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Instagram Testing Promoted Stories Ads for Business Accounts

Instagram is one of the most popular social media apps out there, and it also happens to be one of the least intrusive social networks when it comes to users being bombarded by ads. This means users are able to see more of what their friends and favorite influencers are up to while offering a great balance between sponsored content and organic posts.

However, the prominence of ads on Instagram might be about to change!


A new option will allow users, businesses, and brands alike to easily create targeted ads through Instagram’s popular Stories feature, making it easier for companies to reach the consumers who are going to be eager to engage with their brand.

In this blog, I’m going to be exploring Instagram’s new Promote for Stories ad type, which will let users and businesses promote their stories similar to Facebook’s Boost option. We will take a look at all the benefits of this new ad type, and discuss how small businesses with limited resources or management teams can promote organic content to a broader audience at a limited cost.

Why Stories and How Will it Work?

Instagram’s Stories feature is already an extremely popular aspect of the platform. In fact, the feature’s popularity is the main reason why Facebook adopted the feature onto its own platform, and also why Facebook (Instagram’s parent company) decided to monetize the feature by inserting ads in between Stories.

The new promoted option within Stories will work exactly like how normal post ads show up in user’s regular feeds. However, instead of the promoted content showing up in the feed, the promoted Stories will show up between the existing Story ads and Stories from people you follow.

While in theory, the new features sound like a great addition to the platform, in reality, there may be some issues. By letting anyone promote their own stories into the Stories feed of other users, Instagram could cause a bunch of confusions for users if the promoted feature is not implemented correctly.

For example, if an influencer decided to promote their Story and you as a user don’t even follow that influencer, it could be very confusing and seem completely out of place for their Stories to show up between the Stories of the people and influencers you do follow.

Though there may be some confusion on the part of the user, the new feature offers many benefits to businesses. Businesses are already creating stories on Instagram, and the new feature will make it easy to transform existing stories into ads.

Brands have already integrated Stories into their own social media marketing strategies with great success, and have grown accustomed to posting organic, unpaid Stories. This comes as no surprise, as Instagram Stories is a great tool for brand engagement and for connecting with customers and influencers. The Promote feature will let brands repurpose these organic Stories as ads, with the added benefit of being able to use all of Instagram’s targeting parameters, like interest or location.

Business accounts will be able to target the promoted Stories—which will include a link to the business’s Instagram profile or website—by location and other interests, ensuring that the ads are shown to audiences that are similar to their existing follower-base,

The fact that 80% of Instagram accounts already follow a company shows how willing users are to interact with businesses on the platform. That means that there is incredible potential for this tool, and brands should start utilizing the tool as soon as they are able.

If you want to learn more about how to create and publish Instagram Story ads, then check out our helpful blog on that topic here.

Benefits for Small Businesses

So far, businesses have not been as eager to incorporate paid advertising on Instagram into their marketing strategies as they have been with Facebook. While there are only 2 million advertisers on Instagram, there are nearly 6 million on Facebook. This could be because of a lack of options in advertising styles on Instagram— an issue this feature hopes to change.

The new promoted tool for Stories could encourage small and medium-sized businesses to invest more in Instagram by eliminating some resources required to create content. Instagram is hoping to encourage more brands and businesses to advertise on the platform by offering Promoted Stories as an advertising method to all business pages at a very low cost.

At this time, the Promoted tool in Stories in is only available to business accounts, and Instagram has been unclear on when the new advertising feature will be ready for the masses.

The Promote feature is perfect for any business or brand that has a limited ad budget but wants to use Instagram as a platform to engage with new and existing customers. Instagram has already been a great tool for many brands, and the new Promote Stories ad type is a great way for the company to attract more businesses to advertise on Instagram by offering an easy way to create targeted ads at a reasonable cost.

If you want to learn more about how to promote your brand on Instagram, then enroll in our Personal Branding & Influencer Marketing course today! You can also follow us on YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram for more helpful content posted daily, and you can head to our blog for more FREE training that will help your business thrive using digital marketing.

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