Looking for some Instagram inspiration?
Whether you’re just getting started with Instagram marketing or you’re a seasoned pro, it’s NEVER a bad idea to see how other brands are using Instagram to grow their business.
It’s easy to get caught up in your regular workflow or fall into a creative rut, and sometimes you just need some fresh inspiration!
In the following post, we look at 5 awesome brands that use Later, the #1 Instagram marketing platform, to find out what they’re doing to stand out on Instagram.
Read for some Instagram inspiration? Here we go:
Instagram Inspiration #1: Artifact Uprising
For most businesses, getting to 500,000+ followers on Instagram is a total pipe dream.
But when you run an Instagram account as creative and visually-stunning as Artifact Uprising, it’s pretty easy to do!
I mean, how can you not click the “follow” button after visiting their page?!
So what exactly does Artifact Uprising do so great?
Well, beyond having a delightful Instagram theme (you can learn more about that here), Artifact Uprising has mastered the art of keeping their feed cohesive.
With a new photo editing app popping-up almost every day, creating nice looking visuals for your Instagram feed isn’t as difficult as it used to be,
What can be really difficult, however, is making all your individual photos look good beside each other
You have to find a balance in your feed, mixing up your angles, subjects, and shot selections. And if you sell physical products, integrating your product shots in a way that flows with the rest of your content.
This is something Artifact Uprising does so well.
So how can you do the same for your feed? Well, it all starts with vision.
You need to have a clear idea of what you want your Instagram feed to say about you as a business, and the feeling people get when they scroll your feed.
Next, you need to find an Instagram theme or palette that suits your brand, whether it’s bold and colorful or minimal and desaturated.
You also need to think about the types of content you want to feature.
In Artifact Uprising’s case, they use a mix of lifestyle content, user-generated content (UGC), product photos, and overlays to promote their latest blog posts and promotions.
Finally, you need to actually plan your feed!
To do this, Artifact Uprising uses Later’s Visual Instagram Planner, which lets you see exactly what your Instagram feed would look like with your scheduled posts, and lets you easily rearrange or swap our photos to find the perfect balance for your feed.
According to Megan White, marketing coordinator at Artifact Uprising, “We love using Later because not only does it allow us to visually see our images laid out on a calendar week by week, but it also shows us our best time to post.”
“We wouldn’t go anywhere else to schedule and curate our social media,” she says.
Instagram Inspiration #2: MeUndies
When MeUndies first launched back in 2011, it was an immediate hit.
The underwear brand’s awesome visual marketing hit the world by storm — and so did their Instagram account.
If you’re in need of some Instagram inspiration, look no further. MeUndies runs one of the best accounts we’ve seen. But what exactly do they do so well?
If we had to pick one thing, it’s their ability to post so many product-focused shots without coming across as overly promotional.
It might sound like a minor thing, but a lot of businesses have trouble with this. When they post photos or videos of their products, it either looks out of place or comes across as too salesy.
Why? Because they do it in such a creative and fun way, and it totally vibes with their brand.
Of course, the fact that MeUndies has an incredibly visual product really helps. But having a visually product by itself isn’t enough to be successful on Instagram.
Creativity is key to building an engaging feed — and that’s something MeUndies has plenty of.
Whether it’s creating animated videos or switching up their color palette or posting slightly-racy photos of half-dressed models (hey, they’re an underwear brand after all!), MeUndies’ feed radiates creativity.
And the great thing is that, despite posting a ton of different types of content, MeUndies manages to keeps their feed consistent.
So what are the big takeaways from MeUndies?
If you have a visual product, think of new and interesting ways of showcasing it! Don’t post product photos “just ‘cause.”
Think about how you can leverage the beauty of your products to build a Instagram feed that doesn’t look like a product catalogue.
Instagram Inspiration #3: Stumptown Coffee
How does a coffee roaster and retailer rack up over 230,000 Instagram followers?
Well, if you’re Stumptown Coffee, you do it by building a stunning Instagram feed that features a variety of lifestyle content, product photos, events, flatlays, and user-generated content!
Seriously, though. Stumptown Coffee runs a pretty amazing feed. And while they do a lot of things right, we’re going to focus on their awesome use of user-generated content (UGC).
So how do they do it?
Well, if you ever browse Stumptown’s feed, you’ll quickly notice that they’re constantly sharing their branded hashtags on their posts, including #humansofstumptown and #stumptowncoffeeroasters.
The reason they share these hashtags so often is because they want their followers to get into the habit of posting with them as well.
This is the best way to curate UGC for your feed — it gives your followers an easy way to share relevant content.
When you share your branded hashtags on a consistent basis, it sort of trains your followers to do the same — and because Stumptown has so many fans, it’s easy for them to collect great UGC.
