Fresh out of ideas for what to post on Instagram?
When you’re running a business account, dreaming up new social media content can get tiresome. But we can help with that.
If you need to know what to post on Instagram for maximum engagement, read on for 25 of the coolest content ideas.
Give your audience plenty of reasons to like your posts, tag their friends, and help you to build your brand and make money online.
The 8 Instagram formats you need to know
Before you find out what to post on Instagram, let’s run through the various content formats that this social media platform is home to:
- Instagram feed – the app’s homepage is the first thing people see when they log on. All of your latest photos and videos will appear here, as well as suggested content.
- Stories – Disappearing 24 hours after they’re posted, Instagram Stories sit at the top of the feed. They have tons of uses – we’ll show you what people love the most.
- Highlights – let others know what your brand is about. Instagram Highlights allow you to curate previous Stories into useful categories at the top of your page.
- IGTV – There’s even a TV channel for your long-form Instagram content. IGTV lets users post videos that others can discover.
- Reels – If short-form content is more appealing, Instagram Reels allow users to show their more lighthearted side in video clips that last for 30 seconds or less.
- Guides – The newest way to post on Instagram, Guides allow business users to share tips and recommendations in a scrollable format.
- Instagram Live – accessible to anyone, Instagram Live is an amazing way for brands to connect with followers with in-the-moment content.
- Instagram Shop – perfect for small businesses, the Shop feature comes with curated Editors’ Picks, Collections, and the ability to shop in-app.
25 Instagram content ideas for your business account
Alright, let’s show you what to post on Instagram to excite your followers and entice your target audience.
1. Put together an Instagram Guide
This shiny new content format from Instagram is a great way to show users your styling tips and favorite collections.
Instagram Guides allow you to post ideas and photos in the style of articles. It’s like having mini magazines dedicated to your brand.
We love how fashion brand Everlane has produced a style guide on their Instagram page. H&M has used the format to highlight an earlier post they made on DIY tips.
Anyone can use Guides to diversify their Instagram content. Why not try it out by reposting photos from your feed in a new context?
2. Film a one-minute tutorial and post it to the feed
Plenty of people use social media to find out how to make, use, or customize things. Instagram tutorials will be both helpful and captivating for your followers.
Let’s face it, even if we don’t wear makeup, watching a tutorial on how to apply it is fascinating. Huda Beauty knows that all too well.
The cosmetics brand often posts one-minute videos to its Instagram feed. This way, customers know exactly what to do with the products they’re buying.
Plus, tutorials are key for giving people inspiration. Make sure you produce high-quality videos and list what you used in the caption.
3. Post an educational Carousel
If you want to post multiple photos or videos in one go, Instagram Carousels are for you. Appearing on your main grid, this content works for any business.
Using Carousels is a cool way to post new products, but you could also share quotes, videos, and tutorials in this format.
Branding agency Edge of Seventeen engages its audience with how-to guides and educational posts using Carousels.
As they’ll live on your main grid, you could factor Carousels into your content calendar so your followers can look forward to a new one every week.
4. Share behind-the-scenes content
People love seeing behind the scenes of their favorite brands, and social media has enabled that in a big way. Embrace it, and make behind-the-scenes content a part of your Instagram.
You could post photos on your feed, or share videos on Stories or Reels if you don’t want to ruin the aesthetic of your Instagram account.
Giving a sneak peek behind the scenes is a great way for online stores to show how products are made.
But people also want to see how ideas are generated. This format works well for agencies and creative companies, too.
5. Post fun Instagram Reels
Speaking of Reels, let’s look at everyone’s favorite new way of sharing content on Instagram. These 30-second videos are fun for all users, including brands.
As well as behind-the-scenes content, Reels have become the go-to format for quick tutorials. If someone wants your bakery’s cookie recipe, this is where you can share it.
Where a grid photo or video is typically high-quality, Reels aren’t so polished. It’s all about digestible Instagram content that’s relevant in the moment.
Take a look at Pretzel Doughnut Co’s Reel below. It capitalizes on an upcoming holiday, and lets followers know how to recreate the look at home.
6. Put the spotlight on your employees
If you’re focused on products or edited content, it can be hard to know what to post on Instagram. So, take a look at the team around you.
By sharing the people who make your company what it is, you’re letting your audience see a more human side to your business.
Lifestyle brand Goop does this in a great way with its Staffer Routines, which are posted on Instagram Stories and then made into Highlight reels.
Seeing the different types of people in the business can help users connect with it a little more. Plus, it’s always fun to see how someone else lives.
7. Post product pics with shoppable tags
Social media can be one of the best ways to drive traffic to your website. Our top tip for eCommerce stores is to use shoppable tags on grid posts.
It’s easy once your business account is set up as a shop. When you post a new product photo or Carousel, simply tag each item from your catalog.
