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From Instagram to Pinterest, What Image-Based Marketing Can Do for Your Company

Courtney Scharf
October 11th, 2012
Image-based marketing has begun to strongly influence the corporate world. With the influx and increasing popularity of social media platforms like Pinterest and Instagram, savvy brands have capitalized on the existence of these new breeds of social media and made the most of the opportunity that they present.

Instagram has offered companies a fantastic way to spread and share company culture and products or services with a wide audience. Billboard has been particularly proficient at creating a strong presence on the highly popular app, making use of its extremely compelling photo opportunities. By leveraging the company's interesting focus on celebrity and music, they've strengthened the brand's connection to its customers and given people good reason to stay tied to the company. Developing a mix may be the most important tactic when it comes to Instagram. Followers will be more interested in your brand if you feature both behind-the-scenes and publicly available content through the app. This gives the user a feeling that they're more strongly tied to the brand, and humanizes a company in a very positive way. While sharing company culture on Instagram is encouraged, ensure that the content is still compelling and worth the user's time.

Instagram accounts and posts can be optimized very effectively by the use of hashtags and linking between other social media sites. Companies can easily tie their Instagram accounts to their Twitter and Facebook feeds, adding an interesting and highly visual component to these other content streams. Doing so could also spread the word about a new account, and direct customers to your company's Instagram page. As the following for this new form of social media may be limited initially, it's wise to leverage other platforms to gain a following. Let followers know about your brand's new account without spamming, and ensure that the account has enough content on it to appear worthwhile to potential followers.

Pinterest is a similarly popular visual-based social media platform that many companies have benefited from. Online brands like The Coveteur have done a fabulous job of connecting with their fans via the site, and solidified their status as an aspirational company with plenty of personality. Though the people who run the account ultimately use it to draw traffic to the Coveteur site, they also post content from elsewhere, like inspirational quotes or funny memes. This makes their account all the more worthwhile, and has earned the brand a healthy following of more than 22,000 users.

Pinterest can also be strategically set up with the use of hashtags and creative keywords. Optimizing for terms associated with your brand is a great way to increase the amount of followers your have, and is relatively straightforward. Uniqlo, a Japanese clothing brand, actually timed their posts in certain categories to run a very interactive campaign on the site that showed up to people who weren't even following its Pinterest page. This kind of Pinterest marketing strategy clearly required a great deal of planning, but the astonishing outcome provided the company with a great deal of attention and praise.

Image-based marketing will, no doubt, dominate the future of branding and advertising. To learn more about this strategy and others, check out Trend Hunter's Social Media Trend Report and Marketing Trend Report.