Instagram for Business

Welcome to the Instagram for Business blog! Explore how businesses are using Instagram through tips, brand spotlights, API examples and news from Instagram HQ.

First Look – Measuring the Effectiveness of Brand Advertising Campaigns on Instagram

instagram news,

We introduced ads on Instagram on November 1 and today we’re sharing results from some of our first sponsored campaigns in the home feed on mobile.

Ads on Instagram are designed to support brands focused on reaching large audiences with memorable, high quality content. We think this aligns with the way people and brands already use Instagram – sharing photos and videos that capture a moment, inspire others, or shift perceptions.

For this analysis, we focused on metrics such as reach, ad recall, and awareness, which reflect the value and effectiveness of brand campaigns, rather than on social metrics such as comments, likes and followers.

Results from the first four completed Instagram campaigns:


  • All four initial ad campaigns measured were successful at delivering the broad reach our advertisers were seeking
  • The marketers achieved a high impact with a very low average frequency of ad impressions per user
  • Levi’s reached 7.4 million people in the U.S. across a nine-day period, targeting people aged 18-34
  • Ben & Jerry’s reached 9.8 million people in the U.S. over eight days, targeting people aged 18-35

Ad Recall

  • Across the four campaigns, there was a 32-point incremental lift in ad recall per campaign for people who were repeatedly exposed to a particular campaign versus control groups


  • Across the four campaigns, there was a ten-point incremental lift in brand message awareness per campaign for people who were repeatedly exposed to a particular campaign versus control groups
  • In particular, seventeen percent of people who saw a single ad for Ben & Jerry’s Scotchy Scotch Scotch-flavored ice cream not only became aware of the new flavor, they also associated it with the brand

Read full case studies for two of the four initial campaigns, Ben & Jerry’s and Levi’s.

While these initial results are promising, we believe that early campaigns may benefit from an overall increase in awareness of ads on Instagram due to their recent introduction. We will continue to optimize our ad products to make them successful for marketers and a great experience for people on Instagram. We’ll share additional case studies and results periodically in the future.

As we emphasized when introducing ads, our goal is to make them enjoyable, engaging and natural to Instagram, so we started by partnering with brands that were already great members of the community. We’ll continue to work closely with marketers to maintain the quality content people expect to see on Instagram.


Introducing Instagram Direct

Today, we’re excited to bring you Instagram Direct, a new way to send photo and video messages to friends.

Over the past three years, the Instagram community has grown to over 150 million people capturing and sharing moments all around the globe. As we’ve grown, Instagram has evolved not only into a community of photographers, but also into a means of visual communication. From a photo of your daily coffee to a sunrise shared from the top of a mountain hike, every Instagram moment contains something you find special—something you broadcast to your followers when you tap “share.”

There are, however, moments in our lives that we want to share, but that will be the most relevant only to a smaller group of people—an inside joke between friends captured on the go, a special family moment or even just one more photo of your new puppy. Instagram Direct helps you share these moments.

From how you capture photos and videos to the way you start conversations through likes and comments, we built Instagram Direct to feel natural to the Instagram experience you already know. When you open Instagram, you’ll now see a new icon in the top right corner of your home feed. Tap it to open your inbox where you’ll see photos and videos that people have sent to you. To send a photo or video to specific people, tap the camera button to enter the same simple photo or video capture and editing screens. At the top of the share screen, you’ll see the option to share with your followers (“Followers”) or to send to specific people (“Direct”). To send using Direct, tap the names of the people you want to send your photo or video to, write your caption, tap “send” and you’re done.

Instagram Direct enables you to share relevant moments with a specific person or a group of up to 15 people. After sending, you’ll be able to find out who’s seen your photo or video, see who’s liked it and watch your recipients commenting in real time as the conversation unfolds.

Photos and videos that you receive from people you follow will appear immediately. If someone you’re not following sends you a photo or video on Instagram, it will be held in your requests until you decide if you want to view it.

