Bursting onto the social media scene in 2011, Instagram quickly and aggressively made a name for itself. With the old-school simplicity of a Polaroid camera, and the tag-insanity of Twitter, Instagram turns your iPhone into an insanely cool photo studio. Click the self-explanatory camera icon, run your shot through a variety of crazy filters, and voila—your followers can now appreciate the beauty of life through your eyes. Users can @tag friends and followers, #hashtag their witty captions and comments, and then choose whether or not they’d like to share their newest masterpiece on their Twitter or Facebook accounts. Brands, retailers and athletes are jumping on the Instagram bandwagon in droves, giving fans a literal peek behind the scenes. Followers can now see events, athletes, gear, and their favorite products actually being used. Shameless self-promotion at its finest—what better marketing could a company ask for?
The real question is what makes a brand stand out in the densely populated Insta-nation? How does a company attract a mass following, and once popularity is attained, how do you keep fans entertained? We took a look at what brands are doing it well, and how.