Instagram is heavily associated with fashion and beauty. It is almost expected that brands within that realm will have a dominant presence on the image driven social App. However, Instagram is not limited to fans of lipstick and spiked pumps. Barfton cited that, “Instagram has been adopted by 59 percent of the world’s top brands.”

Given that statistic it’s unusual that there are so few pet brands that are actually thriving on Instagram. I mean – Who wouldn’t ‘Like’ a picture of a fluffy puppy in their Instagram feed?

 

So, what can pet brands do to help gain strength on Instagram?

These three quick tips:

 

  1. User Generated Images – By now it is common knowledge that stock images are not cutting it. A great way to gain ‘Likes’ and followers is to share other Instagram users’ pictures.

Instagram is a vast sea of share-able images and Apps such as InstaRepost make it easy to acknowledge the original source, making sure to give credit where it’s due!

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  1. Hashtags – Do not underestimate the power of a good hashtag! The pound sign followed by a keyword or phrase is a great way to categorize images. This helps Instagram users who are looking for pictures of cats and dogs locate relative images that are being posted.

Often brands spend a lot of time creating their own unique hashtags and forget to leverage the tags that are already extremely popular. The hashtag #ILoveMyDog alone boasts over three million photos.

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As you can see below, Milk-Bone has done an awesome job of creating their own unique hashtag, #SayItWithMilkBone, while also utilizing popular hashtags that are already well established.

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  1. Consistency – Consistent twice a day posts are a must to gain and maintain momentum. People lose interest in brands that do not entertain them by posting regularly. For brands that struggle to come up with original content to post on Instagram a great plan of action is to focus energy into engaging with active users by commenting and sharing their image posts!

For example, despite the fact that Purina has some cute posts on their account, there have only been 6 posts since February 2013. This inconsistency is most likely to blame for the social channel’s small following.

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If pet brands incorporate these three key components into their Instagram practices they will have a great chance of reaching and keeping the audience they are seeking. When in doubt ask yourself, “What would I as a pet fanatic like to see on Instagram?”

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