Last week, Instagram announced that ads are coming soon to Instagram Stories, just five months after the feature’s initial release. This was mostly received with heart eyes from businesses, and rolling eyes from users, but overall not a big surprise to anyone. 150 million people use Instagram Stories each day - on par with Snapchat’s latest statistic - and Facebook easily built on their existing Ads Manager to get this advertising product up fast.
While Instagram is just starting to advertise in Stories, Snapchat’s been doing it since October 2014. Snapchat now has an array of advertising options - promoted filters, stories, lenses, etc., - that provide impressions to advertisers and revenue to Snap Inc. While Instagram Stories and Snapchat do provide similar experiences, Instagram Stories has two substantial benefits when it comes to running ads:
Instagram Story ads will be sold at auction
Instagram Story ads can be done within the Facebook ads platform
While the reasons above may have persuaded you to get started, Instagram Story ads aren’t open to everyone just yet. Instagram is testing this feature with about thirty clients, including General Motors, Nike, Netflix, and Airbnb.
Despite Instagram Stories having a lot of positives, Snapchat, with its advertising revenue, isn’t going anywhere. With 150 million daily active users and a far more expansive ad product that includes Stories, geofilters and lenses, they’ve made a stake in the ground - and that’s going to take much more than twenty-four hours to disappear.