Instagram launches ads in Stories feature

Instagram testing the use of weblinks in Stories in a push for more revenue for the photo-sharing app

Instagram has launched full-screen ads for its Stories feature, in a push for more revenue for the photo-sharing app.

Initially, the new Ads in Stories will be rolled out on a test basis through over 30 advertisers from around the world, including Adidas, Louis Vitton, L'Oreal, Capital One, General Motors, Buick, Nike, Yoox, Netflix, and Shiseido. The new feature will be launched globally in the coming weeks.

Instagram's Stories, the picture and video slideshow feature identical to the signature function of rival Snapchat, was launched five months ago and has grown by 50 percent in popularity according to Amy Cole, head of brand development, EMEA at Instagram.

“We're excited about Stories and how the community is engaging and adopting. So far we have 150 million people that are using Stories every single day, which is up from 100 million in October,” Cole told Arabian Business.

“We find it's a really engaging format for people, with all the creative tools, like Boomerang. We've seen that 25 percent of the Stories are actually Boomerang.

“Of the Stories that are on Instagram, a third of those are coming from businesses, which is not that surprising to us because we're also seeing that people are organically following brands. Over 70 percent of people follow a brand.”

She said the ads in Stories will give businesses the ability “to target all of the people that matter most to them”.

“It gives them the ability to reach as many people as possible and gives the ability to measure the impact that those ads are actually having within Stories,” Cole said.

The Facebook-owned company is also launching insights for Stories within Business Tools globally on January 17 and will include reach, impressions and replies.

“We’re giving businesses more insights into the Stories,” said Cole, “and helping to make sure that they understand how that Stories content is working.”

Instagram is also working on rolling out additional formats over the coming months, including experimenting with weblinks.

“We're starting to test in organic posts, where people can link on the link out of Stories,” Cole revealed.

“We've seen really strong engagement coming from links so far from an organic perspective. Warby Parker has been using links in their Stories to talk about their resort collection. They've seen 100 percent lift in sales from the Instagram Stories.”

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