With Instagram hitting 700 million active users this year, it’s no wonder that majority of local and global brands are turning their marketing strategy towards it. U.S consumers are reported to spend 5 hours per day on their mobile devices most of which is probably on social media like Instagram. Brands thus create Instagram accounts to raise brand awareness and market their products on a platform that consumers are constantly exposed to.
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The dilemma then comes when brands decide between managing one global account or multiple accounts for individual countries. This article rolls out the deciding factors in helping brands make that decision.
Here we compare 2 types of accounts of internationally renowned coffee shop Costa Coffee.
Costa Coffee’s global account, @costacoffee, stands at 217k followers. For accounts catered to UAE, Polska, Kuwait, Kazakhstan and the Philippines, their total following only amounts to 91.8k. Needless to say, their global account takes the cake here. If your campaign intends to reach out to a larger number of people, post it on your global account.
Now let’s take a look at where their followers come from.
(Country demographics was taken from Popular Chips Insights )
There’s a clear distinction in the statistics that the global accounts attract a majority of following from where the shop originates from. For global account @costacoffee, it’s the UK. The global account, therefore, reaches out to a majority of UK locals whereas their Polish account, @costacoffeepolska, has a majority following from Poland itself.
What this means is that global accounts are good for global campaigns which target a huge mass. However, for local campaigns which aim to reach a larger audience specific to a country, statistics favors multiple accounts specific to countries.
The number of following is important for any Instagram account. However, we must also see if the posts and campaigns are really engaging the audience, or if people just turn a deaf ear (or rather a deaf finger) to it.
(Engagement Analysis was taken from Popular Chips Insights )
Here I use Popular Chips Insights to see how interactive the average post of these accounts is. As you can see, the global account of Starbucks, @starbucks, is less than half as interactive as the one targeting the specific country- which in this case, is @starbucks_j (Japan). This is likely due to the audience feeling more relatable to the influencers and campaigns which feature their language and surrounding, rather than just a general campaign marketing a brand.
Ask Yourself: Am I Relevant?
In case you haven’t already realized, social media marketing is a science. It takes more than just opening up an Instagram account to get the word out about your product, but instead, requires careful research and thought about who exactly you’re targeting and what characteristics they comprise of. Therefore I’d say that the most important thing about considering this dilemma is to ask: “Am I relevant?” If your answer is no, to any particular audience, chances are, your campaigns are going to flop, or worse, people will start to unfollow you.
The smartest thing to do is what these coffee shop brands do, and come up with a general global account to target the international masses, as well as individual accounts specific to the country. A global account allows you to increase brand awareness to the general public. And while that sounds promising, one has to be wary of aiming multiple targets but hitting none of them. To counter this, make your campaigns relevant to specific audiences by opening multiple local accounts. Managing country-specific accounts gives your brand a persona that’s relevant to local audiences and ensures that no one gets left out, a danger that single global accounts risk.