BlogMutt is always checking out what’s new in the content world — a little while ago, we joined SnapChat to see what all the buzz was about. Now, BlogMutt is on Instagram and we’re pretty excited about it.
Why’d we join Instagram, you ask?
Well, Instagram is huge right now. In June of 2016, Reuters reported that Instagram had over 500 million users. Every day, 300 million people use the app; 95 million photos are shared, on average, and users are double tapping over 4 billion photos. That’s definitely enough to make us pay attention.
It’s also personal; Instagram is by far my favorite social media app. Every time I sign on, I find inspiration, visit beautiful places, live vicariously through my amazing friends, and give them a glimpse into my life, too.
I’ve never felt at home in the terse, fast-paced, can’t-miss-a-moment mania that is Twitter, and I get sucked into the Facebook vortex every time I sign on. Instagram has the perfect mix: in a few minutes, I can scroll through my feed, check up on a friend, and move on with my day.
It also has a great personality. The short-but-not-too-short captions, prime set-up for visual humor, not to mention the living record of your post history allow people to create amazing moments. This post is one of my all-time favorites:
This may not be the best photo of all time, but gives you an amazing window into the the poster’s personality and it makes you laugh. Plus, it absolutely requires that you see the photo and the caption together.
People can also use repetition on Instagram to create magnificent collections over time — check out Mike Mellia’s account, my new favorite work of art (these are all short videos, so click on the photo to watch):
Those are pretty unique and personal posts, though, so what exactly makes Instagram great for BlogMutt as a business? I was wondering the same thing when the idea was first tossed around here.
Instagram for Business
If you’re thinking about creating an Instagram for your business, I highly recommend that before you do anything else, you take this simple first step:
Make specific goals for what you want from your account.
This was our first question, and it helped me understand what Instagram could do for us.
Now, I’m not in the marketing department here — I do Writer Support. My job at BlogMutt is basically to help make our platform the simplest, most accessible and friendliest freelance writing platform on the web. I help writers create better content, answer their questions, and make sure that our best writers have all the support they need to keep creating the amazing content that our customers have come to expect.
Why is Instagram a part of Writer Support?!
Well, think about these 3 things Instagram does really well:
1. It creates community by inviting users to connect not only with your brand but also with each other.
2. It connects people based on common interests.
3. It allows brands to open their office and share their personality.
All of these things are really, really important to our writer-facing brand, because this is a part of what makes BlogMutt unique. We have 10,000+ writers in our system and maintain an active forum where writers can communicate with each other. Writers answer each others’ questions, encourage each other to write more or improve their skills; they even get a little bit competitive, sometimes. We offer writers an unparalleled support system in an industry that is otherwise faceless.
So, when I decided to create our Instagram account, the natural goals were:
- Broaden our brand visibility and attract new writers.
- Engage with and reach out to our amazing writer community — and help them engage with us by giving them an “inside view” of our office.
- Reach out to a broader community of freelance writers and people who love words as much as we do.
In order to reach these goals, the next step was creating a strategy. Stay tuned for a follow-up post in which we discuss our Instagram strategy and how we put it into action.
In the meantime, a great first step is finding some other businesses that are making the most of their Instagram accounts.
The first step in my Instagram research was checking out some other business accounts that I simply love to follow, and thinking about what makes them so great. Here are my top three:
- Outdoor Gear Exchange. This locally-owned gear shop out of Burlington, Vermont may just have my favorite business Instagram of all time. They post inspiring photos with an outdoor theme and involve their sizable (and very adventurous) staff in every campaign. They also do gear giveaways and create fantastic video content.
- Skratch Labs. Another small business out of BlogMutt’s own hometown, Boulder, Colorado, SkratchLabs makes healthy drink mixes and foods designed for athletes on the go. Branded product photos are well-mixed with classic Colorado nature shots, delicious-looking recipe ideas, and amazing pictures of their sponsored athletes.
- The Earnest Hemingway Foundation. I have to admit that I really dislike Hemingway, which may be an unpopular stance around our office. He does have one redeeming feature, though: the foundation celebrating his posterity creates hilarious, 15-second versions of his most famous books, which make this account really unique and entertaining. They also use a lot of text in their images.
These three accounts are just a small peek into the amazing things that companies are creating on Instagram. Here at BlogMutt, we’re pretty excited to join them.
Come check out BlogMutt on Instagram for news from the office, tips on how to write better blogs, and (of course) a lovable #MuttoftheWeek. Don’t forget to follow us @blogmutt and turn on post notifications to make sure you never miss a mutt.