Skip to main content

Look out, Instagram’s big ad push is about to begin

how to save photos from instagram
Image used with permission by copyright holder
Instagram may have more than 300 million users but till now its ad model has been rather limited for marketers eager to reach them.

Not anymore. Starting this month, the Facebook-owned company is making changes that could see its ad revenue fly off the charts.

Announcing the new strategy this week, Instagram said it’s opening up its ad business to brands “large and small.” That’s a big deal as up to now the company has been tightly controlling the system, partnering mainly with select big-name brands as it experimented with different ways to incorporate sponsored messages into its photo- and video-sharing service.

The new system will enable marketers to go about their Instagram-based campaigns in a more automated manner that means they’ll no longer have to spend valuable time negotiating directly with a member of Instagram’s sales team over a proposed ad spot.

What’s more, the company is going to start allowing marketers to launch global campaigns with the possibility to include video ads of up to 30 seconds “so brands can engage in richer storytelling,” Instagram said.

It’s also launching a new premium product called Marquee that the company claims will help drive “mass awareness and expanded reach in a short time-frame,” touting it as ideal for events like movie premieres and new product launches.

And remember how it recently started letting users post landscape and portrait shots alongside the square pictures it’s so famous for? Well, it shouldn’t surprise you to learn that the change was made with advertisers very much in mind, as it’ll give them more options for how they present their campaigns to users.

Instagram said it’s recently expanded its ad business to 30 new countries – among them Italy, Spain, Mexico, India, and South Korea – with plans to enter even more markets around the world at the end of this month.

Although Instagram launched in 2010, ads only started appearing on the service in 2013. The company up to now has been careful to incorporate its ads in a way that doesn’t leave users annoyed or overwhelmed, so we’d be surprised if these latest changes, the most significant to date regarding its marketing model, will blow all that hard work. We should find out in the coming months.

Editors' Recommendations

Trevor Mogg
Contributing Editor
Not so many moons ago, Trevor moved from one tea-loving island nation that drives on the left (Britain) to another (Japan)…
Why Instagram’s dreaded Shopping tab is a big win for small businesses
instagram shopping icon

Now that everyone’s had a few weeks to get familiar with Instagram’s shopping tab, it’s time we shed our knee-jerk reactions and take a look at the bigger picture. While no company with a popular app can roll out a significant UI redesign without expecting a certain amount of criticism, the controversy around this particular change has been rightly and uniquely boisterous. Where our notifications tab long resided, an indiscreet shopping bag has made a fresh roost. More than a minor annoyance (and an exercise in muscle memory retraining), this seemingly shallow, money-fueled addition is a big win for small businesses that operate online.

Without parroting what we’ve all heard, it should be universally understood by now that online commerce is more important than ever to businesses of all sizes. And, while this may not apply to everyone, shopping while mindlessly browsing social media has become a kind of therapy we just can’t get anywhere else at present. Even for those who don’t check out in-app, data shows a marked percentage of our purchasing decisions are influenced by ads on Facebook-owned Instagram. Furthermore, Facebook Marketplace has become an absolute juggernaut in e-commerce, effortlessly challenging even internet mainstays like eBay.

Read more
TikTok boss calls out Facebook, Instagram to team up against Trump ban
Tik Tok app

A top TikTok executive is telling Facebook and Instagram to put their money where their mouth is.

TikTok interim global chief Vanessa Pappas called out the social media powerhouses after the Trump administration announced that TikTok would be banned from being downloaded from U.S. app stores starting Sunday.

Read more
Targeted Facebook ads are about to lose a big audience: iPhone owners
facebook hacked

The face of Facebook advertising is about to change. With Apple’s rollout of iOS14 in September, Facebook issued a short statement to advertisers letting them know that their formerly hypertargeted ads, as facilitated by the Facebook Audience Network platform, might not work anymore. As first reported by Axios, this will likely have a huge impact on the advertising industry, of which Facebook plays a huge part in the U.S. But while this may be bad for the advertisers and for Facebook, this could be a win for users’ privacy

The next update of the iPhone software will feature a new function wherein users have to opt in to being tracked by advertisers. This will require apps to ask iPhone users’ permission to collect and share their data. This puts advertisers who rely heavily on Facebook’s platform in a pickle, as Facebook’s ads are notorious for being extremely specific to the user.
Accomplishing what the boycott couldn’t
July 31 saw the end of a massive, much-ballyhooed advertising boycott — with more than 1,000 brands participating — that was supposed to bring Facebook to its financial knees in the name of social justice. Instead, the boycott barely dented the platform’s revenue.

Read more