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Instagram recently announced that it has doubled the number of advertisers on its app in the past 6 months, reaching a whopping 500 000 advertisers. The Facebook-owned business is growing from strength to strength since it opened up its advertising platform to 200 countries one year ago. The photo app, launched in 2010 and currently deemed the new ‘golden child’ of online advertising, uses Facebook demographic data to serve targeted ads to relevant audiences.

500,000 Advertisers on Instagram from Instagram for Business on Vimeo.

According to an article in Financial Mail, Instagram now boasts a robust ‘500 million monthly active users’, with 300 million using the application every day.

Instagram’s CEO, Marne Levine, states that the vast majority of advertisers are small business owners, and that the top five sectors advertising on the platform are consumer-packaged goods, ecommerce, retail, entertainment and technology.

Staying ahead of the game

Since selling their start-up to Facebook in April 2012, Instagram has maintained relevance in the market with innovative and valuable platform updates that speak directly to the needs of both users and advertisers. These include, for example, revising the way content is displayed in your Instagram feed, and the recent launch of the Instagram Business Profile with features such as a Contact button and directions to your business. More recently, we saw the launch of Instagram Stories – their answer to the rapidly-growing competitor SnapChat. In May of this year, Instagram increased the time of their videos to a full 60 seconds. And, according to Financial Mail, video consumption on the platform has grown 150% in the past six months.

Local adoption

Globally, the top five countries adopting the advertising platform are US, Brazil, UK, Australia and Canada. However, adoption in South Africa is on the rise as more brands and small business owners become aware of the ‘power of visual storytelling’ and the reach available to them.

According to the Instagram Business blog, “75% of Instagrammers take action after being inspired by a post, like visiting a website, searching, shopping or telling a friend.” In a world where we are bombarded with incessant multimedia, it is clear that Instagram, with its beautifully curated imagery and subtle advertising tactics, stands out from the rest.

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