Instagram Starts Offering Essential Ad Tools At Last

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Facebook-owned Instagram is making itself more advertising-friendly today with the rollout of a suite of business tools aimed at brands which offer insights and analytics related to their use of the image-sharing network. Included in the suite are tools that show a business’s reach and impressions, as well as engagement, plus the performance of paid ad campaigns.

Specifically, businesses are being offered a dashboard interface for tracking their performance, where they’ll have tabs for things like “Account Insights” and “Ad Insights,” the latter which shows the analytics for things like impressions, reach and frequency as it related to ad campaigns and individual ads.

Another section, called “Ad Staging” is where advertisers and their creative teams can create their ads, preview them ahead of running, and work together on upcoming campaigns, explains a post on the Instagram blog, first spotted by The Next Web.

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Notably, the campaign summary data is being offered to advertisers in real-time, allowing them to see how the audience is reacting to their sponsored photos, possibly so they could defuse the sort of situation Michael Kors faced when the company ran the first Instagram ad, and had to deal with massive user backlash. (That ad, however seemingly disliked, was actually fairly successful it was later pointed out. The account gained 34,000 followers in 18 hours after running.)

Instagram says it developed the new business tools in conjunction with select advertising partners, and is now making them available to all advertisers working to reach the network’s over 200 million users worldwide.

Ads on Instagram were inevitable, following the Facebook acquisition and the service’s need to begin generating revenue at last. However much some users won’t care for the further invasion of ads on Instagram, brands have already been participating for some time on the network, growing their follower accounts and establishing their communities. Offering these businesses tools to make better decisions about what users want to see and how well they’re engaged with the company and its shared photos only makes sense as the next logical step.

Instagram ad tools have been a long time coming, and highly anticipated by businesses. The company first introduced ads 10 months ago, and yet have waited until now to make campaign monitoring tools available. However, the actual public release of these tools is still being kept vague, for whatever reason – Instagram says that the suite will roll out “over the coming weeks and months,” without providing a more solidified timeframe.