The Ultimate Template for Crafting The Perfect Instagram Post
Creating an Instagram post isn’t difficult. You snap a pic, write a few lines and then post it.
How hard can it be?
But the tricky part is when you are going to craft a good Instagram post that leaves a long-lasting impression on your followers, gets people talking, and impacts your audience thoroughly.
In order to craft perfect Instagram posts every time, you need a strategy and a plan. You can’ t just snap a photo with your phone on something you find interesting and write a caption in a few seconds. You need to put great thought into it.
There are two parts that go into crafting a great Instagram post. The visual content and the caption.
Both are equally important and complement each other and empower the message you want to convey with the post you share.
In this article, we’re looking at how you can create perfect Instagram posts every time that makes people come back for more.
Before you go about posting like a maniac, it’s important that you set up goals with that particular post. In your social media strategy, you’ve hopefully already set up some main goals that you have and want to achieve with the use of Instagram and social media in general, but these are goals for the larger picture and will probably not be achieved by you posting one post.
Of course, using your posts to work towards your main objectives is something you should absolutely do, but considering the fact that a single Instagram post is such a small puzzle piece if you look at the big picture, and therefore, you’ll be better off looking at what you want to achieve with that particular post you’re about to share.
For optimal results, you need to ask yourself the following question: What am I hoping to achieve with the post I am about to share?
When you’ve done so, and answered the question you just asked yourself, you need to ask yourself yet another question. “How will I achieve that in the best possible way with the post I am going to share?
If your “mini goal” with the post is to let your audience know about your huge summer sale, how should you set up your post so that it leaves the biggest impact and gets people to do what you want to do – shop from you?
When you’ve decided the objective with your post, it’s time to start jumping into the more practical part of your Instagram post.
Follow the SMART-goalsetting principle, as shown in this visual from Weekdone:
Think about the caption
As mentioned, the caption is equally important as the post that you share. This means you should put an equal amount of emphasis on the caption as you do with the visual you created.
Instagram captions are limited to 2,200 characters, and after three lines of text, they become truncated with an ellipsis. But just because the limit is 2,200 doesn’t mean that’s the optimal amount of text you should use.
In fact, 2,200 characters are quite a lot, and very few use all of them. And even fewer people read it all. Instagram is a platform where you should be short and snappy – but not as short as on Twitter, for obvious reasons.
There’s no ideal length for the caption you are creating, because it will vary from brand to brand, and what type of audience you have. Most importantly, it will vary between the type of content you share and what message you want to send.
But one thing that all captions on Instagram should have in common, and the rule that everyone should follow is the rule that you should try to grasp your readers’ attention in the first one or two lines in order to provide context to your post and/or to encourage your readers to keep reading your whole caption.
This is especially important if you choose to write a long caption.
Create different types of captions
There are different types of captions you can use and all of them serves a purpose. Something that more and more brands have started to do is use the Instagram caption to write short-form articles and text that provides value to their audience.
Normally, the Instagram caption has mainly been a way to give more context to the post and to describe what the post is about,m but now, more and more brands have started to realize that the caption tells a story itself that their audience will find equally interesting as the post, if not more.
Tutorials are loved by everyone, and it is a way to give more value to your audience. On posts that have included a guide, you can often see people thanking for it – which is a sign that they are appreciated.
But in order for it to make sense, you want to share tutorials that are actually relevant to your audience. If you have an account dedicated to food, nobody is going to be interested in a guide on how you disassemble a car engine. Instead, they will most likely want to see recipes. And if you share a post about a special dish, the most logical would be to give your audience the recipe to that dish.
In other words, make the tutorial relevant to the visual you are posting. Don’t share the recipe for an apple pie if you are sharing a photo of fish stew. It just won’t make sense, and the caption and photo won’t complement each other, which would allow you to empower your message.
Tips and tricks
The more value you bring with your post, the more people will appreciate it; and by including tips and tricks in your captions, you can do just that.
It doesn’t have to be the longest guide on how you download Google Chrome or resetting your computer, but instead, a tip to making your computer faster in 30 seconds or hidden features that people don’t know of.
The same principle goes for this point as the previous one. Make sure that the tips you give are actually relevant to your niche and brand because otherwise, people won’t care – even if your tips are awesome.
Develop a story
It’s no secret that storytelling works extremely well in marketing.
This goes for both your caption and your visual content.
To tell a story, with your Instagram post, you want to use these three components and techniques:
- Branded images
- Cohesive style of images or graphics
- Same color palette
Write a caption with passion, including coloring words that allow your followers to visualize themselves in the situation you are describing. If you are writing about your product, include elements in your texts that make people feel like they have it right in front of them, because this will have a huge effect on your conversion rates.
Asking questions is a great way to get your audience more engaged in your brand and the content you share.
Every successful brand on Instagram is doing it – and for great reasons. If your audience doesn’t feel like you are including them, they’ll feel a distance from your brand, and you’ll have a harder time building relationships with them. But when you ask questions, you show that you value their opinions, make yourself more approachable, and also open up for further interaction with them based on their response.
Bodaskins knows the importance of asking questions, and do so accordingly on Instagram.
Hashtags don’t have much to do with how good the post is in itself, but it has a huge effect on how your post performs. Of course, trying to promote a post that isn’t that great with hashtags will not generate as great results as if you share a good post with hashtags. But a perfect Instagram post with hashtags will give it the exposure it deserves, and help you reach people outside your circle of followers.
In that sense, hashtags complement a great post and let you squeeze out every single drop of marketing power it holds.
Using the perfect hashtags is an art, and if I’d go through it all, we’d be here all day. If you know how to use hashtags properly, good for you!
If not, I’ll just leave this complete hashtag guide here😉
Did you know that you can tag up to 20 people in your post? Well, you can, and you are missing out on a great opportunity if you aren’t doing it.
When you tag 20 people in your post, it means that 20 more people will see your post. But that’s far from everything that comes with tagging people in your post.
When you tag people in your post, your post will also be visible in their profile, meaning that everyone who checks the posts they have been tagged in will be able to find your post, thus giving your post, and page an extra boost of exposure.
Ideal image sizes for Instagram
Back in the days, the life on Instagram was quite square. Literally.
In fact, you could only post square images. But due to a lot of complaints about Instagram not supporting other formats, they eventually introduced them.
Now, you can post both vertical, square, and landscape photos.
- The ideal size for a vertical Instagram image is 1080px in width by 1350px in height.
- The ideal size for a square Instagram image is 1080px in width by 1080px in height.
- The ideal size for a horizontal Instagram image is 1080px in width by 566px in height.
Have these sizes in mind when crafting your visual, and try to use the format that makes the best impression.
Post for a reason
Don’t post just because you feel like it, even if you have nothing to post. The perfect Instagram posts are high-quality, well-thought through and shared with a reason. If your post doesn’t fulfill these criteria, you should probably not post it.
People are extremely quick to unfollow you if you share a post that isn’t relevant to them or meets their standards.
Again, think about value. Does the post you are going to post give value to your followers? If not, then don’t post it.