This week, Instagram announced it is adding video to the carousel ad format. The carousel ad format launched last year as an enhanced interactive advertising experience for brands to showcase multiple products and creative images. Now with video capabilities – videos can be up to 60 seconds long – Instagram is banking on advertisers flexing their creative muscles:
“The hardest thing to do is to capture people’s imaginations, and carousel can help advertisers better achieve that with five pieces of content. As we see people watch more video, we think this helps business bring messages to life more,” said James Quarles, Global Head of Business and Brand Development at Instagram.
The format launched in beta this week, with brands like Taco Bell and Airbnb getting to play around with it first. A wider roll-out to all advertisers is slated for later this month.
WHAT MARKETERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CAROUSEL VIDEO ADS
This is a natural move for Facebook (who owns Instagram), which has made recent investments in its video products. As mentioned above, it will give marketers greater creative flexibility in utilizing Instagram for branding efforts with video, particularly with tactics like sequential content.
While carousel ads may seem like an easy way to reuse existing TV or pre-roll assets, marketers should instead view it as an opportunity to conduct data-driven testing to understand what resonates with Instagram users. This testing will likely require platform-specific creative development.
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