Instagram is Now Serving Up Ads in Stories So get Used to It

Instagram Stories ads are here and likely here to stay, as the site expands its marketing prowess into yet another format…

It’s important to remember a simple fact — when something is “free,” the recipient is the product. In other words, social sites which come at no-cost gather a whole lot of user data. And, that information is used to solicit businesses into purchasing targeted ads. So, it’s little surprise Instagram is pedaling another way for companies to reach consumers.

Instagram Stories Ads Roll Out

Now, another piece of the puzzle falls into place with Instagram Stories ads. They appear in vertical orientation and include shopping bag stickers for users to quickly make impulse purchases. The site just introduced the campaign tool, starting with select brands, including Adidas.

Of course, this move isn’t entirely without risks. Brands previously content to promote products with simple photos might find it all-too-tempting to invade the video format. And, it’s certainly worthwhile, given that Instagram Stories is so popular. In fact, it’s outperforming rival Snapchat, even though it cloned its competitor’s key feature. (It also outdoes its parent company, by-the-way.)

Today, Facebook Stories boasts 150 million DAUs or daily active users. And, its subsidiary, Instagram Stories claims twice as many — 300 million. However, Snapchat lingers far behind. Facebook has more than 2 billion users. While Snapchat just 191 million DAUs, of which, less than 150 million use Stories daily. (By comparison, WhatsApp Status, which is the same stories format, has 450 million DAUs.)

This comes after the world’s largest social site announced it would introduce Facebook Stories video ads. It seems there is no escaping the marketing onslaught. But, it does reiterate the reality when a service is “free,” the users are ultimately the product.

Owen E. Richason IV

Owen is blog content writer, SEO consultant, social media marketer, and website guy. His work has appeared in the Houston Chronicle, on Business.com, Tampa Bay Business and Financier, AOL and numerous other blogs and websites. is also a musician and is the founder of Groove Modes.