With the average monthly user count up to 90 million, Instagram cannot be ignored by businesses. Whether your company is already on Instagram or is thinking about it, I’ve found a few brands that not only understand the medium but make it fun and interesting.
The popular department store engages its Instagram followers by posting new items coming to stores and by encouraging fans to share their own purchases by uploading photos and using the Kohl’s hashtag #SavedatKohls.
What they understand: That fans don’t just want to hear what companies have to say – they want to contribute their own photos and stories too.
With 1.5 million followers on Instagram, Nike has successfully attracted its loyal fans to the new channel. They share a solid mix of product images (photographed in innovative ways) and people who are being active, – often sport celebrities – living the “just do it” lifestyle.
What they understand: Nike has always had powerful imagery and motivational themes that attract customers. They’ve simply shifted what they already did well into a different medium. Nike also doesn’t overwhelm followers with photos of their shoes and other products – their marketing messages are nuanced.
Some may think that Etsy has it easy on Instagram, I mean, they do facilitate an online store with super original handmade and vintage items. But, they don’t use their Instagram account to highlight the unique wares on their site. Instead, Etsy uses this channel to showcase the crafters behind the products and to ask fans their thoughts on crafting.
What they understand: Etsy gets that just because there are more pictures and fewer words on Instagram, they can still encourage their followers to provide their feedback and opinions (which are valuable assets in understanding their clientbase). Plus, Etsy highlights what makes their business great – the crafters behind the scenes.
HelloGiggles, co-founded by Zooey Deschanel, is an online community of women who post about topics specific just to women – including nails of the day, illustrated tweets and hot items chosen by the staff.
What they understand: HelloGiggles doesn’t just get Instagram, they get their readers. They’ve come up with new and exciting ways to reel in their fans – their illustrated tweets feature is hilarious and focuses on fans’ social media.
Although National Geographic is a print publication, their website ranks in Alexa as the top 1,142nd global website (out of every website ever). Always known for their up-close-and-personal wildlife images and stories, NatGeo offers its Instagram fans an inside look at the talent of their dynamic team.
What they understand: People know National Geographic for their inside stories on new species and exotic locations. So, NatGeo gives the people what they want! Their photos are fascinating glimpses into the bigger stories shared on their website and in their magazine.
Southwest has a long company history that attracts flying and plane enthusiasts alike. And, they use those assets to their best advantage on their Instagram account.
What they understand: Southwest gets that aviation geeks and savvy travelers follower their account and gear Southwest content toward them. The airline posts packing tips and users’ photos to make sure fans are paying attention.
What other businesses on Instagram just get it?
This article was written by Lisa Parkin
Lisa Parkin is the CEO and President of Social Climber. Her creativity and determination lend themselves to working with a medium that never stops changing.