By Longfei Zhang and Yining Xu

A recent study showed that Instagram provides business with more than 25% engagement rate among other social media platforms. It is not surprised at all since Instagram has over 500 million active users every month, 4.2 billion likes every day, and 95 million photos and videos posted daily. Lately, leading the way in the social media marketing world, Instagram developed new tools to help business users optimize their digital marketing strategy. It is essential for the businesses to leverage the new feature for their own good.

18 Creative Instagram Brand Campaigns by Using Business Profiles - Zentrope

Instagram Business Profiles

Instagram launched its new tools for business users on May 31th, 2016, which includes new business profiles, business analytics, and the ability to turn posts into ads through Instagram itself. This free business tool aims to make business stand out in Instagram, collect more data on the business post-performance, and reach out to more customers.

Companies of any size can come up with a business profile so that they are able to distinguish their Instagram accounts from individual accounts. The major differences between business profiles and individual profiles are the contact button, business insights, and the ability to promote.

  • The contact button on the profile page enables viewers to either call, text, email or get directions of the business location.

Zentrope Instagram Account  Zentrope Instagram Account  Zentrope Instagram Account

  • Instagram Insights is a bless for business owners, as they can get their audience’s demographic and behavioral information. The more data analytics information the businesses can get, the more accurate and relevant posts they can create.
  • Tap the top right “Bar Chart” icon of your profile page, you will see the data analysis insights. As long as you post something new, you will get Impressions, Reach, Website Clicks, and Follower Activity.
  • Tap “Followers – See More” on the Insights page, you’ll see a breakdown of your followers demographic, and the peak times they use Instagram. You can utilize this data to attract the most viewers.

Zentrope Instagram Account Insights  Zentrope Instagram Account Insights  Zentrope Instagram Account Insights

  • The ability to promote helps the post spread out to more audience. Business accounts can determine which post they would like to promote, the target audience, and the promotion length of time.
  • Keep in mind that if you want to promote your post, you have to be the admin of your Facebook page connected to the Instagram account. Once everything is set, follow the steps below
  • Step 1. Tap on the Promote link on the post you would like to promote.
    Step 2. Fill in the details like Audience (targeted), Budget (estimated), and Duration (length of promotion).
    Step 3. Hit the Promote button.

Zentrope Instagram Account Promote  Zentrope Instagram Account Promote  Zentrope Instagram Account Promote

With these tools, designer in New York City can better know what style their audience are looking for, and tailor the posts to their taste; travel agency in Japan can seasonally advertise its beautiful cherry blossom to travel lovers. Instagram makes social media marketing so much easier for business, and now it is really the time to convert/create your business profile in order to use those new exciting features before everyone starts!

How to create/convert to a business profile?

Step 1. To enable this feature, make sure your Instagram app is updated to the latest. If you already have an Instagram account, proceed to Step 2. If not, create an Instagram account first.
Step 2. Tap the top right “Options” icon of your profile.
Step 3. Choose “Switch to Business Profile” tab.
Step 4. Select your admined Facebook Page that you want to connect with your Instagram Business Profile on the “Connect Your Facebook Page”.
Step 5. Update your business contact information (email, phone and address) on the “Set Up Your Business Profile” page, and hit Done.

For more detail, please check this tutorial.

Either using those new tools, Instagram Ad or posting attractive and organized contents would definitely boost your views, likes, and lead to sales, not to mention the combination usage of them. Nowadays, learning how effective social media marketing is, almost every business from local to public has a social media account, mainly Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Below are 16 successful Instagram marketing campaigns for business.


L’Oreal launched a winter-themed campaign in Canada to drive attention to their new product “Infallible” among female audience between 18 and 49. During the four-week campaign, they used Instagram sponsored photos to emphasize the ‘winter beauty’ as well as using the hashtags #infallible and #redhot. At the end, this campaign was able to generate a 18% increase in new product awareness and 14% increase in Ad recall.

L'Oreal Instagram Business Campaign - Zentrope

Burt’s Bees, a personal care product brand, launched a series of “Delight Your Lips” promotion ads on Instagram. They sent Ads about their new lip crayon product line to girls specifically from 18 to 24 on Instagram. At the end, there was a 5% increase in product awareness and a 16% increase in Ad memorization.


Madewell, the clothing brand, has around 781K followers on Instagram. It started a campaign so that everyone can post their best Madewell outfits or Madewell-organized flash mobs’ pictures with hashtags #DenimMadewell. Only in a day, the campaign received 1,600 posts, 160,000 likes, and 8.5 million impressions.

Madewell #DenumMadewell Instagram Campaign - Zentrope

Kenneth Cole successfully increased their brand awareness and interacted with their audience by launching a selfie contest on January 31st throughout March 31st 2014. By encouraging their loyal audience to post selfies on Instagram using the hashtag #DressForYourSelfie, Kenneth Cole guaranteed the winner free shoes for an entire year.

