Only 6% of your brands followers see your organic posts!
Instagram will start placing ads on the “explore” page, where users are showed curated content based on their interests. This is the first expansion of ads for Instagram beyond stories and feed posts. This is an obvious choice for Instagram, with the increase in ad spend on the platform. For brands, it is further emphasising the need for paid social advertising, in a world where organic reach is steadily decreasing.
What is the explore page?
Some of you may have never used (or heard of) the explore page, and others - use this page religiously. They say people who use this page, are "open to explore new things" and want to dive further into the platform. It works a bit like Pinterest, you search by interests suggested to you at the top eg. food - and you scroll....welcome to a whole new feed! *caution* this is a great time-waster and you can often find yourself lost in the web of beautiful imagery for a bit too long!
Where will you see the ads?
The ads will only appear in the feed/scroll section of "explore" (right screen in above picture) and will not *yet* be visible in the grid (on the left).
What does this mean?
There is no doubt Facebook has been experiencing a steady decrease in organic reach over the past few years - with the push for Facebook to be about "connecting people" and recent algorithm changes - studies have found that less than 6% of your fans will see your brand's organic posts. This has undoubtedly already begun impacting Instagram - with the feed no longer being arranged by time posted, but by engagement (and many other factors).
The way I see it - there is little you can do about the decline in organic reach, but it is important to understand things are changing (always) - and the value of paid advertising for brands is at an all time high. The new ad unit it is a great for brands way to reach potential customers, when they're engaged and exploring a topic they care about!
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