These Brands are Killing It on Instagram

these brand are killing it on instagram

I love finding branding and marketing inspiration on Instagram and I’m loving the platform in general these days because the user experience is a lot more enjoyable than the toxic environment on Facebook. You can find out more about how we feel about THAT whole sitch here.

In my feed, I like to see posts from a mix of different kinds of companies because, as a marketer, I’m constantly paying attention to what other marketers are doing well. If you are a marketer or a small business owner, you might know what I mean. And I’d LOVE to see what profiles you’ve been following for ideas and inspiration. You can leave a comment below or Tweet at me and I’ll check it out your favorites.

Lately, I’ve been feeling an intense amount of marketing love for a few companies in particular.

  1. Moondeli
    Moondeli makes healthy tonics that can be added to nut milk, coffee, juices, and smoothies. Their ingredients feature some of the highest quality, most potent rainforest plants like turmeric, maca, and cacao.

Their branding enforces the “alternativeness” or, shall I say, traditional kind of health products they sell. (I always think it’s funny to call ingestion of ingredients that have been known for their health properties for hundreds and hundreds of years “alternative” just because we’ve made advancement in medicine. You can have both, you know?)

With Moondeli’s branding suite, you really do feel like you’ve been pulled into a community and an experience that centers around beauty and natural health. From their logo and typography to the corresponding symbols on their different products, they’ve created something that is attractive; something that possesses all of the right elements to get their target market’s attention.

 

<<photos of packaging on my IG account>>

They invest a lot in their photography as well. They are consistent in their themes, layouts, and colors -a ton of the flatlays feature crystals with a color palette of pinks, blues, greens, and greys. It’s that kind of ethereal feel that is earthy yet coming on trend. It’s just pretty and fun to look at.

🌑💜💭✨ #energytonic ✨ #almondmilk ✨ #amethyst ✨ #intentions

A post shared by 🌕 M O O N D E L I 🌕 (@moondeli) on

 

Something else they are doing right? User generated content. They’ve created a culture where their community feels so connected to Moondeli’s product, strangers are tagging away and the company ends up with a ton of free, beautiful content to fill their Instagram feed and build their credibility. Not only that, but it also seems that the community has taken cues from the company on what the aesthetics of a photo featuring a Moondelli product should look like.

And it’s in the customer’s interest to create a photo that Moondeli might share because it might help them grow THEIR OWN audience.

See what they did there?

Stunning capture by the radiant @sidneybensimon 🙌🌞💙✨#gratitude #plantmedicine #love

A post shared by 🌕 M O O N D E L I 🌕 (@moondeli) on

 

Finally, I love that Moondeli breaks down the barrier and rids the customer of the burden of HOW IN THE HECK to use their products. They frequently give tips on on new uses and include recipes in many of their posts. There’s also a recipes page on their website. This serves the purpose of eliminating hesitation to purchase because the viewer already knows specific ways they will use the product.

Enjoy some more of Moondeli’s eye candy and check out how I used some of their products here.

  1. Ox and Otter
    Shiyana of Ox and Otter is a ceramicist who runs her entire business with just an Instagram account (over 90k followers) and a SUPER SIMPLE website that currently features all of her sold out creations. Think about that next time you get caught up opening accounts and building elaborate websites when you should be focusing on your product.

 

My favorite handmade indulgences all in one- 🌿Pottery 🌿Rings 🌿Body Care

A post shared by Shiyana (@oxandotter) on

Shiyana creates beautiful, one of a kind ceramic mugs and bowls and is a self-described Ceramic Artist Glaze Witch. What’s fun about Ox and Otter is that you are following HER -the creator of the beautiful pieces that you might someday get to purchase if you can catch a mug in your cart before they all sell out. Since you see her often, posing with her Black Wave and Midnight Rose works of art that happen to hold coffee, you feel a much stronger connection with the brand. It’s that feeling of friendship that social media is so capable of creating between a person and their stranger-followers.

Ox and Otter has a look that users are clearly responding to, so Shiyana is smart to focus on creating variations of the same kind of design, “milking” what is already working for her.

One thing that I love most about Shiyana’s content is the amount of effort she puts into her photoshoots. Rest assured, there WILL BE color coordinated nail polish that compliments the mug on display and everything from her makeup and clothes to the background reinforces the branding. Really, it’s just her taste that is very unique, beautiful, and focused.

 

  1. Liberated Heart
    With the ultimate summer/festival wear, Liberated Heart is also tapping into the witchy, celestial vibe that Moondeli and Ox and Otter have done so well. They operate mainly between their Instagram Account and website.

When the brand launched in 2013, it gained a cult following and became a  leader in festival fashion and, after that an additional surge in attention when model Candace Swanepoel was photographed wearing one of their dresses. Then, the company focused on engaging the influx of commenters on their Instagram photos, which really paid off for them.

I think that Liberated Heart manages their ratio of content expertly. It’s a good mix of straight product promotion to sell specific items for their catalog and themes like desert scenes, palm trees, beach frolicking that support the branding so well.

Weekend setup vibes ✨✨✨ @lisadanielle__

A post shared by LIBERATED HEART (@liberatedheart) on

 

  1. Room Service Vintage
    I used to shop at Room Service for most of my furniture and a lot of my decor during the time I lived in Austin, Texas. I continued following them for years after I moved because I love to torture myself with vintage steals that I can never have because they don’t ship.

