Not just for Kardashians! Samantha Yasmine’s amazingly effective Instagram brand

This post was written by Josh Clark, Marketing Exec at Altmetric.

Finding the most effective channel for promoting research is a common challenge for many researchers. Samantha Yasmine is a biomedical researcher at the University of Toronto who uses Instagram as a tool to disseminate her work broadly to both the scholarly and wider community.

Samantha’s 4:AM presentation focused on how by using Instagram she is trying to generate more transparency between her work in the lab and the public. Samantha began by speaking about how by being effective in social promotion researchers can connect with the public by showing the personal side of their work and appeal to a more emotionally motivated audience.

By sharing pictures, longer text commentaries and ‘Stories’ (short videos that expire within 24hrs of posting) through Instagram she is able to explain the work she is doing in a more accessible, casual and often personal way. She has also used tools like live video broadcasts to host Q&A sessions and make the most of hashtags to get her posts seen by as many Instagram users as possible, in part to gain new followers.

Although Instagram has enabled Samantha to engage more broadly, she notes that Twitter is still the most effective channel to post about research. Links to research are far more likely to be clicked if shared on Twitter, with many of her linked tweets receiving engagement (clicks, shares, likes etc) in the tens of thousands. Samantha explained that she will continue to use both platforms as they each have different advantages: Twitter is better for getting external content seen, whilst with Instagram it’s possible to do more storytelling and achieve more engagement with the content she posts.

You can find Samantha’s awesome Instagram profile at instagram.com/science.sam/ and learn more about her work by visiting samanthayammine.com