In Christopher Nolan’s latest blockbuster, Insterstellar, humans face a mysterious “blight” which threatens to wipe out Earth’s crops and ultimately, the entire human race. A small group of pioneers, led by the movie’s hero, Cooper (played by Matthew McConaughey), travel through time and space in hopes of saving humanity.
Back here on Planet Earth, another drama is taking place. Marketers face a new social media landscape where time is also of the essence. An enterprising group of companies have recently launched Instagram pages which have helped to lift their sales out of this world. Among the most successful are Starbucks, Burberry, and Red Bull.
Like the citizens of planet Earth in Interstellar, your company risks being left behind in a rapidly changing environment if it fails to capitalize on the explosive growth of Instagram as a social media platform. A recent study from Simply Measured shows that 59% of the world’s top brands are now using Instagram. In addition, it has become the social media platform of choice for Generation Z, those born around the year 2000. Currently, 76% of teens use Instagram, as compared to just 59% on Twitter and 45% on Facebook (down 27% in the last six months!)
The countdown is on. Implement these best practices for your company’s Instagram account.
The increased real estate of an Instagram account page offers added opportunity to share content that is both informative and fun. A puppy picture on the Anthropologie account page generated 7,640 likes while a picture of shoppers at an Anthropologie luncheon generated 3,457. It can’t all be belly laughs and lollipops, but don’t be shy in posting images that can pique a consumer’s interest through an unconventional route. Humanize your business and create a connection that makes consumers more open to your products and services.
Facebook bought Instagram in 2012 and the duo offers a unique branding opportunity. James Borow explains, “Brands create Instagram videos, share them to their Facebook pages and then boost them into paid media that hits the Facebook news feed, in the same way that they boost text or photo posts. This enables brands to reach Facebook’s 818 million monthly active mobile users, which dwarfs Instagram’s 130 million. It’s profiting from Instagram without having to advertise on Instagram… For now it’s all about capturing and sharing the world’s moments—and paying to distribute them on the world’s largest social network.” Instagram and Facebook are a powerful team. Capitalize on the opportunity presented by these two social media titans by utilizing them together.
Posting pictures of your staff on Instagram reinforces their value and gives viewers an inside look inside at your company. Who knows? These images may also help to recruit new employees who appreciate the respect and publicity given to employees. A staff picture need not be elaborate. Snap a picture of an employee in their natural habitat to give a realistic view of what life at your company is like.
Global age demographics are changing. As more Millennials replace Baby Boomers, it will become increasingly important for organizations to promote products and services that match the ideals of the Millenial generation. According to recent data from the professional service organization, PwC, Millennials value work/life balance more so than any prior generation and are willing to take significant steps to achieve it. Organizations that play into this desire have an opportunity to win over this new generation by displaying a fun-loving approach to work and life via Instagram. Share these types of images with followers to show that you don’t take yourself too seriously while on the job and that you value being happy and successful in your career.
Below are four helpful tips to gather more followers on Instagram.
Instead of trying to sell your product or service, remember that Instagram is primarily a visual experience. To build a successful brand on Instagram, focus instead on:
Create short videos of important company moments to share with your followers. It’s a great way to help them feel included. Brands share unique branded experiences, highlight brand advocates, and develop content with the help of the audience. You can also preview products, showcase a specific cause or event, share important news, promote awareness for an issue or leverage or create Instagram videos that show fans appreciation.
To find out how your brand is doing on Instagram, use image analytic tools such as BlitzMetrics and Curalate. Curalate allows you to track an Instagram post’s likes and comments so that a brand can see how posts influence popularity. These image analytic programs allow you to identify images and video that best resonate with fans and followers.