GUEST POST: 5 Myths Every Church Needs to Know About Instagram
GUEST POST BY: Casey Lester
Instagram can be complicated. For example:
- What do you post?
- How often do you post?
These are two of the many questions people face when deciding on their Instagram strategy. Or, maybe, these questions don’t go through your mind at all and you are all over the place when posting content.
Don’t worry, friend! You are not alone.
Let’s break down five myths every church needs to know about Instagram.
Let’s jump right in.
Our eyes follow a natural flow when we look at things. Looking at Instagram is no different. Therefore, you want to create content with similar color schemes. Is it okay to have different colors on your Instagram feed? Yes! Absolutely! You need to place them strategically so that when your eyes are flowing through your posts, it seems like a natural process. You would not want to put bold, harsh colors right next to each other. Why? Because it stops the flow and our brains get confused at what it is trying to focus on.
Use an app that allows you to see your current and future posts collectively. This will help you imagine your feed and curate it easier. The app I use and love for planning my Instagram feed is Planoly. Planoly does not post for you, but it does give you a good overview of the flow of your feed.
Open your Instagram app and click the heart at the bottom where you check your notifications. At the top you will see “Following” and “You.” It automatically defaults to “You” when you come to this page. However, if you switch to “Following” you will see all of the activity of your friends. You can see what they like, comment on, and who they follow. So, long story short — just because you control who you friend and who you accept as friends does not mean other people cannot see this activity.
Make this simple for yourself. Do not follow any account that you would not want someone to see, because they can. Plus, you do not want your feed bombarded with garbage all the time.
That little button that says “Facebook” when you are ready to post an image on Instagram, do not use it. When you post the same thing on Instagram as you post on social media at the same time, people looking through both Facebook and Instagram see the same thing. Your feed ends up redundant and people end up only viewing and engaging through one platform. Spice it up. Use variety. Your audience will thank you.
You can use the same images, just spread them out by a couple of days. Post picture one on Facebook on Monday and then on Instagram on Thursday. You do not have to create double the content, simply spread the love.
This used to be true. Now that the algorithm has changed, it is no longer true! Instagram (and Facebook) now post what they believe is relevant for you, not the chronological order of posts from accounts you follow. Stop setting your alarm and following a super-strict time schedule. Post at different times each day throughout the week. Do this for a little while and see when you get the most engagement, then schedule posts around that time frame.
This is a big no-no on Instagram. Instagram has banned third-party apps. In fact, if you are using a third-party app to post on Instagram, there is a good chance Instagram is doing what it can to hide your posts from your followers. This is because Instagram wants you to spend time on their social media platform. I mean, it makes sense, right? They want you to actually click on their app, post from their app, and engage with others on their app. Keep it simple. Just post directly from Instagram. I mentioned before that Planoly is a good option for pre-planning your posts while still uploading directly from the Instagram app.
What is my next step?
- Who is my audience?
- Who am I trying to reach?
- What content do they want to see?
Once you answer these questions, start creating content.
Need help creating content? I’d be happy to assist you.
Need help learning Planoly? I’d be happy to show you how this works!
Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Isaiah 30:18 Therefore the LORD is waiting to show you mercy, and is rising up to show you compassion, for the LORD is a just God. All who wait patiently for him are happy. (CSB)
Matthew 14:29 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter answered him, “command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” And climbing out of the boat, Peter started walking on the water and came toward Jesus. (CSB)
Matthew 14:19, 20 Then he commanded the crowds to sit down on the grass. He took the five loaves and the two fish, looking up to heaven, he blessed them. He broke the loaves and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. Everyone ate and was satisfied. They picked up twelve baskets full of leftover pieces. (CSB)