How brands are really embracing Instagram in Middle East

Instagram_Icon_LargeIf you are reading this blog post then you are probably aware about the story of Instagram and it’s massive growth. This photo sharing (and now video sharing) Mobile app grew from zero to 130 million monthly active users in 2 years and 7 months only (yes that’s monthly number of active users).

On July 16, 2013 Instagram’s Press Center page mentioned of having 130m Million Active users with 45 Million Photos shared & 1 Billion Likes EVERY day.

instagram-statistics

After 11 months the growth is phenomenal as today Instagram has 200m MAU (+54%), 20 Billion (+25%) photos shared and capturing 1.6 Billion Likes daily (+60%).

Instagram Statistics 12 June 2014

Brands in Saudi Arabia, UAE or Kuwait or near by Middle Eastern countries have tried to be part of this phenomenal growth and some of them have really embraced this social channel. In Kuwait particularly, Instagram accounts are big business as a whole Instaconomy culture running behind it.

Let’s look at how some of leading Brands in Middle East are using Instagram.

McDonald’s Arabia

Instagram Username: mcdonaldsarabia
Total Followers: 160,898 (12th June, 2014)

McDonald’s Arabia has showcased an amazing strategy of using the crowd sourced photographs from their loyal fans and mixing it with offline campaign based updates. A good number of re-posted pictures clicked by McDonald’s followers can be found on brand’s Instagram page which shows a great two-way loyalty connection between the brand & the Followers.

McDonald’s award Followers by re-posting their content on Brand’s Instagram Page & even on Facebook Page which is very well appreciated by Followers and has generated positive results for the brand in terms of both loyalty & engagement on Social channels.

(Disclaimer: I consult for McDonald’s Arabia  as they being a client of my employer Leo Burnett Dubai)

McDonald's Arabia Instagram McDonald's Arabia Instagram McDonald's Arabia Instagram McDonald's Arabia Instagram

BySymphony

Instagram Username: bysymphony
Total Followers: 53,996 (12th June, 2014)

Symphony is Dubai’s leading fashion Boutique shop located in prestigious Dubai Mall and renowned for it’s luxurious collection of clothing. Symphony’s product line & Instagram strategy both are targeted to affluent women and it reflect pretty well in the variety of pictures posted on the page.

Promoting the In-Store Sale

Symphony Dubai Instagram

Building Membership for the Loyalty Program

BySymphony Instagram

Cross Social Channel Marketing

BySymphony Instagram

Generating Offline Sales through Instagram

BySymphony Instagram

Extending the Instagram Outreach by using Brand Ambassadors

Symphony Dubai Instagram

This is one of the absolutely amazing tactic that is used by Symphony is to extend it’s social outreach by tapping into leading Fashion bloggers network from the region and using them as voice of the Brand. BySymphony contracted 4 leading Fashion bloggers in the region to take over BySymphony’s Instagram page and help them promote #TastemakerTakeover concept.

  • Ascia AKF, A Kuwaiti/American turban tying blogger/designer has more than 790,151 Followers on her Instagram pageas (as on 12th June, 2014).
  • Latifa Al Shamsi, run her own blog and has got close to 60,673 followers on a “private” Instagram account (as on 12th June, 2014).
  • Confashions, A fashion and lifestyle blogger from Kuwait has got nearly 52,590 Followers on Instagram (as on 12th June, 2014).
  • Tala Samman, Founder of Myfashdiary.com – a leading Fashion blog in Middle East. She has got 38,687 Followers on Instagram (as on 12th June, 2014).

Great Instagraming BySymphony!

Topshop Middle East

Instagram Username: topshop_me
Total Followers: 41,707 (as on 12th June, 2014)

Topshop is another Fashion brand from Middle East which is using Instagram to successfully augment their social media presence along with Facebook & Twitter. I was not able to find any reference to TopShop Middle East website on any of their social channels (not even on Google) which shows that Topshop is one of those brands that have decided to live completely on Social media and not to have any local Website presence.

Endorsements of Topshop products by Famous celebrities

Many references can be seen on Topshop_me Instagram page where they have posted pictures of famous celebrities wearing Topshop clothes.

Topshop_me Instagram

Creative use of Instagram for announcements

Topshop Middle East Instagram

The Dubai Mall

Instagram Username: TheDubaiMall
Total Followers: 82,626 (as on 12th June, 2014)

Dubai Mall is leading the category made up of all Malls of Dubai when it comes to Social Media. They have 477,000 Fans on their Facebook Page, 66,000 Followers on Twitter & 31,000 Followers on Instagram.

On Instagram, Dubai Mall is promoting content of various retail outlets within The Dubai Mall. Be it launch of a new store, announcements on Iftar meals, promotion of a sales of certain store and even promoting competitions by retail brands situated within the mall. They mix all this content with Trivia’ questions, awesome pictures of Burj Khalifa, Dubai Mall Fountain, etc.

The Dubai Mall Instagram

Cruciani Dubai

Instagram Username: cruciani_uae
Total Followers: 28,187 (as on 12th June, 2014)

Cruciani is an Italian brand that has established themselves in luxury category with their Bracelets which are considered as a style symbol among affluent category buyers. Cruciani strategy on Instagram is very simple but extremely powerful. In all of their posts they have made their product as “hero” and have used a variety of different styles to present their product in front of their followers.

Product as Hero in every image 

Cruciani Dubai

Instagram Competitions – Repost, Tag, Get Likes & Win 5 Cruciani Bracelets

Cruciani Dubai

Tags, Tags, Tags & More Tags

Not sure how if this is helping the brand but Cruciani seems to add a lot of tags to their posts.

Cruciani Dubai

Cruciani Dubai

Cruciani Dubai

Good work Cruciani!

Until I did this research on use of Instagram I was not fully convinced with the potential of this platform but now I am sure that this Social Platform can do wonders for any brand especially because pictures say a lot more than words do it.

Do you have any other examples of great Instagram strategy that you would like to share with world? Feel free to write about in the comments below.

Like above Post?

Subscribe here to get all the blog updates in your inbox as soon as they are published.

 

You can also follow Author on Twitter