social media engagement

Where Does Engagement Live In Instagram Vs. Reality

March 22, 2023

Real people doing real-life things get real results. Ever heard the phrase, what does it mean for engagement and which do you prefer?


Instagram Vs. Reality


Tribu recently decided it was time for a Tribe-wide photography session to update our website headshots. Stay tuned for those! Anyways, after seeing the photos of our team I was inspired by the many different sides of my coworkers. The shots that immediately caught my eye were the goofy ones where their personalities showed through!


There was a time when the polished, filtered, perfectly set up scenario ruled social platforms. That isn’t the case anymore! People gravitate towards people and content creators and businesses - turns out it makes the job a little easier. Pieces that feel more “raw” and “slice of life” perform better than those that may be carefully curated.


Instagram and now Tiktok are rising above the nearly outdated Facebook. We are continuing to see metrics for relatable, entertaining content sweep the others. In fact, according to TikTok statistics from Social Shepherd, their most popular content is entertainment.


Content That Gets Results

These platforms thrive on people and community. Hootsuite nailed it right on the head when they mentioned, “Social media is ultimately for people, not robots, and pictures with people perform better than those without,” which makes sense. If you think about it, that makes sense. When was the last time you scrolled on TikTok for example? Some of the first videos were probably a tutorial, maybe some sort of challenge or trend. Tutorials guide people - they are meant to be and feel helpful. Challenges and trends support comradery whether that has a competitive nature or fosters a conversation.


This can be tricky when it comes to brands. How do you blend your efforts for promoting a product or service without completely dominating the feed with images of said product? While graphic design can act as an integral support for the success of any brand but creative can not stand alone when it comes to images that live on social platforms. We have found that placement is everything - changing your environment and who / what surrounds it can alter results tenfold. For example:


A Few Examples Where We See Real Engagement

We took a look at Instagram for a ballet company. In the previous 30 published pieces of content, static images that did not include people averaged about 61 likes with a reach of 800 and 60 accounts engaged while similar static images that did include people averaged 170 likes with a reach of 1,380 and 212 accounts engaged - nearly 3 times the number of likes, double the reach and four times the engagement!

We also pulled TikTok metrics for a flavored rum business for the same allotted amount of posts. This time we compared videos. The average views were 50 compared to 250 when people were included - 5 times over!


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Poor Engagement With Nike


Strong Engagement With Nike


Let’s take an international brand you may be more familiar with, Nike. Their products and subsequent sales are successful because of the incredible support they give to their community of consumers. Their feed is full of people empowering people who happen to be wearing the apparel. On average, posts that do include people see more than 20,000 likes and 25% more engagement than those without.

Looking to increase your data points and cultivate a buzzing community for your consumers? There is one easy answer, people like people - and perhaps it is that simple on social. Give it a try! 

Also, take a look at our beautiful Tribe and their new headshots. 


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