TIL: Edmonton loves the High Level Bridge.

You may have recently heard of the tool 2016bestnine. In a nutshell, it’s a website that shows your top 9 most-liked Instagram photos of the year. This is the 2016 version of 2015bestnine generator which you may have used.

Aside from being a cool tool that you can use to see which of your photos from the past year got the most traction, it can also be used for a little bit of research and intelligence gathering. You don’t need to login or connect your account in any way – meaning you can see the top 9 most-liked 2016 photos of any public account. Essentially, it takes the leg-work out of going and checking for yourself – the data is already all there publicly, it’s just easier to sort this way.

Here are three things you could use this tool for:

  1. Competition – we know you’re likely already thinking it. You can find out what types of photos worked well for your competition. What common feelings do their top nine photos portray? Is there a narrative thread through their top 9 photos? What subjects resonate with their followers? Double back and go find those photos on their Instagram profile – what hashtags did they use?
  2.  Vet potential influencers – are you a business that wants to do some work with influencers? Have a set of influencers you want to use in mind? Run their accounts through 2016bestnine. What do their best photos look like? Do they tell a story between their photos. As mentioned above, double back and find those photos on their profile – do they hashtag stuff? Are their hashtags relevant? Do these photos get any comments?
  3. Get your photo featured by an account – some accounts get the bulk of their content from featuring others’ photos. This is particularly true in the tourism industry. If you want a better chance of having your photo featured by a certain account – check what worked well for them in the past. They’re more likely to use photos of similar subjects, filters, etc of images that worked well in the past. It also means if you use their hashtag (and related hashtags) with a photo in the style/theme/subject of what’s worked best for them – you’re putting yourself in a better position to get likes.

Here’s a real-life example using (@ExploreEdmonton) Edmonton Tourism’s Instagram 2016bestnine

Explore Edmonton 2016bestnine Instagram photos

Take a few seconds and  make your own conclusions first….

A couple big things we noticed. First, all but one of the photos are of the river valley. Second, 5 of the 9 feature the High Level Bridge – that’s a staggering amount. Third, arguably none (you could make a case for the top right picture) of the photos’ main focus is on the downtown skyline. All this combined seems crazy given that Edmonton just opened a brand new arena, hosted a big bmx/skateboarding competition and built a giant ice castle among many other tourism related things in 2016. But none of these made it into Edmonton Tourism’s top nine most-liked photos of the year.

What this means…

There are three big takeaways from this:

  1. If you’re using stock/promotional photos and you’re looking for an iconic Edmonton shot – you might want to consider a shot featuring the High Level Bridge. I’m a big fan of skylines, and in saying that – I am particularly fond of Edmonton’s (especially from Cloverdale Hill with the Muttart in the foreground). However, I constantly see stock images of downtown used digitally on website sliders, landing pages, ads and in offline advertising promotional pieces. The evidence suggests maybe an image showcasing the High Level Bridge would have a stronger impact. Without overtly saying “this is Edmonton”, it would be an image locals would connect to and even non-locals would recognize as Edmonton.
  2. If you want Edmonton Tourism to feature your image or want to take a touristy shot that will get a lot of likes – consider a shot of the High Level Bridge. Again, the evidence is there that the bridge is somewhat of an iconic locally. Being the main artery southbound out of downtown,  naturally photogenic and having the historical context of being situated in the river valley (a traditional meeting place) are all things working in your favour. If you’re hoping Edmonton Tourism shares your picture – hedge your bets by taking a shot of the High Level.
  3. Planning an Instameet? Consider having it at/near the High Level Bridge. A few different organizations plan Instameets (where Instagrammers meet up to share their love of Instagram and take some pictures) – not sure if there’s ever been a High Level one, but if not – there should be!

There’s just a few quick ways you can use this free tool for marketing purposes. We have a number of more advanced tools that we use for social media listening, intelligence and content creation on a daily basis. If you’re interested in learning more about these tools and how they could work for you, contact us.

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Post Written By:

Edward Spethmann

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Senior Content Strategist

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