This morning while perusing Instagram, I came across the first Sponsored ad in my feed. It’s a beautiful shot of a GE Electric Boeing jet engine. The ad is relatively inconspicuous except for the word Sponsored labeled across it and my total confusion as to what it’s doing in my newsfeed.
But looking at the GE picture, I am in awe at the future possibilities with IG ads. And I’m not talking about the possibilities for big brands like GE, I’m thinking about small businesses.
The first Instagram ad was a Michael Kors watch photo that landed in female accounts on November 1st. I didnt’ see it. But while big brands are leaping in and buying ad space, Instagram hasn’t released it to small businesses yet. So while I’m excited, I also have a lot of questions.
How will they determine which ads go where? How will they know who to market to? Can there be local/national/international ads? Where can the ads be purchased? How much will they cost?
The user side of me isn’t excited to start seeing ads in my feed, but if they continue to be as aesthetically pleasing as the picture GE shared – I can deal. But the marketer inside of me is exhuberant because I can see the reach potential an ad could have IF it’s placed well and IF it’s an interesting picture that depicts the brand well.
Instagram’s main power lies in its simplistic nature and beauty. Users and brands alike are able to take and share spectacular pictures that make them look like professional photographers. So brands wanting to get in on the IG ad action will need to be additionally aware of the pictures they choose to sponsor. Many users will react negatively, but like most social network changes, the dust will eventually settle.
For now I’m going to sit back and watch this ad stream unfold on Instagram and begin finding the answers to my questions.
But what I really want to know is: What do YOU think about Instagram incorporating ads into the news feed??