Kenneth Cole Instagram Campaign - Zentrope


Even the bank/financial services are latching on Instagram promotion now. Capital One, one of the biggest U.S. credit card companies, launched their famous “What’s in your wallet?” campaign on Instagram (it used to be offline). More than using sponsored posts to advertise, the bank also gave three popular Instagram influencers Zach Rose, Kimberly Genevieve and Paul Octavious access to its Instagram account, where they can directly post fancy pictures of what they kept in their wallets in order to attract more followers. All those posts lifted Capital One’s ad recall by 16%, especially for customers that over 45, the ad recall rate is 25%.

Sporting Goods

Jelly Skateboard, a San Diego based company, believes that Instagram made a huge contribution to their direct-to-customer marketing strategy. As the company firmly believed that analytics is essential to optimize feeds, it has already implemented the Instagram for Business Tools efficiently to promote their events and expand customer base.


Hillside Beach Club, a five-star resort in Turkey, was looking for their Chief Instagram Officer, which role was to spend a week at the resort for free and manage the resort Instagram account. This campaign encouraged applicants to post their best beach shots with @hillsidebeachclub under #JobAtHeavenOnEarth.

The Pocono Mountains Visitor Bureau (PMVB) launched the #TakeOnPocono campaign. PMVB invited both visitors and residents to share their posts with this hashtag. At the end, this campaign helped PMVB break their number of followers’ record, as well as generated over 24,000 Instagram posts.


Each year when Halloween is approaching, Starbucks always announces their seasonal drinks on Instagram using warm autumn pictures and captions including #PumpkinSpiceLatte and #PSL. Consumer are able to look at how the pumpkin spice latte looks like if they search those hashtags on instagram.

Just add water. 💧Pajamas. ❤ Fireplace. 🔥 Book. 📖 #pumpkinspicelatte 🎃 #starbucksVIA ☕

Starbucks Coffee ☕(@starbucks)发的照片 ·

Applebees’s #Fantographer campaign invited customers to post their meals on Instagram for the chances of having their images shared on Applebee’s official Instagram account. During this campaign, its Instagram follower increased by 32% and engagement increased by 25%.

Public Service Announcement

Clif Bar started the #MeetTheMoment campaign, urging fans to tag their outdoor adventure posts with this hashtag. Clif Bar would donate $1 for every tag they got. Just in a month, the campaign raised a total of $4,000 for the nonprofit organization International Mountain Biking Association. This public interest marketing strategy successfully built Clif Bar an outdoor enthusiast with sincere social care.

TOMS launched the #WithoutShoes campaign, propagating that TOMS would donate one pair of shoes for every Instagram posts with this hashtag. No doubt that this campaign was a huge success with over 27,435 posts in a day – 27,435 children in 10 countries would receive new shoes! It has become a TOMS annual tradition now.


Staples is good at shortening the gap between itself and the followers. In some of the posts, the captions are like, “That’s pretty much our day. How about yours? Tell us in emojis.” And there were lots of fun comments underneath. This kind of call-to-action draws enormous attention from the followers.

That’s pretty much our day. How about yours? Tell us in emojis.

Staples(@staples)发的照片 ·

Target shares its shopping link on the profile page. When the followers click on it, they would be guided to a page that contains all its Instagram posts with Target products. Followers can click on the posts they like, and will be guided to the target shopping page.

Target Instagram Shop - Zentrope


Mercedes-Benz USA launched a promotion campaign on Instagram for their first compact SUV: GLA. Using the hashtag #GLAPacked, Mercedes-Benz posted pictures of weekend getaway items neatly placed on the customized GLA cargo mat. Those pictures left a long-lasting impression, and reinforced the brand value to its followers. It turned out that the website traffic was increased by 54% from the Instagram and Facebook ads, and the Instagram ads had a 14% increase.

In 2012, Ford launched a six-week photo contest for promoting their Ford Fiesta on Instagram whereas the followers could win prizes (final prize, a Ford Fiesta). Ford gave out a new hashtag every week about its high-tech feature. This strategy not only advertised for its new product, but also spread their high-end technology concepts out to more people.

Moreover, Ford was able to combine Instagram promotion to its offline events. During its auto show, Ford used the hashtags over their booth, and printed out popular posts from fans. This way Ford was able to engage the audience, and recall their brand awareness on Ford.


Bloom & Wild, the online flower store in London, picked the most popular picture based on statistics, and made it as the main Instagram Ads. As a result of the successful digital marketing, they were able to boost their bouquet orders by 62%. Many new customers not only bought the bouquet, but also left positive comments.

Bloom & Wild Instagram Campaign - Zentrope

Alex and Ani, the Jewelry maker from Rhode Island, utilized the once-a-year digital hashtags #Bonnaroo, #15YearsOfMagic, and #ConnectedByRoo from Bonnaroo (an annual music festival) to advertise their festival-friendly accessories. The sales of their special #MusicallyInspired products were largely boosted. Also, its cross-functional social media marketing was not in vain at all – it received over 75,000 likes on InstagramFacebook and Twitter.

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