To learn more about Instagram Direct, check out

Instagram for iOS version 5.0 is available today for download in Apple’s App Store, and Instagram for Android version 5.0 is available today on Google Play.


the making of, brand spotlight,

The Making Of: British Garments with @sehkelly

To see how clothes go from the factory to the shop window, follow @sehkelly on Instagram.

When it comes to homegrown threads, you can’t get closer to Britain than SEH Kelly's (@sehkelly) hand-woven clothes.

Based in their East London workshop, designers Paul Vincent and Sara Kelly started the menswear company in 2009. They source cloth and makers from 15-20 British locations—from a Mohair mill in West Yorkshire to a one-man mill in North London and a family-son tweed mill in Country Donegal, Ireland.

"What is most important to us is transparency," says cofounder Paul. "The places we visit—be they fabric mills, brass foundries, glove-makers or garment factories—are often so interesting, and the work they do so wonderful that it seems a waste not to show it to the world. We hope, in some small way, to inspire an interest in the making process, not necessarily craft or handmade work, but the simple nuts and bolts of industry around the British Isles doing its very excellent thing."

(Source: instagram)

Introducing Instagram for Windows Phone

instagram news, windows phone,

Today, we’re excited to bring you Instagram for Windows Phone.

When we launched Instagram for Android in March of 2012, the community was 30 million strong and growing fast. The Instagram community is now more than 150 million people and reaches every corner of the globe.

In that past year, however, Instagram isn’t all that’s grown. We’ve also seen the rise of a new mobile platform as tens of millions of people around the world have taken to Windows Phones. Our mission is to give everyone the ability to capture and share the moments around them, so our team has been working hard to bring Instagram to Windows Phone users everywhere.

We wanted to make Instagram available to people with Windows Phones as quickly as possible, so we focused on creating an awesome experience with Instagram’s core features. We’re not finished, and our team will continue developing the Windows Phone app to keep releasing features and bringing you the best Instagram possible.

Instagram is a place where people come to be inspired and connect with others, and we’re thrilled to welcome Windows Phone users to the community. Now the images you create to show what your brand is all about can reach even more people.

Learn more about Instagram for Windows phone at and download it today from the Windows Phone Store!


bolthouse farms, cpg,

Bolthouse Farms rewards people on Instagram for spreading the word about the brand’s ‘roots’

Though it has been around for nearly a century, bottled juice maker Bolthouse Farms doesn’t have the marketing budgets to match Coca-Cola-owned Odwalla or Pepsi-owned Naked Juice. So it was a big deal for the company when in mid October it launched its first major consumer advertising campaign, focused on beverages, seeking to set its brand apart by driving awareness of the fact that Bolthouse owns the farms that produce its carrot juice.

When considering which media channels would be most effective to spread the word, Bolthouse director of brand engagement Pamela Naumes says the company just kept coming back to Instagram. Bolthouse is using out-of-home media in the Chicago, Miami and San Francisco markets, but Naumes explains, “We really believe in the power of digital and social, and more specifically Instagram, to tell our story.”

One reason: Bolthouse, which grows and distributes carrots in addition to salad dressing and a range of bottled beverages, was impressed that over 16,000 images had already been uploaded to Instagram with the hashtag #bolthousefarms, without any prompting from the brand.

So it decided to tap into that behavior, encouraging users to take photos of Bolthouse related imagery—billboards, bottles in the grocery store—and upload them to instagram with the hashtags #carrotfarmers and #gotcoupon. In exchange, Instagrammers are rewarded with $1.50 off a Bolthouse beverage.

It works like this: Once an image with the two hashtags is verified as related to Bolthouse, the @bolthousefarms account comments on the user’s image with a link that they can type into an Internet browser to print a coupon or send to their email account.  

The campaign has been such a hit that Naumes says the number of #carrotfarmers images is on track to surpass the number of #bolthousefarms images soon. But Bolthouse is also focused on how the campaign is driving awareness and trial of their products.

