Canon just rolled out its own official influencer program. The camera company will be working with 40 amateur photographers to gain brand exposure across Instagram. But will a content-first strategy be enough to supersede enigmatic enemy GoPro?

When it comes to influencer marketing, Canon has actually been ahead of the curve. The brand has headed a program of professional photographers called Explorers of Light for the past 23 years, which consists of 42 professionals who represent the company at events. Now, Canon hopes to appeal to the layman and the younger generations by working with photographer wannabes across the ‘gram.

This prioritization of content is a strategy that appears to have been successful for Canon in the past. In fact, the company already boasts the second-largest Instagram community among camera brands, with several posts featuring user-generated content.

Still, while Canon paces ahead of others by making content king, there is one brand it hasn’t quite conquered yet: quick come-up action camera brand GoPro. Both Canon and GoPro share similar post frequency, but GoPro charges forward with a monstrous following and exceptional engagement figures, according to Gartner L2’s Digital IQ Index: Consumer Electronics.

For its latest initiative, Canon has opted for influencers across a range of categories such as travel, food, health and lifestyle to be featured on both Instagram and on a dedicated webpage called aRchive. Additionally, the brand has enlisted twenty of the aforementioned influencers to promote the company’s new mirrorless Canon EOS R photography equipment across both Instagram and YouTube. For example, Canon filmed a video with YouTuber Devin Graham, who boasts more than 5 million YouTube subscribers. In the video, which has received more than 300,000 views, the YouTuber slips and slides out of an airplane.

Photography captured by professionals is certainly impressive, but putting content before creator can be just as eye-catching.  By putting content first and adding an adventurous spin to its collaborations, Canon might be able to outshine GoPro, which fell in Gartner L2’s most recent ranking from Genius to Gifted.

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