is consistent and on-brand, and it can also help you avoid last-minute scrambling to come up with content.
Use analytics to inform your scheduling
Use Instagram analytics to track when your audience is most active and engaging with your content. This information can help you optimize your posting schedule for maximum engagement.
Mix up your content
When scheduling your Instagram posts, it's important to mix up your content to keep your audience engaged. This can include a mix of images, videos, Stories, and Reels, as well as different types of content like product highlights, behind-the-scenes glimpses, and user-generated content.
8. Tag Your Products
Tagging your products on Instagram is a great way to make it easy for your audience to purchase items directly from your posts.
When you tag products in your posts or Stories, your followers can tap on the tag to see more information about the product and even purchase it directly from your post. This makes it easier for your followers to shop for your products and can increase sales for your brand.
In addition to making it easier for your followers to buy your products, tagging products on Instagram can also help you track the performance of your posts. You can use Instagram's analytics tools to see how many clicks and purchases each product tag has generated, allowing you to optimise your posts for maximum sales.
To tag products on Instagram, you'll need to have an Instagram business account and connect it to a Facebook catalogue. From there, you can add product tags to your posts and Stories, and your followers can start shopping for your products directly from your content.
9. Create Instagram Reels
Instagram Reels is a feature that allows you to create and share short, entertaining videos on Instagram. They boast an average engagement rate of 1.95%.
Here are some tips for creating engaging and effective Instagram Reels:
Plan your content
Before creating your Instagram Reel, it's important to plan out your content in advance. This will help you stay organised and ensure that your Reel is on-brand and engaging for your audience.
Keep it short and sweet
Instagram Reels are meant to be short and snappy, so it's important to keep your content concise and to the point. Try to deliver your message in a clear and concise way to keep your audience engaged.
Use engaging visuals
Instagram Reels are a highly visual medium, so it's important to use high-quality visuals that are visually appealing. Use a mix of different visual elements like images, videos, animations, and stickers to make your Reels stand out.
Add music and sound effects
Instagram Reels allows you to add sound effects and music to your videos, which can help make them more entertaining and engaging for your audience. Use popular songs or sound effects that are relevant to your content to make your Reels more engaging.
Use hashtags and captions
Like with regular Instagram posts, it's important to use relevant hashtags and captions on your Instagram Reels to make them more discoverable and provide additional context for your content.
Instagram Reels is a great opportunity to get creative and try new things. Experiment with different visual and audio effects, storytelling techniques, and content formats to keep your audience engaged and entertained.
10. Pin Your Best Posts
Pin your best posts on Instagram is a feature that allows you to select a post and keep it at the top of your profile page.
Here are some reasons why you should consider pinning your best posts on Instagram:
- Pinning your best posts is an excellent way to showcase your most engaging and high-quality content to your followers. This can help you build a stronger brand identity and keep your audience engaged with your content.
- You can keep your profile looking fresh and up-to-date, which can help attract new followers and keep existing ones engaged.
- Pinning a post to the top of your profile is a great way to highlight important information about your brand, such as a new product launch or a limited-time promotion.
- You can help increase engagement on your post. This is because when your followers visit your profile, they will see your pinned content first, and are more likely to engage with it.
- If you have a lot of content on your profile, pinning a post can make it easier for people to find what they're looking for. This is particularly helpful if you have a specific post or message that you want to promote to your audience.
Instagram Marketing Trends 2023
Capitalising on the latest trends is one of the best ways to boost your Instagram marketing efforts. Here are some of the hottest trends to follow at the moment:
- Influencer marketing - Influencer marketing is still a popular trend on Instagram. Brands are collaborating with influencers to promote their products or services to a wider audience.
- Authentic content - Consumers are looking for more authentic content from brands, so creating content that is more genuine and relatable can help increase engagement.
- Video content - Video content continues to be a popular trend on Instagram, with features like Reels and IGTV allowing brands to share longer-form video content.
- User-generated content - User-generated content is a trend that continues to gain traction on Instagram. Brands are encouraging their followers to create and share content featuring their products or services, which can help increase engagement and build a sense of community.
- Instagram Shopping - Instagram Shopping is becoming more popular as e-commerce continues to grow. Brands can tag products in their posts and stories, making it easier for users to shop directly from the app.
- Niche communities - Niche communities are forming on Instagram, with users creating and engaging with content that is specific to their interests. Brands can tap into these communities by creating content that resonates with their interests.
Instagram Post Guidelines
Here are some guidelines to keep in mind when posting on Instagram:
- Image sizing - For optimal image quality, Instagram recommends using images that are at least 1080 pixels wide. The recommended aspect ratio is 1.91:1 for landscape images, 4:5 for vertical images, and 1:1 for square images.
- Video sizing - For videos, Instagram recommends using an aspect ratio of 9:16 for vertical videos and 16:9 for horizontal videos. The maximum length for a video is 60 seconds.
- Hashtags - Utilise relevant hashtags to ensure your posts are discoverable to users who are interested in similar topics. Instagram enables you to add up to 30 hashtags per post.
- Captions - Captions can be up to 2,200 characters long, but it's best to keep them concise and to the point. Use clear and engaging language, and try to include a call to action to encourage engagement with your post.
- Tagging - Tag relevant accounts in your posts to increase engagement and visibility. You can tag up to 20 accounts per post.
- Branding - When it comes to Instagram post creation, use your brand's visual and messaging guidelines to create a consistent and cohesive look and feel across your Instagram posts. This can include using brand colours, fonts, and tone of voice.
- Frequency - Post regularly to keep your audience engaged and interested in your content. The recommended frequency is at least once per day, but it's also important to prioritise quality over quantity.
- Audience - Understand your audience and craft content that resonates with them. Use Instagram's analytics tools to track engagement and adjust your content strategy accordingly.
Time for a Recap
It doesn't matter what products your business is looking to sell, having an Instagram marketing strategy for 2023 should be something you are focusing on. With the recent Facebook rebranding involving WhatsApp and Instagram, it's never been a better time to start fully optimising your social media channels, and connecting them together has never been easier.
To recap, getting the most out of your Instagram page next year will start by following these 5 tips that we've explained in this guide:
- Establish a consistent theme
- Plan your content effectively
- Leverage the right hashtags
- Collaborate with relevant influencers
- Use high-quality elements
By doing this thoroughly and effectively, you'll be able to engage with a much larger audience who may already be interested in what you have to offer. All you have to do is reach out to them.
This blog post is Last updated on May 23rd, 2023.
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