Welcome back readers! Today is Transformation Tuesday and I’m going to discuss Instagram’s newest transformation. Instagram is a social media website that allows users to post photos about events in their life for their friends and family. It also allows companies to better connect with their audience in a more personal and direct way.
Instagram doesn’t focus on words to capture an audience’s attention, but instead allows an image to take the place of words. For instance, Target recently posted a photo to promote the DVD release of the movie Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1. In the photo you can see clothes and supplies that can be associated with the movie. Target chose this photo because it allows the user to imagine being a part of the rebellion from the movie. The image encourages users to visit Target to purchase the movie and maybe a few extra supplies. This photo is unique because it appeals to a wide range of girls and women. It allows them to imagine themselves as the independent warriors in their own lives.
Instagram’s new transformation will now allow businesses to promote their brand through a photo slide show. Originally, companies could only post one photo at a time on their Instagram account; but now with new slide show brands will be able to post multiple photos together. This new advertising method is called: carousel ads. Carousel ads will allow users to scroll to the left to view multiple photos. Here is a video that shows how the slideshow will work for users.
Another transformation Instagram will offer is a link to click and view a company’s website. In the past, Instagram only allowed companies to promote photos, not website links. But now with the carousel ads, the user will have the opportunity to click on a company website and learn more.
This new transformation was caused by advertisers needing more direct results with their audience. Many current Instagram business accounts wanted more successful ways of reaching their audience and have their audience take direct action (by clicking on a link and purchasing an item). So Instagram worked to create the carousel ads that will allow more direct contact with users, but also allow the users to scroll past the ad, if they are not interested.
From a PR perspective, I can see the new carousel ads becoming effective because it will offer more interaction with users and provide them with more information. I think by allowing companies to promote their message with multiple images can help to better inform the user.
However, my only concern is how accepting users will be about viewing more advertisements on their newsfeed. As a frequent Instagram user, I’m not always happy when I see multiple ads on my newsfeed; especially if I’m not interested in the displayed content. So it will be interesting to learn how these carousel ads will play an effect on the future of Instagram’s advertising.
Instagram will be releasing the new ads on a limited time frame and during that time they will try to determine which format will best relate to users.