Time online needs to be time well spent. Once you nail the basics of a social network, how can you add some sizzle to ensure your content compels people to take action, expands your network, and stands apart amidst a sea of mediocrity?
On Instagram, think beyond the obvious photo/video uploads. Check out these five ideas for inspiration to take your Insta-game to the next level.
- Filters create storylines. On Instagram, Microsoft celebrates “people who break boundaries, achieve their goals, and #DoMore every day.” Those photos are all in color. Every so often, Microsoft will throw in a black and white pic, which signifies a behind-the-scenes photo. I love the idea of being so intentional with filters. Can you create distinct experiences within your Instagram feed just by controlling filters or editing techniques?
- “Sitcoms” come to Instagram. “To reach a new generation of kids fighting the blemish battles, Benzac Acne Solutions has created an Instagram sitcom about the quest for a pimple-free life,” according to Fast Company. During a three-week period, 22 15-second episodes will be posted to Instagram.
- Choose you own adventure. To promote the Toronto Short Film Festival, the brand’s Instagram channel morphed into a choose-your-own-adventure silent film. From Fast Company: “By using clips from the seven silent films included in the festival, users can string together a short film based on a series of decisions. Opening with a street fight scene, viewers are given the choice to call the cops or run away. Clicking the hashtag of your choice, you’re taken to the next video. From there you can hide in a department store or a hospital, then go on a date, only to fake sick to get out of a horrible dining experience. At least, that’s one of the many films that can come from the experience.” While your brand may not need to create a film experience, there are ways to creatively connect hashtags to calls to action.
- Insta-loop “event.” While “loop giveaways” are fairly common, a loop event adds a new twist to the concept. (And, in my opinion, it feels more authentic than a contest or giveaway.) We worked with the Columbus College of Art & Design to host a virtual fashion show on Instagram using this loop concept. On a specific date, at the same time, the participating influencers posted the outfit/look that they felt best showed their fashion perspective. In the caption, the person detailed her look and included verbiage to promote the upcoming (real world) fashion show. And, by asking each influencer to tag another participant in their photo caption, we were able to create a whole virtual “runway” of looks.
- Brand journalism via Insta-zine. As more and more brands get into the content publishing game, it becomes even more challenging to cut through the noise. But, good content is inherently social. So, how about creating remarkable, magazine-style content, but publishing it on Instagram? And, the Insta-zine is born. From AdWeek: “The magazine, which Ballantine’s is calling an “Insta-zine,” is titled W. The first issue can be found at @w_issueone on Instagram. (It’s linked from Ballantine’s Instagram account, of course.) The magazine features a mosaic-style grid of images that together make up the front page. Tapping on individual posts leads you to different articles.”