Last week, we wrote about how Instagram is emerging as one of the fastest growing social media channels in 2014.  The acceleration it has seen in account growth, photo sharing, brand usage and overall engagement is a testament to the popularity of the platform.  In our original report, we broke down how music festivals have been using Instagram and dedicated hashtags to create a community experience.

We also investigated how the official hashtags of popular music festivals grew from year to year.  When we first published our story #Lollapalooza2014 had 22,526 photos. The funny thing about that is…Lollapalooza didn’t actually take place until this past weekend (Aug 1-3).  We’ve updated the image accordingly and are re-sharing it, along with some of the other festival statistics we discovered.  What we’re really impressed by is how much Instagram usage at these festivals has grown in just two years, across the board.

We’ve added two charts that include that year over year growth.

Instagram Festival Usage YOY Growth
Instagram Festival Usage YOY Growth The data for those charts was gathered from Instagram itself and refers to the annual dedicated hashtag each festival uses. While Governors Ball may be the youngest of the 4 festivals, it’s also experiencing the most social growth among them.  In the 4 years that the NYC festival has existed, the exponential growth has far exceeded its more established, older festivals.

Lollapalooza Instagram WiFi
boon
chella
gov332
That growth can be attributed to a variety of different factors. We spoke with Morgan Howard, who handles the marketing and social media for the Governors Ball Music Festival, to find out exactly how the festival is making an impact.

Here are 6 of the reasons she gave us:

1) The organic growth of Instagram as a platform.

2) FOMO is a real thing.  Our festival is the perfect opportunity to prove to everyone via Instagram that you know how to have fun, like music, eat yummy food and look fantastic.

3) Having free cell phone charging stations at the festival.  Alex Joffe, our partnership director, made sure that a few of our branded activations included free cell phone charging stations.

4) Engaging with our followers before the festival and during the festival.

5) Making sure that our followers and people attending the festival know the #s (We had awesome Fun Dial buttons with #YoureDoingGreat floating around the fest.  We even spotted some of our headliners wearing them.)

6) Providing free photo-booths that allowed all festival attendees, artists and VIPS to upload pictures or gifs to social. These were sent directly to consumer via email and also were uploaded to our Facebook page.  The email included our #s.

Next summer, it’ll be exciting to see how these four festivals continue to grow their social audiences and build online initiatives for their actual events. We believe that adding a more elaborate WiFi infrastructure can help people stay connected and increase the amount of uploads and engagement during those weekends.

Until then, we wanted to let all the Governors Ball festivalgoers know that from a social media perspective, well, #YOUREDOINGGREAT.

Screen Shot 2014-08-07 at 4.00.16 PM