After several months of testing and refining, Instagram advertising is now open to businesses of all sizes around the world! To make the most of the opportunity, follow this spotlight blog series for helpful tips specific to your industry or vertical.
To mark Instagram's 5th birthday, we're kicking things off today and celebrating all week, with two additional industry posts on Wednesday (automotive) and Thursday (consumer packaged goods). Happy birthday, Instagram!
Instagram is all about creative inspiration – captivating visuals with the power to move people. That’s why it’s such a great fit for fashion and beauty enthusiasts, who log in for easy-to-consume content on the looks and trends they love.
Now with over 400 million monthly active users, Instagram is a growing and engaged community that’s predicted to span one third of the entire Internet population by 2018. For fashion and beauty brands, this translates to a huge potential for gaining new lifetime customers.
Here are six tips on how to be part of Instagram’s haute couture:
1. Consider creating tailored regional accounts
A whopping 75% of Instagrammers live outside the US. Leverage this opportunity to reach a global audience by creating separate accounts for key markets. Then, for increased relevance, tailor your content accordingly by country or language. For example, if you know that fringe details are all the rage in Europe but not at all popular in North America, you can use that knowledge to showcase different trends on each account.
Notice the difference between these Sephora and Sephora
2. Establish your organic presence and
If you’re just getting started with Instagram, step one is to establish a strong organic presence and build up your follower base. Post visually compelling images that tell a story, showcase your products or services, and convey your brand’s unique perspective. Also try posting Instagram-exclusive content that doesn’t appear on any other channel, to give your followers a reason to keep coming back.
3. Take things to the next level with some
After you’ve built a healthy organic presence, the next step is to bolster your efforts through advertising spend. This will help you fend off the competition, keep engagement high, and wow your audiences along the way. And since Instagram no longer requires an insertion order or minimum spend to get started, it’s easy to begin advertising right away.
4. Experiment with both branding and direct response objectives
While most advertisers clearly recognize the value Instagram has for branding campaigns, the platform also offers an increasingly strong set of direct response options. This gives you the opportunity to start high-level with videos and images, and then draw users down the funnel and send them directly to product pages where they can make a purchase.
5. Get creative with cinemagraphs
Cinemagraphs combine the clarity of still images with the visual impact of video for a surprising and mesmerizing effect. A wide variety of brands, from Toyota to Budweiser, have tested these out. Perhaps one of the most compelling examples comes from fashion brand Stuart Weitzman, which used the technique to show off small and striking details. Instagram provides lots of room for creativity, and cinemagraphs can be an inventive way to stand out.
Cinemagraphs, like this one from Stuart Weitzman, use small, eye-catching movements (click the image to see it in action).
6. Test or create relevant beauty and fashion hashtags
See what hashtags others are using, and incorporate them into your content. Or, create a specific hashtag just for your brand. For example, Estée Lauder created the #BestAngle hashtag to promote a contest, while L’Oreal Paris uses #RockYourLashes to promote their Miss Manga Rock mascara.
L’Oreal Paris uses the #rockyourlashes hashtag to promote Miss Manga Rock mascara.
Fashion and beauty brands already live and breathe “visual,” so Instagram is a natural way to extend their messaging. If you’d like to learn how Marin Software can help advance your Instagram strategy, feel free to get in touch.