More Than Just a Pretty Feed: Why Instagram Advertising is a Must

Katies Instagram Post
Katie Cavanaugh
April 5, 2018

Facebook is for cringe-worthy mom comments, Snapchat is for the dog face filters, YouTube is for beauty tutorials, and Instagram is for #foodporn. Or are they?

While traditionally known as the ultimate photo sharing social media platform, Instagram is more than just your digital scrapbook. Instagram is quickly becoming a powerful marketing tool that you should consider using in both your advertising and organic strategies.

Here’s why and how to incorporate Instagram into your digital marketing strategy.


All about the visuals

Instagram is visual; you can post photo, carousel, video and story ads. These various formats offer a wealth of creative opportunities less rigid than a Google AdWords search ad. This freedom can seriously benefit your business’s paid social strategy.

Branding is always important when forming Instagram ads. Make sure your aesthetic is consistent across your organic posts and ads. Disjointed posts will likely confuse users and make them more likely to unfollow you.  

Need some Insta inspiration? Anthropologie is the golden child of effective Instagram advertising. First and foremost, they exude a lifestyle—then they feature specific products. This dedication to a clear aesthetic and brand voice makes their ads authentic and engaging.

They also use various content formats like videos, carousels, and photos to avoid any sense of monotony. Anthropologie also takes advantage of Instagram stories, which are becoming increasingly popular tools to flash personality not always seen in their carefully curated content. Plus, Anthropologie also tags all the merchandise featured in each post, so it can be easily shopped for through the link available in their Instagram profile bio. But, more on that later.


Anthropologie Instagram


Collaboration and engagement beyond a “like”

As a social platform, Instagram boasts the most user engagement with a 2.2% per follower interaction rate, as compared to Facebook’s .2% per follower rate.

With 800 million active monthly users, that’s a lot of interaction on one site. Interaction types vary from posting to liking or sharing a post, but one thing is certain: the level of interaction on Instagram makes for a great organic marketing opportunity.

Partnerships with sponsors, influencers, and regular users also distinguish Instagram from other social media platforms. These kinds of partnerships are great ways to increase your business’s impressions and connect with your users. This boosted reach can seriously help your organic game.  

Need an idea for an organic Instagram marketing strategy? Try giving users the opportunity to submit their own content to be posted on your page. Not only is it a great way to feature new, interesting content, but it also makes your brand more accessible and relatable.

Adobe exemplifies how to do a user-generated content campaign the right way. They consistently post photos submitted by their followers related to a certain theme that showcase Adobe software. They switch up the theme regularly to receive more submissions and keep their Instagram feed fresh and open to user interaction.

Not interested in photo-editing software? Well, after looking through Adobe’s Instagram feed, you will be.


Adobe Instagram


From inspiration to information to purchase

Instagram for Business is a helpful resource that guides all businesses in developing the right Instagram marketing strategy for them. There are 25 million business profiles on Instagram and 96% of fashion brands use Instagram.

In terms of turning engagement into purchases, Instagram currently allows products to be tagged in posts and then further explored by users. Hopefully soon, entirely in-app purchases will be possible, especially since 60% of users find new products on Instagram.

This would mean that users would be able to move seamlessly between “inspiration to information to purchase in just a few steps.”

Still, the current Instagram platform offers an online advertising experience unlike any other. The visual nature of the site makes product placement feel natural and even helpful.


Instagram is a social media platform that opens the door to creativity, inspires engagement and collaboration, and offers an authentic way to advertise your brand.  

Considering using Instagram in your marketing strategy but not sure where to start? Reach out to our team. We’re happy to help. 

Katie Cavanaugh
Junior Copywriter

Originally from Mequon, Wisconsin, Katie Cavanaugh is a senior at Northwestern University. She loves rowing for the Northwestern club crew team, Bananagrams, and biking on Chicago’s lakefront path. Growing up, she wanted to become a Supreme Court judge.

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