Written by Charlotte McCleary
Instagram has always been extremely helpful to marketers, proven by the two million advertisers on the platform. For its part the app had upgraded its channel by putting tools that could help marketers and users alike. Some of these are the Live and Stories.
Stories, launched in August 2016, has since evolved into a useful instrument for marketers. It has been updated many times, attracting 300 million daily users creating and watching stories as of mid 2017. Marketers have used the feature creatively to their advantage, gaining higher engagement rates and greater brand awareness.
Ads were incorporated into Stories in March 2017 and immediately taken up by many marketers. In fact, 50% of brands on the platform are using the ad feature to reach the 300 million users. It also means that more marketers are placing their trust in the tool to deliver the promised results. Here are a few successful examples of Instagram Ads that rocked the Instagram world.
But Instagram recently announced that they will be giving more leeway to their users with Stories. This is in terms of creating Stories and buying ads. Some of these are the assimilation of Facebook Canvas to the app so that users could have the ultimate experience in watching Stories; a new uploader; and an optimization for your ads. It is important to underline the importance of these new tools so that marketers will know how to leverage with them.
Instagram integrated Facebook Canvas, enabling users to view Stories in full screen, which provides a more immersive viewing experience. What is more, viewers are more likely to enjoy your content if they view photos or videos in full screen as opposed to viewing content with some options still showing. Having a full screen in Stories enables your audience to focus more on the content rather than being distracted by the buttons appearing now and then.
This format attracts many more users to the ad. For instance, Casper, a well known mattress manufacturer, recently used Instagram Stories’ Facebook Canvas in order to catch their audience’s attention. The company used Stories to reveal their brand’s selling points and what their line could offer. With this, it is easier for the audience to discover the product’s benefits without having to exert themselves too much by having to skim your entire website. The specific link in the swipe up function directs your leads to where they need to be on your site.
Marketers were also introduced to new tools on the platform. One new tool enables marketers to save the posts they uploaded in Stories for further use either on the device’s camera roll or on Instagram stories archive. This will save marketers time and effort in building a new content for other platforms. It also reinforces the abilities of companies to use Instagram Ads for brand loyalty.
Existing content can now be reused and saved with the help of Power Editor and Ads Manager, a great tool for those who want to keep their branding consistent. Take for example, The Bouqs Company, that sells flowers online. The company used the tool in reuploading a previous post from a past collection. This increased engagement from audience and brand awareness. This tool will also be effective in promoting older products from the company, especially if these product lines are still available.
One of the difficult things about social media marketing is that there are a lot of platforms available on the market, making it challenging to keep track of every campaign on each channel. Though each has different algorithms and guidelines, as well as different markets in different platforms, keeping a cohesive plan and strategy is one answer to this problem.
It is easier said than done, though, as social media platforms usually have different user demographics. It is hard to monitor numerous accounts from social media sites as well, which might result to campaigns getting out of hand. Most of the time, marketers who are using different platforms ask for help from third party apps. Procter and Gamble’s Sk-II tested the Instagram Stories with same campaign in Instagram and Facebook. According to Instagram, the campaign “achieved a brand lift of +13pts for its new product and +30% reach among its target audience of females in Japan aged 18-54 versus running on Instagram and Facebook feed alone.”
This just means that adding Instagram Stories in your campaign across social media platforms is helpful for your brand. Placement optimization allows marketers to extend their campaigns across Facebook, Instagram, and Audience Network, which will greatly help a more cohesive campaign.
There is certainly a lot to take from Instagram’s announcement. Marketers, who usually have a hard time handling many tasks can now extend their campaigns across the major, popular platforms with minimum fuss. Advertisers can take advantage as well of the uploading tool that will let them save the content for other uses. This will be cost-efficient, meaning there would be less expenditure on your marketing strategies. This is especially helpful as well to reintroduce some products to your audience.
Facebook Canvas’ integration to Instagram Stories will greatly help marketers to attract customers, if played with the right content. Full screen is always the best viewing experience. As with movies, it is very irritating to see random buttons at the bottom of the screen. Full screen also means that there is more space for your content which marketers can use in any way they want. This also means that every space on the screen can be filled with important information or design.
There are tons of ways to present your contents on Instagram Stories. Boomerang and filters are just some of the tools within Stories that marketers can use to creatively present their contents. Using these features will easily attract your audience, and if effective, might give you the engagement your brand craves. Lastly, it is important to monitor your contents to know which one is effective and which one is not. There are more ways to tickle the curiosity of your audience, but marketers should be able to gauge if the engagement rate is increasing.
About the Author
Charlotte McCleary is a message-centric brand strategist who works with the marketing teams of start-ups and young companies to streamline their market positioning and message. When not crafting blueprints for marketers she is a keynote speaker and personal branding coach.