Instagram is one of the fastest growing social media platforms. Their number of users is rapidly increasing. But an increasing number of users also means an increasing amount of content. That includes a lot of brands using Instagram as a marketing channel.

So, when it comes to publishing content on your profiles, how do you deal with this much published content and a dip in your inspiration?

We’ve gathered 35 Instagram content ideas, both for posts and Stories, to cure any marketers’ creative block! Each idea is supported with proper example(s) to boost your imagination even further 😉

Grab your notebook and let’s get planning!

Instagram Post Content Ideas

First things first.

When marketers think of Instagram content they usually think of regular posts or Stories. But there are two other formats too: Live and IGTV. Each one offers various opportunities, especially when it comes to the maximum length of videos. Keep them in mind. Especially IGTV, which still isn’t very popular but holds a lot of potential.

#1
Exclusive offers, sales or dedicated promo codes

Exclusive offers for your Instagram community are great at making followers feel special. You can also let people know when a sale starts (or let them know in advance before everyone else knows). Another idea is creating a special promo code for your Instagram community. This will let you know how many clients you’re getting from this platform.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez DAISY LONDON (@daisy_jewellery)


#2
Quotes

Funny, inspiring, motivating… Since they can be quite rare on Instagram, they still stand out from other types of Instagram content. Add a relevant caption and CTA, and you’ll generate engagement.

#3
How-to content

Whether it’s a how-to video, multi-image post, video tutorial or recipe, it’s definitely popular on Instagram. Why? Because it demonstrates how to do something in an easy and accessible manner. And it’s useful. So don’t be afraid of preparing your own. You don’t even have to be a filmmaker to create one.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez KITKAT (@kitkat)

#4
Behind the scenes

Brands differ from influencers, bloggers and the average Instagram user. That’s because what they usually show is rigidly planned and scheduled according to a strategy. Sometimes, it’s planned even 2 months before being published. And there is nothing wrong with it. But wouldn’t it be nice to be a bit more spontaneous sometimes? Like “We’re here now, we’re working on this, and it’ll be ready for you soon.” Not only does it give your upcoming content context but it also brings you closer to your audience.

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

It’s time for the Pyramid to get dressed…

Post udostępniony przez Glastonbury Festival (@glastofest)

#5
Interviews [or sneak peeks]

It may not seem so obvious, but yes, on Instagram you can promote this type of content. And in 4 ways, no less:

  • Regular post: publish a sneak peek or the most interesting pieces from your interview [this may be up to 60 seconds long].
  • Instagram Stories: here again you can publish selected pieces from your interview. Just remember that each Story can be up to 15 seconds long. However, if you add longer video (e.g. 45 seconds long) Instagram will automatically cut it into Stories. On Stories remember (and advised) to add subtitles to your videos, since so many users watch them with the sound off. How to prepare such Stories-friendly video? There are several free video editing software programs which are helpful, even for a beginner.
  • IGTV: On IGTV you can publish the whole interview and then promote it on your profile or Stories.
  • Live: are you confident, well prepared, or even spontaneous? Make your interview a live broadcast. Then you can save it and reuse it later.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez LUSH UK (@lush)

#6
Content related to trending topics

Heard of the Ice Bucket or 10 Years Challenge? We all did. Following trending topics like these is an easy way to create new content and try something new. Your audience will appreciate the fresh content.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez Mercedes-Benz (@mercedesbenz)


#7
Take advantage of real-time marketing

While the trends mentioned above are more long-term, producing real-time marketing content can make you stand out right now. But to get noticed, you have to react quickly and be creative at the same time.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Eggfit of the day or just world record outfit? @world_record_egg. Get yours at hm.com #LikeTheEgg #eggGang #egg ??

Post udostępniony przez H&M (@hm)


#8
Your inspiration or recommendation

Just tested something amazing? Read a book, watched a movie, or seen an interview? Something got you truly inspired? Share it with your audience! You can also think of this in the sense of B2B, in which you can e.g. recommend an app, a company, shoutout another business you admire, or even collaborate (cross promotion). Maybe there’s something interesting going on in your local area to tell your followers about?

#9
Contest or a giveaway

It’s simple: contests engage. Not only are they an idea for content but also a great way to increase your overall engagement and follower base.
We’ve already prepared a guide on how to create an excellent and legal contest.

Contest example:


Giveaway example:


#10
Show the human face of your brand

Share a day from your office, your daily routine, show an event you’re a part of, team integration, taking part in a business run… Show your followers that the people working in your company are real, fun, and cooperative people, and have interests similar to yours. Share all the things you do together, show yourselves getting along and the atmosphere of your team; the good vibes will spread.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez LiveChat (@livechat)


#11
Give your employees some screen time

People always want to know who they’re talking to. By showing off your employees you’ll build trust between users and your brand.


