Some brands are posting more on Instagram than on Facebook – is it time you moved your social media focus?

Everyone knows Facebook rules the world of social media marketing. It has the largest (most targeted) audience, most advanced advertising features, and it has withstood the test of time. When it comes to social media marketing, Facebook has been the primary network for most brands. But, lately, there is a shift that we are noticing. In the mobile dominated world, where consumers spend more time on their phone than on desktops, Instagram is starting to lead in some quarters. Instagram understood the mobile shift early-on and did not deviate from its audience. The other thing Instragram captured early-on was the shift from text to visual content. This has paid off really well, even more so in recent times.

According to a new report by L2, big retail brands aimed at teens are posting more frequently on Instagram than on Facebook (10 posts per week vs. 7). But, here’s the important aspect – these same brands found that engagement actually increased as they started posting more. Exactly the opposite happens when you post more on other social networks.

If you are still on the fence, here are some things that are unique to Instagram that will let you decide if it is right for you:

Higher Engagement

Engagement is the holy grail of social media marketing. It’s (hopefully) the core reason why you are on any social network in the first place. To say that Instagram is winning in engagement is an understatement; it is beating all other social networks (including Facebook) by a huge margin! A Forrester study found that Instagram posts generated a per-follower engagement of 4.21% vs. less than 0.1% on any other network including Facebook and Twitter. Take a minute to absorb that number – it is a staggering 58 times more engagement than Facebook. Instagram is built with primary purpose of capturing moments. People might go to Facebook to check your company’s address or hours, but they are on Instagram for pretty much one purpose – to engage with visual content.

Better Post Reach

All the content you post will be seen by your followers. This simply equates to more of your audience being able to view your content, and in turn results in better reach and engagement for your company. This is a big difference from other networks like Facebook where the content appears in your followers’ feed based on algorithms. With recent Facebook algorithm changes, it has become even more difficult for brands to reach followers with your posts (unless you want to promote).

Younger Demographic

With over 400 million monthly active users, Instagram is now the second-largest social network in the US. The platform is popular with younger social media users (majority are under 30) that are highly coveted because brands find them hard to reach. According to eMarketer, 89.6% of 12 to 17 year-old smartphone users used Instagram monthly in 2015. If your product or service is aimed towards younger demographic, Instagram should be a top priority. Facebook’s teen audience has fallen sharply over the last few years as teens have moved on to other apps like Instagram and Snapchat.



Avenue For Creativity

Instagram tells a visual story better than any other social network. There are so many ways you can enhance your photos and relate them to your brand, or establish a visual story over time. Your audience doesn’t even need to click on your photos or videos – just a scroll through your profile provides them a feel of your brand. Instagram platform encourages creative thinking with its built-in tools such as filters. And, I am amazed how much creative content is posted using Instagram’s limited feature set.

International Audience

More than 70% of Instagram’s monthly active users are from outside the US. It provides a great window into the events happening globally. If your brand serves an international audience, Instagram provides a great way to capture their visual moments.

Unique Advertising Opportunity

Facebook has the most advanced advertising platform of any social network. It’s highly targeted and easy to track campaign ROI. Instagram is currently focused on building the audience, but it will eventually provide more options for advertisers. But, even without those options, Instagram is a great platform for your social media Ad dollars. According to Nielsen, Instagram sponsored posts had 2.9 times higher Ad recall rate than Nielsen’s norms for online Ads. This fact alone should put Instagram Ads on a brand’s radar. But, there is more. Advertising on Instagram feels much more subtle and organic, and there are fewer Ads on the platform (at least, for now). This is a unique time for marketers to stand-out and build lasting connections with their audience using visual ads that deliver value.

Here’s an infographic (from selfstartr) that compares Facebook and Instagram on reach, engagement, ROI and advertiser interest. It is apparent that if your audience is on Instagram, it should be your priority in 2016.

YibLab Facebook vs Instagram infographic


What are your thoughts? Have you invested, or planning to invest on Instagram? Please share in comments below.

You can also contact me on twitter @jasmeetio or on my personal website – Jasmeet Sawhney.

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