What to post on Instagram; 7 optimum ideas for engagement

Ruthie Instagram 10 Comments

We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post.

Do you often wonder what to post on Instagram? Here’s a common scenario: it’s Monday, you’ve had a full weekend with kids and sports activities and – oh, the dog threw up on the couch again.  You’ve been trying to grow your presence on Instagram but – ALAS – you have no plan for this day.

As you mop up the last of the dog vomit, you wonder if that’s Insta-worthy – but check yourself because last time you posted something like that five people unfollowed and the post tanked.  Not that you posted the actual photo of stomach contents – you’re not that gross.  It was a photo of your clean kitchen floor AFTER the fact.

So here we are again, not knowing what to post on Instagram on Monday morning.  Or should I even post on Monday morning?  Are mornings good?  Is afternoon better?  All my followers seem to be on at 9:00 pm – is that the time?

We’ll get to posting times in another entry, but for now, allow me to alleviate your frustration with a few simple posting tips.

What to post on Instagram 7 best hacks

What to post on Instagram

1.)  Know your target

Who is your target audience?  Are you a hairdresser who wants to attract more customers?  Feature your clients in before and after photos, show your work space, or offer simple hair care tips.  If you’re a fashion blogger, post photos of your outfits and styling tips.  Don’t forget testimonials – social proof is everything in the marketing industry!

If you don’t know your ideal audience member, then you won’t know what to post in Instagram.  Get that nailed down first, and watch this video for how to decide! 


2.)  Draw interest with scenery

You can’t go wrong with a good sunset, am I right?  (Follow me on Instagram to view this concept in action.)  A nature trail, mountain view, or field of sunflowers all scream, “LOOK AT ME!”  And honestly, Instagram is based on beautiful photos.  You don’t have to be a professional photographer to do this – a simple iphone will work.  This post on how to take incredible iphone photos will help.

So here’s the thing – what you want to say doesn’t have to correlate with your scenery photo.  You could talk about last week’s clothing battle with your child and close with an inspirational bit of “we’re-in-this-together” encouragement.  Any time you inspire people with your words, you win! (And so do they!)


3.  Feature selfies

People ALWAYS love to see the person behind the ‘Gram!  I’m telling you, when I post a photo of myself, I get more likes and follows – and I’m a middle-aged grandma for goodness sakes! (#GigirockstheGram)  For instance, follow Fridays remain popular – give 3-5 fun tips about yourself, then ask a question.  Be intriguing, informative, and hey – humor is always a draw.  #askmehowIknow

Ninja tip:  Feature a cohort each week, or more than one in a carousel.  More on carousels in a moment.


4.  Quote sparingly

You can’t go wrong with an inspirational quote.  People LOVE them! Authors like Louisa May Alcott, Walt Whitman, and Doctor Seuss remain favorites with the Insta-crowd.  Just be sure to space your quotes because there is MORE TO INSTAGRAM’S potential than quotes.  A good quote should be treated like an exclamation point – savored for special occasions – not peppered throughout the mix.

Download the app, Brainy Quote for quick access and ideas!

What to post on Instagram 7 best hacks

A good quote should be treated like an exclamation point – savored for special occasions – not peppered throughout the mix.

5.  Plan your look

There are several free apps you can use to view your grid of nine.  (Don’t know what a Grid of Nine is?  Check out my Authentic Instagram Engagement Course to up your game and stay in the Insta-loop!)

The free Preview app is one I’ve used (and loved). Now, I use Later.com (paid version) to schedule, and it gives a preview right in desktop – upload a few mock photos to see what your potential posting strategy looks like.

Knowing your personal look cuts decision fatigue because you have a strategy – and strategy is the name of the game on Instagram!

(Don’t have an Insta-strategy?  I can help you with that.  Contact me here to receive an overview of my services to select your perfect fit!)


6.  Utilize the carousel feature

Got a zillion photos from a recent vacation or business trip?  You can post up to 10 photos in a carousel – and carousels boost engagement. Do you know why?  Because it takes time to swipe left – and people are nosy!  The more they interact with a post, the more IG will expose that post to others, and more eyes will view your feed.

The carousel is your bff – use it and watch your feed accelerate!

What to post on Instagram

7.  Harness social proof

Remember #1 – know your peeps?  They are your gold mine.  What do they love about your services?  What good things are they saying about you? Ask if you can quote them – and tag them too!  Their friends will be exposed to your IG account, and you will expose them to new people too.  Everyone gets some love!

You can also use video for this – with their permission, of course!


So there you have it – 7 ideas for what to post on Monday morning.  Nail down your target audience, and everything will get easier when it comes to IG posting.  Feature landscape, selfies, and quotes to break up your grid (of nine – remember?).  Strategize your look, use the carousel feature for more engagement, and get that social proof rolling.

You see, Instagram does not have to be a big ginormous mystery.  After all, I cracked the code – and now I help others do it too.

(You can be one of the “others”.)

Don’t be lost on Monday morning.  Go clean up that dog hooey and post your next photo with confidence!  I’m watching you – be sure to tag me on IG if you put any of these hacks to use.


Need help with Insta-stories?  Try this!

7 day instagram story challenge


Click here to join the 7-day Instagram Story Challenge to instantly up your IG game!


Comments 10

  1. Great tips Ruthie! Thanks for putting this information together. I know how to move forward with some things from here. I’m back to evening posting! (That’s when I can relax and I actually enjoy IG like most working mamas).

    1. Post

      I’m so glad you’ve figured out your Insta-rhythm, girlfriend. You are super busy so I’m sure it’s a balancing act! Thanks for stopping by, friend.

    1. Post

      There are ways to do it but I KNOW how frustrating it can be! You made me laugh with the Insta-ignorant comment! LOLOL. Be sure to follow me over there – I do weekly lives and videos!

    1. Post
    1. Post

      Thanks so much, Beth!!! I do weekly IG trainings over there with live video and IGTV so be sure to follow along – you’re sure to learn good tips each week!

    1. Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.