I’ve never been a fan of social media. I find it to be a nuisance. Too many times friends have stopped me from consuming my food just so that they could spend five minutes attempting to find the perfect angle. What is the purpose of halting the enjoyment of experience only to capture it on photo?
Shortly after the upload, a tiny alert pops up with hearts; someone has “liked” their photo. Their faces now gleamed with joy. What was so exciting about steak? In a recent article by WSJ profiling cosmetics brand Estee Lauder “photographs put our products in a whole new light”-Laney Crowell, Estee Lauder executive director of online global communications.
In an attempt to revitalize the brand for the younger generation, brands are now utilizing marketing strategies in the form of photography. Instagram, an online tool cataloging photographs has over 150 million active users. With such a large following, it’s not surprising the companies are looking to Instagram to build their brand capital.
But can Instagram really create enough envy to sell a product? Well, 91% of all retailers now utilize Instagram as a marketing tool (Dishman, 2014). What is it about the photographs that make people wish or want? In reality, lipstick, steak, and jeans are all very common goods. But through Instagram, lipstick is now an experience. Estee Lauder currently posts photographs daily on how their lipstick is used, in a desk drawer, on the beach, with a bikini. Lipstick is no longer a cosmetic in the photo, but rather a desire. Who doesn’t need sultry red lipstick with that teeny weenie polka dot bikini?