When social becomes profitable: How Instagram is empowering businesses

After reaching more than 800 million monthly active users in 2017, Instagram has turned into the social media El Dorado. This has made a substantial impact on businesses that rapidly understood the power of the platform for advertising. In fact, Instagram recently estimated the business community to represent 2 Million advertisers (up from 1 million back in March).

Here are some of the key elements behind Instagram's marketing success:

1. Instagram traffic VISITS HAVE HIGHER QUALITY

Visitors from Instagram stay on a site for an average of 192 seconds – this is longer than visitors from any other channel, including Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter. This also means that traffic from Instagram is the most engaged and represents a more attractive consumer panel (Yotpo 2017).

2. Instagram has high organic and targeted reach

The organic nature of Instagram’s audience increases the word-of-mouth effect. According to a recent Yotpo research, 83% of consumers confirmed that seeing a post about a brand on Instagram influences their decision to look the brand up.

In addition, with the current available tools, businesses are now able to leverage this instagram audience even more by targeting specific segments (by age, country or even interest).

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3. Instagram's hashtags(#) simply work

Not only do hashtags enable categorisation and content discovery, they are also the driving forces behind most of the user-generated advertising campaigns. According to Sproutsocial, "One of the best ways to kick off a UGC campaign on Instagram is with the help of a branded hashtag" in order to optimise exposure. This is also why 7 out of 10 hashtags used are branded (Simply Measured Study).

4. Instagram enables shoppable solutions

Instagram shopping is real. The platform is providing increasingly more links and solutions to connect user generated content to e-commerce websites within the application.

  • Instagram stories

By introducing the swipe up option in Instagram stories, direct product referrals are possible, creating a direct linkto an e-commerce website within the platform.

  • Shoppable third-party solutions

Companies such as Curalate are also providing solutions to turn your Instagram feed into a shoppable feed. Again here, a direct link within the platform makes instagram scrolling and buying a natural consumer path.

  • Shoppable tags

Last but not least, Instagram recently developed it's own shoppable posts, currently only available for businesses in the United States using the Big Commerce platform. The tool is simple: retailers can insert shoppable tags on their Instagram pictures featuring a product to get the Instagram user directly to the store.

This add-on is another proof that Instagram is slowly shifting towards a key selling tool for retailers, something to keep an eye on in Europe as well! 

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What's more, Instagram is estimated to rake in $4 billion in global advertising revenue by the end of 2017, an impressive growth prospect!