Instagram Stories Ads Are Here…Are you on Board?

It was inevitable…once Instagram introduced Instagram Stories (expiring content as in Snapchat), it was only time before they would allow an Ad

opportunity for brands in this venue as well.

But are Stories really getting enough traction to matter? Yes.

According to Instagram: In the five months since it launched, stories has grown considerably. Now, more than 150 million Instagrammers use it daily. And stories is contributing to more content and engagement. 

A great example from Instagram is one of AirBnB – Global leader in accommodations, Airbnb, is using Instagram Stories to help build awareness and buzz around its largest product launch to date—Trips on Airbnb. Through a series of 15-second videos, Airbnb highlights the ability to access unique experiences by connecting travelers with local experts who share the same interests, from art collectors to avid hikers. Using broad (25-44) targeting of men and women in the US, Airbnb is gaining awareness of its new product by using Instagram’s new immersive, sound-on storytelling format. Airbnb is excited to tap into interest targeting for future campaigns to drive their message home among their most relevant users.

In turn, Stories Ads are going to get traction too. They are going to be less invasive as they are skippable, so the Instagram user decides which ones they watch or don’t watch. The brands have a choice of using an “unclickable” 5-second photo

or a 15-second video.  The videos are sold in auction at a CPM (vs. Facebook where’s a 3 second CPV). Best part? You can ensure your ads are right for the audience through targeting, of course.

4 ways your brand can test Instagram Story Ads:

  1. Show an experience through a series – Since stories are meant to show a consecutive flow (i.e. a story), it provides an opportunity to let your brand share an experience from beginning to end. Perhaps it’s the entrance to an event, or how an influencer is engaging with your product in 2-3 creative ways. For example if your brand is a beauty brand, it could show the influencer examining the product, using it, and speaking to how the experience was.
  2. Product launch – Since Stories are considered new, of the moment content, it’s a great way to show a sneak peak to a new release. Some brands provide influencers and loyal consumers with exclusive releases. Perhaps it’s a way to share this product with a larger potential group of fans with exclusive access before it’s open to the public.
  3. Provide never before seen content – Imagine your brand is about to release a new video series, but you want to test out a smaller version through Instagram to understand the traction for the content. Or perhaps it’s a smaller piece, that will then allow consumers to go to the larger format, on your site.
  4. Give your loyal fan base a chance to feel the love through exclusive features. Perhaps you pick the best fans, and show new potential fans how much these people already love your brand, and why.

How is it different than Snapchat? It’s a self service skippable video format. And although Snapchat isn’t going anywhere, Instagram is definitely on the verge of taking a chunk out of Snapchat’s game.

Is your brand ready?

image source – pixabay 

This post was originally written for Socialnomics. 

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