Founded in January 1888, The National Geographic Society is a “global non-profit organization committed to exploring and protecting the planet” (National Geographic Society, n.d.). The society sponsors and funds research and conservation projects as well as provides grants through their various educational initiatives. The society also publishes written materials and journals, with the National Geographic Magazine as their most notable and successful publication.
Catching on with the advancement of technology in the 21st century, National Geographic has also expanded its reach to social media. Not only have they been able to maintain their success in the sector of print publication, they are also one of the most successful and most engaging publishers of online social media content, rivalling Huffington Post and Buzzfeed.
- How can National Geographic maintain its leadership in the social media sphere; and
- How can National Geographic further increase user engagement
Social Media Analysis
For this report, I tracked data on activities of National Geographic across its three main platforms – Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – over a two-week period to investigate how the posts and strategies vary depending on the platform. As of April 2016, National Geographic has over 99.1 million followers across all three of its platforms, with Instagram garnering the most followers (47.7 million) and largely contributing to its success in social media.
No. of followers: 40,115,365
Frequency of posts: Average of 8 posts per day
Average no. of shares & likes per post: Average of 23, 317 shares, 154 likes per post
No. of followers: 11.3 million
Frequency of posts: Average of 15.25 tweets per day
No. of followers: 47.7 million
Frequency of posts: Average of 8.6 posts per day
To increase consumer engagement and brand awareness, National Geographic can create informative original content for their Snapchat platform. With the increase in millenials travelling and exploring the world, and going on expeditions on their own instead of with commercial tour groups (Machado, 2014), this function on Snapchat’s Discover will give them tips and information about the places they travel to. By employing this form of native advertising, as well as the interactive nature of Snapchat’s functions, National Geographic will be able to increase their brand recognition and brand awareness. It will also make the National Geographic brand synonymous with ‘travel’ and help them expand their National Geographic Travel subsidiary.