I love attending educational events especially panel discussions and seminars on business as this is something I'm eager to get the latest insight on! Last week Instagram launched an independent research study into UK Small Business which illustrated how entrepreneurs have grown with the platform. Some examples of these success stories came together to share their journeys from "Vicky's Donuts" bakery to "Earl Of East London" candle makers and "Campbell Cole" leather accessories. In these cases hobbies have become legitimate businesses and a totally new career for each creative. Vicky was able to gain exposure and create a community from Kate Moross offering to mentor her with graphic design and branding. Earl Of East London started off selling at local produce markets and since building a loyal following online have now opened their own shop and have 120 stockists internationally! Nottingham based Campbell Cole have changed their annual strategy of ceasing to exhibit at trade shows and transfer that allotted budget and energy into marketing and sales purely through Instagram.
We were given the physical report to analyse but these examples of real stories infront of us is what really made an impact, even more than the incredible data. Apparently 1 in 3 UK small businesses have built their business on Instagram. That could be because 76% of adults in the UK own a smartphone and use it more than any other device for Internet! This means businesses have had to adapt to reach their customers through a mobile screen which explains the boom in a new wave of embracing social media as the main focus in business strategy. Since Instagram launched in 2010, accounts have been able to forge valuable connections with clients which is both benefiting local communities but also creating new networks across the world with the break down of geographical borders. Globally Instagram is an escalating community of 800 million! 51% of UK small businesses say Instagram is a way to connect with customers in other countries and their expansion is having a direct impact on the UK economy from both profits and job creation. Predictions for the future are sizable so Instagram are putting more dedicated business tools in place to help small businesses expand over the coming years.
So if you have a passion or an idea, don't hesitate to give it a chance and the best place possible to test the waters is most definitely Instagram............. its proven!
My snaps are from the seminar and LetterBug's paint palette at the Insta-Economy Christmas market in Spitafields.