Why Your Company Should Be Using Instagram to Engage Prospects

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Molly Strakosch

Marketing Associate

instagram logoSocial media has no doubt become a hot topic of conversation these days among people of all ages; some people express how they think it’s one of the best things to happen to society, and some say they think it’s one of the worst. Despite the opponents of social media’s omnipresence and continuous growth, newer sites like Instagram offer more value than one might think.

Newer social media platforms, like Instagram, are not only used (and should not only be used) for entertaining the world’s teenagers who are constantly indulged on these sites—they are actually incredibly valuable tools being used in the corporate world, which is why you should take more advantage of the opportunities Instagram can have for your B2B marketing. In fact, the amount of U.S. adults using Instagram grew 9% over 2014 — meaning that 26% of all US adults are now on Instagram. This is the largest jump of any major social media site studied, surpassing growth by Pinterest (7%), LinkedIn (6%) and Twitter (5%)

From my personal experience, it is clear that Instagram is the new “it” and recent statistics seem to support this claim…

Now some of you may be thinking that it’s obvious that Instagram is very essential and effective for consumer marketing, but you may be wondering just how effective it can be for B2B marketing…

Reasons why your company should be on Instagram

#1 – It is very important to stay up to date with today’s latest trends

Instagram is definitely one of the most popular and fastest growing social media platforms of 2015. For the first time, roughly half of internet-using young adults ages 18-29 (53%) use Instagram. These millennials, who are the consumers and marketers of the near future, are more than likely to be familiar with Instagram, so it is important to know how to connect with them in the most impactful ways. While Instagram’s growth has been spiking in 2014 and 2015, others sites may start to become outdated, so it is important to be present on the place that the most people are checking regularly and engaging with most. Instagram recently announced a millstone of reaching 300 million monthly active users, surpassing Twitter for the first time. By being on growing sites, you are allowing your brand to expand because you will be seen more by your prospects that are staying up to date with the latest trends.

This post from Nike has received over 450,000 likes:

A sunset is not a stop sign. @nikesverige

A photo posted by nike (@nike) on

#2 – Be one of the first B2B companies to dominate the Instagram game before everyone catches on…

Companies are missing an opportunity by not embracing Instagram the same way they embraced Twitter. Instagram delivered brands 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook and 120 times more engagement per follower than Twitter. While most B2C marketers have recognized Instagram as a seriously powerful tool for marketing and have taken advantage of this, not all B2B marketers have embraced this latest trend and have yet to take time to grow their brand by regularly posting Instagrams and attracting followers. Start using Instagram in the beginning stages for B2B marketing to avoid lagging behind your competition who will most likely catch on sooner rather than later.

#3 – Instagram is easy to use, and makes it hard to miss a post

Instagram is very user friendly, because the idea behind it is simple – post pictures and videos with short captions. The posts are not filtered so you see everything that your followers post. Also, the feed does not move as fast as the Twitter feed, where it is easier for your followers to miss your posts.

#4 – A picture is worth a thousand words

Enough said.

Other technology companies are already having success with Instagram

IBM, being one of the leaders in the technology industry, has already invested time into their Instagram account (Kudos!) They have attracted over 29,000 followers in the 1.5 years that they have been using it. In the analysis below, you can see that IBM gets the most engagement through posting their content on Instagram. For example their post on July 22 received 1,373 likes on Instagram, while their engagement on Twitter was 66 and on Facebook was 38.

Post
Instagram Likes
Instagram Comments
Twitter Engage-
ment
Facebook Engage-
ment
Total Engage-
ment 
Regarding today’s #MarriageEquality news.
1,266
26
0
403
1,695
One purpose. 📷: @christopher_ly
1,373
32
66
38
1,509
Thanks to all who followed our #IBMThink series.
1,313
22
1
4
1,340
Analysis from Simply Measured
 
 
 
 
 

Here are a few examples of IBM Instagrams that their followers engage with:

What to Post

So, if you’re now convinced that your company should be engaging and posting regularly on Instagram, you may be wondering “What type of content should I post as a B2B marketer” ? “What works?”

Instagram is a great place to enhance your brand and be a little more personal than you might be on other platforms. It’s a powerful way of telling your brand’s story and is a strategy to shift away from sales driven marketing that might not be as effective anymore, to humanizing the brand and creating a community for your customers and employees. People like to see what’s going on inside the company and like to make connections with the people they do business with, on a more personal level. You want to post things that are creative, visually attractive and will be interesting to an array of followers. Don’t be afraid to show off your creative team’s talents!

Posts that have done well for B2B marketers include

  • Pictures of your office
  • Pictures from your company’s international travel
  • Pictures of employees at company outings or in the office (i.e. highlight office culture, make employees seem more “human” )
  • Pictures of employees with customers
  • Posts about current events and the company’s stance on issues (i.e. Gay rights, Green stance, etc.)
  • Fun company events or news (i.e. CEO’s birthday, company anniversary party, out of office hours…)
  • Behind the scenes of the creation of your products

So, what’s the harm in giving it a try? We are currently setting up our very own Instagram account here at TechTarget, so please don’t hesitate to be one of our first followers!

If you have any comments or questions about Instagram, please feel free to leave a comment or connect with me on LinkedIn.

B2B marketing, instagram, social media, social media marketing

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