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Don’t sleep on Instagram


Mena brands taking advantage of this lurking visual giant

August 24, 2014 4:29 by

By Brianna McLeod

Instagram, while one of the biggest social networks, is often overlooked or misused by businesses, here’s a look at three brands that are doing it right.

Continuing the article series shedding light on social media strategies for success, this week, we’ll share with you a bit about the inner workings of one of the visual kings, Instagram, and how it’s flooding mobile devices of users worldwide.

Many businesses in Mena have gotten comfortable with Instagram’s established parent, Facebook. Brand managers have recognised that, when considering their digital strategies, they can’t afford to ignore this network of more than 78 million users in Mena. But what about Facebook’s adopted little sibling, Instagram?

Unlike Facebook, where organic reach has been rumoured to be down to 1-6 per cent (3.4 per cent according to a study done by Newcast of FB Pages worldwide), Instagram is still an arena to feature great content without mandatory paid media support. You may be surprised to learn that this powerful network is picking up momentum at a staggering rate (now surpassing Twitter with more than 200m monthly users worldwide) and regionally (#Kuwait was the most widely used hashtag on IG in the entire world in 2013, with 16.3m mentions). Yet, when considering social expansion, there are still many big businesses that look at Instagram like the slow kid picked last on the playground. Why?

Primarily, I think there is a lack of publicity and understanding for the power of the network in the region. Regional stats are hard to come by and there are even less outspoken cases of Instagram success, but I assure you they are multiplying. Secondly, it takes a while to initiate change, especially when the value is not fully understood. In an effort to help further understand one of the top social trends of 2014 (Forbes), I will share some cases of brands who are taking Instagram by the reigns to further their business objectives, as well as the key components that make them so successful.

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