THE 14TH ANNUAL SHORTY AWARDS

The Shorty Awards honor the best of social media and digital. View this season's finalists!

Photoshop Express

Entered in Brand Partnership, Instagram Presence

Objective

Adobe Photoshop Express is a photo editing app for social that needed help with its own social presence. Their ask to us was clear: How can Photoshop Express become the go-to editing mobile editing app for next gen creators on Instagram? 

Before we could answer this question, we had to be honest with ourselves about our audience. We know that next gen creators are still honing their creative stylings, but we also know they don’t care about what capital “B” brands have to say on the subject of creativity. When it comes to creative expression, they seek guidance and inspiration from friends and other creators, but never from a corporation. 

 

Strategy

In order to grow a community of next gen creators on Instagram, we needed to show up like a creator on Instagram. We needed to think like a creator, adopt the voice and tone of a creator, post like a creator and engage like a creator. We needed to become a creator for creators

 

First, we aimed to think like a creator by assembling a braintrust of expert next gen creators to mine for culturally relevant and trend-driven content that would inspire meaningful engagement with our audience – an ongoing process that we return to regularly. We conducted focus groups and partnered with native creators outside of the United States to better understand next gen creators and their needs worldwide.

Next, we began posting like a creator – curating a diverse and global range of content tailored to our audience's aspirations and values, tapping into cultural moments like Holi, Golden Week Japan, Lunar New Year and Diwali. We implemented an approach that prioritized culture-driving media, leveraging the platform's evolving focus on video content while ensuring a mix of both reels and static posts to accommodate different user preferences. We embraced a creator and influencer-first content approach, with both always-on newsroom content and quarterly influencer series with influential Gen-Z voices for deeper explorations of inspirational topics and cultural moments.

Then, we drove engagement like a creator by leveraging native features to grow a global audience. We partnered with creators that captured the essence of our brand and created collaborative posts that naturally integrated into their feeds. We also used our story highlights as an inspiration station for relevant trends and edit styles, always right there for our audience to return to when they need it. Above all else, we aimed to build our community of next gen creators by creating content that was shareable, comment-worthy and bookmark-able.

Results

We positioned Adobe Photoshop Express as a creator for creators and built a community along the way, bringing Adobe Photoshop Express to new heights of success on Instagram with 80% follower growth in just one year. We reached an impressive 31M accounts globally across 66 boosted posts, with an average interaction rate of 2.6%. The newfound global efforts and presence on Instagram left its footprint on the app as well, helping drive 6 million more downloads in 2023 than the previous year.

The impact was clear: a surge in followers, a boost in meaningful engagement, and a newfound sense of community. Quantitative growth is exciting, but our true purpose to be a creator for creators in need of direction and inspiration is what motivates all that we do. To be there for people like @hyphygrandma who recently commented “I needed this ♡ I’ve been feeling so out of touch with my creative energy recently” perfectly encapsulates our mission. As Adobe Photoshop Express continues to emerge as a leading force for creativity amongst Gen Z and Gen Alpha (gasp!), we showcased that with the right strategy and implementation, Instagram can still serve as a launchpad for community and connection for younger generations. 

 

Media

Entrant Company / Organization Name

kvell collective, Adobe Photoshop Express

Links

Entry Credits