Instagram is one of the Facebook’s apps that turned into a platform that gains over a billion users. Facebook is now more than just about messaging and staying in touch, Facebook as the biggest social networking site is making a habit of launching new apps that soon turn into platforms. Hot on the heels of Facebook itself, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp, their primary photo-sharing app – Instagram. Besides its photo-sharing feature where users can share photos and use hashtags to let users find exactly what they’re looking for (much like Twitter), Instagram users can also share short videos and upload ‘stories’ that highlight their favourite ‘moments’ (similar to SnapChat).
Instagram also found a perfect balance between creativity and community; simplicity and specialist. Instagram was launched on October 2010, and within two months it hit one million users and it kept on growing ever since. Considering that Instagram has now an incredible 500m+ monthly active users and 300m+ daily users all over the globe which had surpassed Twitter and Snapchat in the number of monthly active users, we can expect to see the platform cross the billion marks in 2018.
So, what does this mean for your business?
Instagram is currently the second most popular social media network in the world, behind only Facebook and recently introduced simplified analytics, thus making it easier for marketers to use it as an advertising platform. Instagram is an easy to use mobile-exclusive platform that can immediately take, edit and post images in-the-moment experience, which naturally attracts more people. More than 80 percent of the 600 million people who use Instagram each month follow a brand. And in the past month, more than 120 million people — or roughly 20 percent of Instagram’s monthly audience — have used Instagram to visit a brand’s website, get directions to a business location or contact a company by phone, email or direct message.
With huge amounts of people just waiting to be exposed to your brand’s content, Instagram is, no doubt, the best visual marketing tool for businesses. Not only can businesses build trust with their audience by presenting through posting pictures and videos of the company’s culture with its employees and what their product or service is all about, but showing them behind the scenes of their operations as well as encourage customers to partake by sharing their personal results and tagging the business. It taps into a community of very visual consumers; image quality is worth a thousand words and a great place to build a brand and loyal followers.
Throw into the equation that Instagram ads are operated by Facebook’s comprehensive Ads Manager platform, armed with the internet’s most in-depth targeting options, there are different advertising options that let you to make your ads more interesting and fascinating to your followers:
- Photo Ads
- Video Ads
- Carousel Ads
- Stories Ads
It’s no surprise that the number of advertisers on Instagram has doubled over the past six months or so, to more than one million, in part due to the fact that Instagram is now considered the best social media platform for customer engagement. If your brand is not yet on Instagram and haven’t advertised or created content yet, now is a great time to move in as an early adopter.