Are You Doing it Wrong? How the Smartest Brands are Marketing on Instagram

Apr 08, 2015

> Hey everyone! If you read my post on shopping on Instagram, you’ve obviously been waiting with bated breath for the followup. I think it’s time to get into it a little bit, the killer details that is. In 2014, brands spent over $1B on sponsored posts and product placement on Instagram, with little to no data. Dash Hudson helps brands run beautiful, data-backed campaigns that convert. If you plan to write a check in 2015, read on …

This is what $7,500 looks like on Instagram. Very fetching. The beautiful Rocky Barnes. Source: Instagram

It’s Like That. And That’s the Way It Is

The existing behavior on Instagram is for brands to engage influencers manually (by email, or via agency, egad!) and compensate them to run a promotion. Promotions most frequently take the form of:

  • Payments for tags of the brand in a comment (ie. “Loving my @jennifer handbag, it fits my iPhone 6 plus like a dream.”)

  • Products are placed in a photo (ie. influencer takes a photo of themselves wearing their AG Jeans, adds an @mention and photo tag).

  • An influencer promotes an event / contest / offering (ie. “Go visit @friendlycompany they are giving away soooo many puppies!”)

If you are doing any of these things .. stop it right now. You’re doing it wrong.

Deep breath.

Why am I doing it wrong Thomas?

Chances are you have been spending money on these types of promotions without the tools to measure the impact. It’s not your fault. You’ve been executing on a plan to build your marketing presence on Instagram, but there’s been no help. We feel for you.

Damage assessment time. Ask yourself these six questions and see if you can answer them:

  • What was the total reach of my most recent promotion?

  • How many total likes and comments did I get on my last promotion?

  • How many new followers did I get from my last promotion?

  • How many customers then went on to view my featured product?

  • How many customers converted?

  • What was the effectiveness of my spend?

If you could answer three of six questions above, good news, you are in relative terms an All-Star. Pat yourself on the back (quickly) and come with me.

More good news! If your boss didn’t ask you any of the questions above then you’re going to have his job soon.

Turn Every Instagram Marketing Dollar into ROI

$1B spent by brands on Instagram in 2014. With almost no data to back it.

So. Much. Money.

Instagram is the stage, glossy mag, and shopping mall for an entire generation. It is a place dominated by beauty and visions of viscerally attractive lifestyles, a place where aesthetic is the trump card.

It’s money worth spending.

Jessica travels the world and has one of the most aspirational lifestyles on Insta. And insurance-worthy stems. Source: Instagram

No wonder brands have rushed to stake their claims, and clamored to reach this incredibly engaged and rapidly growing audience.

The Cost of Working With Influencers

The cost to work with an influencer on Instagram varies widely. Rates run as high as $20,ooo per post, but there are many affordable options as well. Lots of factors go into determining an influencer’s value:

  • The quality of the content produced by the influencer.

  • The perceived ‘status’ of the influencer (top model > youtuber).

  • How in-demand the influencer is.

I personally spent months in hand to hand Instagram marketing combat. I’ll regale you with tales of the mistakes I made in a future post. Or over scotch and soda. It still hurts.

Without a data-driven mindset, and the tools to setup, manage, and monitor campaigns, Instagram marketing is a total wild, wild west. The Will Smith kind. An incredibly uncool kind.

This is how we do it. The lovely Blair, x Laila Azhar. Source: Instagram

But What’s a Marketer to Do?

Dash Hudson connects brands to Instagram influencers who create beautiful content that reaches engaged audiences, builds your brand, and is instantly shoppable, driving meaningful ROI.

Planning on running a paid Instagram campaign?

We provide you with the tools to find the right influencers for your brand, set up campaigns, and measure the results of that campaign, from reach to checkout.

Here’s how we can help. We do the hard work, and enable you to:

If you are interested in answering the six key questions outlined above, and creating beautiful Instagram campaigns that are backed with data and drive ROI, come learn more.

Thomas Rankin

Co-founder and CEO of Dash Hudson