Why Story Ads Matter?
It’s more than two years since Instagram launched story ads and nearly one year since Facebook launched its version of story ads. According to Instagram, out of the 500 million Instagram accounts that use stories, one in three most-viewed stories belong to brands. And, one in five brand stories receives a direct message from viewers.
In April of this year, Mark Zuckerberg revealed that over three million advertisers were using Stories Ads on Facebook, Messenger, and Instagram.
How are Story Ads different from Regular Newsfeed Ads?
As the name implies, Instagram Story Ads are part of Instagram Stories – they can be found on top of the News Feed and are full-screen content. When a user clicks on a story ad, the ad occupies the full screen, and by swiping next, the user can watch a steady stream of content – one story after another.
On the other regular newsfeed ads look similar to Instagram posts. They occupy only a portion of the screen, and users can like, comment on it as usual.
The biggest click factor of story ads is that advertisers can link within the ad – meaning viewers can click on these links and be taken directly to a landing page, product page, or lead form.
Secrets of Creating Highly Effective Story Ads that Convert
#1: Multiple Tests aid in Ad Optimization
The best way for advertisers to judge the pulse of the audience is by running multiple tests. Even small changes like the placement of the logo, colour scheme of the ad, or the copy can lead to huge wins.
Jose Sanchez, the head of Smartly.io, believes that brands must take a test-and-learn approach. By changing the various parameters of the ad like – pacing, colour schemes, content, length – advertisers will be able to arrive at the right ad structure that clicks with their target audience.
#2: Interactive Ads click with the Audience
Story ads are highly interactive. Brands can include polls, questions, and other interactive options right on the ad. This incentivizes the users to swipe up on the ads and see what it has to offer.
#3: Carousels provide Audience with in-depth Information
Carousel video story ads are well suited for both Facebook and Instagram story ads. Carousels are a great way to provide your target audience with in-depth information about the brand/product and increase airtime.
Advertisers can also link a different landing page for each card on the carousel. Akvile DeFazio, of the social media agency AKvertise, recommends using a maximum of three to five cards, as users are impatient to see too many options.
#4: Short and Crisp Messages work the Best
Instagram stories ads come with a “Sponsored” label that appears in the top, right corner. Advertisers have to work on grabbing the attention of the audience before they realize that what they are watching is an ad and swipe away. To grab the attention of the audience instantly, the core message of the ad should be simple, short, and to the point.
#5: A Powerful CTA
Advertisers recommend including a strong CTA by offering a limited deal, an exclusive offer, etc. This encourages viewers to swipe up and arrive at the landing page.
Stories are Here to Stay
In just two years of its launch, the number of users using stories has shot up to 500 million. A vast majority of the audience has moved from the News Feed to Stories, and advertisers have to revise their marketing strategy to give the audience more of what they like – the Story Ads.