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How The Music World Flocked To Instagram In 2016

Dec 6, 2016

Many social media networks have tried and failed to become the go-to platform for musicians to engage with their fans. Remember Twitter #Music or Facebook Mentions? Are any musicians using Snapchat other than DJ Khaled?

But while others have fallen short in capturing the music world, Instagram has taken a series of small steps to turn its once photo-driven service into a creative haven where artists tease new music, reveal album artwork, announce tour dates, and offer intimate behind-the-scenes glimpses. To cite just a few of those steps, over the past year, the platform has extended the length of video posts to 60 seconds, introduced Instagram Stories (and later included the ability to add web links and tags, unlike its rival Snapchat Stories), and hired Lauren Wirtzer Seawood, Beyoncé's former digital guru, as head of music partnerships.

Instagram shared with Fast Company a compilation of year-end data that highlights the company's continued evolution and focus in the music space. Among the most significant: Five out of the 10 most-followed Instagram accounts are music accounts. Kanye West, the once prolific tweeter, joined Instagram in 2016, as did the Gorillaz, who used Instagram Stories to announce its first album in five years. And unsurprisingly, Beyoncé dominated the platform after using it to announce both the "Formation" video and the Lemonade visual album. See below for other highlights on the artists and songs most mentioned on Instagram throughout the year.