By Tripti Shrivastava.
With a community of 600 million users, 100 million of whom were added in the last half of 2016, Instagram has become an indispensable tool for social marketers looking to drive engagement and keep their brands top-of-mind.
Instagram is no longer just a photo-sharing network. It has evolved into a photo, video, and GIF-sharing network. With features like Instagram Stories, Instagram Live, and “Save for Later,” Instagram has become a robust platform that combines the power of Snapchat and Pinterest.
Here we look at the Forbes top ten most valuable brands’ performances on Instagram to understand how they use the platform and whose strategies resonate most with the Instagram audience.
Forbes Top 10 Most Valuable Brands 2016
Image Credit: Forbes
*Note: Apple does not have an Instagram account yet, so we’re only evaluating the other nine brands and their activity on Instagram.
Who Is Winning on Engagement?
The top brands on the Forbes list are tech brands: Apple, Google, Microsoft, Facebook. But Disney is here, too, owning some of the most innovative companies in the world like ESPN, Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, and many others, including Babble, the parenting blog.
Disney is the clear winner for driving the highest engagement on Instagram among these top brands.
Disney generated 10 times more engagement in February 2017 than all the other top 8 brands combined, capturing over 91% of the share of the engagement.
Engagement as a % of followers for Disney (122%) was the highest among the brands in this data set, which shows that Disney’s Instagram audience has an incredibly strong affinity with the brand and its content on the platform.
Even on a per-post basis, Disney received 3.5 times higher engagement than the next brand, Google.
The most engaging post across all the most valuable brands in this data period was also a post from Disney, where it regrammed one of Babble’s posts. The post generated 15% of the total engagement in the reporting period for all brands.
Who Gained the Most Followers?
It’s Disney again! Google had the highest growth rate per day (3.9%) for the month, but audience base is only half of Disney’s; Google added 127K followers in the data period, while Disney added over 206K more followers in February 2017. This resulted in Disney capturing 41% share of followers, which is still higher than the other top 4 brands combined.The biggest spike in the number of followers for Disney last month came on Feb 27th, as the cast of their new movie “Beauty and the Beast” toured Shanghai and the brand shared images on Instagram.This post below was the most engaging post for Disney on February 27th.
Who Posted Most Frequently on Instagram?
Frequently posting relevant content on Instagram keeps followers engaged with Disney. It posted more on Instagram than all the other brands in the data set combined (90 vs. 79), which adds up to 3.2 post per day for the brand. All the other brands averaged less than 1 post per day in the data period.Disney posts a mix of photos and videos (40% of their posts last month were videos). The brand makes sure to keep its Instagram feed exciting by mixing media types and using the newest platform features–like the carousel photos format and Instagram stories–to provide their audience with the best possible experience.
Disney’s target market is not limited to children. Their focus is on the whole family: from children to teenagers, and even adults. As Walt Disney himself once said:
“You’re dead if you aim only for kids. Adults are only kids grown up, anyway.”
This multi-generational focus is evident in their ads, movies, and Instagram feed, which has something that appeals to everyone–from celebrity pictures, as we saw above, to Winnie-the-Pooh with his honey pot.
The brand also makes sure to use emojis in its posts to keep the tone playful (97% of Disney’s posts in the data period included one or more emojis) and adds hashtags (70% of the posts include at least one hashtag) to facilitate discovery and incite action and engagement from followers.
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