How to Nail Timely Holiday Content on Instagram

marketing tools Jan 19, 2016

It's common knowledge that Americans are reluctant to take holidays. However, it's not for a lack of appreciating the special days that give people the option to both stay off the clock and celebrate historic moments when they come around.

Lucky for the world, social media has given us all the opportunity to pay tribute to those meaningful holidays, whether that's National Dog Day or the slightly more poignant Martin Luther King Jr Day.

Here's a look at how partaking in community happenings can really make you a winner at engagement.

Typical. Source: Instagram

Sure, you likely join in on the #MondayStruggles and #Friyay trends out there, while probably dabbling in the occasional #TBT. But what about the more punctual social episodes that can drive spikes into your engagement?

As we all know (unless you just crawled from under a rock - hey, it's possible), this past Monday, January 18th, marked a very significant holiday in 'Murca: Martin Luther King Jr Day. People got justifiably excited about honoring the civil rights leader with visual tributes on the IG, with 'grams coming at us from every which way. Very fitting for the man who changed America for the better.

While it's easy for brands to just go for the quick regram and call it participating, it was really interesting to observe how some of them took a more personal approach to touch people's emotional chords, all while carefully choosing images that seamlessly fit into their gallery to keep their followers on their brand journey's straight and narrow. Speaking to your audience while your Insta strategy unfolds is the type of content no company should be omitting.

We gathered 5 examples of companies that did themselves a solid by chiming in on this commemorative day by way of Instagram. #NailedIt

1. BB Dakota

Our #MCM today, obvi ✌💕 #MLKday

A photo posted by BB Dakota (@bbdakota) on

BB Dakota's super fun and sassy voice lent itself perfectly to this playful MLK shot. It clearly resonated with their audience, too, well surpassing their average engagement rate.

2. Rebecca Minkoff

Monday inspiration

A photo posted by Rebecca Minkoff (@rebeccaminkoff) on

The Rebecca Minkoff social team clearly knows what type of content their audience responds to. They posted this inspiring quote illustrated in a minimalistic yet impactful way.

Their MLK quote is their second best performing post of the week. Go, commemoration!

3. Pacsun

Yes, the Jenner sisters Pacsun. The brand that every teenager wants a piece of due to its ability to churn out the trendiest of trends at lightning speed. They captured the affection of a whole generation, and their young audience is precisely what makes their MLK post so significant - in a world where all of the information we need is at our fingertips, the young'ns often seem to be disinterested in most things that don't get measured in double-taps.

It appears that they enjoyed the historic homage: would it not be for Kylie Jenner, their MLK photo would have been the brand's second top post of the week!

4. Dannijo

The social media-savvy jewelry brand posted a strong photo to inspire their followers. And they totally felt it. It surpassed their average engagement by a fair amount.

5. AirBnb

A piecemeal tribute to this important day, celebrating American history with an on-brand homage.

AirBnb really went all out and manifestly wanted to make an impact by taking a stance. They published a carefully crafted piecemeal of three photos that, put together, make up one shot of Martin Luther King Jr's room at the Lorraine Motel (now the National Civil Rights Museum). Each post was accompanied by a gripping caption about what the holiday represents.

Instead of a forced post out of obligation or doing it as an afterthought to hop on the #trending train, AirBnb used their position of influence to put out contemplative, inspirational posts. This also showcases their directional spirit with the use of innovative content by experimenting with both piecemeal (their three posts put together made up one photo) and cinemagraphs.

The cherry on top of the sundae? The content they chose is the interior of a residence, harmoniously blending into their gallery and brand offering of, well, residences. Perfectly apropos.

The results definitely paid off, each post earning itself well over 5K likes. And by looking as the piecemeal composite as one post, seeing as it is technically one photo and all three elements of it were posted simultaneously, we could state that it generated over 20K likes. That's an engagement rate of 2.51%, compared to their 1.64% average. A major win, both socially (relating to social media) and significantly (relating to the depth of their well-heard message).

Here are the tree individual posts, in chronological order. Don't forget to hit play:

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