Photo Ideas to Add Personality to Your Instagram Feed

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Instagram is fast becoming the most powerful platform for many creative businesses to grow their audience and increase sales. There’s magic in the combination of gorgeous photography and soulful words, and the connection Instagram allows us to build with those who follow us and the people we follow too. But I know sometimes you can feel a bit stumped as to what images to share! This blog post will give you lots of ideas for your professional branding photoshoot and pictures you can take on your own.

Before we jump into the photo content ideas, here are a few practical tips for creating a beautiful feed that will make new visitors to your profile want to follow you:

Share a mix of 'busy’ and ‘spacious’ images

An even and easy-on-the-eyes Instagram feed is usually made up of a combination of ‘busy’ and ‘spacious’ images. An example of a good busy shot could be a photo of trees or flowers where they completely fill the frame or a picture of you in lush surroundings, like the examples below.

 A frame full of florals

A frame full of florals

 Luxury Wedding Florist, Esther

Luxury Wedding Florist, Esther

A nice spacious image to follow this type of shot on your feed could be your hand holding up your favourite mug against a plain wall, or a minimalist flatlay of a postcard featuring a saying you love. You may also use quotes or graphics in your feed, which often lend themselves well to the ‘spacious’ category as they break up your posts and help the overall feed feel less cluttered.

 Images with lots of white space (that doesn’t necessarily have to be white) allow your posts breathe and make for a more appealing overall feed

Images with lots of white space (that doesn’t necessarily have to be white) allow your posts breathe and make for a more appealing overall feed

Use an instagram planning tool

I use a visual planner called Later to prepare all my Instagram posts on desktop (you can also Auto Schedule on here but I prefer to post manually). Using a tool like Later or Planoly is a great way to see how all your photos and graphics will look together and plan the mix of portraits, quotes, testimonials and other content so that your feed looks lovely and tidy, rather than repetitive or hard to navigate.

Use your brand style guide

Stick to your brand colour palette when creating graphics to make sure they blend in nicely with your other content, and to make them instantly recognisable as your work when people are scrolling through their home feed.

 I love using my own photos for quote posts but you can use a plain square of one of your brand colours - try Canva for making these if you’re not Photoshop savvy!

I love using my own photos for quote posts but you can use a plain square of one of your brand colours - try Canva for making these if you’re not Photoshop savvy!

Always give credit where it’s due

If you are re-posting an image or graphic (or anything at all) from someone else’s feed, you must ask for permission and give credit when you share it. If they say no, you should not share it. It’s much better to ask first because if they see it and ask you to take it down, you could lose valuable engagement that you’ve already had on the post. If they say yes, tag them in the image itself and, importantly, tag them in the caption so that your followers can easily follow them too if they like their content. If you find an Image on Pinterest, click through to the website that it came from to find the original creator, as Pinterest is just an aggregator of content so giving credit to the platform is doing a disservice to the actual artist who created the image.

Show your face regularly

As your sparkling personality is central to your brand and business, I’d recommend sharing a photo of yourself at least every 4-5 posts. That doesn’t mean you have to share a formal headshot every time - use a mixture of closeup portraits and other more candid images where you’re not necessarily looking at the camera. Eye contact is hugely important in building rapport, so do try and maintain a mix of photos of you looking at the camera and those where you’re laughing, looking away or engrossed in your work, like the examples below.

 Life Coach, Sophie French

Life Coach, Sophie French

 Career Coach, Merlinda Francois

Career Coach, Merlinda Francois

Ideas for Instagram Photos

Your workspace

Wide shot of your desk

Closeups of your office decor

Your favourite reading spot

Laptop flatlays with your morning caffeine fix

The view from your window

Relevant books you keep by your desk

Postcards or prints of quotes that mean a lot to you

 Details of my workspace with personal touches that make the image unique to my brand

Details of my workspace with personal touches that make the image unique to my brand

Places you love

Photos from your trips and travels at home and abroad

A mixture of landscapes and closeup details

Pictures of your favourite room in your home or the art on your walls

Photos in nature, flowers that catch your eye on your morning walk or a beautiful sunset

Your favourite local independent cafe, florist or shop

 I love to travel and the negative space in this photo makes it an ideal ‘spacious’ image candidate for my feed

I love to travel and the negative space in this photo makes it an ideal ‘spacious’ image candidate for my feed

Weekend activities

Breakfast in bed

A pile of your favourite books

Doing some baking

Yoga mat at the ready

A walk in the park

A trip to the beach

An afternoon in a coffee shop

Reading a magazine

 My idea of a wild weekend pretty much always includes a cup o’ tea and a sit down!

My idea of a wild weekend pretty much always includes a cup o’ tea and a sit down!

 I love being by the sea so my beach photos from the summer make an appearance!

I love being by the sea so my beach photos from the summer make an appearance!

Your favourite people

Hanging out with family, friends or your partner

Portraits of them or pictures of you both together

Photos of your beloved pet

Family members or public figures who have inspired you (always ask for permission from the subject of the photo before sharing)

Share your unique perspective

The most important thing you can do when planning your Instagram content is to add your unique flair to each post (this can be in the image and especially the caption). We can often see a lot of the same or similar photos and graphics circulating, but what makes a post stand out and helps the viewer connect to the poster, is their individual take on that image. What was the inspiration behind it? How did the moment you captured make you feel? If you infuse your emotions into your content, you’ll be very likely to evoke an emotional reaction with your audience. This is how you build meaningful relationships on social media and these relationships will often lead to sales for your business!

Always post in alignment with your brand values

Whatever you decide the post, if you run it through the filter of your core values and ask yourself “Would my ideal client LOVE this?” you’ll be onto a winner!

If you have any questions about how to add personality to your Instagram feed or create consistent content for your brand, please comment below so I can help! I’d love to hear from you!

You might also like this post about how you can make sure your brand portraits have got soul!