Based on what Publishers have shown, people viewing Instagram Stories are willing to swipe up to visit a site.  Can advertisers do the same?  It’s time to see.

Now, Instagram has officially begun selling ads that can appear within people’s Stories feed and link to a brand’s site or app-install page in Apple’s or Google’s app store.  A couple of weeks ago, it was reported that Instagram was testing direct-response ads within Stories.  Since then, Instagram has since then made them available though Facebook’s self-serve ad-buying tools, Ads Manager and Power Editor, as well as through Facebook’s advertising API.

Instagram is now allowing advertisers to set objectives for these ads, which coincides with the roll of swipable ads in the Stories feed (viewed by more than 200 million people daily), such as if a brand wants people to view the video, visit a website, install an app or complete a specified conversion event.  These are similar to the ones already available for non-Story Instagram ads, as well as ads on Facebook, while Snapchat has rolled out its own version called “goal-based bidding.”  Basically what they all boil down to is that Instagram is going to use the objective as a North Star, which will let them aim a brand’s ads at the people in the target audience who are most likely to fulfill that objective.

The direct-response ads aren’t really all that different from the Instagram version that was added to Stories in January.  Brands are able to feature a single vertical photo or a vertical video that is 15 seconds long (maximum length) as their ad, and that will allow them to target the ads using Facebook’s standard ad-targeting options.

The biggest difference with the direct-response version of Story ads (besides being priced on a per-click basis) is that the ads can catch people’s attention, as well as directly convert them into customers.  At the bottom of the ads, there is a message that prompts people to swipe up to visit a website or open their device app store to install an app.This is basically like Snapchat’s Snap Ads With Attachments.  The exception is that Instagram’s version can’t load an in-app advertorial or native extended video when people swipe up.  There are several different calls to action for brands to select for Instagram’s direct-response Story Ads:

  • Apply Now
  • Book Now
  • Contact Us
  • Donate Now
  • Download
  • Learn More
  • Send Message
  • Request Time
  • Start Order
  • Shop Now
  • Sign Up
  • Watch More


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