5 Unique Instagram Brand Campaigns

January 26, 2016 | by Carlie Miller

While most of the Instagram photos I post are typically of my lunch, my cat or a city skyline, some brands have turned up the dial on creativity and launched some interesting campaigns on the social media platform that have done an excellent job of driving engagement. Here are 5 of my favorite Instagram brand campaigns that think outside of the box:

1. Old Spice Choose-Your-Own Adventure Campaign


One of my favorite Instagram campaigns from 2015 was a choose-your-own-adventure-style game released by Old Spice to promote their new shower gel. Users were first shown a black and white drawing of a man in a cave and given instructions on how to choose the next step in the game. There are a number of different scenarios you can end up with – ranging from a robot punching your face and the game ending, to you becoming a celebrity of an alien world.

2. Applebee’s #Fantographer Campaign


Applebee’s Instagram content is 100% user-generated, thanks to a successful campaign that was started in the summer of 2014 that called for users to tag their photos taken at Applebee’s with #fantographer. Since then, every post (besides a small handful) has been a food shot of someone who has eaten at the restaurant. The campaign has created a high level of engagement and authenticity in the brand, showing only real food from real people.

3. Ballantine “Instazine” Campaign


The whiskey brand Ballantine created a separate Instagram account for what they’re calling an “Instazine”, showing articles and videos with modern and fresh imagery all while shaking up the traditional Instagram platform. Instead of individual photos each telling their own story, the photos make up a collage the tell a bigger picture. This one is best experienced first-hand—check out @w_issue1 to view the first issue.

4. Starbucks Red Cup Contest


Following up from the success of their White Cup Contest in 2014, Starbucks launched a Red Cup Contest on Instagram during the holiday season of 2015. They asked users to take a photo of their “beautiful or creative red cup moment” on Instagram and 5 winners would receive a $500 gift card. During this 4-day contest, over 40,000 posts were tagged with #redcupcontest.

5. Mercedes Benz Build Your Own GLA Campaign


Mercedez Benz created an Instagram-exclusive campaign that allowed users to build their own GLA250. Users have their choice of car color, wheels, grille and roof and are then presented with their chosen car. Complete specs are also given, along with a price and a message to “take this pic to your local Mercedes-Benz dealer to get started.”

What are some of your favorite Instagram campaigns or accounts? Tell us in the comments or on our Facebook page!

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