Kaitlin has seen Instagram evolve as a platform for advertisers and –admittedly– has a love-hate relationship with advertising on Instagram. When the aesthetics are done right, an Instagram advert can blend into your feed and doesn’t have to feel “intrusive”. On the other hand, I feel that the platform is going down the same path as Facebook, where all brands now have to essentially pay for any of their content to be seen by their followers, and soon Instagram will become a heavy stream of adverts too.” Lauren is exceptional at strategizing and creating Instagram content. As more and more businesses are ramping up their Instagram activity and ad spend, it’s imperative that they create meaningful and lighter content that their audience wants to see.” [SPECIAL OFFER] You’ve checked us out online. The whole reason people love Instagram is the fact that it’s visual first, text second.” The Sins of an Instagram Advertiser The experts agree– the goal of a great ad campaign is to make your content feel natural and organic. Content that works on Facebook doesn’t typically work on Instagram so I hate when I see a heavily branded visual on Instagram that’s clearly been posted across a brand’s every social account. It’s so important that a brand thinks about what content works for each platform and tailors their content to each.” Did you know Califia is pronounced like California? Create ads that inspire your audience instead of just selling to it. Make intrusive content. Use stock images or packshot style product images.
Instagram is increasingly following suit with parent company Facebook and transforming itself into a pay-to-play platform for advertisers and brands.
Since an algorithm update in 2016, Instagram ditched chronological feeds in favor of content it thinks you’ll like to see — namely, friend’s pictures, awww-inspiring animals and most definitely not corporate posts. As a result, social media managers and brands that wanna get noticed have next to no choice but to pay for Instagram ads. Two years in, marketers are finding it harder than ever to reach their audience.
Don’t get me wrong– advertising on Instagram is still a great way to promote your brand to a highly targeted audience, but it’s also an easy way to put out useless cringe-worthy content at the cost of your marketing budget. What gets pushed out needs to be top notch and visually striking enough to get noticed, and provoke audience engagement.
It isn’t easy to craft something of the caliber that brands with teams of designers and photographers push out, but you can beat out 80-90% of Instagram ads by avoiding common pitfalls.
To get a better idea of how to create a cringe-free Instagram ad campaign, I spoke with two professionals with a lot of experience in (ethically) gaming the ‘gram with quality ad content.
Kaitlin is the social head honcho at Rebecca Abigail, a communications agency based in London. She was brought on to launch their social media and influencer marketing division. Prior to this, she spent 7 years working at the likes of We Are Social, HeyHuman, and Feref leading social campaigns for big names like LEGO, Ballantine’s Whisky, and Tesco.
Kaitlin has seen Instagram evolve as a platform for advertisers and –admittedly– has a love-hate relationship with advertising on Instagram. Kaitlin explained,
“On the one hand, I believe there is great value in giving brands and businesses the opportunity to reach new audiences through advertising. When the aesthetics are done right, an Instagram advert can blend into your feed and doesn’t have to feel “intrusive”.
On the other hand, I feel that the platform is going down the same path as Facebook, where all brands now have to essentially pay for any of their content to be seen by their followers, and soon Instagram will become a heavy stream of adverts too.”
Lauren is exceptional at strategizing and creating Instagram content. Carving a niche in the world of fashion and luxury goods, she now works as a coveted social media consultant for some top UK brands. Lauren is also an Instagram influencer herself.
Following her breast cancer diagnosis, she documented her journey as a young woman battling cancer on her blog, and now successful t-shirt charity store, GIRLvsCancer. Her way with words, penchant for beautiful social photography, Instagram skills, and relatable content led to her brand going viral.
Instagram Ads Tips From The Pros
Both Kaitlin and Lauren shared some fantastic Instagram ad tips that can take your game to a whole other level.
Lauren shared a bit about her experience with using ads as a method of audience acquisition for brands, and as a part of remarketing programs to drive ROI.
“Customers are becoming increasingly savvy and prefer to use Instagram as a place to source inspiration– not be sold to. This is why the content of Instagram ads is vital – it needs to feel organic!”
Kaitlin agrees, putting emphasis on the realities of advertising to people…