Room Service uses their Instagram account to sell the pieces they post by allowing a 2 hour hold on items. They even keep the posts updated with their “sold” status and it obviously works well for them.

Cherry Blossom Pink Recliner with Cane sides, 42″ t x 25″ w x 28″ d, $149.00 -SOLD-

A post shared by Room Service Austin, Texas (@roomservicevintage) on

Their photos aren’t that fancy and there aren’t any posts created “just for looks” -this is a purely functional account. It simply a catalog and they get enough high quality pieces in to be able to develop leads on Instagram.

It’s these little tricks that can work for small business -something you might want to keep in mind if you deal with one-of-a-kind retail.

 

Do you have any favorite non-major brands that you follow on Instagram for inspiration? I’d love to know what you are paying attention to. Tweet at me or respond in the comments below.

How to Build a Brand: What I’ve Learned

In this blog post, we’re going to point you in the right direction so you can build a brand that is lean and focus on the real priorities of launching a business.

What’s the role of a brand? How do brands really work? How can you find a winning branding concept and…wait. Let’s actually get into to that in a minute.

So, what’s the role of a brand?

Think of a brand as the hand that reaches out to shake the hands of customers and partners each time they come in contact with your company. Each time the customer interacts, this is really a touchpoint; an opportunity for you to build (or hopefully not lose) credibility as a business.

These are places like the homepage of your website, whenever the customer receives a message from the company, when they read something about your company, when they see your logo on a product, when they speak with somebody on your team.

For example, one of the most important touch points is the very first time that the customer sees your brand.

I want to take this opportunity to share some thoughts with you about branding. First of all, I encourage you to plunge your audience directly into value. Let me give you an example.

When Eazl launched, we created this website that took us hours to build. It was beautiful but, really, did it add any value to what our audience was going to be experiencing when they first interacted with Eazl? The answer is no.

When people know that Eazl is a learning company, what they want to do is jump right into some of the content that we create. We’re a content creation company. So, what we did is we rerouted our domain from eazl.co to go directly to ourYouTube channel and what that does is it plunges people right into the content.

For a long time, we were getting people that went right to the YouTube channel really got to work with Eazl’s stuff, and sometimes would subscribe to our YouTube channel, which built our community. Versus having this worthless website that nobody really got anything from.

So, I encourage you find a way to bring your audience right into value when they first interact with you and your brand.

Second, let’s talk about what a brand is really for.

Early on, when I was launching businesses,I used to think , “Oh, I need to create these really cool brands that are going to dazzle people because they are so attractive and sleek and unique and cool.”

In reality, I promise you that almost nobody is going to see your brand and be like, “Whoa, that brand is so cool that I’m going to buy whatever they’re selling.”

That’s just not how brands work.

Instead, I encourage you to think of your brand as a tool for increasing the chances that your audience wants to interact with your company.

I’m going to call this your Brand Boost.

What can you do with your brand that is just going to increase those chances that strangers are going to want to interact with your company and see what you have to offer?

Your brand boost is when you design your brand to communicate one message to your tribe that will help them overcome an objection or increase their desire to interact with your company. Primarily, there are one of two ways to use this Brand Boost.

First, to overcome a key objection. Looking back on your audience interviews during the research phase of your building, do you see patterns within the people that you interviewed? For example, do they have a common objection of fear and hesitation with your business concept.

Alternatively, you can highlight a “wow factor”. Is there some critical element to your offering that if people only knew that one thing they be much more likely to become a customer?

You’re going to want to pick one of these two to be your Brand Boost and think of it like this: “My brand will increase conversions by showing total strangers that ________.”

Here’s some really pronounced examples.

Here’s an example of overcoming a blockage. There’s a company called Acceptance Auto Insurance. They’re basically overcoming the objection that many potential customers don’t think that they’re going to be accepted by the auto insurance company.

eazl build a brand
Acceptance Auto Insurance used their branding to address a common hesitation that car insurance shoppers have.

Alternatively, here’s an example of a brand built around a key feature: Minute Rice. Just from the name alone, you know that this rice is designed to be made in just a few minutes.

build-a-brand-minute-rice
Minute built their brand around their product’s key feature.

As I mentioned earlier, when I was a less experienced entrepreneur, I used to believe that the logo was so important and needed to dazzle people so people would think it’s really cool.

In reality, your logo will create little if any value for your tribe. Instead, let me tell you how logos really work.

A logo works because, over time, you project value onto the logo and your audience starts to associate your logo with value.

Tweet this: A logo works because, over time, you project value onto the logo and your audience starts to associate your logo with value.

For example, if they have repeated successful interactions with your company, they’re going to start associating that logo with trust. If you do marketing and advertising, you’re going to be able to cause that logo to be positioned in people’s mind in a way that helps your organization. Finally, if you’re around for a long time, your logo is going to be associated with credibility and longevity.

That’s what we really mean by lean branding.

What’s important here is that you start, you get to market, and you expect your brand to evolve over time instead of spending so much of your precious time energy on the front end working on a symbol.

Here are some key takeaways:

  1. In every interaction point between your brand and customers or your partners, you have a brand touch. If possible, you want to engineer the introduction touchpoint of your brand such that the customer is immediately experiencing value.

2) Engineer your brand or your Brand Boost to overcome common objections or highlight a “wow factor” if appropriate.

3) Logos themselves don’t create value. Instead, a brand builds value over time by earning the trust of their stakeholders.

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