#12
Treat your Instagram profile like a collage – This one requires quite a lot of work, preparation and proper planning, but it’s worth the effort once you have a great idea. Treating your profile as a single piece will turn it into your own unique showcase.

Here are some other, even more creative Instagram profiles: @rickandmortyrickstaverse, @the_oa

#13
Present your product in an interesting [non-obvious] way

Presenting your product might seem straightforward. But doing it right and making it successful isn’t always so obvious. It has to be eye-catching, creative, and it has to make people stop and pay attention. Here are some examples of what we mean:

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez Herschel Supply Co. (@herschelsupply)

Presenting your products in an appealing way is a must if you want to encourage people to buy.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez I Dew Care (@idewcare)

#14
… or in a real life, daily situation

You can always create the impression that your products are luxurious. But sometimes, it’s more important to show how they were created for real people and can be used on a daily basis. It’s also important to show them in everyday situations, not just in perfect, stylized photos. People need to know they can use your product on their way to work or right before bed.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez Converse (@converse)

#15
Take advantage of user-generated content

Oh, user-generated content… This is what brands really love. It’s an easy way to get new content. At the same time, users are always eager to make this content for you! And once you share it, they’ll feel appreciated and important. It’s also a clear sign that your brand can be trusted and offer valuable goods.

Just like Daniel Wellington (see below), make it a routine. By creating a hashtag specifically dedicated to this type of content (here: #DWPickoftheDay) and getting your audience accustomed to it, you will always have something to post to fill any content gap.

It’s especially easy to use UGC on Stories. When users add a Story and tag your brand in it, you can directly share it to your Story. Voila! New content published.

#16
Employer branding

You can treat your brand’s Instagram exclusively as an employer branding channel. This is especially useful in technological companies and the IT industry. They don’t often have that much to show on Instagram. So instead, hand over the Instagram profile to your HR department (or consult with them about your strategy) and post job offers, present any programs your company offers, share fun facts about your company, it’s historical moments, advantages of working there, and so on…


#17
Throwback – It’s always fun to travel back in time for a bit, isn’t it? 😉 

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

What a sight in your rearview mirror: The #BMW 2002 #turbo. Just 1.672 units of this beast were built… And we think that’s a shame. #bmwclassic

Post udostępniony przez BMW Classic (@bmwclassic)

#18
Share sneak peeks of what is to come

Let your audience know what’s coming. Whether it’s a new website, new event, new product, new collection, event registration, or anything else, make some buzz! Get people anticipating and wanting it. 

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

NEW IN | Check check check out our latest arrivals! Find out more at #zarahome stores and online.

Post udostępniony przez Zara Home (@zarahome)


#19
… or make a countdown!

This will also make people wait for what is coming and want it even more. Don’t overdo, however. Making a 30-day countdown may bore or even irritate people. Go for something shorter or send reminders only every 5 days or so.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Time for new loot! This July 11th, get awesome deals on gaming products, and tons of other stuff you’re into. #PrimeDay

Post udostępniony przez Amazon (@amazon)


#20
Post something funny

You could grab anything funny from the web and post it (and sharing the original creator’s credentials, obviously!). Or you could make your own content related brand or industry. Users will appreciate the latter much more.

Cute cats or puppies are not a ready solution for everyone. At some point, users will get fed up with this kind of content. So, cats and puppies are an option… but only to a certain extent. Using them in the right context can work when done well. Take a look:

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez Heineken (@heineken)


#21
Series

Have a great idea you’re very into? Turn it into a series! Just make sure your audience actually likes that type of content. Using tools like Sotrender will help you find out if they do.  

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez WearlyMe (@wearlyme)


Pro tip: use your own hashtag for it too. Something like #PickOfTheDay, #PickOfTheWeek, #MondayMotiation, #ThrowbackThursday, or whatever is relevant.

#22
Share content you’ve posted somewhere else [or already existing content]

Did you publish a new blog post on your blog, video on YouTube, infographic on Pinterest? Let your Instagram community know about it! Add a direct link in your bio and mark it with #linkinbio in your post. Share a piece of it and a sneak peek on why it’s worth checking out. Then finish your caption with a call to action [CTA].