Your Instagram audience will be able to see product names and prices with a single tap, and the links will send them to your store.
Make sure shoppable posts will stand out in the feed and be identifiable, like candle brand Nomad Noe’s striking photo posts.
8. Optimize your Instagram bio
It doesn’t seem like much, but your bio is your calling card on Instagram. This is where you have the chance to describe your company in a few words.
Alongside a killer tagline, your bio – positioned at the top of your Instagram page, right under your photo – is where you can post a link to your website.
Sure, this isn’t mind-blowing content, but it’s the gateway to the cool stuff you get up to away from Instagram.
Keep it simple, like cosmetics brand Coco Kind, or make like Sports World Chicago and use your bio for promotional opportunities.
9. Optimize your highlights
Ever felt sad when your perfectly-curated Instagram Story disappeared after 24 hours? Thankfully, that’s what Highlights is there for.
This feature lets users collate several permanent Stories, split by theme. You can assign whatever title you want to each Highlight – just make sure they’re short and to the point.
Some accounts, like Pholk Beauty below, give each Highlight a header image. You’ll need to post these as part of your Stories, then save everything together.
This kind of collated content is great for all businesses. You could post quotes, tips, customer reviews, or highlights from events.
10. Create a series
If you often find yourself wondering what to post on Instagram, plot a series into your content calendar. This is a cool post idea if you want long-term engagement.
Find a theme that’s relevant to your account, and then team up with collaborators or influencers to deliver fresh content every week.
If you run a store, why not create a series of posts about styling homes or wardrobes? If you’re an entrepreneur, how about success stories?
Upload pictures for each series post so they appear in the main feed. This is a great way to keep users coming back regularly.
11. Have an Instagram takeover with an influencer
Push the collaboration idea a step further, and enlist influencers to take over your account every once in a while.
This is a really powerful way to boost brand recognition. Your chosen influencer can spend a day posting Stories to your followers, showing how they use your products.
Maximize this opportunity by considering your goals: do you want a bigger audience, or perhaps you want to increase your credibility?
Remember, it’s not a literal takeover. The influencer should send you their content beforehand, for you to upload. That way, you’re both aligned on what your followers will see.
12. Collaborate with influencers on IGTV
That’s right, we have another idea for Instagram collaborations. If your brand suits long-form content, head over to IGTV.
Just like regular television, there’s loads you can do on your IGTV channel. Some accounts like to use the function to completely diversify their Instagram content.
Check out lifestyle brand Anthropologie, for example. Amongst their IGTV uploads are meditation, cooking, and boxing posts, as well as a series of holiday videos.
If you’re planning what to post on Instagram with an influencer, this is one of the best ways to add value for your followers.
13. Host an Instagram Live with a special guest
Here’s one more collaborative post idea for your content calendar. If you ever dreamed of being a TV presenter, this is the Instagram content for you.
Think up an engaging topic, and find a co-worker, influencer, or industry expert with a great WiFi signal.
Be sure to tell people about your Instagram Live event ahead of time. Post a picture of the collaborator on your grid, or some Stories the day before.
Take inspiration from Friends NYC with their regular book club posts, or fashion brand Insert Name Here, whose co-founders chat about new launches.
14. Post interesting facts and statistics
Want to show off your brand’s achievements? Turn them into Instagram content and let your audience know that your business is booming.
Or educate your followers – no one wants to be preached to on social media, but everyone loves the occasional funny or mind-blowing fact.
This is an easy way to diversify your content. Store a bunch of statistics for days when you don’t know exactly what to post on Instagram.
Just ensure the facts and stats that you post are correct. If you can fascinate your followers with this type of content, it will make for great engagement.
15. Share testimonials from your customers
Let’s face it, we all go to read reviews before making a purchase. It’s reassuring to know that other people have bought and (hopefully) liked that item in your cart.
There’s nothing stopping you from creating a post on Instagram every time you get a glowing testimonial.
Check out how snacks brand Parm Crisps shares good reviews. Simplicity is key for making an impact – just a jazzy orange background and an upbeat caption.
Review posts will easily fill your page with feel-good content. Plus, it’s a great way to pad out your schedule when you’re stuck for things to post.
16. Repost user-generated content
Spend enough time on Instagram, and you’ll find that some accounts only ever seem to post user-generated content.
While it’s not the most solid idea for building a brand, you should definitely sprinkle a few of your followers’ Instagram posts through your page.
User-generated content is invaluable. It entails your account reposting photos that your customers have taken of themselves using your brand’s products.
Sharing these kinds of posts instantly builds credibility, plus it shows that you’re engaging with your audience. Encourage users by asking them to tag your company in their posts.
17. Host fun quizzes and polls
Market research doesn’t have to take a lot of time and money. Instagram polls can be an amazing resource for direct audience feedback.
