Instagram has just announced via its official blog that ads will begin displaying for users starting next week. For those in the know, the fact that Instragram had decided to start showing ads is old news, but the time has finally come. Instagram has finally given us a sneak peak at how the ads will look. The sample ad on their blog shows a man sitting at the head of a long dinner table, a laptop with an Instagram logo and a cup of coffee in front of him.
The familiar Instagram logo is in the top left corner, but there is a new item in the top right that simply reads, “Sponsored”. Clicking this will take you to a page where you can learn more about ads in Instagram. There is also a “…” in the bottom right, which if clicked will allow you to hide the ad and give feedback that Instagram claims they will use to improve your ad experience in the future.
Instragram is insisting the ads will be consistent with the look and feel of the Instagram pictures and videos that the some 150 million users are familiar with. They are being selective about the advertisers that are allowed to have ads, and have gone with a chosen few for now. Instagram is making sure that the ads are creative and streamlined with the current Instagram user experience. Some of the preliminary companies that are running ads (from MarketingLand):
- Ben & Jerry’s
- Michael Kors
- Starwood Hotels
More companies will be added as the ad program expands and Instragram is satisfied with the ad material they come up with. Instagram insists that you will still own your photos and videos, and everything else about your experience will remain the same.
Placing ads is always a contentious subject. It interrupts the user experience and can frustrate some people. Instagram insists that ads are necessary: “Building Instagram as a business will help us better serve the global—and ever growing—Instagram community, while maintaining the simplicity you know and love.”