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June 22, 2017
How to Make Your Instagram Takeover Worthwhile
Kelly Bradley
Kelly Bradley

Weight Watchers, General Electric, Birchbox—all the big brands have done it, and are currently doing it. But what is “it?” I’m talking about an Instagram takeover. Since Instagram’s inception in 2010, the platform has only continued to grow in popularity, not only for personal reasons, but for business as well.

Hootsuite predicts that by the end of 2017, nearly 71 percent of U.S. brands will be using Instagram for marketing. So if you’re a brand that’s not on Instagram, there has never been a better time to join. One of Instagram’s most popular marketing tactics is in fact the Instagram takeover.

What’s an Instagram takeover?

The name says it all, really. An Instagram takeover occurs when a brand allows another person to temporarily take control of their account in order to share their own photos and videos. The brand boosts engagement and the person who is taking over the account is also getting more exposure—win, win!

What’s in it for my brand?

Quite a lot of benefits accompany Instagram takeovers—both for your brand and for the person executing the takeover.

  • Builds trust. Allowing an industry partner to take over your Instagram shows that you’re proud to let them express their own unique perspective. Doing so indicates that the person taking over your Instagram trusts your brand as well.
  • Provides an additional viewpoint. When someone takes control of your Instagram, they will be posting content that your audience doesn’t normally see, giving some variety to your account. Having a fresh perspective on your page may capture the attention of new followers.
Instagram photos and videos shown on a smartphone. Instagram takeovers use visual content to attract new audiences.
https://blog.bufferapp.com/instagram-stories
  • Drives engagement and brand awareness. Engagement from a takeover can be measured in a number of different ways, from likes and comments to views and direct messages. An Instagram takeover can pique engagement with your current audience, and grow your follower base thanks to the followers of the influencer who is taking over your account.

How do I execute an Instagram takeover?

An Instagram takeover must be executed properly in order for it to be effective for your brand. Think of it this way: if you have a Twitter account but don’t use it, it’s probably not going to do much for your brand awareness. The same goes for your Instagram takeover, which must be well thought out and planned in advance in order to be successful. Here are some steps you can take to ensure this marketing tactic will benefit your brand:

1. Set goals.

Just like with any marketing strategy, it’s important to set goals because they give you a way of measuring success. For instance, is your end goal to increase overall brand awareness? To promote a new product? To grow your total number of followers? Setting these benchmarks prior to the takeover will give an indication as to what exactly your takeover helped achieve.

2. Determine who is taking over your account.

You have several options here, and the benefits of the takeover will be different depending on who you select. For example, asking an employee to take over your account is an effective way of showcasing your company culture, while having a customer take over your Instagram can strengthen your relationship and build trust. Take Kuno Creative for example. This marketing agency chose to implement employee Instagram takeovers, which offered their followers a sneak peek into the day in the life of a Kuno Creative employee. This marketing strategy increased the company’s average weekly engagement rate by nearly 18 percent.

3. Promote your takeover.

To get as much engagement as possible during your takeover, you’ll want to make sure all of your followers are aware of what’s going to happen. Start promoting the takeover two weeks in advance, and give your followers a reason to be interested. A great way to promote activity is by utilizing a branded hashtag, which makes it easy to track engagement.

It’s also important to advertise the takeover on all of your social media channels, not just Instagram. Promoting across channels only gets the word out to a larger audience. It also doesn’t hurt to have whoever is taking over your Instagram take part in the same type of promotion.

4. Strategize about content.

Collaborate with whoever will be taking over your account in order to guide them in the direction of the type of content you’d like to focus on, whether that’s industry tips, a product review, or sharing their opinion on trending topics. Providing that specific direction may help the takeover be as successful for them as it is for your brand.

5. Choose your takeover method.

Collaborate with whoever will be taking over your account in order to guide them in the direction of the type of content you’d like to focus on, whether that’s industry tips, a product review, or sharing their opinion on trending topics. Providing that specific direction may help the takeover be as successful for them as it is for your brand.

6. Measure success.

The final step to the takeover? Evaluating how everything worked. Take a look at which metrics changed—how many followers did you gain? How many likes did each photo get and how does that compare to the number of likes your brand usually receives? It’s also important to ask the person who took over your account what they thought worked well and what didn’t. This feedback will be valuable in helping you execute your next takeover and ensure that it is as successful, if not more, than the last.

Learn more about promoting your brand on Instagram or optimizing your social media strategy in general.