Sin­ga­pore brands are lever­ag­ing IG sto­ries to cre­ate value and en­gage­ment

In­sta­gram sto­ries ac­count for nearly a fifth of brand im­pres­sions, which in­di­cates its strong or­ganic reach.

Singapore Business Review - - CONTENTS -

When Sin­ga­pore Air­lines bagged the most cov­eted recog­ni­tion in com­mer­cial avi­a­tion in­dus­try - Air­line of the Year Award - dur­ing the Sky­trax World Air­line Awards in July 2018, it speaks vol­ume not only of the Asian car­rier’s commitment to ex­cel­lence and cus­tomer com­fort, but also of its pop­u­lar­ity amongst global travellers who use their ser­vices. A sig­nif­i­cant part of Sin­ga­pore Air­lines’ pop­u­lar­ity is due to their im­pec­ca­ble us­age of the in­ter­net and so­cial me­dia, par­tic­u­larly In­sta­gram, in pro­mot­ing their prod­ucts and ser­vices and en­gag­ing the mil­lions of clients they serve.

A quick look at the Sto­ries - a se­ries of 15-sec­ond clips or pho­tos that usu­ally ex­pire in 24 hours but can also be saved and pinned in­def­i­nitely - of Sin­ga­pore Air­lines’ In­sta­gram ac­count shows the level of crafts­man­ship and sto­ry­telling that the car­rier’s mar­ket­ing and so­cial me­dia teams have been show­ing. Some of the Sto­ries also em­ploy the best fea­tures that the tool has to of­fer - from mak­ing a game where users can tap on the Sto­ries to help a fic­tional char­ac­ter called “Bert” have the best sleep ever in his busi­ness class seat, by help­ing him turn his seat into a bed, pro­vid­ing him a blan­ket, dim­ming his win­dow, and giv­ing him a pil­low and a sleep­ing mask. Not only did the Sto­ries al­low bet­ter en­gage­ment with the air­lines’ clients, but the tool also served as an ef­fec­tive in­for­ma­tion cam­paign for the state-of-the-art and top-of-the-line ser­vices that they of­fer, which in­clude a seat that re­clines into a bed in Sin­ga­pore Air­lines’ Boe­ing 787-10 Dream­liner fleet.

“For brands look­ing to en­hance their brand aware­ness and cre­ate a more per­son­alised touch, util­is­ing In­sta­gram Sto­ries is a great way as it en­ables brands to in­crease en­gage­ment and or­ganic vis­i­bil­ity,” said Charles Tidswell, Vice Pres­i­dent for JAPAC at So­cial­bak­ers.“singaporea­n brands which have ex­celled in us­ing In­sta­gram Sto­ries to en­gage their au­di­ences are Sin­ga­pore Air­lines and Changi Air­port.”

Sin­ga­pore Air­lines have also utilised the “poll” fea­ture of

In­sta­gram Sto­ries and have used it ef­fec­tively not only in bet­ter en­gag­ing with their cus­tomers but also in mar­ket­ing their grow­ing in-flight of­fer­ings to their travellers, which in the case of their sto­ries in­clude a poll ask­ing peo­ple what movies they should watch whilst in the flight. The car­rier also utilised the swipe-up fea­ture, which al­lows users to be prompted to a sep­a­rate web page for more in­for­ma­tion about their prod­ucts and of­fer­ings. This is on top of the icons and stick­ers that Sin­ga­pore Air­lines have made avail­able to their clients, of­fer­ing them a whole pack to use when they travel, in­clud­ing the air­lines’ logo.

“It comes as no sur­prise that In­sta­gram is the per­fect plat­form to show­case vis­ual con­tent,” Tidswell said.

Cre­at­ing valu­able nar­ra­tives

Re­search by So­cial­bak­ers sug­gest that the vol­ume of brands post­ing In­sta­gram Sto­ries has in­creased four times over the course of 2018, with short 15-sec­ond clips boast­ing over 400 mil­lion daily ac­tive users. Tidswell also shared that In­sta­gram Sto­ries is a great way for mar­keters to gen­er­ate or­ganic con­tent on the plat­form with all the in­ter­ac­tive fea­tures it en­tails, as com­pared to the usual In­sta­gram posts that are “con­sumed pas­sively”.

“In­sta­gram sto­ries ac­count for about 19% of brand im­pres­sions (to­tal num­ber of times your Story was viewed),” he said. “Whilst this may seem in­signif­i­cant, this ac­tu­ally makes up a third of im­pres­sions earned - an im­pres­sive in­di­ca­tor of or­ganic reach. If a brand’s fo­cus is sim­ple just pub­lish­ing posts, close to a quar­ter of im­pres­sions will be lost if In­sta­gram Sto­ries is not utilised.”

The time lim­i­ta­tion of 15 sec­onds, ac­cord­ing to Fire­fly Pho­tog­ra­phy Chief Mar­ket­ing Of­fi­cer (CMO) Benny

Chow, is also help­ing re­shape how the mar­ket­ing de­part­ments of com­pa­nies and brands ap­proach their mar­ket­ing cam­paigns, spurring cre­ativ­ity in a new plat­form that of­fers more in­ter­ac­tion than ever be­fore. Chow cited the ex­am­ple of Changi Air­port, which or­gan­ises a lot of events and attraction­s within the vicin­ity, mak­ing it not only one of the most premier travelling hubs in Asia but in­creas­ingly be­com­ing a tourist at­trac­tion.

Brands and com­pa­nies need to have an un­der­stand­ing on what makes a good story in a sto­ry­telling ecosys­tem as In­sta­gram Sto­ries can be an in­dis­pens­able tool for brands and com­pa­nies to gen­er­ate trans­par­ent con­tent that is de­liv­ered both ef­fi­ciently and with the in­tended ef­fect. “Con­tent does not have to be per­fect - but rather the con­tent pushed out has to res­onate with fans and fol­low­ers alike,” he con­cluded.

The vol­ume of brands post­ing In­sta­gram Sto­ries has in­creased four times over the course of 2018

Changi Air­port makes good use of IG sto­ries to brand the travel hub as a tourist at­trac­tion

Charles Tidswell

Benny Chow

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