In addition to the number of photos posted each week, Bolthouse measures the earned impressions it receives from images that reach the followers of the users who post them. And of course Bolthouse monitors how many people actually print and redeem the coupons. “The majority of Instagrammers uploading images are also printing the coupon,” reports Naumes.

Bolthouse plans to keep the program going, including kicking off a second phase of promotion to support it. And while the Instagram campaign is generating immediate business results, Bolthouse is delighted that it also supports their “farm fresh” branding. Says Naumes, “The beauty of the hashtag is that it reinforces that we are carrot farmers.”


charity, james beard foundation, restaurants,

James Beard Foundation Inspires Diners to Snap Food for Charity

Instagram and food. It’s like they were made for each other. If you scroll through your feed and don’t catch a glimpse of someone’s latest meal, artfully arranged #onthetable, you might think something is wrong. So it’s only natural that the James Beard Foundation (@beardfoundation) tapped into people’s passion for snapping pics while dining to amplify awareness of its Taste America Local Dish Challenge in September and October.

"Food photography is so hot right now and on Instagram people share their experiences through images in a way that’s really compelling," says Kris Moon, Director of Charitable Giving and Strategic Partnerships at JBF. "Diners can now say, ‘Look at this amazing dish!’"

As part of the Taste America national traveling food festival, JBF enlisted 162 restaurants in 10 cities to feature a limited-time dish celebrating their city’s local flavors. Participating chefs used Instagram video to announce the promotion: For every local dish ordered, the restaurants would donate $1 to the JBF’s educational programs.

Meanwhile, diners could up the ante by posting a photograph of the local dish to Instagram with #JBFTasteAmerica and the hashtag of their city. The winning hometown, based on number of photo uploads, will be awarded $10,000 to a local food charity. The votes are still being tallied but Chicago and Santa Barbara look to be in the lead and JBF has seen over 5,000 instances of the #JBFTasteAmerica hashtag since Taste America kicked off in June.

While Instagram helped to get diners and chefs across the US get involved with Taste America, JBF also used the platform to share moments from events around the country hosted by all star chefs like Richard Blais, Michael Voltaggio and Wylie Dufresne.

The campaign has JBF even more excited about using Instagram as a marketing tool. “We’ve been very active on Instagram for about a year, but Taste America has expanded our presence there,” says JBF senior editor Anna Mowry. “The bulk of our images come from the Beard House, which is often called the Carnegie Hall for chefs. With Instagram we can share the incredible cooking that’s happening there every day with all users on the platform.”


Michael Kors, Fashion,

Michael Kors Enlists Help in the Fight to End Hunger

It’s not every day that Instagrammers have a chance to see their photos on the big screen in New York’s Times Square. But earlier this month Michael Kors (@michaelkors) made that possible for people who shared Instagram photos (like those above) to help spread the word about World Food Day, using the hashtag #watchhungerstop.

Fashion designer Michael Kors has been a longtime supporter of the fight to end hunger. This year his company decided to adopt the cause officially by partnering with the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) to launch a long term initiative called Watch Hunger Stop. In April, Kors unveiled a special edition timepiece, the 100 series watch, to support WFP. An engraving on the back of the watch includes his signature, the name of the campaign and the message: 1 WATCH = 100 MEALS.

Many global brands have causes they’re passionate about, using their voice to raise awareness and inspire action. But it can be a challenge to figure out how to get customers involved beyond making a purchase or donation. This is where the company turned to the Instagram community, streaming photos with the hashtag #watchhungerstop to 12 billboards in Times Square on October 16, World Food Day.

Given that 350,000 pedestrians visit the tourist hot spot on an average day, and another 115,000 pass through on wheels, there’s no doubt the images made an impact. In fact Michael Kors reported that the Times Square billboards delivered 1.5 million impressions on the day of the campaign.