#23
Share knowledge or tips

This option can be pretty broad. What we’re referring to is sharing valuable and useful content. So not funny or inspiring content, but useful information relevant to your audience. Here you will definitely need to know your audience: their needs and their problems. Not sure if you know them well enough? Just ask! And just like that, you have another content idea 😉 Asking a question is a great way to show your audience that you’re listening and to receive feedback.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez Sotrender (@sotrender)

#24
Show that your brand cares

… about the environment, society, local community, or animals. Nowadays people are more conscious about the world’s problems. They expect more than just good prices and nice products. They want them to have a positive impact on the world. Showing your brand cares on your Instagram will improve people’s attitude towards you.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez KappAhl (@kappahl)

#25
Show how your product is manufactured

This idea may seem more relevant in some industries than others, especially FMCG. You can take this idea as it is or take it in broad strokes, as the sky’s the limit. It will be unique and might be interesting to your audience. The only thing to remember is that you should use easy-to-understand language. No jargon!


#26
News

Simple as that. Anything important happening to you is worth sharing. Depending on its importance and appeal, you can share such content either on your profile or Stories. Don’t be scared to be spontaneous and show your real thoughts and feelings.

#27
Events

Share your hosted and organized events, or the ones you take part in. Just one event offers so many content opportunities! Sharing info about it, sharing registration, behind the scenes preparations, summaries, final thoughts, and invitations for next year. So many possibilities!

#28
Show appreciation for your audience

People like to be appreciated. Your audience, your customers, and your followers can be taken care of in many ways. Some of them we’ve already mentioned, like sharing user generated content. But you can do so much more! Thank them for their feedback and opinions on specific issues, for their patience when you had technical issues. Ask for their thoughts on a topic you’ve been thinking about, give them something special, or prepare anything they’ve been asking for. Treat your audience right.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez Nashville Wraps (@nashvillewraps)

#29
Post what your audience can identify with

It’s a great way to get closer to your audience. But to do this, you have to know your target audience REALLY WELL. You need to address their needs, expectations, problems, and values to win their hearts. You want them to see your brand as the go-to brand. It’s especially easy with clothing or beauty brands, where women speak to women but will work also with automotive brands, for example.

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez Amazon (@amazon)


#30
Numbers

Last but not least, share your numbers 😉 Numbers always look impressive and many are interested in them. And let’s be honest, you can put everything into numbers: how many employees you have, how many clients, Instagram followers, coffees had this year, and so on…  

 

Wyświetl ten post na Instagramie.

 

Post udostępniony przez Amazon (@amazon)

Instagram Stories Content Ideas

Stories is another Instagram format. And let’s be honest; it’s booming! It’s already one of the hottest trends in 2019, even for brands. Just a few days ago Stories hit 500 million daily users and 2 million advertisers! What numbers!

While you can certainly use all the ideas mentioned above with Stories, there are several which work especially well in this 1080 x 1920 format.

What can be done exclusively on Stories is:

  • More comprehensive graphics or even infographics – just make sure they are readable. While simple graphic design can be posted on your profile, anything with a bit more text won’t look good and bring much value. Leave that for Stories or other social media platforms.
  • Boards, such as seasonal ones. They are a great way to engage people and reach new ones.
Instagram Stories boards

Instagram Stories boards

  • Instagram takeovers with an influencer, celebrity or any other person who is relevant to your target audience. If you pick the right person, you’ll get an amazing amount of views.
  • Q&A live sessions. It’s an easy way to answer any questions your audience may have. Make sessions on a specific topic or make it an open chat where users can ask questions. Recently, such Q&As are even more convenient to run thanks to the introduction of the Question Sticker.
  • Live – tour your office, share and event or quick update, relevant news, or a spontaneous chat… Anything that comes to your mind 😉

Which of these content ideas does your audience like the most?

There are so many things which can be posted on Instagram! But are all of them equally liked by your audience? Probably not. That’s why it’s worth checking and monitoring how your content is performing and how engaging it is.

The first thing to check is your Top Posts published over a given period of time.

Top performing posts, Sotrender

Top performing posts, Sotrender

The same can be done with Stories.

Top Stories, Sotrender

Top Stories, Sotrender

In both cases, Sotrender can sort posts by the metrics available, such as reach, impressions, and so on.

Top Stories sorted by Impressions, Sotrender

Top Stories sorted by Impressions, Sotrender

Here, keep an eye on two more Instagram Stories metrics.

  • Replies. Are users replying to your Stories? If they are, it means your content is engaging. Remember that the algorithm is aware of everything, so it’s also important for you to answer those DMs.
  • Exits. While a high number of replies is a good thing, with exits it’s just the opposite. When users exit your Stories often, it means your content isn’t interesting enough. Analyze why.

Are your users saving posts? If so, you’ll want to know 😉

If they are, it means they like what you’re posting. It’s a clear sign you should invest more time in producing similar pieces.

Check whether users are saving your posts

Check whether users are saving your posts

Start analyzing your Instagram profiles with our 2-week free trial!

No more excuses for creative block

Now you can’t say you don’t have any post ideas for Instagram, can you?

Noticed something missing on our list? Let us know in the comments! We’re more than happy to expand our list with new ideas!