Corporate Eye

Nearly 3 out of 4 of Fortune 500 are Active on Instagram

instagram app iconAccording to The Fortune 500 Instagram Report from TrackMaven, 22.4% of Fortune 500 companies have active Instagram profiles and 17% have posted at least one photo or video to Instagram in the past month. Those statistics are certainly smaller than the number of Fortune 500 companies active on Twitter and Facebook, but they’re still impressive for a site that launched just three years ago.

The first brand to launch an Instagram profile was Starbucks just two months after the site debuted. Today, Starbucks has the second highest number of Instagram followers of the Fortune 500 with 1.5 million followers.

The only more popular Fortune 500 brand on Instagram is Nike with 2.3 million followers. However, neither Starbucks nor Nike have published the most photos or videos to Instagram. Those honors go to Foot Locker with just over 1,000 photos and Target with 39 videos.

Keep in mind, video was introduced on Instagram earlier this year. Therefore, it’s not surprising that the number of videos published by Fortune 500 companies on Instagram is low and that overall interactions with videos are also significantly lower than with photos. In fact, 96% of content published by Fortune 500 companies during the 30 days prior to this study were pictures according to TrackMaven.

With that said, TrackMaven also reports that Nike and Starbucks have the most engaged Instagram audiences with each brand generating significantly more interactions than any other Fortune 500 company. For the Fortune 500 companies on Instagram, the majority of audience interactions come in the form of likes rather than comments. Overall, 97% of interactions per post are likes.

Hashtags also have an effect on interactions on Instagram. The TrackMaven report reveals that interactions increase as the number of hashtags increases up to five hashtags at which point interactions begin to decline as hashtags increase.

Turning to Instagram post scheduling effectiveness, TrackMaven found that most Fortune 500 companies publish pictures during the week, particularly between 3:00 and 4:00 p.m. EST and on Thursdays. However, the study revealed no significant difference in the number of interactions a post receives based on the time it’s published on Instagram.

On the other hand, most videos are published to Instagram by Fortune 500 companies during the week, particularly between 2:00 and 3:00 P.M. EST. However, timing does have more of an impact on interactions for video content than it does for picture content. Videos published by Fortune 500 companies between 9:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. EST generate significantly more interactions, most likely because it’s more difficult to watch videos while at work than it is to look at pictures.

What can you learn from all of this data? Picture content and likes rule on Instagram. Use hashtags generously and strategically to improve discovery of your content and worry less about when you publish content and more on how often you publish content that is relevant and meaningful to your target audience.

Follow the link at the beginning of this article to read the full report from TrackMaven.

Image: Jason A. Howie

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.