In October, I wrote over on the Webs blog about the introduction of advertising to Instagram and how you can optimize the social platform for your small business.

In 2014, Instagram made a series of updates to their platform expanding this opportunity for businesses to attract customers and gain revenue even further. Most notably, they added tagging, creative tools, and Instagram Direct, a feature that allows a user to send private messages (much like Twitter DM).

However, despite all of these new features, brands didn’t fully jump on the Instagram marketing bandwagon. Sure there were a few attempts – like Buffalo Wild Wings with Instagram Direct, and Mazda with their Interactive Roadmap – but in actuality, most brands still struggled with how to make these features connect with their business goals and make spending time on this platform worthwhile…

Enter IKEA.

With the help of the advertising agency, Instinct, the Russia division of IKEA broke ground in establishing an astounding and comprehensive marketing strategy on Instagram: creating a website within the app itself.

To introduce the PS 2014 Collection, the ikea_ps_2014 account was debuted to resemble the IKEA catalog online. This account is to be used much like a typical website homepage with a menu to link to the brand’s most popular categories – Benches, Tables, Storage, Light, Textiles and Ideas.

When clicking on the category of your choice, you will be prompted to “Tap the Picture” to reveal that every product featured in the photo is tagged with a corresponding account name, like “ps_laptop_station.”

Ikea tagged image

If you click-through to this tagged account, you will find all of the product information, pricing and additional photos, much like your typical landing page.

What I really love is that they brought the strategy full circle by keeping it about the consumer. In the video below, they explain how their hope is to spark inspiration for your own style and design. And in doing so, IKEA asks users to upload how they have incorporated the new products into their own homes and be sure to tag the account for the appropriate item.

IKEA PS: Instagram Website from Instinct on Vimeo.

Bravo! Not only are they combining Instagram with their other marketing collateral (their catalog and website), they are keeping the strategy about Instagram – a platform that is centered on showing off your style with the glamour of filters and frames.

But let’s break down what truly makes this a brilliant strategy:

The frustration that many business owners have with the limitations of Instagram is that they can show all the products the want to, but at the end of the day they still can’t link back to their website and make that interaction profitable. While this new model doesn’t necessarily solve that issue, it gets us pretty close. If business owners can’t take you to their website, they can bring their website to you.

With this fun and interactive take on Instagram, I believe IKEA and Instinct have truly revolutionized the potential for the social platform. It proves that a little creativity and thinking outside the box can break the mold of a feared revenue model and connect it to their brand identity and business goals.

What do you think about IKEA’s Instagram strategy? Have you found a way to utilize Instagram to your business’ advantage?

Share with us in the comments!

About the Author: Deanna Zaucha is the Content Marketing Coordinator for Pagemodo, and also manages our social media presence. Can be found on a dance floor, or on her iPhone keeping up with trends in marketing and tech.

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