June 29, 2016 By integrate

Laura U: Bernhardt Furniture Instagram Takeover

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Cultivating strategic partnerships between businesses and influencers is a great way to gain additional exposure within a relevant audience, and with our client Laura U Interiors, we developed an Instagram takeover with Bernhardt Furniture to enhance the brand’s performance on the social media platform.

Initially, Laura of Laura U was picked as one of eight 2016 Style Spotters for High Point Market, the largest furnishings industry trade show in the world.  Spotters were selected for being “creative, influential and recognized for excellence,” as well as being “a renowned expert whose signature sense of style arises from his or her personal design philosophy.” Alone, this is quite an honor and a great vehicle for increased exposure, but the Integrate team wanted to utilize Laura’s position on this committee as a tool to create a partnership with another well-known High Point vendor that she admired, and build a larger social media following.

An Instagram takeover is a great way for brands to cross-promote content and develop buy-in from new, coveted audiences who they’d like to be in front of, but aren’t yet reaching. Two users that have similar content and potential audience overlap, swap accounts for a pre-determined period of time, posting photos that appeal to both brands, while also infusing their personal touches on the content. The users can promote their content on two accounts now, allowing both parties to reach an audience that they were not communicating with before, and potentially garner new followers.

Integrate worked with client, Laura U, and Bernhardt Furniture, which boasts over 30,000 followers on Instagram, to swap accounts for the day. It was a perfect match – Laura U Interiors has styled many homes with their products and Bernhardt has a very similar style and target audience. After the initial outreach to Bernhardt, which was ecstatic to team up with a High Point Market Style Spotter, our team was hard at work creating graphics and content.

Integrate hoped to see an increase in Laura U’s followers, along with engagement from Bernhardt’s base of followers, all while raising awareness of Laura’s affiliation with the High Point Market vendor group.

Before any content could be shared, though, a lot of planning had to take place. Laura U Interiors and Bernhardt had to agree on a timeline, the subject of the content, and the frequency of the posts. With our team facilitating the process, both agreed on three posts over the course of one day. We then created a unique hashtag for the takeover, “#LUxBernhardtTakeover,” which allowed Instagram users to easily search for posts and recognize that a takeover was happening on both accounts. The team then coordinated content with Laura, picking three photos of her work that not only highlighted a variety of Bernhardt’s furniture, but also showed off Laura’s unique and chic sense of style.

The Integrate team then went to work on creating the graphics and copy for the Instagram posts, including a fourth post for the Bernhardt page that went live the day before the actual takeover, introducing Laura U to Bernhardt’s audience with a brief caption detailing her work and what would be going on over the next 24 hours.

On April 11, the takeover went live on the Bernhardt Furniture Instagram page. By partnering with a vendor that shared a similar target audience, the content was easily tailored to and seamlessly integrated into their feed. Laura’s three design posts on the Bernhardt page garnered over 500 likes total, and drew an additional 67 new followers to Laura U’s Instagram account in only one day.

The takeover wasn’t one-sided though, as Bernhardt Furniture posted three pictures to Laura’s page as well. Bernhardt also used the hashtag created, allowing users to search for the event via the unique tag, and drove many members of its audience to Laura’s page. A mutually beneficial partnership, the takeover allowed Laura U to engage with an audience that was similar to hers, but not uniquely her own. Thanks to the takeover, dozens of Instagram users commented on her photos, and gave great feedback regarding her style picks.

Overall, the takeover was a great way to engage a potential audience and create strong business ties, as Bernhardt still mentions Laura U Interiors on the platform when relevant content comes their way!