Report Finds Shockingly Low Percentage Of Brands On Instagram

Chris CrumSocial Media

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Yesmail has a new study out, which finds that while brands on Instagram experienced a 278% growth in followers in 2014, the number of brands adopting the platform is still quite low. The firm analyzed over 2,000 brands on social platforms and found that only 23% are on Instagram.

"Restaurants lead the Instagram-adoption rate, beating CPG, retail and hotel brands. However, only 31 percent of restaurants are on Instagram, compared to a whopping 86 percent of restaurants using Facebook and Twitter," a spokesperson for Yesmail tells WebProNews. "With 300 million users and 70 million photos and videos shared daily, Instagram’s high level of consumer engagement should motivate brands to adopt the platform."

It found that hotel adoption of Instagram is about 30.8%, while retailer adoption and CPG adoption are at 23% and 16% respectively. Retailers included in the research saw an 8% increase in followers per month, on average. That's double the rate of other social platforms, according to Yesmail. 80% of brands from the research have Facebook pages, while 82% are active on Twitter, 60% engage on YouTube, and over a third have a Google+ profile.

"Brand adoption of Instagram seems to happen at a substantially lower rate," Yesmail says. "As an example, when brands promote themselves via three social channels, just 12 percent include Instagram as part of their social marketing strategy. If brands add a fourth channel, the number of brands employing Instagram jumps to 37 percent. If five, that number jumps to 47 percent."

“It surprises me that more brands are not developing their presence on Instagram,” said Michael Fisher, president of Yes Lifecycle Marketing. “With over 300 million users and 70 million photos and videos shared daily, by not investing in a social strategy that includes Instagram brands are missing a sizeable opportunity to further engage with their customers.”

"Instagram is a great way for brands to increase consumer engagement,” he added. “Although no industry has fully embraced Instagram, brands would be smart to create a presence on the platform to ensure competitive advantage and reap the benefits of Instagram’s high follower growth rates.”

A report from SocialBakers that came out late last year found that Instagram destroys Twitter in brand engagement. According to that, the average engagement per post for the top 25 most-engaged brands in 50 times greater on Instagram than it is on Twitter.

“Instagram gives brands an outlet for creative storytelling and engagement with tight communities of people who share a passion for the the brands’ values,” said Socialbakers at the time.

A report from L2 came out last week finding that Facebook's hits to the organic reach of Page posts is sending brands to Instagram.

“Facebook’s News Feed algorithm restricts the organic reach of content on the platform, and is particularly punishing for brands with large followings (500k+),” L2 said. "In contrast, Instagram communities defy gravity, with no negative correlation between a brand’s follower count and engagement rate.”

“Enamored by 100 percent organic reach, brands have dialed up efforts on Instagram – post frequency has grown 23 percent over the last five quarters. Unlike the pay-to-play ethos of Facebook, pure sweat (namely, content testing and optimization) still drives meaningful results on Instagram. For brands, these are the salad days – motivated to both preserve user experience and create scarcity value, Instagram has kept advertising on the platform to a minimum,” it said.

We recently explored some tips for businesses just starting out on Instagram, and based on Yesmail's findings, a lot of businesses are going to need them. Check those out here.

Chris Crum

Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.