Branding SMM Social Media Trends

Instagram marketing: 5 brands to get you inspired

Alina Gorbatch
by Alina Gorbatch on September 21, 2020

When it comes to Instagram marketing, all industries are equal, but some are more equal than others. 

Let’s face it: for some industries, Instagram marketing is easy as a piece of cake. We all know these industries: food, clothing, makeup, travel. All they have to do is take good photos and post them regularly. Perhaps, provide some tips: how best to apply makeup and how to combine jeans and sweaters. Another classic move: influencer marketing. “Instagram famous” girls and boys showcasing visually appealing product is all you need to have an exponentially increasing brand awareness, brand popularity, and personal satisfaction with your job. 

Yet, brands from all kinds of industries want to be a part of this. Instagram has 1 billion users monthly and boasts the highest engagement rate among social media platforms. People gladly follow businesses on Instagram and don't mind ads. It's also the most popular social network among U.S. teens. Is it even possible to ignore Instagram marketing with stats like these? (stats' source)

This blog post is for the ones that struggle with Instagram marketing because the process is not that straightforward for them. It’s also for the brands that want to stand out and think outside the box. After all, your photos might be professional and your dresses might be the definition of aesthetic, but people still get tired of scrolling through the same type of content. Sometimes, you need to make them laugh, show something different and surprising, and generally attempt to elicit emotions other than the envy for how pretty the model is. 

This blog post meant is to get you inspired. To show you some unconventional brands that do some unconventional Instagram marketing. Also, the ones that do Instagram marketing so well that it’s impossible to ignore. Hopefully, you’ll learn from them and get inspired and will be able to apply some ideas to your own brand. 

1. Netflix

Netflix is one of those brands that you can't ignore because their strategies are simply too good.

Netflix does extremely well on social networks. Its main Twitter account has 9 million followers. Its other Twitter accounts, such as Netflix is a Joke and Strong Black Lead have hundreds of thousands of followers. On all of its social media platforms, Netflix is the definition of entertainment. And Instagram is no exception. 

Netflix's Instagram has 24.5 million followers. This is so much more than their Twitter following. What is it that they are doing so exceptionally right on Instagram?

Firstly, they post screenshots from the series with subtitles. Who doesn't enjoy those? 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

the phantoms from Julie and the Phantoms are actually ghosts — and it turns out being a ghost is pretty complicated!!! πŸ‘» @julieandthephantoms

A post shared by Netflix US (@netflix) on

Secondly, they carry out exciting contests. Exciting not for the ones that wish to win free stuff, but for the ones that want to show off their knowledge and play with the similarly minded people. These are the followers who are much more valuable than the ones only following your account for a momentary gain. These ones might actually convert one day. 

What do the contests look like? Usually, they involve a hashtag and a challenge to name the movie or the quote. Unsurprisingly, this attracts lots of engagement from the fans of the shows. 

Then, of course, Netflix doesn't ignore memes. Looks like the memes are aimed at Instagram's young audience. They are universal, meaning that no matter what your product is, if teens are your target audience, you can create something like this.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

me, the full package, walking into our first date

A post shared by Netflix US (@netflix) on

Isn't this something every teen can relate to? 

Finally, they get extremely creative. For example, there's a separate account for the character of BoJack Horseman. It's made completely from his perspective. If you relate to the character, you might want to follow. But it's not just about that: as with the multiple Twitter accounts of Netflix, this is about diversifying the marketing strategy and making sure you appeal to different kinds of audiences. 

2. Chipotle

Being a food delivery brand, Chipotle could just post photos of its food that looks good if you apply multiple filters. But Chipotle has something bigger than that: it has a brand personality

A strong brand personality is something that attracts people of all food tastes. It's something every brand should strive to achieve and reflect in its social media profiles.

What is brand personality? In short, it's a set of human characteristics, such as qualities and demographics, attributed to a brand. Brand personality elicits emotions and makes brands impossible to forget, in the same way that we don't forget interesting people, weird people, and people that made us laugh. 

Chipotle is a funny quirky meme brand. Its brand image is consistent on all social media accounts so Chipotle's Instagram feed is just like its other feeds: full of memes, jokes, and banter. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A few favorites from 2019. Thanks for a wild year πŸŒ―πŸ’«

A post shared by Chipotle (@chipotle) on

It's also like this when it comes to Chipotle's customer service.

3. Old Spice 

If there's a brand that can make everything absolutely ridiculous, it's Old Spice. You probably remember their ads with naked men, horses, and naked men on horses. It's been ten years since these ads. Today, their Instagram feed is not much different: it's full of weird ideas, weird people, and most of all, weird photoshop. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Hey world, your favorite #PITFLUENCER here reminding you that the best defense is a good offense. And the best offense is Old Spice Sweat Defense Antiperspirant. To smell like a winner use my code PITFLUENCER for 15% off. Link in bio. #ad #sponsored #pitsterized #shirtsvspits #pitandroll #pitupgame #pitledouble #πŸ’ͺ

A post shared by Old Spice (@oldspice) on

Old Spice reminds us that no matter how boring your product is (sorry, antiperspirants, but there is really nothing pretty or exciting about preventing one's body from smelling), your social media posts can still attract tons of attention and become very memorable. Especially, if the creative people behind the marketing strategy are... well... a bit weird.

4. HubSpot

It's not easy to run a SaaS Instagram account (trust me, I know). There can be no pretty product images or videos. All SaaS content marketing is usually long-form: educational videos, blog posts, etc., and all SaaS social media marketing usually involves talking to people about different technology and attempting to show that you're more aware of the new trends, have more expertise, and are generally better. 

HubSpot solved this problem by having an Instagram account whose main aim is to redirect to HubSpot's long-form content. But that's not it: HubSpot's Instagram posts are also full of genuinely useful information and print screened advice from the field experts. They are all designed well enough to fit into the Instagram universe, but unlike most content on this platform, HubSpot's feed is seriously educational. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The books are closed on Q2, and while it had its ups and downs, there’s a lot we can learn from the trends that have emerged. We’ve been collecting and analyzing data from our global consumer base since March, and now that we’re near the beginning of Q3, let’s take a look at what business metrics have changed over the past four months, and what we can learn from them moving forward. Check the link in our bio for the latest benchmark data update, covering data and insights for the past several months. #growbetter #hubspot

A post shared by HubSpot (@hubspot) on

5. Chubbies

Chubbies are casual shorts. And, no, there is nothing glamorous about them. If you're thinking about common Instagram clothing accounts that showcase their product using extremely good-looking models, you're wrong. 

Chubbies is one of those products that are all about comfort. Their Instagram account reflects that in the best possible way: post after post, you see how relaxed the people wearing Chubbies shorts and the marketing team behind the brand are. And, you want to become one of them. 

Chubbies' Instagram account has half a million followers. It's full of shorts jokes and lifestyle posts. The latter, unlike all of the other popular Instagram accounts, promote chubbiness (obviously), beer, holidays, and generally good time. The former leave us wondering if the Internet has gone too far.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

We’ve achieved peak internet from Twitter @ RigaTony27 #chubbies

A post shared by Chubbies (@chubbies) on

In the end, this is another brand with a great personality. The one that you'll never forget - even if you'll want to.

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