As of October 2020, the Instagram account with the most followers is footballer Cristiano Ronaldo followed by Ariana Grande and Dwayne Johnson who surpassed Selena Gomez and Kylie Jenner to become the most followed man in America. So what are these people doing right apart from being celebrities, and what can you learn from it?
The best case study is perhaps Dwayne Johnson who reached the impressive milestone of 200m followers just last week. His gameplay? Getting up close and personal with his audience. On any given day, he will update his followers on his life, what he’s eating, his fitness products and his upcoming projects. He also started using IGTV to give fitness tips or discuss important events, and while he is Instagram’s most valuable star with the ability to charge more than anyone else for a sponsored post, his list of endorsement deals is surprisingly short.
And if you go on Kylie Jenner’s feed, you see something very similar: A count of her day-to-day life with the occasional post to promote her companies: Kylie Cosmetics and Kylie Skin. Recently, she also started using IGTV for beauty tutorials and that allows her audience to see how her products perform before they make a purchase.
Users on Instagram want to connect. They want to see people “behind the scenes”. Celebrities aside, there are also some brands that are dominating Instagram. In this post, we look at a few of them so you can draw some inspiration on how to get more followers.
The Most Followed Brands on Instagram
The most followed Instagram accounts are celebrities, sure, but there are also some brands there. Like Nike, with 122 million followers, and Victoria’s Secret with just under 69 million followers. These top Instagram accounts aside, there are also some up and coming ones that are true success stories; They are the best Instagram accounts to follow for brand inspiration.
Top Instagram accounts with the most followers
This one’s a no-brainer. If you want some fresh ideas on the best type of content to share on Instagram, the place to start looking is Instagram’s own feed. It’s populated with captivating content, mostly user-generated and showing everyday people who are maximizing their creative potential on the platform. The trick is to craft visually gripping content, and Instagram’s official account has the clear purpose of showcasing the best and most interesting people and trends at any given time.
Along with that, Instagram also uses IGTV to promote content they go out and create themselves. Usually they are highlights of upcoming episodes…something which does a great job of sparking interest.
Watch the space for: Fresh content ideas 💡
When it comes to brands on Instagram, Nike steals the show and this is because it’s a lesson in lifestyle branding. Their products are just part of the story they are telling; Their feed is a much more intimate place for inspiration and innovation. Like how bright and friendly the space feels, and how every post inspires you to do something and be a better version of yourself.
Nike understands that Instagram is a more intimate platform than Facebook or Twitter. People go on Facebook and Twitter to complain about brands; On Instagram, they seek positive experiences, and the platform is also more seasonal and it’s about what’s happening in the world right now. It’s a great way to hop on news, which Nike does wonderfully.
Watch the space for: How to stay relevant
Zara & Chanel
By nature, Instagram is a great sales channel for fashion brands. It’s visual and there is the “community” dimension, but not all brands seem to have the same mastery of the platform. Two brands that do are Chanel and Zara, with over 41 million followers each. Their secret?
Well, Chanel went the way of bringing its audience closer to its story with posts that evoke nostalgia and the ones that promote #InsideChanel, a content series that tells the story of the house’s history and heritage. Harking back to the past is always a great way to forge an emotional connection.
As for Zara, the brand is crushing the competition with ever-changing product lines and using Instagram as a catalogue for its latest offerings. This keeps users curious about what’s coming next, and their product-focused content gives the audience what they want.
Watch the spaces for: The best way to sell yourself in an overcrowded industry
Other Instagram accounts worth following
They might not have the follower count of celebrity accounts or top brands, but some Instagram accounts are worth following just for how well they mastered the platform. They are what you would call success stories, including Doritos, Vans and General Electric.
General Electric; The Power of High-Quality Photos and Storytelling
It’s a company as scientific and stodgy as it gets, but their Instagram feed still manages to capture the minds of the masses. Their strategy? They don’t talk about their manufacturing of windmills and industrial gadgets, but rather they plan photo shoots at some of the most innovative facilities in the world, bringing their audience closer to their work through visual storytelling.
Doritos; The Power of Influencer Marketing
Doritos has a simple strategy when it comes to boosting brand awareness and that’s influencer marketing around events like the Super Bowl. They do this through video ads that are a mix of influencer and product-focused content to a Custom Audience of past purchasers but also shared on their Instagram feed, Instagram Stories, Facebook feed and Facebook Stories.
Vans; The Power of User-Generated Content
And finally, Vans makes stylish shoes, but the brand’s Instagram feed does more than just show that stylishness.
It’s a flashy space of product shots and action photos, and real people wearing their favorite Vans in street-style sightings.
It’s a great way to build brand love and strengthen your online community.