Why You NEED to Be Active on Instagram in 2018

Part #3 in the series: 2018 Digital Marketing Trends: What to Watch for in the New Year

You probably already know that Facebook leads the race for active users among any social media network out there. In fact, they boasted 1.8 billion users in January of 2017, which seems like pretty small potatoes compared to Instagram’s meager 600 million. So if it’s got such a small following (comparatively) why are digital marketers going to go nuts over Instagram in 2018?

The answer comes down to one simple word: engagement.

Your business can have the biggest Facebook following in the industry, but if those followers aren’t engaging with your posts, you become just one more piece of noise to get scrolled by in the hunt for funny cat videos.

While Instagram has shown a steady climb in user base over the past few years, 2017 was when marketers really discovered how effective this image-centric social network is at building loyal and interactive audiences.

But just how much more engaged are followers on Instagram?

One study examined the social media accounts of a band called Paramore. The band shared the exact same image on several of their social networks, but the difference in audience reaction was unexpectedly enlightening. Their Facebook following of 3.2 million users gave the photo a total of 9,405 likes. On Instagram, where Paramore had a much more modest following of just 360,000 fans, the image received more than 52,000 likes.

Let that sink in.

An Instagram following 10% of the size of the same Facebook fan base managed to create 500% more engagement.

How Can I Get Started Building My Brand on Instagram?

Because of its focus on images, Instagram is the perfect place to show off how your products or services make your customers’ lives easier, happier or just more fun. Especially on social platforms, users are wary of the used car salesman types, so avoid using Instagram to sell to your customer base. Instead, use it to tell your story.

When you tell your fans a story that makes them laugh or feel warm and fuzzy inside, they’ll naturally want to share it with their friends.

What story can you tell with pictures of employees at work?
What can a photo of a customer with one of your products say about your company as a whole?
What can you do around the office that will make your followers laugh? (Our own Instagram is heavily focused on the humor of our business (Artful Pussycat on Instagram)
How can you capture the humanity behind your business in an image?

These are the sorts of questions you can ask to help you create engaging content that Instagram users will love to share.

Your brand is more than just the story you want your business to tell. Your brand is also how your audience fits into this story. There is no better place for consumers to join your story than on social media, where they can like, comment, and share the awesome things that you are doing. And in 2018, Instagram is the place where businesses are telling their story.

If you’re looking to tell yours, let us know how we can help.

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