What We've Learnt from Instagram

Over the past 9 months, the NKBL team has been working with creative agencies to launch a NKBL Instagram profile.

13 Sep 2018
by Orielle, NKBL and youth work, Evaluation

Over the past 9 months, the NKBL team has been working with creative agencies to launch a NKBL Instagram profile. You may have noticed our Facebook and Twitter pages are directed primarily towards practitioners. We wanted to reach young people in an exciting and creative way to meet our core objective of directly engaging young people and communicating effective prevention messages.

Together with our partners at PrimatePunk and Sunshine Communications, we developed a plan for our messages to reach young people. We decided NKBL content should be socially engaged, fun, friendly and informative. The theme focuses on ‘better lives’, promoting a message of positivity by showing young people possibility and opportunity.

Posts have been a mix of life hacks, examples of inspirational Scottish young people, jokes, competitions and NKBL messages. Videos have proved to be the most popular posts.

We launched the account in September and since then have posted 81 times, gained 767 followers and reached over 2,000 people.

Hear how the NKBL team have found the process.

Jane, National Coordinator

“So far it seems that we have a reasonable number of followers but (as you might expect) the ‘better lives’ messaging is the reason for this. Our challenge is to build on this with the important prevention work and the right messages.  Personally, I think that we have, to a certain extent, underestimated the likelihood that young people will get behind a social cause in favour of the lure of competitions and life hacks! We need to get this balance right if Instagram is to help us achieve programme objectives.”

Emily, Senior Development Officer

“I have found the process of starting the NKBL Instagram account really exciting. It feels like it has made us all think much more creatively about the type of content we produce across our channels. We’ve been able to involve local partners too, like Jade from PSYV who did a takeover of our Instagram Stories, showing behind the scenes at a peer education event.”

Núria, Digital Development and Projects Officer

“Joining Instagram has been a sharp learning curve for us. Building a long-term loyal community is different to running short-term sporadic campaigns – and that’s meant learning to balance our earnest ‘no knives’ messages against the more fun, casual posts that celebrate ‘better lives’. But it’s worth it. In three months, we have almost 1,000 followers on Instagram. It took us three years to do that on Twitter! Every double tap on an inspirational quote or life hack is a young person who will listen and trust us when we share those important messages about keeping safe or speaking up.”

Do you use Instagram for your organisation? Do you have any advice for others looking to start an account?

You can find us on Instagram at @NKBLScotland

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