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Instagram users engaging with brands at an all-time high

You already know the importance of social media marketing, but have you looked at your Instagram campaign lately? If you haven’t, take another look.

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Instagram is an important marketing tool

You are probably already using social media sites like Facebook and Twitter for e-marketing. But don’t forget about Instagram! A new report from eMarketer, “Instagram Advertising: What Marketers Need to Know” shows that there is an extremely high level of user engagement with marketing content on Instagram, making the photo-based social media site a must for small businesses who want to market online.

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Instagram is in the process of ramping up its advertising content by adding more interactive buttons, audience targeting technologies, and the option to buy advertisements. eMarketer predicts that Instagram could pull in $600 million in ad revenue in the upcoming year, reaching over two billion by 2017.

Instagram has higher engagement than other networks

A study by social media analyst Sharablee shows that Instagram has higher levels of user engagement than other social media sites. Engagement is measured through a combination of user activity on pages, comments, “likes,” retweets, and shares. Instagram saw a 108 percent growth in engagement in the first quarter of 2015, while Facebook engagement only grew by 27 percent and Twitter by 32 percent.

What accounts for the difference? While Facebook uses algorithms to prioritize certain posts over others in a user’s newsfeed, Instagrams shows you every single post from all of the accounts you follow. This means that users are exposed to all of your content, rather than just select posts, so you might end up with higher levels of engagement on Instagram than on Facebook, even if you have fewer followers.

eMarketer cites the example of home furnishings manufacturer Dot & Bo, who report that they have a similar number of “likes” for the Instagram and Facebook content, even though they have almost eight times more followers on Facebook.

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Success depends on what you put into it

With any site, the success of marketing content lies in a precarious balance between not enough and too many ads. If Instagram begins to feel overly crowded with advertising, this may alienate users and cause declines in traffic and membership.

Only time will tell if Instagram will be able to maintain these high levels of engagement as more and more advertisement flood the site. You can read the full report with a subscription to eMarketer.

Ellen Vessels, a Staff Writer at The American Genius, is respected for their wide range of work, with a focus on generational marketing and business trends. Ellen is also a performance artist when not writing, and has a passion for sustainability, social justice, and the arts.

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