As far as image-driven social sites go, Instagram has proven its value for sharing fresh, creative content. Far from being merely pretty, Instagram provides brands with the chance to engage markets visually, establish an emotional connection, and increase their followers. However, B2B brands often overlook Instagram, believing it’s better for fashion, news and travel companies.
Some of the other reasons B2B marketers often don’t even consider Instagram is because they don’t feel they have enough visual content. Christopher Penn has a great visual marketing exercise to make even those of us who feel we can’t think visually feel more compentent, and we’ve rounded up some of our best visual content tips on our blog.
So now that you have no excuses, consider how you can use Instagram. Some of the ways B2B brands use Instagram include:
- Telling your company’s story visually
- Introducing your staff
- Allowing your audience behind the scenes
- Fostering local connections through geo-tagging
- Applying hashtags for branding and search benefits
- Liking and commenting to interact with other brands
I think it’s always helpful to see examples of B2B companies using social media in action. Here are three B2B Instagram presences to inspire you: Intel, General Electric, and Maerskline.
Intel uses Instagram to capture its audience’s attention and tell its unique story. The company serves both businesses and consumers and manages to engage both with photos that showcase its products in fun and interesting ways. This brand shares everything from behind-the-scenes-photos to inspirational messages and artistic photos of its products with landmarks in the background.
Like Intel, General Electric shares its story via Instagram. The company gives its audience a look at everything from its hard-at-work engineers to its products and services. There’s a definite wow factor at work here, as GE shows off technology that can only be described as larger than life. GE also marks special occasions, such as National Inventors’ Day, runs photo contests, and shares images submitted by contest winners via its Instagram account.
Maerskline uses its Instagram presence to showcase its containers and vessels, give viewers an inside look at events, and introduce audience members to its staff. The global shipping company effectively uses photography techniques, including the use of lighting and angles to create images that are powerful and appealing. Additionally, Maerskline mixes images from its past with current photos, creating a visual story that shows where it has been, where it is now, and where it is going.
Instagram can be a great platform for engaging customers and building brand awareness. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean it will benefit your business. Before you invest your time, determine whether your audience uses Instagram and is likely to engage with your business there. If so, it’s time to develop a solid strategy for taking advantage of this site.
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