This past October, Chanel made its Instagram debut and quickly racked up something like 1.8 million followers on its first day. Interesting to the fashion press and advertisers, alike, is Chanel's ability to quickly grow an Instagram audience. At the time, some sources claimed that the Karl Lagerfeld-helmed house established its account and amassed nearly 2 million followers in a number of hours (which seems highly unlikely). AdWeek seemed to have the more plausible story, writing, "It appears that the brand opened its account some time ago, built up a considerable backing organically and then finally saw fit to post content." Note: as of today, Chanel has amassed a following of 6.5 million on Instagram.
As we previously noted, Chanel is obviously a bit late to the party. As the New York Times's Matthew Scheier wrote this past April, "Nearly every show attendee, from the front row to the standing section, now arrives with phone in hand and Instagram account primed." And brands are very much the same, maintaining very active social media accounts with the help of social media managers. (Yes, that's a full time job). Thus, a social media presence, including an Instagram account, is pretty much run of the mill for most fashion brands.
And the need is growing. Earlier this summer, digital marketing company Stylophane ranked the top fashion brands on Instagram, finding that Instagram users are flocking to athletic brands like Nike along with high-fashion labels like Dior. WWD subsequently reported that Nike is the fastest growing brand on the social network. Another noteworthy brand is Estée Lauder, which saw a huge follower jump after announcing a partnership with model Kendall Jenner on the platform, said it’s the brand’s fastest-growing platform. “We want to be where our consumers are, and our customers and beauty enthusiasts love Instagram because of its visual and easy-to-consume nature,” according to a spokesperson for the brand.
We took a look back at the numbers from October 2014 to see just how much the brands’ accounts have grown in just under a year. (Note, some brands, such as Nike and Adidas, Michael Kors, Zara, ASOS, Topshop, etc., are included purely for comparison purposes, and some new names have been added to the list) …
Nike has 20.9 million followers.
H&M has 9 million followers.
Forever 21 has 7.9 million followers. (Up from 4.99 followers in October 2014)
Louis Vuitton has 6.5 million followers. (Up from 3.03 million)
Victoria Beckham has 6.4 million followers.
Zara has 5.8 million followers. (Up from 1.2 million)
Dior has 5.5 million followers. (Up from 1.78 million)
Adidas has 5.4 million followers.
Michael Kors has 5.3 million followers. (Up from 2.9 million)
Gucci has 5.1 million followers. (Up from 2.5 million)
Topshop has 4.9 million followers.
Prada has 4.6 million followers. (Up from 1.81 million)
Valentino has 4.4 million followers. (Up from 1.72 million)
Burberry has 4.2 million followers. (Up from 2.02 million)
ASOS has 3.2 million followers. (Up from 2.34 million)
Versace has 3.1 million followers. (Up from 1.3 million)
Givenchy has 3 million followers. (Up from 1.1 million)
Fendi has 2.7 million followers (Up from 760,000)
Balmain has 2.1 million followers.
Lanvin has 1.5 million. (Up from 662,000)
Balenciaga has 1.1 million followers. (Up from 574,00)
Hermès has 1.1 million followers. (Up from 521,000)
Maison Margiela has 533,000 followers. (Up from 321,000)
Proenza Schouler has 338,000 followers.
The Row has 318,000 followers.
YSL has 184,000 followers. (Up from 116,000)
IMAGE COURTESY OF LE-21EME.