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  • Writer's pictureMacauley Clifton

What are Instagram Story Ads and How to Use Them.

With more than 500 million users viewing Instagram Stories every day, they can be a powerful tool in accelerating your companies growth. Stories can be utilised to boost reach, send traffic to your website and in turn, boost revenue.

If you are familiar with Instagram, you'll know how stories work - however, if not, Stories are a full-screen photo or video that is visible for 24 hours. They appear at the top of the homepage, showing all the stories within the last 24 hours for the accounts that you follow. Once clicked onto stories, they stream one after another until the user swipes through or watches all the available stories.

Ads seamlessly slip into this by appearing between organic Instagram Stories from who the users follow. Therefore they do an excellent job of 'soft-advertising' without harming the user's experience.

But how can I use this in my business?

As always, the primary goal of advertising is to engage your audience and entice them to your end goal (be that, downloading an app or going to your website etc.)


With Instagram being owned by Facebook, they get access to the huge amount of data that Facebook holds. You can therefore use Instagram Stories to retarget users that may have interacted with previous ads, pages on your site or simply viewed your profile. Retargeting campaigns help in taking warm leads to fully-fledged customers and is certain to offer an impressive ROI.


Want to push your giveaway or sale season? Instagram stories can be huge. Instagram stories are a full-screen experience so if you provide a captivating image/video and couple it with a good CTA and you could see a great response and drive traffic to your website, contact form or page.


The perfect media for small and medium business that are operating on a limited budget. Story Ads can be great in getting your brand out there in front of a larger audience so you can build up that following. Established Businesses, Story Ads can be a great way to launch a new product or diversification.

How do I get the most from my story ads?

With Stories being 1 to 15 seconds in length, making the most of that time is essential. Here's how you can do just that:


Making sure your audience is spot-on is an excellent place to start. By doing this, your Ad will be in front of exactly who you want it to be, therefore increasing the chance of getting a successful conversion. 

Lookalike audience can play a role in this. Lookalikes take the data from your Instagram interactions and create an audience that is similar to these people. 


As mentioned above, you only have up to 15 seconds for your Story Ad. So it is essential to make an impact from the first second. The primary way you can do this is to use high-quality visuals to wow your audience. It is also important to portray your message quickly and clearly. A high number will probably 'tap through' to the next story, so catching their attention within the first few seconds before they do is vital.

Lastly, a clear call-to-action (CTA) is required. When posting a Story Ad, Instagram will show a swipe up button at the bottom, however, you can still include a call out to swipe up within your content to help further push them to make that move.


This isn't for everyone and only suites a couple of Industry, but the use of an influencer within your Ads can be huge. If you can incorporate an influencer that is well known within your space and have either an image or a video of them with your product, it will cause the social proof of your product to go throug hthe roof and therefore increase the click through rate.



  • Video Aspect Ratio: 4:5 and 9:16

  • Maximum File Size: 4GB

  • Supported Files: .MP4 and .MOV

  • Duration: 1 to 15 seconds


  • Aspect Ratio: 4:5 and 9:16

  • File Size: Max 30mb

  • Supported Formations: .PNG and .JPG

  • Minimum Resolution: 1080 x 1920 Pixels

To Finish..

Instagram story ads can open new and exciting avenues for your business to interact with current and new customers. With its full-screen visuals, it is one of the only Advertising mediums that give you 100% of the viewer's attention so if used wisely, can be one of the best ROI Ads.

It is important to remember to play around and test different content and audiences to see, which strikes the best chord with your desired audience.

_____ As always, if you want some help with your Ad Campaigns or are interested in our range of Marketing services for your business, please don't hesitate to get in touch:

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