You might be using Instagram to entertain your friends and family – or you could be using the platform to promote your brand or business. Either way, if you’re regularly posting on Instagram, you should ask yourself a few questions. What is the best time to post on Instagram? Are your posts on the right day and at the right time? Are your videos and imagery up to scratch? And are you fully engaging with your audience? Read on to discover best practices you can use to ensure your Instagram posts stand out from the crowd and really capture your audience’s attention, whether you’re a personal or business user.
Instagram is a visual platform that’s used to share moments and to communicate a point of view to the world via photos and videos. It's owned by Facebook and it integrates very effectively with the Facebook advertising platform. Marketers can advertise on Instagram through Facebook to reach a young, mobile audience.
You may be wondering what the best days and times are to post on Instagram, particularly if you are an advertiser.
Various studies have tried to find a ‘best’ time on a ‘best’ day. Wednesday at 11am is generally suggested as the best day and time to post. However, you’ll most likely be posting more often than once a week, so it’s a good idea to look at a wider selection of ‘good’ times to post.
We recommend that you look at your account analytics and timezone. A sound approach is to use Instagram’s Insights tool. If you have a business account, you’ll automatically have access to this free analytics tool. You can use it to see on which days of the week – and which times – your followers are most active onInstagram. This data can give you a good understanding of the best times topost, based on your instagram users and followers.
You should be familiar with these key terms to use Instagram effectively:
Let's talk through some of the best practices for posting on Instagram:
You can use social media influencers to expand your Instagram audience, and to increase awareness of your account or brand. Indeed, Instagram is one of the most important channels for influencer marketing. Influencers are – as the name suggests – influential. Some have millions of followers. By collaborating with the right influencer, you can really expand your reach.
It’s important to choose the influencers you work with carefully. They need to be credible, trustworthy, relevant, and authentic, and to have a vision and target audience that align with your own.
So reach out to any influencers you are interested in working with. You could ask them to take over your page for a set period of time, or to create content with a CTA to follow your own brand's account. These partnerships can be paid or free, depending on the type of relationship you have with them.
As Instagram is a visual platform, it means that your photos must be of a high standard that presents your product or concept in a way that speaks to people. Here are some of our top tips for posting photos:
Using predefined filters to make your images look better is essential to engaging the audience. You can apply filters at varying strengths to your images using sliders. Popular filters include Clarendon, Gingham, Juno, Lark, Mayfair, Sierra, Valencia, and Walden. When modifying your images (or series of images) with filters, be consistent and take overall color themes and tones into consideration.
Apply no filters
Posting photos as having #nofilter can be a nice way to show your followers how well your images (or products) can look without post-production enhancements. Just make sure to call them out as such.
Modify the ambience
It's possible to simply modify the ambience of your photos by adjusting the light and contrast sliders, to see how high-contrast or low-lit photos might look. You can add filters on top of your ambience-modified photos to produce different photo combinations to share with your audience.
Add the grid function
Adding the grid function when taking a photo allows photo-content producers to shoot their pictures in a standardized manner that takes into account image cropping, and where subjects and people fit into the photo frame.
Cross-pollinate between platforms
You can save and import your Instagram photos into Snapchat, add Snapchat filters, and then reimport back into Instagram for posting. This is a good way to cross-pollinate the filter functionality of the two platforms and create engaging content.
When posting video content on Instagram and other social platforms, here are some useful steps you can take to really enhance the video experience for your audience:
With Instagram Stories, you can share multiple photos and videos with your audience. Stories are temporary content in your overall social experience, so it's important to understand their ephemeral nature.
Let's look at some best practices for creating Stories: