Instagram Stories Feature to Gain Ads; Now Used by 150 Million Users

Instagram’s five-month-old Stories feature brings 150 million active users to the platform every single day. Now, according to a report from Fortune, the social media network is giving advertisers a way to reach them.

As with its duplication of Snapchat’s Stories product, Instagram’s ads within Stories will largely mimic the ads that Snapchat began inserting between Stories in its app last June — but boosted by Facebook’s advertising relationships and technology.

The company has signed up more than 30 advertisers around the world. In the United Stated, those brands include Airbnb, L’Oreal, McDonald’s and Nike, while in Europe, they include Adidas and Pepsi.

After the initial test, “over the coming weeks” Instagram will open up these ads to all advertisers around the world on a self-serve basis through Facebook’s Power Editor ad-buying tool and through third-party ad-buying platforms that use Facebook’s Ads API, said Instagram’s director of market operations, Jim Squires. He continues:

Businesses from the beginning have been a really important part of the Instagram community, and we’re seeing that inside of Stories as well. Seventy percent of people follow businesses inside of Instagram, and that number has continued to increase, and we’ve seen inside of Stories that businesses are further strengthening those relationships. One-third of the most viewed Stories are from businesses. So based on how both people and businesses have embraced Stories, we’re introducing insights for businesses so they can see how people are interacting with their Stories content.

According to Squires, 70 percent of people on Instagram follow businesses and a third of the most-viewed Stories are from businesses. And unlike in regular Instagram feeds, users tend to listen to Stories with sound. In fact, Squires said that 70 percent of people have the sound on when they are going through Stories. That means that the content used in Stories can be a little more expressive, he said.

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