Instagram has gone from a simple photo-sharing platform to becoming a vibrant, interactive community with an impressive half of its billion users on the site daily. Since its creation 10 years ago, traffic growth has been remarkable, outpacing other platforms, and consumer brands have noticed, as the social media darling has become a significant marketing destination.
As reported by MediaKix.com in 2019, 89% of marketers say Instagram is strategically important to their influencer marketing strategy — higher than any other social media channel in the industry. Having an Instagram presence is a requirement in today’s fast-paced, content-driven world. According to a 2019 Pew Research Center study, the share of U.S. adults using social media, including Facebook, is mostly unchanged since 2018. There are many interesting takeaways to note as we dig deeper into the survey findings. Consider these seven data points from the study, along with some of our suggested approaches that may prove beneficial in shaping a successful Instagram marketing strategy.
1. The data shows since 2016, while most social media platform usage by U.S adults remained largely flat, Instagram increased from around 25% to 37% of adults.
This positive news of 48% growth in only four years translates into more potential buyers in this critical demographic. As popular social media platforms drive more traffic from content creators, it becomes increasingly challenging for brands to stand out amongst the noise. Show your brand’s uniqueness on Instagram by presenting a clear backstory and philosophy that feels authentic. Connect with your base organically by sharing the journey of your business from inception to production.
Nike is an excellent example of a brand with a strong voice and direction. On their Instagram page, the company promotes its philosophy with uplifting photos and inspirational stories to create a community of shared cultural interests about social justice, inclusion, and working together to make a better world. Nike’s marketing team understands the high-spending Millennial and Gen Z consumer groups, who have shown a desire to pursue these ideals. This strategy helps Nike to connect with and inspire potential customers.
2. Those ages 18 to 24 are substantially more likely than those ages 25 to 29 to say they use Instagram (75%).
The challenge for brands is understanding how to keep their younger users interested in a sea of content vying for their attention. One widely used method is to create a call to action to elicit a response and keep the audience engaged. This call to action could include adding a link in your Instagram profile to your e-commerce website or running weekly contests for the brand’s best user photos. Other CTA strategies include surveys designed to obtain opinions and valuable marketing data, offering promotional discount codes or giveaways if users watch a video, and reposting user photos to connect with them on an organic level.
3. Among U.S. adults who say they use Instagram, 63% use it daily, with 42% logging on several times a day.
When a busy platform commands so many interactions with users, producing a variety of fresh and relevant content is vital for any brand. Consider reaching your audience by using Instagram Live and its newly announced four-hour livestream limit. You can now archive videos for 30 days and then upload them to Instagram’s long-form video option IGTV. Many brands bolster their engagement by going live with classes, demonstrations of new products, location reporting from events, concerts, and interviews with influencers. Users enjoy commenting during the live broadcasts allowing for more direct interactions with the content creators and can lead to viewers coming back.
Instagram Reels are also a big hit with consumers, as we explained in this recent KM101 article on making the most of the Reels experience.
4. 43% of women, 31% of men, and 51% of Hispanic adults say they use Instagram.
Before you focus on a particular group of consumers, consider collaborating with influencers to energize your marketing campaign. Having a clear goal, whether it is driving traffic to build your audience or promoting a new product, will help guide your research to finding relevant influencers who share your brand’s audience and values. Unlike traditional advertising, influencers share your story organically with a broad audience as they incorporate your products into their photos and Instagram Stories. This approach offers users different ways to engage and discover your brand. An influencer’s unique niche, reach, credibility, and cultivated image can help grow your brand and present it to new followers, ultimately persuading them to buy your products. Be mindful that more prominent influencers will charge a fee to collaborate, so consider that when planning your marketing budget.
5. 42% of adults who make more than $75,000 use Instagram —this is a huge chunk of consumers with high purchasing power.
As luxury brands spend more money on their digital media marketing, this is positive news for those looking for users with discretionary income. Brands will often focus on compelling, thought-provoking imagery that promotes an attitude of success and quality. Some brands will often use images that suggest their products align with exceptional choices such as high-end automobiles, home furnishings, or jewelry. Highlighting their products within the backdrop of an exclusive environment may subtly speak to how their brand fits into a specific class of quality and elegance, toward which many viewers may gravitate.
6. 46% of urban dwellers use Instagram.
Marketing a lifestyle as an extension of a brand can resonate with a demographic whose busy city living style often includes active social time. A brand has ample opportunities to show through simple yet effective messaging how they fit into the user’s world, from being at the office, going to the gym, or enjoying time with friends. Retailers like Urban Outfitters use real-world storytelling to build audience relationships creatively. From posts displaying a snapshot of an active day to quiet time at home, they try to position themselves as urban-life partners. Creative content not only builds a brand’s identity by presenting clothing, accessories, and home decor choices for the urban dweller but also secures product loyalty.
7. 47% of U.S. adults 30-49 years old use Instagram.
Social media is often associated with a younger user base. However, the data suggests ample opportunities to appeal to those in a beginning or mid-career bracket. This demographic tends to focus on home life, enrichment activities, travel, and family. Old Navy is an example of another brand that has successfully used its reach on this platform to appeal to younger families by featuring posts and using the Instagram stories feature to promote fashion, family, and fun. And the strategy seems to be working as they share a strong user engagement with their base of 2.4 million followers.
When using any popular social media platform, building an online presence in a crowded marketplace can be the biggest challenge for any brand. But don’t despair; there is plenty of room on Instagram to flourish, so try out different methods to discover what works best for your audience and create engaging content — and lots of it. If you are not already marketing on Instagram, consider using it as an essential tool in your promotional arsenal.