Visual imagery transcends languages and evokes emotional responses more so than a text-heavy status update. From a brand perspective, visual storytelling is the natural evolution of existing consumer behaviors and helps to humanize brands. Brands can interact with consumers to drive the creation of branded content, which drives additional attention in a user's social activity stream, thus driving additional consideration for the brand.
The power of services like Instagram and Pinterest is in the simplicity and ease of publishing and pinning, as well as the deep integration of each into users' social graphs. Pinterest has reaffirmed consumers' interests in visually searching for information. Meanwhile, Instagram embodies the convergence of mobile and social.
Instagram now boasts more than 50 million users, and it is adding new ones at the rate of roughly 5 million per week. More than 1 billion photos have been uploaded on Instagram, with 5 million-plus more photos being added every day.
By enabling connections with other social platforms, making sharing easy, and focusing on discoverability of content via hashtags, brands have found innovative ways to incorporate Instagram into their social strategies to further humanize their brands. Brands that understand and capitalize on visual storytelling across channels will ultimately reap the benefits and net higher levels of engagement.
This article highlights five brands that have incorporated visual imagery and social curation via Instagram into their broader digital strategies. Each brand offers a different value proposition to its followers, but there are common themes demonstrated by each example. Let's take a look.