Why You Should Be Advertising on Instagram Stories

If you've been using Facebook Ads Manager, you are probably used to pleasant surprises. However, when a new ad unit is rolled out some people get cold feet and want to wait for the dust to settle.

While you're waiting others are reaping the benefits.

And that's no different with advertising on Instagram Stories.

Instagram isn't just a conversation with friends anymore. One-third of the most viewed organic Stories come from businesses.

You may be wondering this: Is my company (or the niche your client works in) a good fit for advertising on Instagram Stories? Here's some stuff to be aware of so you can make that decision.

Demographics of Facebook and Instagram

Yes, Instagram users skew young with 90% of their users younger than 35. But here's something that may surprise you — 80% of Instagram users come from outside of the United States.

Snapchat Vs Instagram

It doesn't have to an either or choice, but Snapchat's new user rate is declining.

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Stories daily active user rate continues to climb as it’s overtaken Snapchat. More than half (200 million) of Instagram’s 375 million monthly user base are daily active users on Stories.

There’s also a larger disconnect between the platform for many marketers. Simply they find Instagram easier to use. It's also more difficult to determine the sentiment of organic content because there is no equivalent to heart or like feature on Snapchat.

Some people only use Snapchat to take advantage of their additional filters and then repost their content on Instagram. To do so:

  • Open Snapchat and record a video
  • Add any filters after recording
  • Click Save next to the volume button
  • Open up Instagram and click the plus sign button
  • Swipe down to access the video you saved in your camera roll

Use Facebook Ads Manager for Instagram

Enjoy the same benefits of Facebook ad targeting including location, audience, and objective based settings.

Since Facebook owns Instagram, you can:

  • Set up ads within Facebook Ads Manager
  • Retarget people both on Instagram and Facebook

“Facebook makes it effortless to test. You don't have to commit a huge marketing budget to see how it performs,” said Zach Greenberger, founder of adMixt. “Be authentic in your brand and test.”

Explain the Why

Instagram gives a platform to connect with your customers in a very real way. Through Stories, you have the opportunity to connect by explaining the why or the mission statement behind your brand.

And brands that can share a greater purpose either through their core mission or the philanthropic work they complete tend to perform well with younger audiences.

According to a study done by Omnicom Group's Cone Communications, 70% of millennials indicate a willingness to spend more with brands that support causes or operate using business models that align and resonate with their own values.

Using Stories Ads Throughout a Marketing Funnel

If your goal is first to grow your presence on Instagram, you may treat your ad with a top of the funnel CTA and tell viewers to follow you for more updates.

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Once they do add you, you can create organic Stories that show up at the top of Instagram anytime they log in on their mobile app.

Like Facebook, Instagram also rewards engagement from ads.  If they follow you after checking out your ad and then engage (watch, view like, etc.) with your other organic content future content is likely to show up higher on the user’s main feed.

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Or go straight for the sale. Offer a discount and add an extra CTA to the bottom with inline text like DailyLook did above. Notice they added text with the CTA as we’re still in an educational period for how to interact with Stories ads for both the viewers and advertisers.

"Facebook has introduced many ad formats and there can be a learning curve. With carousel ads, it took time for users to learn to swipe to see more content. Facebook tested a variety of UI elements to educate users. Now it's a high performing format,” Greenberger said. "For Instagram Stories, users need to learn the benefits of interrupting their stories to visit an advertiser's page. But we see it happen.”

Current CTA's you can select in ad manager for Instagram include:

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Peer Pressure

Unlike ads showing up on Facebook of Instagram's main feed, people can't comment on the paid Stories. They aren't presented with an additional filter from other users. That doesn't mean they won't comment on it elsewhere. But viewers can initially judge your ad for themselves.

So be bold. Take chances. Make mistakes. And don't be afraid of being human because that may create your company's next connection.