Your First 9 Posts

This blog is a transcription of my very first podcast episode!!!! If you prefer to listen rather than read – please do go >>>here <<<

So, you’re all set up on Instagram and ready to give the influencers a run for their money… but what do you post? Think about your first 9 posts. Keep it simple by considering a few themes. I like to call them content buckets – basically categories that help you stay on track when creating and curating relevant content for your feed. In the long term, you need to think more about a strategy and be clear on your audiences but social is an ever-evolving thing. It’s important to just get going once you’ve decided to take the plunge with Insta. With your first 9 posts in mind let’s talk strategy.


Your first 9 posts


Here are some ideas of buckets you could use. You only need a few (I’d choose five) as that gives you plenty to play with. You should be able to come up with lots of ideas within each one to keep your first 9 posts fresh but on point.


  • Tutorials/how-tos Product stories that teach people something or help solve a problem are a good place to start. A simple how-to video is useful and engaging, especially if you are often asked questions about how your product or service works. Can you teach something related to your business that gives people a taster of what you do (ie you’re a course creator, so create a short how-to guide on lighting yourself for video).
  • Reviews/testimonials User generated content is a win-win. People love that you have highlighted them, and you are getting content made for you by your customers. Plus, the social proofing helps establish trust in your business.
  • Industry news A really important way to show you know your stuff. Is there a newsy hook that you can create content around? New innovations in your industry? A rise in popularity of something you are doing so you can tap into trends? Is there any breaking news? This is more reactive content that may or may not be relevant but if people are searching a trending news topic, it will help new eyes to find your feed. Don’t forget the relevant hashtags!
  • Behind the scenes We all love to see how something is made, or more about your working practices and suppliers. This is a big part of helping audiences get to know you. It forges a relationship so that they will (hopefully) think of you when they need what you are offering.
  • About you A simple intro will do as part of your first nine, but this can be an ongoing theme, to share more about yourself in a work capacity. Again, you want customers to know you and choose you for who you are. You are a part of your USP, especially in a crowded market, so it’s worth making the most of yourself.
  • Something inspirational ­– how can you motivate your customers to do something differently? Can you inspire them to learn something new, change a habit, give something up, donate to a cause, do something better? Get them fired up from the start!
  • Quotes – speaking of inspiration, never underestimate the power of a punchy, relevant, well-designed quote on Instagram. Get them right and they are valuable, shareable content.
  • FAQs – if your business gets asked the same questions all the time, make a content bucket of them! Better still, do a double-whammy: put a load in Stories so you can save them as a highlight, with a grid post to direct them there, which in the long run will be easier to find.
  • Calendar/awareness days – if there’s a relevant awareness day/week/campaign going on, it can be really helpful to jump on it. It has to be strong content though. What are you adding to the conversation? If you have an original point of view on it, put it out there. This can also be a way to have fun. If there’s a light-hearted day and you’re a light-hearted person, brand or business, that is!
  • Recurring hashtags – I’m talking things like #meatfreemonday #throwbackthursday They are familiar to people, they give you content ideas and if people are following certain hashtags you may find some new followers that way. They can be very noisy so avoid # with millions of posts. I make a point of searching out some really useful ones to share in my FFWD Social group so you always have inspiration


Woman working at her desk drinking coffee


Remember to engage

Before you rush off to get creating, bear in mind that it’s not just about what you are posting. Engagement is really important too, especially when starting out. Be social! Identify your audience (find them on your competitors feeds!), chat with them, comment on their posts, get to know them. Strike up a relationship. This all feeds into raising brand awareness so it’s part of your whole strategy.

It’s also good to comment on your competitors’ posts. Congratulate them on what they are doing well. Share their posts to your Stories. You’ll find a great deal of support among your fellow Instagrammers and as one of Insta’s favourite quotes might say, ‘We rise by lifting others’.

Join my community

Why not join my membership group – FFWD Social. Here you can connect with other businesses owners who are also looking to be more efficient with social. Every month we cover what’s working well on Facebook and Instagram. There are Instagram, Facebook and caption templates which you can customise with your own logos and brand colours. I also include content creation tutorials, Masterclasses and Q&As with digital marketing experts. FFWD Social is a fantastic place to brainstorm ideas, seek advice and connect with other great business owners just like you!


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