Instagram recently announced the hiring of former Lucky Magazine Editor in Chief Eva Chen to lead partnerships with fashion brands. Reports say the new role will involve no advertising or sponsorship, but rather partnerships to increase fashion brands’ influence through the social media platform.

At first glance, fashion brands’ relationship with Instagram is in no need of improvement or further investment. The category has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of Instagram, with a brand adoption rate of 96%. In the past year (between Q2 2014 and 2015) the average brands’ following has grown by 160% while post frequency has grown 36%.

Screen Shot 2015-07-20 at 5.22.20 PMHowever, while the category boasts followings of more than million strong (Christian Louboutin boasts 4.8 million followers), engagement has not kept pace. Post engagement rate for the category remains one of the lowest.

Screen Shot 2015-07-20 at 4.31.16 PMUnlike on other social platforms, low engagement rate cannot be attributed to having a large community size. As evidenced in the chart above, Sportswear brands have managed to maintain large community sizes and above average engagement. Furthermore, L2’s analysis of 250 brands on Instagram found no negative correlation between the two measures.

Screen Shot 2015-07-20 at 5.53.23 PM

For more on how fashion brands are leveraging this platform, download a copy of L2’s Intelligence Report: Instagram.

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