This concept comes from the Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto who emphasized that 20% of the population controls the majority of the wealth. In marketing the 80/20 Rule translates a bit differently. About 20% of your strategy should produce 80% of the results. In other words, only about 20% of your content should directly promote your business. The other 80% should be informational, educational or entertaining posts that you think your audience will love. In their eyes, you are giving them something relevant and useful while occasionally promoting your business, something they’ll be able to see past. Followers can generally see past self-promotion if it’s offset by something they find useful and if they are the appropriate target audience for the product or service you plan to offer. What you don’t want to do is sound too sales-ey too often.
Here is a simple example with Cath Shaw's business called Bees on a bicycle - an urban garden center and a shop in the heart of Chattanooga, TN:
So if you want to grab – and hold – your audience's attention, your social media content has to cut through the chatter and give them a compelling reason to stick around.
And if you wonder what content you should post on your social media accounts, I have a freebie for you:
Here are some ideas for the different types of content that make sense for your business and audience:
1. Blog posts - Long blog posts are perfect for using the same content in different medias. You can take pieces of the long blog post and create a Facebook or Instagram post, for example. You can make a video out of it for your YouTube channel.
2. Quotes and motivation - They are the perfect content buffer for good Instagram feed. A brand that does a great job (creatively) integrating quote posts into their Instagram account is WeWork.
3. Product promotions, sales and discounts - An image is worth 1,000 words. However I would say that a quality image is worth 1,000 words. CalifiaFarms does a great job with this. See more examples here from the best brands on Instagram, according to Hubspot.
4. Holidays - Holidays such a Black Friday or Christmas can be crucial for the amount of revenue your business can generate.
5. User-generated content - It's a brilliant way to increase engagement and reach. GoPro does this very well. They're always sharing content that their followers captured using the GoPro.
6. Events and announcements - Social media is a powerful tool to gain exposure, whether you’re hosting a n event or doing an announcement. There are creative ways to increase awareness, engagement and sales for your events.
7. Giveaways and contests - If you are looking for an inexpensive, effortless and exciting way to grow your brand on social media, contests and giveaways are perfect for that. I recently ran contest in one of my businesses and it lead to increasing my mail list with 75%.
8. Livestreaming - Run the Live either on Facebook or Instagram and save it before you publish it. This will allow you to edit it and post pieces of it as regular posts on your social media platforms.
9. Testimonials - Sharing clients testimonials is a great way to get your potential prospects to feel safer about choosing you over the competition. After all, it let's them see what current clients have said about your company before they make the decision to invest. And instead of publishing text testimonials, go with videos. You can check our testimonials here.
10. E-books - Promote your eBooks across your social media channels and you'll find that they're a fantastic source of extra leads.
Depending on your business, your type of content may be different and can be as broad or specific as you need. For instance, a health club might have categories like free trials, challenges, workout videos, workshops and clinics, recipes and nutrition, and others.
Once you’ve chosen your categories, create a separate Excel spreadsheet to use as a working library so you can plan and gather the original content, products, events, and promotions you plan to share. It’s helpful to color-code each content type so you can easily differentiate them on the calendar.
You want to know how to schedule all your posts in advance? Here is a Freebie for you:
What type of content are you using for your Instagram?
You want to make your Stories more fun and entertaining? I have some hacks for you to try. Let's get started:
1. Customize your font colors
To add text to your Instagram Stories, first, tap the camera roll icon on the top left corner. Load an image and tap the Aa icon in the top-right corner when you take or upload a photo or video to your story.
In the keyboard that opens, select from a range of colors. There are actually infinite color choices! Scroll to the right on the color options to see two more additional pages of pre-selected colors to choose from.
But your options don’t stop there! You have two more ways to select the perfect font color.
First, you can tap and hold any of the pre-selected color options. This opens a color bar that allows you to pick the perfect color from anywhere on the color spectrum.
Second, you can tap on the color dropper icon to the left of the color bubbles. This will take you out of the keyboard screen and place a color dropper in the center of your image.
Tap anywhere on your image to perfectly match the color on that pixel of the screen. Once you select the color, you’re taken back to the keyboard screen to add your text in the color you selected.
When you match your font or doodle colors to your brand colors, you can augment your branding within your stories. It can also add a level of detail and styling that will better appeal to your audience.
Change your font or pen size
When you add text or use the pen features in Instagram Stories, these tools default to a mid-range size and thickness. It’s easy to go with what Instagram gives you, but sometimes you may want to shrink the text to fit better on the screen or change the pen size to achieve the artistic style you’re going for.
To adjust both, simply use the slider on the left side of the screen. Slide the circle up to make fonts bigger or pens thicker.
Slide the circle down to make fonts smaller or pens thinner.
3. Build text via consecutive posts
If you have a lot of text to share and want to ensure it doesn’t get missed, consider creating a series of consecutive posts to build additional text. Each story image plays for only about 7 seconds so viewers don’t have time to read a lot of text.
To avoid this, put a small amount of text on a plain background or image and upload that to your story. Ensure that you save the post to your mobile device. (You can turn this on as an automatic setting or tap Save before uploading the post.)
Then start a new story post. From the photo gallery icon at the bottom left of the screen, select the image you just shared. Add the next bit of text to this image, and save and upload again. Continue this process until you’ve added all of the text you need.
4. Turn photos into videos
As I just mentioned, images play for about 7 seconds on Instagram Stories. Videos, however, can play for up to 15 seconds. If you want to keep your text or image on the screen longer, craft your image and turn it into a video.
You can even add music or animations to stand out even more. Add filters, stickers, music, and text to personalize your slideshow, then upload it to Instagram Stories. You may need to trim the video or upload the slideshow in several parts in order to get the full story, so keep this in mind when going for the easier route.
An account that uses this tactic really well is E! News. View their stories to see how they share entertainment news updates in a cohesive story but add music and design elements to turn their photos into videos.
Using videos instead of photos may also improve your engagement. Videos with music or audio components are more likely to capture the attention of your audience as they move through the stories in their feed.
You can also create a video slideshow by downloading the appropriate app. Choose an app like the following:
- SlideShow Video Maker
- Music Video Maker
5. Create solid color background
Sometimes you may want to share something to your Instagram story but don’t want to use an image. Maybe you don’t have a good image for this purpose, or don’t want an image to distract from the message and text you post. In these circumstances, a simple solid-color background can be the perfect solution.
To create a solid-color background, take a photo of anything. It won’t matter because the image will be covered up, but you need to start the story design by taking a photo. After you take the photo, tap the pen icon at the top of the screen and select a color for your background. Then tap and hold anywhere on the screen and the color you selected will fill the screen.
Tap Done or the check mark to save the color selection. Then continue with your editing by adding text, stickers, or doodles.
Hungry for more Instagram Stories tricks? Want to learn how to use them to sell your products and services?
What do you think? Are you going to try out any of these tricks in your Instagram stories? Do you have any other creative tips to share? Please share your thoughts or tips in the comments below.