Sci & Tech

Social Media Helping Business

Auto & Tech Desk
Social Media Helping Business
Social Media Helping Business

Several social media networks have come and gone. Instagram is trying to demonstrate longevity.

The online mobile photo and video sharing social networking service, originally cofounded by duo Kevin Systrom and Mike Kireger in 2010 as an instant messaging system, quickly morphed into a photo-only application.  

The community has now changed into a photo sharing website and has come to grow to more than 200 million people in just a few years. In April 2013, the network had become so prominent that Facebook bought the company for $1 billion.

The application, with the passage of time, has become the defacto "cool medium" in which artists and photographers use their page to promote brands.

Given the number of active users on Instagram, it was only a matter of time before the marketing value of the social networking service was noticed by business.

To reach out to a wider range of customers, several major brands frequently singled out "Instagrammers" with attractive feeds: replete with charming  images and followed by many users.

Companies such as Nike, Toyota, and Turkish Airlines, among others, have teamed up with famous users to spread their advertising messages.

Samsung loaned popular photographers a Samsung S4 with a 13 mp camera for a week, asking them to use the phone and reflect on their experience; a measure which helped earn the brand more exposure.

  Steady Stream

Targeting users who not only have plenty of followers but also a refined eye for photography has also become popular with brands in Iran. With a steady stream of followers these users help brand names gain traction.

With the collaboration of Badkoobeh Advertising Agency, Shahrzad Tea, launched an Instagram competition earlier this year, calling on all interested users to use the hash tag #LahzehayeNab (literally: precious moments) on their tea-themed photos.

Enthusiasts entered the competition to attain the most 'likes' they could by 'tagging' their friends below the photos and inviting them to 'like' it. By the end of the competition, the photo with the most number of 'likes' was announced as the winner.  Other contestants also received a box of tea.    

The online shopping website selected people and sent them a complimentary package. Users were asked to post a photo of the goods they had received and elaborate on the experience in the caption.

More recently, soft-drinks maker Rani launched a new campaign asking Iranian users to take photos drinking the canned fruit juice. The winner was offered an all expenses paid holiday to Istanbul.

However, not all fans enjoy being shown products, with some actively leaving the site due to the perceived corporate encroachment.


Creative value has materialized in Iran, where Instagram has become an inspiring medium, specifically in the form of art and craft.

Home businesses such as hand-made shoes, dresses, camera straps, or homemade pastries, continue to sprout out and use the site to promote themselves.  

The site remains popular for now; however, social media trends and popularity have a way of separating at times. This can be said for websites like Cloob which have seen a marked decline in their user base in the past two years. Instagram has the market in Iran, but it could become another footnote in Iran's advertising history like many before it.