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May 27, 2016 Last updated on November 24th, 2017
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Instagram has always been a fashion-friendly space, and from the beginning, retailers wasted no time in making their mark on the platform. Female fashion in particular is positively booming on Instagram, so we wanted to find out how they use the network to gain followers, up engagement and increase their popularity via the platform.

Here are 3 cunning ways fashion retailers use Instagram to boost their engagement and encourage sales.

1. They post frequently

And by frequently I mean multiple times per day. The rule book on posting frequency kind of goes out the window when it comes to retail on Instagram. Take H&M, Asos and Calvin Klein for example, who all post to Instagram more than 10 times per week, and Net-A-Porter posts on average a massive 26 media per week.

Screen Shot 2016-05-25 at 14.00.51
Posting frequency for @netaporter for the last day, 7 days and 30 days. See more stats like this on index.iconosquare.com

Don’t forget…

Becoming a “top-of-mind” brand is increasingly difficult in today’s market, with so many brands big and small all over the internet. So a brand has to stand out and differentiate from its competition in a big way. When combined with great quality content that is interesting and exciting, remaining constantly present in a user’s feed is a good way of ensuring memorability for a brand.

But be warned: there is a fine line between being “present” and being annoying. Chances are, your followers aren’t just on Instagram to follow your brand, so if your posting frequency is excessively high, you will more than likely lose followers due to annoyance.

A photo posted by ASOS (@asos) on

A photo posted by H&M (@hm) on

2. They put the product center-stage

When posting purely about their products, the model and the surroundings seem to fade into the background. The product is placed at the forefront and staged in a way that really enhances it.

A photo posted by H&M (@hm) on

Fashion brands are also really taking advantage of user-generated content, by using it to market their products by simply reposting fans’ media. Check out these great pieces of UGC, which @calvinklein were able to repurpose on their Instagram:

Check out the first ever UGC based TV ad in this blog post on why UGC could be the future of brand advertising.

Always remember…

People use Instagram to share photos of their lives and check out others’ pictures – not to have products pushed at them. If they have intent to buy, they’ll go to a shop or an e-commerce site, not to Instagram. A retailer’s job on Instagram is the difficult task of planting the idea in the user’s head to make them want to go to the shop.

3. They don’t post about their products

To counter the previous point completely, another interesting thing fashion retailers do is post on subjects unrelated to their products. Check out these posts from @asos and @netaporter for example…

A photo posted by ASOS (@asos) on

A photo posted by NET-A-PORTER (@netaporter) on

Why do retailers do this? Storytelling around the product is a good way of keeping followers interested by offering a global vision of the lifestyle that the brand represents.

Are you a fashion retailer? Do you have any savvy ways of using Instagram to market your brand? We would love your input in the comments!

About the author
Emily Marsh

Emily Marsh

Emily is an Inbound Marketer for Iconosquare, based in the Limoges office. She loves all things social and revels in keeping on top of the social media marketing game by writing for the blog. She’s also a bit obsessed with sushi and Netflix.

More posts by Emily Marsh

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