Ad agencies struggle with engagement on Instagram

Lindsay Bennett
By Lindsay Bennett | 6 May 2016

Advertising agencies remain at the bottom of the industries on Instagram by average engagement with their audience, according to Online Circle Digital's second local analysis of the social media platform.

The digital agency's Instagram Performance Report, which examined more than 550 Australian brands and influencers by followers and engagemen from 1 January to 31 March, revealed Ogilvy, OMD, Isobar and Cummins&Partners are a few of the marketing agencies who have increased their follower growth. However, their average engagement rate still lags behind other industries and brands.

Online Circle Digital head of strategy and deliver Lucio Ribeiro spoke to AdNews about marketing agencies' activity on Instagram. Riberio says: “We were curious to see how those behind the brands were doing themselves. Someone on our data team asked the question, "We are advising brands on Instagram, but are we doing anything there?"

Surfwear brands, including Quiksilver, Billabong, Volcom Stone and Rip Curl Australia, continue to dominate as the most successful accounts on Instagram.

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"Successful Instagram accounts use images that transport users to another place, giving a sneak peak behind the scenes or taking us to a beautiful beach somewhere in Australia," Riberio says.

In the fast food category McDonald's and KFC have the largest following, interestingly followed by newcomer THR1VE (featured below) which only launched its Instragram page six months ago. Boost Juice was found to have the highest engagement rate in the beverage category, followed by Greene Street Juice Co.


The rise of the health food Instagram accounts ties into the trend towards and health and fitness and the popularity of #fitspo on the platform.

When broken down by category, Mercedez-Benz topped the list in automotive with 39,129 followers; Frank Body had the edge in the beauty category with 680,579 followers. Woolworths beat Coles in the grocery category with 40,794 followers, and BetterHomesandGardens took the leading spot in the news and magazines category with 470,061 followers.

Travel is an upcoming category, with the @australia Instagram, Discover Tasmania and @thisisqueensland all landing themselves in the top 30 Instagram accounts by engagement.

Not surprisingly, influencers are the number one industry on Instagram by followers and rates of engagement, with health and fitness Instragammer Kayla Itsines, who starred in a recent Apple campaign, topping the list.

Ribeiro says: “Although there are many categories doing well, like travel, retail, and sports, others categories have a great opportunity to rise in Australia. Beauty and automotive when compared to other countries still have an opportunity to expand in Australia.”

You can read the full report here.

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