*UPDATE* January 2016: Instagram’s Advertising platform is in full public launch. You can set up your account in under 60 seconds.
*UPDATE* February 2016: Your Instagram Ads can now be a minute long
As one may have noticed during a recent phone browsing session bathroom break, Instagram has been rolling out a revamped platform for purchasing, advertising, and overall user engagement on its mobile app. Previously, Instagram’s sponsorship options consisted of universal advertisements reserved for the hegemons of the fashion, automotive and entertainment industries. In short, this new advertising platform equips everyone from the Grillenium Falcon food truck to Taco Bell with not only micro-targeted advertisements but also “action-oriented” buttons that attempt to shorten the distance between visual reach and monetized engagements.
Further, Instagram launched Trends & Places feeds this week that organizes posts by location and category, such as Extreme Athletes and Milwaukee’s Summerfest. Users can more deeply engage with the community that surrounds the passions that brought them to Instagram in the first place.
More importantly, this recent update gives businesses insight into Instagram’s powerful targeting capabilities for future campaigns. Though Instagram’s ad API is in a slow rollout, open only to certified Facebook Marketing Partners (apply here), it’s important to note that these idealist ad metrics are only as good as a company’s ability to observe the data gathered from their sponsored posts and create insights that can justify spending, reveal lucrative markets, and inform future advertising decisions.
That being said, Instagram’s own blog has posted some revealing case studies confirming our hopes for the platform. By leveraging Facebook’s ad infrastructure, Instagram is already making a huge splash for companies through targeted campaigns across Canada and many other niches around the world. As they have with Facebook, Instagram’s Sugar Daddy, businesses of all sizes will soon be able to generate tangible data for their posts instead of the arbitrary viewing metrics (mostly from jittery thumb-scrolling), amassing <3’s, and the occasional follow.
What do you think? Let us know in the comments.