It was inevitable: Since launching ad capability on its platform one-and-a-half years ago, Instagram opened itself up to monetization. Now, it wants to continue in that direction with more confidence as it expands its advertising to make it easier for businesses to achieve their branding goals.
The company, which is owned by Facebook, announced on its blog that it was making advertising available to businesses of all shapes and sizes. This includes small retailers like mom-and-pop stores to giant corporations employing thousands of people.
Instagram’s announcement comes after significant growth at the company. Instagram has expanded to eight countries, and the social networking site is one of the most popular for brand marketing today.
Making ads available to more businesses is a direct result of the company listening to its user base. Users want to be in touch with small, medium, and large companies on the site, so allowing expanded ad features helps businesses and consumers find each other with greater ease. In the next few months, Instagram ads will be available by way of an Instagram Ads API and Facebook ad-buying interfaces.
Since parent company Facebook already boasts more than 2 million advertisers, it’s only natural for Instagram to tap into Facebook’s existing infrastructure to manage its new advertising objective on its site. The start will be slow and gradual: First, a choice group of Facebook Marketing Partners and agencies will get to use the Instagram Ads API. Then, throughout the remainder of the year, other advertisers will have their turn.
Though expanding ads to more businesses is central to Instagram’s announcement, that wasn’t the only thing the company announced. It also revealed plans for expanded targeting options. In the future, advertisers will be empowered to connect with their audiences based on interests, demographics, and information they already have about their consumers.
It’s no surprise that monetization efforts at Instagram are in full swing.With more than 300 million users, that’s a lot of eyeballs. Facebook has been trying to monetize for years, and analysts are now predicting that Facebook can make money off of Instagram by as early as 2016.