Take their #stumptowncoffee hashtag, for example. It’s been used over 70,000 times, and only fraction of those comes from Stumptown itself!
By consistently sharing their hashtags and encouraging their followers to post with them as well, they’ve made collecting great UGC for their Instagram way, way easier.
So how can you do this yourself?
Well, one of the best ways to curate UGC for your Instagram feed with with Later’s Search & Repost, which lets you easily find, collect, and share valuable user-generated content right from your Instagram community!
According to Mallory Pilcher, marketing events director at Stumptown, “We love using Later because it allows us to strategically map out our social media content plan around coffee rollouts, new merch items, events and other happenings here at Stumptown.”
“We love being able to showcase user-generated content, as well, which Later easily allows us to do,” she says.
Instagram Inspiration #4: Hippeas Snacks
If you’ve ever tried to create a color-themed Instagram feed, you’re probably aware of how difficult it can be.
And that’s especially true if you’re sticking to just one color!
Need some Instagram inspiration from a business that does it really well? Check out HIPPEAS Snacks and their beautiful, yellow-themed Instagram feed.
Like MeUndies, HIPPEAS definitely benefits from having a visually appealing product — so posting photos of their iconic yellow chip bags plays heavily into their Instagram strategy.
But while MeUndies gets to work with a ton of different colors, the main color of HIPPEAS’ products never changes.
So how do they do it?
Well, it’s pretty clear that a lot of planning goes into HIPPEAS’ feed. They’ve found SO many fun and creative ways to showcase their products!
Whether it’s a colorful flat lay or beachy lifestyle shot, they do an amazing job of churning out beautiful and fun content that totally vibes with their brand.
And they do it without veering away from their strict color palette!
If you’re hoping to follow HIPPEAS’ lead, you need to invest in creating great original content.
While UGC definitely plays a part in their Instagram content strategy, most of what HIPPEAS posts is content they created themselves.
And while this isn’t the easiest way to collect content (it can take hours to set up photoshoots, find great lighting, and edit your photos), they totally make it work!
The key here is simplicity. Rather than creating ultra-ultra-elaborate photos, HIPPEAS keeps it simple and lets their products take center-stage.
HIPPEAS also uses Later’s Visual Instagram Planner to plan the look of their feed before they post, which saves them a ton of time.
According to Bella Ly, social media manager at HIPPEAS, “Maintaining a consistent feed for HIPPEAS was our top priority and Later’s grid preview was exactly what we needed to organize our content. Our marketing team is spread across the US and UK, so having Later really helped us all stay connected.”
“My favorite thing about using Later is how intuitive and visual the platform is,” she says.
Instagram Inspiration #5: Luxe Magazine
One of the hardest parts about using Instagram as a publisher is getting users from your Instagram feed to your articles.
Instagram only gives you one clickable link in the app, which is the link in your bio. And while a lot of businesses use the link to send Instagram users to their homepage, for publishers that want to send followers to specific articles, the lack of hot links can be a huge problem.
Sounds difficult, right?
Not for Luxe Magazine.
With an enormous following of 600,000+, Luxe Magazine is a content powerhouse in the interior design industry.
And while they’ve clearly done an amazing job of building a beautiful feed, one area that Luxe Magazine excels in is using Instagram as a content promotion channel.
Take a look for yourself!
Everything from their photos to their captions are optimized to drive targeted traffic to their articles.
Their captions usually include a humorous reference, a short description, and a call-to-action that encourages their followers to click the link in their bio — which is super important if you want to your followers to actually click-through to your content.
But how does Luxe Magazine deal with Instagram’s pesky limitation on clickable links?
Well, rather than constantly updating their link (super tedious), they use Later’s Linkin.bio feature, which lets them link to multiple websites and pages without changing the link in their bio!
Here’s how it work: With Linkin.bio, when one of your followers clicks on the link in your bio, they’ll be taken to a web and mobile-optimized landing page that resembles your Instagram feed and displays your Instagram posts as clickable images.
You can add unique links to your Instagram posts, and then schedule or publish them through Later. And when your followers visit your Linkin.bio page, they can click on any of your Instagram posts to visit the article or blog post that your photo is about.
According to Lleana Llorens, senior web editor at Luxe, “We appreciate the ease with which we can schedule a post and its corresponding link without the worry of having to manually change the URL in our profile each time.”
“This not only allows our readers to obtain more information about any home or room featured in a photo (no matter when they see it on their feeds); it streamlines our social planning process so that we can focus on other priorities, such as engaging with our audience,” she says.
Hopefully this post gives you all the Instagram inspiration you need to go out and create your own stunning feed! Remember: if you ever fall into a creative rut, take a moment and check out your favorite accounts for some Instagram inspiration. It really helps!
Later is the #1 Instagram marketing platform that helps you plan your feed, schedule posts, and analyze your account. Sign up for free!