Your School's Stories on Instagram

Vol. 16 No. 4

PSN eletter vol15 no4 Instagram

Your school’s story is what makes your school unique. It’s what attracts families, strengthens retention, and unites your community. How you tell your school’s story is critical to how it’s received—and its success. And, how you communicate your story, via social media sites, video, pictures, statistics, testimonials, prose, school newsletter, Head blog, website, etc., is part of the puzzle of how you tell your story.

ISM teaches through several Summer Institute workshops as well as Advancement Academy how to align school stories with marketing initiatives and unique missions. We believe that for your school to survive in this fierce communication environment, your school’s story MUST illustrate your school’s mission and value system. Doesn’t sound hard, does it? You know your school’s mission and you know what makes your school different from your competition. You have students who are multimedia savvy and who love to create publishable content. It almost seems like a fun team brainstorming initiative that can be outlined and strategically planned in a morning meeting.

Not so fast.

Often what administrators perceive as the story is vastly different from the student’s experience. To capture your school’s true essence, you’ll want to take time to talk to your students and capture their perspectives. The more information you can gather relative to your school’s uniqueness, the clearer picture you illustrate to potential families.

However, late enrollment season is upon us. You're trying to capture interest now. How can you communicate what makes your school amazing to potential families before this school year officially ends?

Introducing Instagram Stories

If you’re familiar with the popular photo-sharing app, SnapChat, Instagram Stories will feel natural to you.

This feature allows you to share all the moments of your day condensed into a “story” that vanishes after 24 hours. Unlike individual pictures and videos that you post directly to your school’s account, story shares won’t stay on your school’s Instagram account or your follower's feed for longer than a day—you can share story posts all day long, making them as creative as you want, with no worry of over-posting! Followers can interact with your stories by sending private messages to you. However, there are no public comments available for Instagram Stories (right now).

What can this mean for your school? If you’re already using Instagram, this new platform can be a great way to test communications. As stories vanish after 24 hours, there is no fear in trying out several ways to share your story—especially if you’re in the process of discovering it.

If Instagram isn’t part of your school’s social media mix, here is a look at some recent user demographics.

Instagram Overview

This popular photo-sharing social site was launched on October 6, 2010. On April 9, 2012, it was bought by Facebook for $1 billion. At the time Facebook purchased it, Instagram only had 30 million users.

In September of 2015, Instagram opened advertising opportunities for all companies. It brought in $595 million in mobile ad revenue at that time. For 2017 ad revenue is projected to reach $2.81 billion.

2016 Statistics

  • 400 million active users
  • 30% of Internet users are now on Instagram
  • Instagram has doubled in the last two years
  • Over 60% log in daily, making Instagram the second most engaged social network after Facebook
  • Over 40 billion photos have been shared—on a daily average, 80 million photos are posted
  • 8% of accounts are fake
  • 30% of accounts are ‘inactive’, posting one or fewer photos or videos a month
  • When Instagram introduced videos, more than 5 million were shared in 24 hours
  • 48.8% of brands are on Instagram—90% of the top 100 brands have a profile
  • Engagement with brands on Instagram is 10 times higher than Facebook, 54 times higher than Pinterest, and 84 times higher than Twitter
  • Over a third of Instagram users have used their mobile device to purchase a product online—making them 70% more likely to do so than non-users
  • 50% of Instagram users follow a brand
  • Photos capture more engagement than videos

Additional ISM resources of interest
The Source for Advancement Vol. 14 No. 7 Purposeful Social Media Plans
The Source for Business and Operations Vol. 6 No. 6 Social Media: The Often Overlooked Element In Your School’s Crisis Plan
The Source for Advancement Vol. 14 No. 2 Getting Students Involved in Social Media Efforts

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