At Cyber PR, we get a lot of questions from artists about what they should be posting on Instagram (and Twitter, and Facebook, and all other sites and socials). If you’ve read our previous Instagram posts (here and here), then you know just how important Instagram is for musicians, and how it helps you curate your brand and connect with fans. We have a lot of Instagram Rockstars we follow and check in with., and we have showcased 7 favorites here.
But figuring out what to post is not always intuitive. A great way to figure out what to post is by checking out artists who post really well and seeing what it is they do and what resonates with you and get inspired by them.
Choose No More Than 5 Social Themes
A problem we see often is artists are all over the place with their content (cats! Dinner! Tour recommend the 5 Themes approach to curating content. What does this mean? Spend a few minutes thinking about the things in life that are most important to you. Music (probably), family, charity, your pets, food, nature, hobbies… what sort of things define you? This is how you start to build your brand. Try to stick to 5 – any more, and your socials become random, and it will be harder for fans to quickly figure out who you are.
Listen To This Podcast To Get Clear About Social Themes:
For more in-depth info on themes, listen to this great #TwitterSmarter Podcast where Ariel talks to the brilliant Madalyn Sklar about it in detail
(yeah we know it’s called TWITTER Smarter but it applies to Instagram too!).
7 Instagram Rockstars to Follow & Emulate
A great way to get better at something is to learn from the masters. We put our heads together and came up with a list of our Instagram heroes. Let’s check out their profiles, and figure out the methods to their fabulous social strategy…
Rockstar #1. A$AP Ferg
Where many Hip-Hop artists tend to lack in branding on socials (Eminem is excluded) A$AP Ferg does a great job of keeping consistency with yellow graphic highlights.
TIP: If you have not designed and created Highlights on your Instagram homepage get on that ASAP!
2. Music/music video snippets – There are so many ways you can showcase music – 30 – 60 second video snippets, GIFS, live footage, you doing covers, are a few suggestions
3. Promo for other A$AP Mob members – He is part of a collective and he consistently promotes (and tags) the other artists he associates with.
4. Behind the scenes – he takes his fans along for the journey.
5. Self-promotion – pretty sure we don’t have to explain what “self-promotion” is
Rockstar #2. Billie Eilish
1. Humor – Billie’s main thing is her humor. Her captions are always funny and really express how personable and relatable she is. Her humor matches her bold and edgy style which she features often on her Instagram feed.
2. Edgy personality
3. Fashion – Just like her sense of humor, she conveys her honest self through her fashion. Billie can always be seen sporting vibrant primary and secondary colored outfits that help to mold her overall theme.
4. Authentic – When scrolling through BIllie’s Page you don’t get the sense that she is presenting anything other than her true self.
5. Color scheme phases – She throughs through color phases with her to coincide with recent releases or photo shoots.
Rockstar #3. Lauren Waller
Lauren is a young singer-songwriter from Los Angeles, and she’s just starting out. Her fans are loving her highly stylized use of pink and greens and saturated color filters.
1. Calls to action! – Lauren uses vibrant images to help her fans find her across all social media platforms.
2. Live performances – yep, I want to be there. Don’t you?
3. Street art – and other cool spots around LA! She shows off the city she is from
4. Her red hair is part of the story too!
5. She weaves in fun TBTs and selfies/shoots with friends
Rockstar #4. Nik West
1.Showcasing unique interests with owned hashtags #BassYoga – Nik loves to show off her yoga skills so much she even made an Instagram post of her doing yoga while playing a show.
2. Purple – Many of her pictures have some purple in them so her entire feed looks aesthetically pleasing.
3. Giving back to the community – She teaches workshops and clinics and always includes these on her feed.
4. Personal life– Nik often shows pictures of her significant other showing that she does have a life outside of touring and performing.
5. Covers and collabs – Don’t get too wrapped up in yourself and remember to acknowledge your influences and other artists you respect. This is a great way to tag people you love and admire as well.
Rockstar #5. Eli Lev
1. New Content – Don’t forget to let people know when you release new content. Eli does countdowns and teasers whenever he has something new coming to excite his fans and get more Patreons.
2. Showing off unique talents
3. Acknowledging the band– You should acknowledge the people instrumental to what you do.
4. Photo shoots – Be proud of how you look and don’t be afraid to show yourself off!
5. Special trips and experiences – Eli has traveled and lived around the world – it is a huge part of who he is as a musician (and a great way to dig back through his archives to create #TBT, #FlashbackFriday and add to his narrative).
Rockstar Label #6. ATO Records
1. Official promo pics – and videos of their artists to showcase the brand (if you have a label this is a great thing to do)
2. Merchandise promotion – note how they used the main bio in their Instagram profile and highlight link to showcase their most recent release for The Claypool Lennon Delirium.
3. Behind the scenes/ATO employees – giving a face to the team behind the posts and the music is a great way to add true personality to the Page
4. Live photos – Live photos that showcase performances and PR moments (like NPR’s Tiny Desk!)
5. Promotion of their artists’ accomplishments (song placements in movies, TV appearances, tour dates, etc.)
Rockstar#7. Hippo Campus
1. Posts in 3s – This allows you to showcase an even greater visual experience and drive people to your page. See above
2. Social Awareness – We have recently posted a new series about how you can support charities by associating with them using fundraisers and we posted this fabulous how-to throw a successful charity event from WHY board member and artists Jen Chapin. Here is a great way of aligning with what matters to you by visualizing it.
3. Black & white – Go B&W for a certain amount of time to mix up your feed – or stay moody and stick with all B&W (its a great way to streamline varied content and make it look uniform.
4. Personality – make sure people know that you’re real – even if it’s lying on the studio couch or walking your dog.
5. Behind the scenes – Everyone loves to see what you’re working on!
Rockstar Honorable Mention: Anderson Paak
We Love Anderson’s amazing Instagram multi-images. This takes planning and consistency but it is eye-catching and cool AF.
There you go. Seven Instagram accounts to follow and steal ideas from. What have we learned?
Choose 5 themes that define you and your brand. Self-promote sparingly.
And most importantly, BE REAL. Good luck, and happy Instagramming!
Want to discover your brand and message to help you reach your audience? Check out Lab 7: Discovering Your Brand with Bobby Owsinski. Click the image below to learn more!