Instagram Brand Adoption Study - February 2013 - By Simply Measured


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Instagram Brand Adoption Study - February 2013 - By Simply Measured

  1. 1. Instagram Brand Adoption Study February, 2013A Study of the Interbrand Top 100 Brands on InstagramDespite a rocky road and tumultuous relationship with its users, Instagram has continued to pushinnovation in their platform. Since we released our study last November, Instagram has made a numberof changes designed to increase user engagement and brand adoption. In just three short months,Instagram introduced Web Profiles, giving brands a place to call their own, and just recently Web Feeds,which gives users a whole new way to engage with content.In an effort to drive more users to its network, Instagram also announced it would no longer supportTwitter cards, a move that created questions about changes to the Twitter user experience, and itspotential impact on engagement. Poorly handled changes to the network’s privacy policy created abacklash among users and raised concerns about a decline in active users, which Instagram stated wasnot the case.With all the recent changes, we’re excited to share our findings. This study looks at the growth ofInstagram and the adoption of the social network by the Interbrand Top 100 Brands* in the world. Thedata and analysis come from Simply Measured’s industry-leading social media analytics & reportingplatform, that helps marketers report on Instagram engagement in context with competitors andbroader social channels.Social Photo Sharing Networks Rival 1
  2. 2. Instagram Brand Adoption Study February, 2013A Study of the Interbrand Top 100 Brands on InstagramFacebook and Twitter adoption rates remain close to 100%, still well out in front of more recentlyestablished networks. However, as top brands seek to expand their social presence, adoption forInstagram and Pinterest are growing at the fastest rates. Instagram has grown by 9%, and Pinterest by10% over the last three months. The number of top 100 brands now active on Instagram and Pinterestnearly rivals those active on Google+, which saw only a 4% increase in brand adoption since November.Despite being a mobile only application, Instagram has kept pace with Pinterest. Since we first startedtracking the Interbrand 100 back in August 2012, top brands have created 19 new Instagram accounts,compared with 18 new accounts on Pinterest.However, changes designed to encourage brand adoption have not kept Instagram’s growth rate fromslowing. Instagram adoption has slowed along with Pinterest; both networks only managed to grow byroughly half the new accounts, as the previous quarter.In the months ahead, we will be looking to see whether the photo sharing networks are able to surpassGoogle+, and whether Web Feeds will cause a more accessible Instagram to overtake Pinterest.More Brands Are Adopting and EngagingThe number of top 100 brands on Instagram has increased to 59%, and the number of active accounts isalso on the rise. Top brands with active accounts on Instagram have grown to 55%, closing the gap onPinterest, where 59% maintain active accounts. Brands on Instagram aren’t just holding down 2
  3. 3. Instagram Brand Adoption Study February, 2013A Study of the Interbrand Top 100 Brands on Instagramaccount and waiting to see if the network matures. Accounts that post at least once a week haveclimbed to 41%, and brands have increased their audience sizes substantially. Since November,Instagram followers of the Interbrand 100 have increased by 41%, reaching a total audience size of 5.8million users.Engagement Is Increasing As Audiences GrowEngagement with the top 100 brands increased 35% during the last three months. The number ofbrands with 100,000+ followers has also increased from 8 to 10 with more brands likely to reach thatmilestone in the months to come. Volkswagen and Gap are just a couple brands nearing the mark.In November, the top 8 brands accounted for 92% of engagement. Today, the top 8 brands are onlyresponsible for 80% of engagement. The number of brands driving engagement and building audiencesis increasing. When we took a look at the top brands’ audiences sizes back in November, we saw thatMTV and Starbucks were continuing to pull away from the pack. Now we’re seeing brands like Nike,which was highlighted in our last study, climb to join their ranks.The top 10 brands, by followers, averaged engagement growth of 19%, fueled by dramatic increases infollower counts. Gucci and Tiffany & Co have roughly doubled their follower engagement, after growingtheir audiences by 65% and 75% respectively.The number of top brands to reach the 100,000 follower milestone has risen to 10 with the addition ofAdidas, which more than doubled its followers, and Ralph Lauren, which was added to our study after itwas ranked among the Interbrand top 100 3
  4. 4. Instagram Brand Adoption Study February, 2013A Study of the Interbrand Top 100 Brands on InstagramFavorite Filters: The Most Engaging and Most UsedBrands have decreased their use of photos with filters. When we first released our Instagram Study inAugust 2012, 60% of brand photos had filters applied to them, now just 40% have filters. However,photos with filters average 5,078 engagements per post, slightly more than photos without filters.Lo-Fi remains the most used filter, and ranks third in engagement per photo. The #1 filter by averageengagement is Hudson, which earned 8,260 engagements per photo, surpassing last quarter’s leader,Hefe, which averaged 8,083 engagements per photo.Activity and Engagement Beyond InstagramThe number of photos posted by top brands increased slightly this quarter, and engagement per photogrew significantly on Instagram and continued to increase on Facebook. As we addressed in November,integration between Facebook and Instagram has allowed users to have photos they “like” appear intheir Facebook feeds. The result has been a continued increase in per post engagement and a greatershare of brand photos posted to 4
  5. 5. Instagram Brand Adoption Study February, 2013A Study of the Interbrand Top 100 Brands on InstagramEngagement per photo decreased only slightly on Twitter, but because the drop took place while overallengagement was trending positively and concerns over support for Twitter Cards were being voiced, wedecided to take a look at how Twitter engagement has been trending.Engagement with photos shared on Twitter has been in decline in recent weeks. Major fluctuations inTwitter engagement have been seen over the last six months. This is due to the fact that Tweetscontaining Instagram photos average only 22 shares, but have the potential to create huge spikes inengagement, when amplified by the right 5
  6. 6. Instagram Brand Adoption Study February, 2013A Study of the Interbrand Top 100 Brands on InstagramTo account for this volatility, we normalized Twitter engagement by only looking at photos shared within1 standard deviation of the average (shown above). After normalizing the data, we found that sincemid-December, Twitter engagement has been trending at its lowest levels since August 2012.Lower engagement levels seem to be persisting beyond a couple weeks of low holiday volume. We’llcontinue to monitor its performance to determine whether we’re seeing a slump, or a change in howTwitter users are engaging with Instagram content.Conclusion:During a period where Instagram has undergone many changes, top brands have continued to expandtheir presence on the network. Although recent changes haven’t kept Instagram’s adoption rate fromslowing, 59% of brands are now managing accounts that appeal to over 90 million active Instagramusers. The brands that have recognized the power of reaching out to this mobile audience, and whohave developed successful content strategies to engage them have earned a share of the more than 1.6million new followers gained by Interbrand 100 accounts over the past three months.Simply Measured’s Instagram reports help brands measure and analyze Instagram data as part of acomplete suite of social media analytics and reporting. See how Simply Measured can help you developyour Instagram account, try our Free Instagram User Report.*Brands included in the study are subject to change with the Interbrand 100 ranking. Notable changesthis quarter were Ralph Lauren, which was added and maintains a large presence on Instagram, andArmani, which was not included, its absence responsible for decreased brand adoption on 6