The BMW brand’s international Instagram channel has broken through the ten million followers’ mark, making it the most successful automotive brand on Instagram worldwide.
The impressive figure of 10,000,000 followers underlines the BMW brand’s commitment to social media. For BMW marketing, Instagram is more than just another digital communication channel. BMW uses its Instagram channel to share the BMW brand lifestyle with its followers – through the latest news on upcoming models, glimpses of its own history or looking ahead to the future of mobility. With its clear focus on strong visuals and a highly-interactive community, Instagram is the ideal channel for communicating the brand values of joy (“sheer driving pleasure”), aesthetic appeal and innovation. However, growing the community is not top priority. It is more important to cover a wide variety of topics with relevant content that appeals to users and increases their involvement in the form of likes, shares and comments. The BMW Instagram channel impresses with its targeted, long-term channel management and regular publication of emotionally-engaging content.
In addition to effective influencer marketing, the brand also celebrates the involvement and enthusiasm of each individual fan. Under the hashtag #bmwrepost, BMW shares photos taken by enthusiasts and hobby photographers with the community in appreciation of its loyal fans around the globe. Where else can you get this close to a brand and share your own photo millions of times? User activation through #bmwrepost has been a resounding success. It is no coincidence that #BMW has already been used more than 19 million times and is by far the most popular brand hashtag in the automotive sector.
“The aim of our social media strategy is to optimise how we use the special features of the specific channels available to us,” explains Jörg Poggenpohl, Head of Digital Marketing BMW. “Instagram is made for initiating authentic dialogue with followers worldwide. It is important to us not only to celebrate our own achievements, but, above all, to share the excitement and enthusiasm of our fans and customers with an audience of millions.”
BMW marketing was quick to recognise the enormous potential of the social media network. BMW published its first image on Instagram back on 30 May 2012: a high-gloss photo of a BMW 650i Coupé. By May 2014, BMW had a million followers. Since then, its Instagram fan community has grown exponentially: from two million followers in early 2015 to double that number by the autumn of the same year. A year later, in autumn 2016, BMW had already reached the eight million mark.
BMW’s popularity on Instagram confirms the success of the brand’s social media strategy. The parameters are tailored, individual content, professional editing and authenticity. In addition to Instagram, international BMW marketing also successfully uses the social media channels Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.