Just when you thought Instagram couldn't get any more awesome, the social networking platform rolled out Instagram Ads platform-wide. Boasting a user base of over 400 million, the announcement flung open the door for marketers to use ads to reach customers in exciting new ways.
Why Instagram Ads matter
The potential for high brand engagement using Instagram Ads looks promising. Unlike other social platforms, Instagram users are two and a half times more likely to click on ads served to them in their feeds.
"People come to Instagram for visual inspiration, and advertising on Instagram has the power to touch, inspire and move people. Instagram ads have proven to drive strong branding results-97% of measured campaigns on Instagram have generated significant lifts in ad recall," say Instagram officials.
Qualitative revenue numbers aren't in yet because the service is still so new. "However, the combination of their demographics, their targeting capabilities and their initial successes make this ad type an attractive new choice for businesses," notes B2C's Scott Fenstermaker.
Tips for Optimizing Your Instagram Ads
While it may be tempting simply to port your proven content-related images and marketing idea over from Facebook and Twitter, Instagram Ads need a whole new strategy. The user base is far more image-focused than Twitter and the community's use of hashtags is different than you'll find on other social platforms.
Global marketing agency Moburst took Instagram Ads for a spin recently and says it learned a few lessons along the way. "Instagram users are extremely active," explains Moburst's Lior Eldan. "Apparently, the double tap is used more loosely than the good old Facebook Like. Similar ads that generated between 15-30 likes on Facebook, reached between 300-500 likes on Instagram. Additionally, we noticed a large number of comments on the Instagram creatives, many of which even mentioned other users within the comments. This was an interesting find, since it paves the way for a two-way channel between marketers and audiences."
● Many of the rules marketing teams have learned from posting image-based on other social platforms apply for Instagram Ads:
● Be authentic. Use images that capture the heart of your brand and the minds of your customers.
● Remember proper attribution. If you didn't create it, make sure you publish with permission from the person or agency that did.
● Help people buy your product. Nothing kills a sale faster than forgetting to include a link to your website or sales page.
● Don't forget a strong call to action! Ask people to click through, call you, connect online, or share in their feeds.
Instagram's clickable ad unit will no doubt provide a clear way for brands to deliver traffic and revenue. Quality interactions, however, start with quality ideas," says Lucy Xu, Community Manager at marketing solutions firm Curalate. Revisit what strategies have worked for your brand on other social platforms then expand on those to really rock it with the new Instagram Ads.