Instagram Campaign Marketing: From Selfie Platform to Full Fledged Marketing
Since its launch in 2010, Instagram has been gaining popularity and engaging users from all around the world. Instagram is essentially an online photo and video sharing platform that can be accessed from any digital device. From public figures to multinational companies, Instagram has a wide range of uses. As an individual you can use Instagram has a means of sharing your day-to-day activities with your friends and family. As a business owner/entrepreneur however, there is much more in this little app for you. Creating a profile for your startup or small business to engage your followers with your company’s latest news and updates is just scratching the surface. An Instagram campaign can greatly enhance your online presence, spread the word about your business and fulfill all your marketing needs.
Because of the genuine nature of the social media platform, many brands have chosen to create Instagram campaigns to enhance their product’s popularity and brand image amongst a select audience. Instagram is especially popular amongst millennials, as they refer to it as ‘the gram’ or ‘insta’, and spend hours on end exploring the online world. This makes it very simple for brands to target that age group and their general preferences through current trends and rising hashtags.
As Instagram developed amongst the years, several features have been implemented in the app to allow more interactions and direct communication between users. Features like Instagram Direct and Live Stories have made it a lot simpler to start successful Instagram Campaigns and prevail a new face to the brand. Hashtags like #TransformationTuesday and #WomanCrushWednesday are being used and followed by a lot of Instagram users. For that reason, it would be effective for brands to implement them or other relevant hashtags within their Instagram campaigns.
For public accounts, you can choose to categorize your profile as a Public Figure or a Company to initially introduce yourself to your viewers. From then on, you have the ability to view the insights on your pages and analyze the viewership of your posts, the nature of your follower base and assess all recent activity on your page. Using this information, you will be able to understand what your followers like the most, and what type of content you should be creating and posting to enhance your Instagram campaign.
Another feature recently added to Instagram are the sponsored posts. As a public account you have the option to pay for your posts to be shown on users’ timelines even those who are not following you. Using this Instagram feature will expose your Instagram campaign to more viewers and gradually increase your follower count. Through the users’ Facebook demographics, you’re able to utilize behavioral marketing and effectively target specific interests and behaviors.
Key Steps to a Flourishing Instagram Campaign
Whether you’re using Instagram as a branch of your marketing scheme or basing your marketing technique around an Instagram campaign, it’s important to understand the how-to’s of the app, and how to attract viewers to your photos and videos successfully. Here are some tips and tricks on how to make the most out of your Instagram campaign, and make your followers hungry for more.
- Feel the Beat
To ensure the success and immediate relevance of your Instagram campaign, you need to be able to feel the rhythm of the market and understand the social media world, the trends happening and the trends to come. Based on your well-founded instincts, you should be able to assess when and how to introduce your Instagram campaign.
Planning and preparation is essential prior to the launch of any Instagram campaign, it would even make sense to keep some draft posts on queue when you think your audience is ready for them. Have a plan that maintains the activeness of your account and keeps your audience constantly tuned in.
- Pictures, Videos and more!
Instagram users are already looking for visual content, to step up the viewer’s engagement with your work why not make it move! Videos are very likely to resonate with your audience and keep them engaged for a longer period.
Unlike in the past, you are no longer restricted to 15-second videos to share with your audience at a time. Instagram videos can be up to a minute long, and you can chose to create a set of videos to share with your viewers all at once.
However, bare in mind that long videos might not be as engaging since viewers are rapidly scrolling through their timelines, so keep your videos short and sweet!
- Make Your Profile Pop!
When viewers visit your Instagram profile, you want to make sure they click the ‘follow’ button. They are more likely to do that if your profile is exciting and inviting enough, and you need to make sure of that. When posting content on your Instagram page you need to ensure that all posts are able to stand alone, but also stand together.
Try to implement a theme throughout our posts, you can achieve this through the filters used in your pictures, the nature of the photos and videos themselves, and even in the captions and hashtags you use in your posts.
Your posts could even follow a storyline that show the series of events. Either way, having an artistic sense of style and formatting will help you maintain the aesthetic of your profile and gain the attention of many consumers to enhance your Instagram campaign.
- Go Live
Using one of the most recent Instagram uses is the Live feature. Many companies and figures go live to give their viewers a glimpse into the behind the scenes of the brand and the management behind the magic. In addition to the live feature, you can save you Live Session to be viewed later on by followers who missed it.
When recording a Live Session, there are three factors to keep in mind, genuineness, organization and spontaneity. Be authentic in your recording, and make sure that nothing seems too staged or fake while also making sure than whatever you are showing is presented professionally and clearly.
You can use this Live feature for other reasons within your Instagram campaign as well. For example, you can record a part of an event hosted by your brand or show the reveal of the winners from your latest competition.
