Instagram For Brands
Instagram is one of the most popular photo editing and image sharing social network connected with Twitter and Facebook. The application can be downloaded for iPhones, iPads, and Android devices. It allows users to share images of their lives through artistic sepia filters. It was launched in the end of 2010 and acquired by Facebook for $1 billion in April of 2012. Number of brands has taken advantage by offering their customers a peak for the features their products can offer. If your brand is working good on social media platforms, Instagram should be the part of your daily vocabulary.
You might feel lucky, if your brand is not on Instagram yet or not have focused to use Instagram as a marketing strategy. You can learn from the brands that already are on Instagram and do what is best for your brand. We will be discussing some key strategies that brands are using to make their campaign successful on Instagram.
As always, let us start with the most obvious strategies used for social media platforms and then we will dig in more detailed strategies for Instagram uses for brands with a few examples:
The most basic rule for using any social media platform to promote your brand is the user engagement. When you promote on Instagram, you need to engage your users through high quality and unique images that they have not seen anywhere else (plus the image should be relevant to your brand identity).
Posting your content in a timely manner is one of the key considerations for your marketing strategy on social media platforms. Unlike Facebook and Twitter, frequent posts on Instagram doesn’t look odd at all, instead it creates a stream of images which is very useful for a brand.
Use of Hash tags:
Like Twitter, Instagram also provides the hash tag (#) feature for making search for the specific content you are looking for. You can use multiple hash tags for your images and add more to the list afterwards as well to make sure that you receive more likes and increased number of followers.
Puma, a well-known brand to us all for footwear. They started to use Instagram and enticed the users to share the destination they are at wearing their Puma shoes. Puma’s Instagram account is a refreshing change; it reminds the people that the product is not just about the journey, the destination also matters.
Sneak a Peak:
Some of the brands are using images of their production line or the support offices or the back offices where the customers are not allowed to go for making users interaction more personal with the brand. We also confirmed that some of the music bands are also using Instagram and showing some details of their routines behind the curtains.
Audi, car manufacturer is using Instagram to share images of the new concepts and models. The trick is to use your follower’s passion towards your brand and increase engagement by providing what they are looking for i.e. news and updates regarding your brand.
User Generated Content:
This is what each and every brand is looking for on social media platforms. Brands want users to talk about them in their comments, likes, videos, and images. Instagram now has provided brands with yet another opportunity which can be used for user generated content.
Some of the brands are arranging competitions for higher user engagement on Instagram. The concept is that user’s upload images through Instagram completing a particular task (most of the times with the brand name or the product itself), and other fans can vote for the image through Facebook. The most voted image wins the competition. This is a very commonly used technique for involving your fans or followers with your brand on Instagram.
API for special campaigns:
The API’s is a useful tool to use with Instagram. Some of the brands want their users to know about the reach it has over the globe. In this approach, when a user uploads a picture using Instagram, they are aslo asked for the location from which the picture is being uploaded or taken from. Than a map shows the different locations from where the image is uploaded.
Starbucks is one of the brands which are eager to use the new technology. They are one of the top 10 brands who started using Instagram to promote themselves. Starbucks have created a slideshow of the fans images (which are uploaded by their followers), and also they upload images for different coffees, tastes and back factory production processes so the users interest never goes down. The brilliant thing about Starbucks campaign is they provide the images of those things, which sparks the interest of their followers.
In the end, we would conclude our discussion by providing three easy and simple key marketing points to consider when you use Instagram for your brand promotion:
- 1- Post relevant photos to your audience, not just your product.
- 2- Share the images of behind the curtain actions. Customer loves to know what is happening at the back.
- 3- Have clear understanding of the purpose for sharing photos.
We would suggest you to check out some other brands before starting your own brand promotion on Instagram. The top list of brands we would suggest on Instagram are Burberry, Playboy, Starbucks, CNN, Pepsi, and National Geographic.
Let us know if you are following any of the brands currently, and also evaluate how they are working on Instagram and tell us what you think about it.