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Why Trump and Clinton Love Instagram

Oct 19, 2016

We've updated this article to include our MPW OnStage podcast episode, featuring the full interview with Marne Levine during our MPW Summit in October 2016.

A triumphant Donald Trump devouring McDonald’s aboard his airplane. Hillary Clinton, backstage and casting a loving gaze on daughter Chelsea at the Democratic National Convention.

This year’s presidential election will go down in the books for many things, but perhaps one of the less appreciated reasons—thanks to millions of smartphone-wielding, social-networking Americans—is the number of images it has produced

“This is the most visual election we’ve had to date,” said Instagram COO Marne Levine at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit in Laguna Niguel, Calif. on Wednesday.

Levine, a former member of President Obama’s economic policy team, notes that almost all political candidates are on her service these days and using it in interesting ways to campaign and connect with potential voters. “You see them telling their stories in their own way,” Levine says, noting that Hillary’s backstage Instagram post allowed the candidate to show herself as a mother, for example.

Listen to the podcast episode below:

Get it on Google Play

The voting public has also, of course, been incredibly engaged this year—Instagram has 500 million monthly active users—driving billions of election-related social media interactions. Levine has a colleague who used Instagram’s Stories feature to show himself going through the voting process (his ballot arrived in the mail).

For more about Instagram, watch:

As great as the election has been for engagement, Levine is nonetheless looking forward to Nov. 8. “I can’t wait to see the sea of 'I voted' stickers in my feed because it will mean it’s all over.”

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