If you’re a savvy social media marketer, you could post polls or quizzes in your Stories that lead to a better understanding of the types of customers you have.
They don’t have to have such a lofty purpose, though. If you’ve hit Friday morning and you’re stuck for what to post on Instagram, fire out a quiz.
Aside from market research, it’s fun and engaging content to put out. Let your followers get more personal with you.
18. Ask your followers questions
While we’re on the subject of getting personal, let’s talk about questions. This is an even more in-depth way of getting solid info from your followers.
From product queries to blunt opinions and general conversation, the questions box is a fun feature that you can insert into your Stories.
Create a community feel, and encourage people to share a tip or idea that the rest of your audience might love.
And, if you want to get even more ideas about what to post on Instagram, why not just ask your followers what they think?
19. Run a giveaway or contest
Instagram giveaways are becoming increasingly popular with influencers, but they’re a great tactic for businesses, too. Why should you do it? Brand exposure, for starters.
Hosting a contest or giveaway shows just how much you appreciate your audience. Also, depending on the rules to enter, it’ll likely boost your follower count.
Celebrate milestones, like Healthy Nesting, or partner up with other companies to offer one lucky winner a generous stack of freebies.
Ask users to like and comment on the post, share it in their Stories, and follow your account. If you want to blow up on Instagram, this is a great idea.
20. Utilize the Swipe-Up feature
We’ll be upfront: this feature is currently only available to Instagram users with over 10,000 followers. But hey, that could be you.
The famous Swipe-Up function is an easy way to get your audience to visit your website. You simply add it to your Stories when you share exciting updates.
Hair care brand Ouai uses Swipe-Up to show followers where they can find the company’s newest products.
If you’re clued up on affiliate marketing, you could also encourage influencers to link your website as a Swipe-Up in their own Stories.
21. Hold a surprise flash sale
Gone are the days where you email your customers with sale notifications. Now you can just post on Instagram instead.
Sure, you could still do the email, but flash sales on social media could help you to win over followers who haven’t yet entered the sales funnel.
Include a discount code that’s exclusive to Instagram viewers, and make sure your promo has a time limit – weekend sales should grab attention.
So if you’re wondering what to post on Instagram to market your discounts, consider making an exclusive flash sale event instead.
22. Post a countdown to an event or launch
New launches should be super exciting – they’re usually the result of a lot of hard work. It’s even more rewarding when your followers get excited, too.
If you want to know what to post on Instagram to give your event the fanfare it deserves, go all out with a countdown.
You can add a countdown clock to your Stories. Just insert the date and time, then post – be sure to do it within a day of the launch.
Followers can tap on the clock to set a reminder. You could also post a daily photo on your grid ahead of the big day.
23. Repurpose your online content for Instagram
If you’re not already choosing what to post on Instagram from your other marketing channels, you should be.
For a wider reach, turn the things that you post elsewhere into Instagram content. Share a photo of you doing your podcast, and add some interesting quotes.
Or, copy media website Refinery29 and turn an article you wrote into an Instagram post – include the headline and a picture to grab attention.
Once you’ve got their attention, add a link to the content in your bio and tell your followers to click it. Simple.
24. Repost people or brands you love
Some Instagram posts are too amazing not to share. Maybe it’s a beautiful image or a Carousel of inspirational quotes.
If you find a cool post on Instagram that you think your followers would love, why not share it with them? Upload it to your grid or link it in a story.
This is a nice way to give some context to your brand’s way of thinking. One top tip though: always credit the source, always.
It’s really bad practice to share an Instagram post and not tag the original poster. The same goes for stock images.
25. Post on special holidays
Some businesses know exactly what to post on Instagram for the festive season, and florist Dominique Rose is one of them.
Hosting a daily giveaway is a fun (and generous) idea that’ll keep your followers engaged for a long period of time. If you can’t offer freebies, there’s more you can do.
If you’re counting down to Christmas, post a fun image every day of advent. For smaller holidays, upload meaningful quotes or interesting facts.
And remember those Valentine’s donuts? Go all out with your Instagram content and post how-to Reels instead of regular grid posts.
What are the benefits of posting consistently on Instagram?
So, we’ve shown you how and what to post on Instagram, but why does it matter so much?
For businesses of any size, but especially small businesses, there’s so much more to posting on Instagram than finding a cute filter and a dozen hashtags.
This platform is a lucrative sales channel. Coming up with engaging Instagram post ideas will keep your brand fresh in people’s minds.
Let’s break down the importance of considering what to post on Instagram, and doing it often:
- Instagram uses an algorithm to feature the latest posts, and it favors active users.
- People like new content. If you don’t post regularly, they won’t be driven to follow you.
- Consistent engagement will help you to better understand your audience.
In a nutshell: the more you post, the more visible you are. Remember to keep your content on-brand, engaging, and above all, not spammy. Nobody likes a spammer.