After six months of testing, Instagram’s video ads are finally live. Whether you like it or not, video ads will be slowly integrated into your Instagram feed, if you haven’t seen them already. The photo and video sharing social platform owned by Facebook has officially expanded its sponsored content posts from static image ads to 15-second autoplay video spots.
Instagram has already secured deals to show video ads from early buyers, such as Disney, Activision, Lancome, Banana Republic and The CW Television Network. They’ll appear in your feed similar to the sponsored image posts that have been used for almost a year now. The motion ads have already begun appearing, and ads from more companies will continue to be rolled out into users’ feeds as time goes on.
You might stumble upon video ads from these four major brands while thumbing through the food and party snaps in your feed:
For the brand’s first video ad, Banana Republic is running a silent time-lapse video of someone sketching a model. Using a time-manipulation effect made popular by Hyperlapse, Instagram’s first standalone app, the video flips through the sketches of holiday fashions for women.
Disney is promoting their next big movie, Big Hero 6, which comes out this week, with a video showing animated characters posing as if they were taking selfies.
Activision is pushing their newly released video game, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, to Instagram users. For its ad, the brand is sharing a 15-second clip from a longer live-action video that simultaneously debuted last week on its Facebook page, which has 23 million fans.
The CW Television Network has an ad for their new TV series, , which started airing in early October.
Videos and Banana Republic ad screen shot via Adweek
The CW Television Network has an ad for their new TV series, The Flash, which started airing in early October.
With video becoming an increasingly important part of a brand’s larger marketing strategy, particularly for mobile advertising, Instagram is finding a hands-on way to deliver fresh content to users that also meets the brands’ needs. Introducing potentially intrusive ads to a social space that had previously been commercial free is no easy feat. However, with rivals like Tumblr and Snapchat recently launching similar ad products for revenue, Instagram has been forced to expand on their image ads.
As with the sponsored static ads, the company is reviewing all video clips to ensure they fit the overall vibe of the social atmosphere to avoid turning off users. The Instagram ads aren’t meant to be treated as a place for repurposed TV or online commercials. Compared to those of its parent company, Facebook, Adweek reports that Instagram’s tools for advertisers are fairly basic, only allowing marketers to target video spots based on users’ age, gender and country.
Social networks flooded with advertisements might just be the price we have to pay for unlimited use of the otherwise free networks to connect with our friends. But will an enforced connection with brands be destructive to the social experience?
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