Using Instagram to Promote Your Series

social-media
marketing
post-production

(Kailee Cristina Brown) #1

Once you’ve made a series, promoting it on different social media platforms can feel overwhelming if you don’t know much about the platform. Instagram is one of those that has grown in popularity and if used well, can provide some effective ways for you to grow your audience and promote your web series. Below are some of the things that have worked well for me in growing our production company’s Instagram (@applejuicepro) as well as my personal account.

Edit your photos and use filters.
Learn some very basic color correction to make sure your photo looks like real life (only better). You color correct your web series, why not your promotional images? If you’re posting pictures of humans, it’s especially important to make sure that they look their very best.
On top of that, picking a filter for your entire Instagram profile demonstrates your intention to stick to branding, and an understanding of the platform.

Recommended Apps
VSCO
A Color Story

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Use hashtags.
Instagram will let you add up to 30 hashtags in a comment, and to give your picture its best chance of being seen, you should use all of them. Pick hashtags that are relevant to your photo, and do some extra research to find ones that are popular, but not too popular, so your photo doesn’t get lost in the tag. You can also use apps to make hashtag groups that you can easily copy and paste from the app and into Instagram.

Recommended apps:
Plann

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Utilize your Instagram stories.
This is your chance to post some off-the-cuff images that don’t fit into your curated profile. Have your actors and/or crew do takeovers. Add gifs, have a poll, ask a question, be conversational and personal.
You can also save your stories to the Highlights on your main page, which is a good place to put show synopses, high-level information about your group, or save Instagram takeovers for people to watch later.
If you have over 10K followers, you can use the swipe up feature to include links in your stories.

Recommended Apps
Unfold
Over

Engage with your audience.
Instagram pictures generally make it to the top of a feed or hashtag when there is more engagement on it. Give people a question to answer in the comments, and respond back to them. Responding makes it look like there are double the comments on your post. The more engagement you can get in the first hour of posting, the better.

Engage with people who aren’t following you.
Click on the hashtags that you put in your comments, then go like and comment on photos within that hashtag.

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Have a good caption planned out ahead of time.
Good captions are just as important as good photos. Emojis resonate with a younger audience, but might be off-putting if your audience is in their 20s. Captions can be informational, conversational, funny, serious - whatever you want to convey. Conventional wisdom that the caption should always apply to the photo must be applied here!

Plan ahead
Instagram won’t be overwhelming, provided you give it a bit of thought before starting out. Posting regularly is another important part of success on the platform, so I like to sit down once a week and choose my photos and write captions. Then, I can actually enjoy the experience of sharing my work on Instagram.

Recommended Apps
Plann

Capture11

Instagram is a great way to get creative with promoting your series. It gives your audience a chance to engage with you in addition to viewing your series and has many opportunities for you to grow that audience. Do you have any additional tips that have helped for using Instagram to promote your series?


(Amanda Taylor) #2

As much as I hate a “curated” Instagram (mine is a jumble and a disaster and I love it), I do think that at least per show you should have a look and feel. I noticed you didn’t address transmedia, but a more straightforward marketing strategy. Do you have any transmedia advice?


(Bri Castellini) #3

Bless you for the recommended apps. And bless you for this great, in depth piece!


(Kailee Cristina Brown) #4

Honestly, my transmedia advice is to not do it. In my experience, transmedia usually ends up taking more time than it’s worth, and distracts from the actual show. It takes a lot of extra time to execute, which is something you might not have if your production company or series is small. In addition, while you have an actor and director interpreting the characters in the show, transmedia brings in another person representing the character, when they might not know them very well and might give your audience a jumbled perspective of your character. In general, unless you have a large amount of resources and a big following, it doesn’t end up being a good idea.


(Amanda Taylor) #5

THANKS FOR ANSWERING MY BAITING QUESTION, AND THREE CHEERS FOR THIS ANSWER


(Bri Castellini) #6

Related:

lol


(Susanne Morris) #7

I love the section about Instagram stories!