Ivan Ivanov posted on 28 September 2017
We’ve recently discussed the bigger picture on Instagram and how to properly entice your audience through visual media. And achieving consistency throughout your content is one of the most important things for a brand regardless of the social media platform. However, there’s another aspect to brand personality and Instagram that’s worth discussing.
Facebook and Twitter both allow you to build a certain brand personality that is humanized to an extent. However, the visual media sharing platform presents you with an even better personality to properly present your brand.
On Instagram, you are able to build a consistent image that corresponds to your values and marketing message. Furthermore, via the lifestyle persona you create, you’d be able to properly place your product and or service on the forefront within a proper environment.
All this might sound rather confusing, but we’ll dive deeper checking some great examples along the way. Let’s discuss how to translate your engagement into sales through brand behavior and actions via a personality image on Instagram.
There are multiple ways you can approach your Instagram marketing strategy. For starters, you can stick to professional images that translate your brand message. Or you can directly share recycled social media content from other campaigns you’ve done before.
There are positive and negatives to each and every way you plan to present your brand on the photo sharing network. However, for the purpose of this guide, we’ll take a look at the two major differences between an active and a passive approach to an Instagram brand account.
The active approach is best described as running your brand profile much like a social media influencer would run theirs. In a sense, you decide on the embodiment of your brand as a person and share visual content that represents that imaginary person. Two best examples of such an active approach that differ in their own manner are Lorna Jane and Puma Women.
Both brands target active women to sell their active women sportswear. And both brand messages are clear through their visual strategy. Yet, rather than simply sharing photos of their products or athletes and models wearing their products, both brands take an active approach on Instagram.
As it can be seen from the photos above, the brands try to present their models in scenery that one would usually be using their product. In a sense, if an active woman is wearing either Lorna Jane or Puma Women wear, she might post content on Instagram similar to the one shared by both brand accounts. This not only humanizes the brands while retaining their marketing message, but does a better job of selling their product.
The exact opposite of this would be the strategy taken by Adidas Women. Targeting the same audience and selling the same product, Adidas has a rather passive Instagram brand profile approach. The brand usually shares marketing material or relies on the likes of sports celebrities and models.
Plus, even when they do a professional photoshoot in a similar fashion to Puma, they rather take a professional photography approach and rather than sharing something close to what one would find on Instagram from an influencer or an individual, Adidas Women shares photos which are as if taken from the pages of a magazine.
But what do the numbers say?
There are a lot of factors that come into play when analyzing the engagement of a post, including post frequency, hashtag use and many more. Plus, checking the sheer number of followers, Adidas Women does seem to be the clear winner with 2.8 million, followed by Lorna Jane with 795K and Puma Women with 286K.
Does that mean that the passive approach is better? Well, the engagement rate (ER) speaks for itself. The passive approach of Adidas Women brings a mere 0.07% average ER, while both Puma Women and Lorna Jane achieve upwards of 0.12% ER.
The primary way you can interact with your audience on Instagram is through visual media. And when sharing a post, it is far better for it to be as relatable to the people you want to reach as possible. Even if your brand is strong and it sends a message in itself, visitors on Instagram are still more keen to engage with content that holds a balance between humanizing and professional.
Influencers are popular on the platform for a reason. They play on people’s perception and desire for a better life. Much like Hollywood movies and the Spanish novels before them, it’s in our intrinsic nature to seek an escape out of our mundane lives. No matter how successful a person is they have their guilty pleasures for a reason.
A routine always becomes repetitive. And Instagram influencers are that guilty pleasure and that escape we seek. People don’t primarily go to the photo sharing platform to look at goofy photos of their friends. That’s what Facebook and Twitter are for. Rather, when people visit Instagram, they want to see visually appealing photos that help them define their own vision of who they want to be.
In addition, a person chooses the product and/or service of a certain brand to help them define who they are in the society and not just for the value that product and/or service brings. For example, people purchase Beats Headphones to be trendy, while others purchase Audio Technica headphones to show that they value the technical aspect more.
Translating your brand message on Instagram via an active approach you’d be able to take advantage of both the escapee nature of human perception and the brand representation people seek.
For example, if you represent a hardware store brand, instead of posting promotional material or placing your brand logo on every photo, a better approach might be to post photos of men and women using hardware products as they are meant to be. Photos taken in the heat of the moment. In fact, you’d might even want to take customer created content and post it on your official profile. This will both build better brand trust with your audience and help you achieve a few free pieces of content.
The active approach can be used in a variety of ways no matter the product/service of your company. Take a look at Tentsile and Letterfolk for example. Both companies manage to present their brands via relatable visual content and boast pretty good engagement numbers in their respective industries and compared to their Instagram competition.
For you to achieve a better brand personality on Instagram via an active approach all you need to do is follow these four simple steps.
1. Define the Person Behind your Brand – What is the person that defines your core target audience? Once you answer this question start thinking about how this person would use your products/services.
2. What are similar influencers? – Do some research and find Instagram influencers that closely relate to the person that defines your brand. See what they post. Check their analytics and the stats of their Instagram competitors. Consider the strategies they use for their content.
3. Define the Photos/Videos your Brand Person Would Share – Once you have enough insight into what your active strategy would be, start considering the content that you would post. When doing so, step into the shoes of the core person of your target audience, mix things with the thinking of the social media influencers and see where your brand marketing message fits.
4. Be Creative and Think Outside of the Box – Last but not least, make sure that you always stay ahead by embracing a more creative approach towards your content. The little subtleties always matter. Don’t go copy-pasting the content of an influencer, but rather think how you can present your brand via similar content.
Are you inspired? The active Instagram brand profile approach might not be for everyone or for every brand. However, it is definitely something to keep in mind when considering your social media marketing strategy.
Even if you already have a profile set in place, there’s nothing wrong with trying out a new strategy. What’s more, you can always paint such an approach as a hashtag competition for your audience to submit some user generated content and see if it works. Remember to always be creative.
And when doing so, don’t forget to always check the numbers. Analytics show a clear picture of what is successful and what isn’t on Instagram. Did you know that Locowise gives you a detailed overview of all analytics in a neat manner? Check it out with our 7-day-free trial.