Secrets of 3 Instagram-First Brands
It’s no secret that brands are moving away from traditional marketing methods—TV, print, and radio—and focusing their efforts on social media instead.
The dominance of influencers, micro-influencers, dynamic ads, and multiple content formats makes Instagram the perfect place for businesses to build their brands.
For some brands, this means that Instagram has been a total game-changer. Instead of using traditional marketing methods, they’ve found an “Instagram-first” strategy to be a more efficient use of their budgets—and a better fit for their unique brands.
Continue reading to discover:
Secrets of 3 Instagram-first brands
In 2014, ultra-popular beauty blogger Emily Weiss launched the makeup and skincare line, Glossier. Unlike other beauty brands you might see in your local department store or on the chicest shopping streets in your city, Glossier is almost an entirely online experience.
“We operate solely through social channels,” Weiss told Mashable. “You are allowed to get, by leveraging technology, a better brand with immediate results. We know our customer, what she’s purchased, and put her on her journey. If she likes Haloscope, maybe she’s a makeup girl and will like lipsticks.”
Build a cohesive (and eye-catching) visual brand
It’s almost impossible to go on Instagram and not see the familiar pink of a Glossier post. Whether it’s a top-notch influencer sharing their favorite products or a happy customer showing off an unboxing on their Instagram Stories, the company has created an incredibly social media-friendly brand.
Thanks to Glossier’s aesthetically pleasing packaging and fashion-forward branding, their products are highly photogenic. The hashtag #glossier has more than 194,000 posts—and is growing by the minute.
The nature of the products themselves doesn’t hurt either. Customers often share selfies featuring makeup looks they’ve created with Glossier products, many of which Glossier then features on their official Instagram page.
What can your business do to create a shareable Instagram-first brand like Glossier?
As a die-hard La Croix fan (hello, coconut), I wasn’t surprised to find out that the flavored sparkling water company’s profits more than doubled from 2015 to 2017, growing from $49.3 million to $107 million.
While the company has been selling their now iconic cans for more than 30 years, La Croix has seen a remarkable resurgence in recent years—and this resurgence is not coincidentally aligned with Instagram’s rise in popularity.
Although La Croix definitely isn’t the only sparkling water brand out there, they stand out due to their focus on digital over traditional marketing methods.
“The company is particularly active on Instagram, where it works with a vast network of “micro-influencers” (the term for users with thousands, instead of hundreds of thousands, of followers) and encourages fans to use hashtags to share La Croix recipes and experiences,” Fortune’s Laura Entis explains.
And, because of its calorie and sweetener-free status, La Croix is recognized as a healthier alternative to sugar-packed beverages. As a result, hoards of health and nutrition influencers have been happy to include La Croix products in their posts.
Like Glossier, La Croix’s aesthetically pleasing packaging helps boost brand recognition amongst Instagram users both on and offline. Fans will proudly share the spotlight with a can of their favorite La Croix flavor—an instant prop that nods to their apparent healthy lifestyle and awareness of trends. By making their product the ultimate hip Instagram accessory, La Croix has become somewhat of a digital marketing legend.
How can your brand tap into the power of La Croix?
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Since 2014, Article has been bringing beautiful furniture to customers across North America—all without a single physical showroom. The modern interiors company believes that in cutting out the middle men (warehouses, salespeople, wholesalers, export agents, manufacturers, etc.) the customer gets a more efficient and economic experience.
Because they have no showrooms for customers to see and try the furniture out in person, Article’s social media presence is crucial. “Instagram and platforms like Pinterest really help showcase our creative because they’re visual-centric platforms,” Article’s director of marketing Duncan Blair told MiC.
To ensure they’re getting the most out of every post, Article’s marketing team focuses on the power of Instagram ads. In 2016, the company developed a campaign with the purpose of boosting sales amongst new and returning customers. These successful ads featured interiors styled with Article’s furniture, creating an aspirational (yet attainable) experience for the audience.
A big part of Article’s ad strategy is paying close attention to their online audience. Instead of simply using traditional demographics, the marketing team targeted lookalike audiences based on interests similar to current customers, along with retargeting ads to those who had visited the site without making a purchase.
Blair explained that targeting was “also based on people with tastes in verticals like food, art and tech, in order to capture an audience that was younger or more tech-native (those who were already comfortable with making major purchases online).”
Thanks to this ad campaign, Article saw a 8X return on ad spend, and 36 percent of sales included Instagram in the customer journey.
How can your Instagram strategy get you results like Article’s?
When you don’t have a bricks-and-mortar location, it can be hard to give your customers a truly immersive brand experience. But, with the right strategies, an Instagram-first presence can be the best thing to happen to your business.
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June 21, 2018 at 08:51AM