By: Andi Barton I think we all can agree on the fact that Pinterest has captured the photo sharing fascination of social media users around the world. However- don’t let this new network of photography allow you forget about previously existing photo sharing app’s like Instagram! I recently have noticed an influx of new Instagram users from a personal level. However, in addition to seeing many new connections using the app, I’ve noticed a lack of brands who are also getting back on board. If you’re a brand and at a loss for how an Instagram strategy could apply to your business- you’re not alone!
As you develop your social media strategy, it's important to prioritize your networks based on how to most effectively reach your target fans. Instagram is a location that you can easily implement multiple means of engagement! The type of users on this app is a huge network of visual and creative smart phoners that you can tap into. Your Instagram does not need to strictly serve one purpose. Take the time to learn what types of followers you’ve acquired on this particular network, and tailor your strategy based on their interests!
Get involved in what's trending
Show that your brand is involved and informed on the events and happenings going on that interest your demographic of followers. Instagram photos of events, news, fun facts, trending topics etc. that your followers are most likely aware of- and then use it to your advantage and make it engaging! For example, I believe E! is a great cultural example of a corporation leveraging Instagram. They post photos keeping up with the particular events as they happen, photos of celebrities to spread the word of breaking news relevant to these stars. Their Instagram acts as an informative visual blog. Almost every photo they posted last night throughout the SAG Awards made it to Instagram’s popular page.
Going off that, another successful example I observed was Good Morning America- who used the SAG awards last night to their advantage to grab the attention of their followers. They posted an image from the awards with an engaging caption. Know your demographic of followers on Instagram and get involved what’s trending and important in their lives.
Showcase your culture
Successful Instagram-ers like President Obama’s campaign staff and Justin Beiber have already discovered the secret to success on this network. Their use of Instagram is a great example of how to leverage Instagram for engagement purposes. Accounts like these two use the photo sharing to showcase internal happenings and personal documentation that fans and followers can’t necessarily get as regularly anywhere else. Use your Instragram to humanize your brand. Show the inner workings of your culture, give your followers insight into the day-to-day behind the scenes activity.
Instagram & other networks
Make sure you understand that your fans and followers on each network can be different! Therefore, don’t treat Pinterest as a competing network to your Instagram efforts. They can work together! Take images that you’re pinning and repost them through Instagram. Pinterest has such an extensive inventory of photos that range through all styles. Find images that you love for your Pinterest, and use it to your advantage in your Instagram as well. Like this image on the right- Likeable Media used this for our Instagram after finding and pinning it first.
If you post photos to your Facebook page and Twitter, why not make the effort to enhance the images even more? We are all visual creatures to an extent- so make your posts visually pleasing! Not only will you grab attention off the bat- the likeability of something that is more visually attractive and unique may increase interactions. And now that you can upload your images directly to Facebook through the app, why not!
Avid users of Instagram are so dedicated to the app because they love the creation element. You don’t have to be a professional photographer to produce beautiful images here. Leverage this for your brand. Create a photo contest where followers can submit and get recognized. Social media users find you on networks because they want their voice to be heard and interact. On Instagram, if they’re interacting with brands, they want their photos to be seen! Promote a contest where users upload a particular themed or brand related photo, and provide them with a specific hashtag to use. You can then search the hashtag to find all the public Instagram-ers who are submitting through that hashtag.
Your Instagram can act as a mini visual blog for your brand. Don’t underestimate its potential! The loyal users of Instgram is an underestimated network of visual sharers that you can leverage in many different ways!
Be sure to follow Likeable Media on Instagram and check out what goes on behind the scenes here and all other fun social media images!
What creative ways can you come up with for a fresh Instagram strategy? Share your thoughts in the comments below! For more ideas download our free Instagram For Brands Best Practices.