Instagram is a widely popular social media platform in the year 2021 and is constantly bringing new features up and running to improve its outreach. Last year in July, as a response to the ban of TikTok in India, Instagram took over as the biggest new competitor with the inclusion of Reels which introduces Instagram reels ads. These Reels have become very commonplace in a very short period of time as there are countless content creators in India who jumped at the opportunity. However, the Facebook-owned company was not happy with the service that was operating in about 80 countries.
The company is now introducing Instagram reels advertising as a new feature, which will be quite similar to the sponsored posts we see on our home feed and explore tab, however, this holds a lot of potential for businesses, individuals, and Instagram as well. These Instagram reels advertisements will help creators reach wider audiences through the video-centric approach Instagram seems to be taking, and can loop in up to 30 seconds. They will be full screen and vertical, similar to the story (sponsored) ads feature on the platform and can be liked, commented on, shared, and saved.
According to Facebook India’s MD, Ajit Mohan, India is a very critical country with a large user base for Instagram, and since the launch of reels last year, there has been a near exponential growth in video content across the platform. These ads will be in a vertical format, and can also be scrolled through vertically with other Reel content. Instagram COO, Osofsky said that Reels are a way for users to experience newer content on Instagram, making Reels ads a ‘natural fit’ to be taken advantage of by brands of all sizes. It holds potential and opportunity for businesses to utilize a now-familiar creative environment where there are millions of people already. Just like other ads on the platform, Instagram allows users to skip, hide, and report the Reels Ads as well. These Ads will also be identified by the ‘sponsored’ tag below the username of the advertiser.
Instagram is one of the largest social media platforms that exist, and it is no surprise that more Ads are making their way to our screens. These ads will be targeted based on our preferences online, our interests, our browsing habits, and various other factors as well. It also has the giant Facebook to back it up, making it the most formidable player in the ad market today. Although TikTok has a huge audience for similar content and charges up to 2 million USD for a single-day takeover according to Bloomberg, the legal threat looming over the company, and the head-to-head against a universal platform such as Instagram puts it in a volatile position. On the plus side, companies can invest in their digital marketing efforts to include Reels Ads in their paid advertising campaigns, to create a new marketing channel for their products and services.
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