Although we are all embracing the positive effects of digital detoxes, we also cannot deny how much our Insta grids make or break our brand, image and impressions online, especially as creatives. So how do you curate your brand visually, in a variation of squares?
Photo found on Unsplash
Define and be true to your personal or brand aesthetic. If you’re unsure of what type of content does and doesn’t fit into your grid, my first piece of advice is to take a moment to be analytical: what visual aspects do your current photos have in common? Is it composition, color, angle or subject? Write these things down and reference them, should you ever really question if a photo is or isn’t in line with your Instagram aesthetic. I keep an album on my phone that collects any and all photos I take that may fit in my grid, even one day. This album acts as a filter… if I have even the slightest feeling that a photo would be great for my feed, I add it to my Instagram album, and that way it is easily distinguishable from the rest of my (thousands of) photos.
Curate your feed ahead of time. By this point, you have an album full of photos that may or may not be a good fit for your grid, which is great, because, in my experience, spontaneity does not often result in the most effective posts. (Some may disagree with me here, as they post when and where they want to, and still develop a beautiful feed! To each their own.) I would much rather post a photo after the fact when I have a quiet moment to look at the future of my feed. My favorite app to plan my grid in advance is Unum-- more on that to come!
Timing is everything … or is it? As a strategist, I know that the Instagram algorithm favors accounts that post often, whether that be to their feed or stories. My personal opinion is that I would much rather not post for a week until I have a great photo to share than post a subpar photo, simply for the sake of posting. Do not fall into the pressure of finding photos to post, if you don’t have any that you love! It took me a while to learn this, but after a few instances of going back through my feed and deleting photos, I realized that a great account develops engaged followers that are invested in their content, whether that be every day or every month.
Inspiration over Imitation. Another way I stay true to my aesthetic is to be in tune to when I admire someone else’s feed! At the end of the day, no matter how much I love someone else’s aesthetic, it is not mine and any time I feel like I’m trying to be something that I am not, I can see it in my work! Similarly to defining aesthetic is also defining or understanding your lifestyle and point of view. For example, I love women traveling the world who post all of these lavish photos of cities and landscapes all over the world and sure, I travel sometimes, so I have the ability to *sometimes* imitate this aesthetic. But this is not sustainable for my fairly routine life in Boston. Just like building a brand, it’s all about those ‘unique to you’ moments that make your grid wonderful!
Svitlana's hopping in here for a sec!
I'd like to add a few words on the visual part of the grid from my perspective.
I want to offer you to treat your Insta grid is a virtual exhibition!
When a real-life exhibition is being put together, a lot of thinking and planning goes in the process, because neighboring works need to be displayed in a way that doesn't ruin the impression or has one work dominate over another. Do you see where I'm going with this?
This is a little tip that I find very helpful when planning my grid :)