But 2020 was not only the 10th anniversary of Instagram. followers on Instagram has grown from a photo-sharing website to a social and commerce network. It celebrated its 10th anniversary by introducing many new features for users and brands.
Although Instagram is not the block’s newest platform, it first reached 1 billion users in September 2018. The forum saw significant growth in 2020. Last year, Instagram users spent on average 30 minutes per day using the platform – an increase of 13.8% compared to 2019. Instagram is also the fourth most popular mobile app, with 500 million users using Instagram Stories daily and 130 million Instagram users tapping on shopping posts monthly.
Brands must constantly evaluate and adapt their Instagram strategies as we enter 2021. What does it take to be one of the top brands on Instagram in 2021? Take a look at these 15 leading company Instagram accounts.
Recess, a sparkling water company, was one of the top company Instagram accounts for 2020. Excavation is more than just a water brand. Recess’s Instagram bio states it is “an antidote for modern times.” Sparkling water to calm and focus. “We canned a feeling.”
Recess’s audience has been able to find them in an environment of turmoil and stress. Though it was a challenging year, they have focused on creating content that entertains, engages, and distracts from daily life. Recess chose to go organic, even though beverage brands are among the most expensive advertisers.
“I see our Instagram strategy as a social comment on the Millennial existence…
The brand’s organic Instagram encourages its followers to sign up for a weekly content-driven newsletter. It currently boasts a 25% open rate. This is compared to an industry average of 14.5%.
Teva introduced the sport sandal category to the market in 1984. Many millennials still remember the brand as their ‘dad-sandal. The sporty casual sandal has become a fashion statement for millennials and other generations. The company’s Instagram account uses professional photography and user-generated material (UGC), submitted by Teva-wearing followers using the hashtag #strapinfreedom.
Teva is a company in the fashion and beauty industries. It’s crucial for customers to feel comfortable with their product. Teva showcases its diverse customer base to communicate that Teva sandals can be worn by everyone, making it one of the most popular brand Instagram accounts.
In 2020, direct-to-consumer alcohol brands peaked when many liquor stores closed due to the pandemic. People were forced to stay at home and drink alcohol online. Haus, a well-known brand for its handmade aperitifs, was well-positioned to capitalize on the increased demand through its social media strategy.
Haus changed its focus early in the pandemic to The Restaurant Project, where it partnered with various restaurants and worked with chefs to create aperitifs specific to each restaurant. They sold the bottles online and donated 100% of their profits to their restaurant partners. This campaign was successful because it enabled their customers to feel good about supporting their favorite restaurants in difficult times. This customer-focused social strategy, paired with an investment by Shopify Capital, has contributed to a 250% increase in return on ad spending as of April. Haus’s overall business has increased 500% since January.
#4 Girls Night In Club
Girls Night In is a lifestyle brand that assists busy young women in making the most of their weekends by recommending the best culture, lifestyle, and self-care. I was launched in 2018, and the newsletter-based company boasted a remarkable 50% open rate among its 150K subscribers within one year.
GNI was a success early on when everyone wanted to live in the city. The Girls Night In Instagram was focused on sharing what they were best at and how to make the most out of the downtime that came with the pandemic. This content was used to grow the brand’s email list. It also allowed them to launch Whiled, a brand that focuses on staying in’ products, in late 2020.
#5 Bala Bangles
Bala’s line of the fashionable ankle and wrist weights was launched in 2017 by Mark Cuban. They were soon recognized for their partnership with Shark Tank. The brand’s Instagram account is not like the majority of fitness-related content. Their artistic approach to photography and videos has hit significant media outlets and large retail partners.
Bala did not invest in paid marketing channels when the pandemic hit, and there was a need for home workout equipment. Bala maintained their engagement with their audience through Instagram Live workout videos, which could be done with or without their products. Despite the inventory shortages, Bala kept their customers informed with regular updates. Bala was able to take preorders while still building their community.
Madewell was designed for modern city girls who love a stylish, tomboyish look. Madewell is the ideal brand for Instagram. It has 510 million followers and 67% of 18-29-year-olds.
Madewell’s visual content taps into this lifestyle and reinforces the demographic focus. Although the brand was initially known for its denim, Madewell has since expanded their focus to include loungewear and other home-related content in 2020. The brand’s product range may change, but it still presents a clear and shoppable virtual storefront via video and images. Many posts feature the shopping icon with multiple products tagged in each photo (see the example at the right).
#8 Tiffany & Co
Tiffany & Co. is a beautiful example of how a legacy brand can use Instagram to improve its image and reach a new audience. Tiffany Blue is the brand’s trademark color to maintain consistency and strong brand associations. However, it allows for creativity to be pushed to the limits. Tiffany combines fun and playfulness in a highly competitive industry with modern marketing techniques such as the Instagram Live series.
This resulted in an Instagram grid that instantly identifies Tiffany and draws the audience deeper into Tiffany’s world through modern visuals and storytelling. Tiffany & Co.’s posts have generated 11 times more interaction than average watches & jewelry brands.
Away is a brand that focuses on the product features of luggage. However, most luggage brands are focused on this aspect of marketing. They instead use Instagram to discuss the fantastic experiences that a suitcase can provide.
We all know that 2020 was not a great year to travel. Away managed to keep their travel fans engaged by using themes of wanderlust and a little humor about the industry’s current state. Instagram Stories titled “At Home” by Away featured travel-themed movies, recommendations, and alternative uses for luggage.
Despite some setbacks last year, their Instagram account keeps traveling (and Away) top of mind for their followers. This inspires them to think about all they can do with a suitcase and positions the company more as a travel brand than a luggage brand. Travel enthusiasts haven’t stopped loving travel in the past year. They learned to love the freedom of traveling to new places more.
Glossier, a beauty brand, has avoided the polished luxury of many other brands in the sector. Glossier’s Instagram is an example of this, with posts that feel relatable and humanistic. It feels more like users follow friends than brands, with frequent memes or customer messages.
Glossier didn’t start with a product but instead created a product that reflected its needs. Glossier’s products are designed to be shared via Instagram. They feature millennial pink packaging. This strategic move made it easy to tap into the community of beauty lovers on Instagram and turn them into brand ambassadors. Glossier often reposts user-generated content to give fans more incentive and drive overall community engagement.