B2B Brands Have LinkedIn Followers, But Engagement On Instagram

The Fortune 500 Instagram Report and analysis by TrackMaven, examining the usage of Instagram including their posting strategies for follower growth and engagement, finds that there are a few major areas of disconnect between how major brands use Instagram, and how consumers engage with brands on Instagram.

Fortune 500 companies do most of their posting during East Coast business hours. In fact, Fortune 500 brands dramatically favor the 9 a.m. through 9 p.m. ET timeframe for Instagram posting. 88% of Fortune 500 Instagram photos are posted within this 12 hour window. The least popular time to post among Fortune 500 brands is between midnight and 8 a.m. ET.

Instagram posts published between 10 p.m. and 3 a.m. ET time, by Fortune 500 companies, see the highest average engagement level, compared to the average engagement for Fortune 500 Instagram posts, says the report. Posts published in this window see 6.15% to 8.78% more engagement than the average Instagram post from a Fortune 500 brand. The worst time to post on Instagram for Fortune 500 brands is between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. ET. Posts published within this window see 4.18% to 6.58% less engagement than average.

Videos are a different story, says the report. The video functionality is relatively new on Instagram, and as a result, the data set is small. But the report reveals that consumers are more likely to interact with Instagram videos during non-work hours.

Fortune 500 brands post their videos primarily during work hours, just like their pictures. During work hours, an average of 22.5 out of every 1000 Instagram followers interacted with videos posted by Fortune 500 companies. During off-hours, 33.4 out of every 1000 followers interacted with the content, which is nearly 50% higher. And finally, on the weekends, followers interacted with videos at a rate of 25.7. The report suggest that some consumers are probably reluctant to watch videos, which may include an audio component, while they are at work.

Many industry-defining B2B brands have not only embraced social, but have completely changed the game with innovative social strategies, says an adjacent report on social media strategy. 

12 months of social media content from 316 leading B2B brands across five key social networks, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Pinterest, shows a grand total of 508,060 social media posts and over 100 million social interactions. The 316 brands featured in the analysis include the leading B2B brands in the Global 500 and B2B leaders.

A few takeaways in the report from the brands B2B industries excelling on social media include:

Biotech, engineering, and financial services brands have both substantial audience growth and high content engagement on social media, indicating impactful social content. The financial services industry’s 81.77% average follower growth per brand is especially impressive given the industry’s large median social following, says the report.

Brands in the machinery sector see the highest social media audience growth, with average annual follower growth across all five major networks of 129.02%. Engaging content is a correlated factor; social media content from machinery brands is ahead of the B2B pack, as indicated by its high engagement.

Across the B2B landscape, biotech brands have the most engaged social media audiences with an average engagement ratio of 12.46. Financial services brands are a distant second at 9.94

According to the research, LinkedIn is the big B2B winner, based on brand popularity follower count. The median social media audience size for B2B brands is:

  • 109,000 followers on LinkedIn
  • 34,000 page likes on Facebook
  • 18,000 followers on Twitter
  • 3,000 followers on Instagram
  • 420 followers on Pinterest

LinkedIn is B2B marketers’ social channel of choice, used by 94% of B2B marketers, and the 10 most-liked brands on LinkedIn are all B2B brands, says the report.

Looking at B2B brand popularity by content engagement, the average engagement ratio (number of interactions per post per 1,000 followers) for B2B brands on each social network, Instagram is by far the B2B powerhouse. The average engagement ratio for B2B brands is:

  • 22.53 on Instagram
  • 15.88 on Pinterest
  • 5.99 on Facebook
  • 1.09 on LinkedIn
  • 0.86 on Twitter

The report concludes by noting that: “Overall, B2B brands have the largest audience on LinkedIn — 36 times the median number of followers they have on Instagram. But B2B brands get 20 times more engagement on Instagram than on LinkedIn.”

For additional information about the study, and a free copy of the Fortune 500 report, please visit here.




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