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Instagram Video Done Right: 10 Inspiring Brand Examples

Instagram video burst onto the scene in mid-2013, and in the months since we’ve seen good, bad and ugly video efforts from brands. The good news is that when companies do get it right, Instagram video efforts seem to pay off — according a study from Unruly Media, 40% of the most-shared Instagram videos are from brands.

Big name businesses and bloggers make Instagram video look easy, but there’s more to the medium than repurposing YouTube content. Here are 10 brands that are getting creative and doing Instagram video right.

1. NowThisNews: News in 15 Seconds

Plenty of news organizations are trying to take their content to Instagram video, but few do so as well as NowThisNews. The site combines images, text, and voiceover to pack a full news story into just 15 seconds.


2. Lyft: Introducing the Dude

Lyft recently promoted its peer-to-peer ridesharing services to Sundance Film Festival-goers with the #lyftcreatives video series. Drivers quickly introduced their themed rides, which ranged from Harry Potter to karaoke. What film fan wouldn’t want to be chauffeured by El Duderino?

3. TOKY Branding + Design: 2013 Annual Report

It takes a good deal of creativity to make an annual report worth viewing. This year, TOKY Branding + Design delivered their year in review through a series of eight animated Instagram videos.

4. Target: Thirteen Dude Gifts

Run of the mill product shots are pretty common on Instagram, but the dude-centric theme makes this video both interesting and useful to panicked holiday shoppers.


5. Oreo: #OreoSnackHacks

After a stroke of real-time marketing genius at the 2013 Super Bowl, Oreo became the unofficial king of Instagram marketing.  They’re keeping up the creativity with #OreoSnackHacks, an ongoing series of 15-second recipes.

6. Jeni’s Ice Creams: Feuerzangenbowle Launch

This popular Columbus ice creamery used Instagram video to introduce Feuerzangenbowle Sorbet, a limited edition holiday treat. Rather than predictable food porn imagery, this video features citizens of Columbus attempting to pronounce the tricky German name. Repetition does wonders for brand recognition, and a bit of comedy can’t hurt, either.

7. Toyota USA: Dance Moves Across the Decades

This repurposed TV commercial works quite well as an Instagram video series. Over the course of a month, Toyota posted videos of this guy demonstrating a particular decade’s hit dance move in front of the corresponding car model. From the monkey in the 1960s to thrashing in the 90s, these videos are way more fun than a boring old Throwback Thursday shot.

8. General Electric: Behind the Scenes

Freight processing may not sound particularly exciting, but these behind the scenes time-lapse videos are actually quite popular among GE’s followers. The last frame of the video invites users to visit ge.com to see more, and the company’s community managers are responsive to any and all comments. 


9. Jet Blue: Animated Holiday Greeting

Airlines take a lot of heat from frustrated travelers on social media, so Jet Blue does its best to keep its Instagram feed positive. Over the holidays, the company posted this animated short to wish followers a safe journey home.

10. Lululemon: How To Master Your Vinyasa Scarf

As you might expect, the feed of athletic apparel company Lululemon has its fair share of beautiful women demonstrating impressive yoga poses. They also pepper their feed with a few videos, including this handy 15-second tutorial demonstrating scarf-tying technique.

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