The ABC's of Content Ready
Being Content Ready
There are a few facets of being Content Ready for social. One half is part of brand building and storytelling. Understanding what valuable original content you can offer, and what the best way to convey it is.
Today’s post will be focusing on the other half of being Content Ready, and that is your visual flow.
By strategizing your visual flow for Instagram, you will be aesthetically covered for all other networks. If it looks great on Instagram, it will work 99% elsewhere.
The reason why it is important to be strategic with your visual flow, is because it is part of effectively sharing your brand story. By presenting your content in the most compelling and eye catching way, you avoid great ideas from being lost in social swirl.
Instagram is a visual platform, and great content can get lost if the visual flow is a jumble. And since behind good design, is good strategy and intent … let’s get strategizing.
Pick Your Flow
We are going to start with the simplest building blocks of visual flow. There are more advanced approaches, but let’s walk before we break into a full sprint.
The most basic, and most effective way to establish your brand aesthetic while catch potential followers’ eyes, is the Basic 9 layout.
With the Basic 9 layout, you take your first post (image) and turn it into a mega post within your profile.
By gridding one image into a nine section grid (queue Photoshop), you can create nine individual images that can be subsequently posted in sequence.
This Basic 9 technique is also ideal when launching a fresh new Instagram account. It is hard to build community without an established aesthetic, or having potential followers understand at-a-glance what your offer, so this is a gorgeous way to get things rolling.
With new accounts (or feeds where folks are deleting their current content, to start from scratch with all new posts), I advise sharing the first nine posts before you work to grow your following.
Nine posts in a row can be notably spammy, so be careful as to how you roll this out. If you have a decent existing following, I suggest rolling out your Basic 9 over a week’s time, and make sure there is compelling verbiage within your post. This is all part of having a Social Calendar strategy.
Next we’re going to hit on a popular variation of the Basic 9, and that’s The 3 Post.
The 3 Post
The way to effectively use The 3 Post, is to share three aspects / perspectives / or dimensions of a shared concept.
This can be three different perspectives of a room.
Three angles of a product.
Three posts of a branding project (brand template, digital, and printed collateral).
Or for makers, it can be an inspiration image, the product created from it, and a quote.
You get the idea.
The 3 Post is a great way to give a dynamic look to your feed, and offers opportunity to strategize relevant information you want to convey.
The next technique is an ideal one for the time crunched, or folks whose feeds are as much portfolio as personal shares. And this is the Every Other Post.
Every Other Post
With the Every Other Post, it is an ideal way to not overcommit or be as restrictive with your content structure.
You can share your portfolio or work, but then give to your community in a more cerebral way an the alternate post. Is it a quote? A recipe? A tip? Whatever that alternate post content is, it should compliment your brand story.
And as I mentioned when introducing this technique, this approach also works well for folks whose feeds are part portfolio, and part candid shares. By anchoring your feed with being refined content in an alternating post, your brand storytelling won’t get lost in a string of mocha latte captures.
The final technique we’ll touch on today, is the Palette Approach.
When applying a cohesive palette to your feed, it is a gorgeous way to reinforce your brand aesthetic. You also don’t have to be married to the same palette through your existence on Instagram. You can switch it up every 12 posts, 27, or 900.
This technique works ideally for photographers and makers who have inherent color tendencies or a palette focus within their work.
Many modern minimalist color lovers stick to saturated pastels, anchored with a few key background colors.
Photographers with consistent subject matter or aesthetic can achieve a gorgeous consistency.
Whether it is neutrals, brights, or a set palette … sharing images that fall within a consistent color placement not only makes for a gorgeous feed, but followers can easily learn and recognize your brand or work.
And for those who enjoyed the colorwork in today’s post, I have the palette below for you + the HEX colors for your reference :)