At the beginning of October this year Kevin Systrom, Instagram’s CEO, and Mike Krieger, their Chief Technology Officer, announced that they will be leaving Instagram and that they are ready for their new chapter.
Both Kevin and Mike are considered to be the founders of the platform, having both worked on Instagram since its launch in 2010.
Instagram had a very impressive start when it acquired over one million users in only 2 months!
After one year this number increased to 10 million active users and in 2017, the app had over 800 million monthly active users worldwide.
The journey of creating, maintaining, and improving the concept of the platform is very interesting and admirable!
From the very beginning, Instagram clearly knew how to improve the platform adding new “filters” and other new features. After launching the videos in June 2013, Instagram introduced the Direct Message feature, which was followed by the live videos and, most recently, the stories feature.
What Really Makes Instagram so Special?
- Read People!
We can use Instagram not only to produce content and communicate with others but also to read people! For business use this sounds perfect because brands can understand their target audience and analyze the content being produced by them, through scanning the hashtags, you will get to see the bigger picture, and know what people are talking about! And then you can have the knowledge required to establish your own guide of how to communicate with your audience.
- Communicating the Value!
Through Instagram, you can also achieve communicating the value of your products or services to your customers, you can build brand awareness and encourage engagement. And since we all have access to all Instagram super features, its a matter of how to use these features!
- Mobile-Exclusive Platform.
Mobile-exclusive platforms are different due to the practicality of cell-phones as they are easy to use on the go. On Instagram for example, images taken on the go can be immediately edited and posted for all to see.
- Human Nature!
Our nature as human beings and the fact that we always prefer visual content. On Instagram, nearly all the newsfeed is occupied by the horizontal span of images and since they are all reduced to the same square format that gives a certain level of formality to the experience.
- It’s Simplicity!
Instagram is also a departure from apps like Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin, mostly because of its simplicity. It has done a phenomenal job in attracting younger audiences, with the majority of its users clocking in at under the age of 30. Instagram also has an energy that older social media brands have lost over the years.
Brands that are killing it on Instagram!
One of the successful strategies used to creatively spread brand awareness through Instagram would be what Adidas has been doing since 2017 and up until today. They have gathered over 15 million followers for their brand and have a high influence on the followers of their Instagram page.
Adidas used Instagram to spread awareness of the brand, they did that by sharing visual content and videos to drive more enthusiasm for their products.
We can consider this account the most sales focused account, and this is why Instagram is super amazing because you can raise awareness and encourage the users to directly shop through the buying feature; “Shop Now” where users will experience all the phases of a successful “Buyer Journey” process, from being aware of the brand, interested in the brand, desiring the item or service then eventually, ending up buying the service/ product. All this takes place on the same platform at the same time.
From Adidas here, we can see that creativity and professionality in sharing visual content can be a game-changer for the brand.
Using Instagram can go all the way and reach people’s hearts if the right visuals are used along with the perfect use of the short lines in the captions.
Let us take Airbnb and their successful campaign on Instagram as an example!
Airbnb sold an experience. And they did it very well!
They used user-generated photos and captions to paint a story behind each photo. And that is exactly how they won more followers and more interactions.
Instagram mad it just fair by designing analytics tools to help Business Profiles evaluate the success of their Instagram marketing strategies, through the “Insights” which provide access to engagement and impression data, which should give you everything you need to make informed decisions about future campaign efforts. Adding features that allow you to manage multiple accounts, hyperlink usernames and hashtags in the BIO, as well as the ability of immediately turn existing posts into Ads, Instagram became easier for business use and more convenient.
In 2018 Instagram unleashed more creative features to make the best out of this platform.
For bloggers, the main new update was the IGTV which really made people’s dreams come to life by giving them space to speak up and video tap themselves expressing their passion and experiences through it. The IGTV is basically and an app within Instagram that gives users the ability to share videos up to one hour long, just like a TV episode.
The stories update for Instagram this year was really good with the @mention, interactive stickers, and the shop-able tags that allow businesses to tag their products in their photos.
I think this chapter has been fair enough for these two masters. They have done an outstanding job and have added a great value to Instagram as a platform and to the industry as a whole.
And the Question Now is, What is the New Chapter for Instagram!
As people who are always eager to communicate, interact and gain more knowledge, we can not help but wonder what Instagram has to offer us next!
As marketers, business owners, who are looking to make more success and spread the word about what we have to offer, or even as bloggers who are looking forward to adding value to other people’s lives whether it’s about traveling, self-empowerment or producing humor posts to make people laugh and smile for life, we are all waiting for the new features and updates Instagram has to offer next!