- Stay Subtle
To be in harmony with the latest marketing trends outside of the Insta-sphere, make sure that your advertisements stay subtle and relevant. Try to make it appear as if your Instagram campaign is targeting minds not wallets. Consumers do not like being told what to do and where to spend their money, but would rather have the freedom to choose, just make sure they chose you.
On the other end of the spectrum, do not let your Instagram campaign reign too loosely, your brand have a purpose that is clear to you and your consumers. Sometimes the simplest means of calling to action would be to direct them towards a ‘Show Now’ button, or a ‘Click Here’.
- Engage & Communicate
Through Instagram you have numerous ways of approaching your audience and countless means of engaging with them. The mainstream posts aren’t enough to cut it anymore. Post Stories, Live Feeds, and don’t be afraid to answer Direct Messages from your followers and fans.
An Instagram campaign allows your brand to appear approachable and genuine, so use the tools available to you to fulfil this purpose. Alongside the 24-hour long stories that you could post online, you could add these stories to your profile so that they appear forever, but not amongst your posts, these are called Highlights.
Amongst all these tools and features of the social media app, you will be able to personalize your Instagram campaign and showcase the different aspects of your brand in many effective ways.
- Who Runs the World?
Forget what you are taught in school. Governments, banks and businesses do not make the world go round. Kids, teenagers and adults alike are all looking towards social media for information, reviews and tips. There’s no shame in asking for help. Social media influencers hold a pivotal role in shaping the trends of modern teenage society, and it’s how they make money, influencers make money off of promoting products and services. These influencers have already built a strong, loyal follower base, so it would be to your advantage to use them to reach a larger target audience for your Instagram campaign.
Depending on the number of followers, social media influencers will either demand a sum of money, or will go by with just free products. Depending on your budget and target audience, you should be able to select from a wide range of local and global social media influencers.
The Instagram Campaign of 2017
See the tools we discussed being put to use through these real life examples of Instagram campaigns. As we look back the past year, we can recognize some campaigns on Instagram that stood out amongst the rest. From the following examples you can recognize some of Instagram features utilized in the campaign, and attempt to apply the same techniques to your Instagram campaign.
Adidas took video production to another level, their #HereToCreate Instagram campaign sincerely communicated with a broad range of athletes on a deeper level. The campaign features a series of videos that attended to each athletes passion and love for their sport. The underlying theme behind each video was Creativity, and the videos posted were mainly targeted at athletes and the love, passion and inspiration they hold.
Who doesn’t love free stuff? A marketing feature that is very popular with Instagram campaigns is contests and giveaways. RYU really engaged their followers with the #WhatsInYourBag campaign, where all you had to do was post a picture with the hashtag #WhatsInYourBag showing the inside of your gym bag, and you had the chance to win a prize package from RYU. The brand shared the contest on their page, but it was up to the followers to continue the trend and it was what really maximised the effect of their campaign.
Relating back to the influencer marketing technique we mentioned earlier, you can see this in practice through Glossier’s Instagram campaign. They gave away gift packages to multiple social media influencers to advertise their products. The impact of this was a lot more sincere and natural, as it appeared to the viewers that the brand was not looking for big names or famous faces, but real people like themselves.
On the other hand, brands like Fashion Nova chose to target big (if not the biggest) names in the media industry right now. The fashion brand sent their clothes items to celebrities like Kylie Jenner, Cardi B, and many more who are extremely popular in the industry. With Fashion Nova being a relatively inexpensive brand, with quality clothing they aimed to address the concept that you do not have to wear expensive things to look like a model or a superstar.
Sometimes fame comes by accident. Nusret, more commonly known as #SaltBae became extremely popular at the beginning of 2017. After posting a video of him sprinkling salt on one of his delicious meat dishes, Nusret and his restaurant went viral very rapidly. Soon there were memes, video compilation and A LOT of talk about #SaltBae around the internet. Nusret took full advantage of the situation and his restaurant going viral and continue to post similar videos, luring his followers to his restaurant and fine dishes.
Instagram started out as a mere photo sharing platform. Friends would follow other friends, view their uploaded pictures, send pictures back and forth, react and comment with each other. Fast Forward to 2018, Instagram campaigns are one of the best ways to reach target consumers. Digital marketing platforms are everywhere, literally in the thousands. However, Instagram has had a mass following in its short 8 years with us; making it one of the most efficient communication channels between businesses and its customers. Instagram Campaigns have a tendency to go viral. Within hours of launching an ad, the potential number of people who will view the ad is in the millions. While maintaining its original purpose for its loyal patrons, the photo sharing platform has increased its activities internationally. They take use of sponsored posts and they do it well; in a way that is not a nuisance to its followers. Small businesses, huge multinational corporations, celebrities, public figures, singers and writers alike all use that app to get in touch with their followers. The presence of a wide array of people from all over the world, with numerous cultural backgrounds is what makes instagram the success it is. Launching Instagram campaigns is an easy an affordable method to get through to your audience.