Market Trends

Ads in Instagram Stories: Official launch and First Tests

Written by
1 Mar, 2017


Instagram offers a place to people and businesses to share their everyday and epic moments. Launched in August 2016, Instagram Stories has enabled businesses to get to the next step by bringing their stories to life in another, more ephemeral way.

Stories has great momentum to launch ads

Just 6 months after its launch, Instagram Stories now has 150M+ unique daily users.

70% of Instagram users already follow a business, and one-third of the most-watched Stories on Instagram were created by businesses, so there is a clear opportunity to deliver ads that won’t bore people into closing the app.

In the last 6 months, the video usage on Instagram had increased by 150%. And with the launch of the Carousel feature just a few days ago, Instagram is opening new opportunities for videos to be shared.

Ads in Stories, a unique opportunity for advertisers

Today, March 1st 2017, is the official launch of Ads in Instagram Stories.

These ads are totally integrated into the user stories feed and are non-invasive since they appear between stories. The 5-second photo and up to 15-second video adverts are skippable and clearly labeled as sponsored content, just like the ads in the activity feed. They are also persistent in the viewer session: if the user gets back to a previous story, he will see the ad again.

They are the first immediate full-screen and immersive experience. With roughly 70% of watched stories being sound on, this immersive, full-screen nature creates an intimacy with people like never before.

Ads in Instagram Stories are using some of the most interesting Facebook ads features: businesses can choose specific audiences from Facebook targeting, but reach them on Instagram.

Advertisers are also able to see the reach, impressions, replies and exits for each individual story within Business Tools. By viewing these insights, they can learn how to create more relevant content that resonates with their audience.

Beta test by HAWKERS

To unveil this first-ever, full-screen ad to Instagram Stories, and create the most impact for businesses and Instagrammers alike, the Instagram business team decided to test the Beta version with 30+ clients around the world, including several of our clients. Hawkers was one of them.

With this ad, the brand found another avenue to connect with its audiences (and prospective audiences).

The vertical video format, a challenge for advertisers, solved by MakeMeReach

The main challenge for advertisers who want to create ads for Instagram stories is the ad format itself. The vertical mobile video is not very common.

Being part of the Perion group, MakeMeReach as an in-house creative studio - Pixls, that is already producing this kind of format. And we found out that we could re-use existing non-vertical formats to create a very innovative ad:

  • use 2 videos to create one: they can be the same and play the same scene or start at different moments
  • split the screen in 4 if the video is fitted for that
  • mix the video with other elements such as text, photo,  illustrations... and a common background that creates consistency
  • create a video with animated pictures
  • re-use Snapchat creatives

We are just starting with the endless possibilities ads will offer in Stories. Today the only objective available is a reach objective, but looking at how quickly Facebook has launched stories and ads in stories, we are sure that other kinds of objectives such as Click to website or App Install are gonna be available. Stories allow new forms of expression for advertisers and provide sophisticated backend targeting, measurement, organic insights and reporting that makes ads personally relevant to the audiences they care about, ultimately providing great impact. At MakeMeReach, we are convinced that businesses should look at it as a complementary effort to their main feed content.

If you want to be one of the first to launch an ad in Instagram stories, just reach out to our Experts team!

Want to be one of the first to launch an ad in Instagram Stories? Yes Please

About Mélissa Sanchot Our Chief Operating Officer (COO), Mélissa, is constantly thinking outside of the box. Coordinating the Sales, Marketing and Client Services teams at MakeMeReach is no mean feat, but with a mind bursting with innovative ideas, we’re always excited to hear her next cutting edge blogpost.

All posts by Mélissa Sanchot