It’s important to note that the Instagrammers who took part also helped educate their own followers about global hunger, even if the screens that broadcast their messages were a bit smaller than those in New York City.

A Look at Ads on Instagram

Instagram news,

A few weeks ago, we shared our plans to introduce advertising on Instagram. Today, we want to provide a few more details about exactly what ads on Instagram will look like.

If you’re in the United States, you’ll see the sample ad above sometime in the coming week. This is a one-time ad from the Instagram team that’s meant to give you a sense for the look and feel of the ads you will see.

You’ll know a photo or video is an advertisement when you see the “Sponsored” label where the time stamp normally would be. Tap the label to learn more about how advertising works on Instagram. If you have other questions about how advertising on Instagram works, you can learn more here.

We want ads to be creative and engaging, so we’re starting with just a handful of brands that are already great members of the Instagram community. We’ll proceed slowly and let you know when we’re ready to expand, continuing to partner with brands whose content shines.

In the meantime, all businesses can use Instagram by creating an account on the platform. All you need is a mobile device, username and profile image.

Instagram is the place for brands to share beautiful and captivating photos and videos that people can’t see anywhere else.

Stay tuned to this blog to see how a few brands are already crafting eye-catching original content and inspiring their customers and followers to do the same.

We recommend exploring the stories and best practices featured here, such as these profiles of some of our ad launch partners:

We look forward to more businesses joining the Instagram community and sharing moments that capture the essence of their brands.

Instagram as a Growing Business

instagram news,

Over the past three years we’ve watched with amazement as Instagram has grown to a global community of more than 150 million people capturing and sharing the world’s moments. Instagram is a place where people come to connect and be inspired, and our focus with every product we build is keeping it this way.

We have big ideas for the future, and part of making them happen is building Instagram into a sustainable business. In the next couple months, you may begin seeing an occasional ad in your Instagram feed if you’re in the United States. Seeing photos and videos from brands you don’t follow will be new, so we’ll start slow. We’ll focus on delivering a small number of beautiful, high-quality photos and videos from a handful of brands that are already great members of the Instagram community.

Our aim is to make any advertisements you see feel as natural to Instagram as the photos and videos many of you already enjoy from your favorite brands. After all, our team doesn’t just build Instagram, we use it each and every day. We want these ads to be enjoyable and creative in much the same way you see engaging, high-quality ads when you flip through your favorite magazine.

We’ll also make sure you have control. If you see an ad you don’t like, you’ll be able to hide it and provide feedback about what didn’t feel right. We’re relying on your input to help us continually improve the Instagram experience.

As always, you own your own photos and videos. The introduction of advertising won’t change this.

Thanks for listening, and stay tuned for more details. We’re excited to continue building Instagram alongside this inspiring community.


auto, mercedes-benz, instagram+facebook,

Mercedes-Benz Creates an Immersive Experience at the Frankfurt Auto Show

Seeking a way to stand out at this year’s International Motor Show IAA in Frankfurt, Mercedes-Benz turned to Instagram for inspiration. The automaker constructed a space composed entirely of Instagram images: 7 million pixels across nearly 13,000 square feet.

Photos came from the Instagram community using the hashtag #mbcariaa, which Mercedes-Benz announced on Facebook and other media channels as well as on the image wall itself. The automaker describes the installation as an “emotional” campaign designed to engage the community. “They can actively play a part in the exhibition on the show stand with Instagram pictures and thus help shape it.”

Over the course of the show, September 12-22, a team at the Mercedes-Benz offices selected the most striking images from the over 1,500 submitted and turned them into a mosaic, using software to animate the images. Every 30 minutes the team swapped in a new set of photos to ensure the installation was constantly evolving. The best images were also published to the Mercedes-Benz Pages on Facebook and Google+.

To raise the stakes for the installation, the automaker also hosted four photo bloggers overnight on Sunday, September 15 for an Instagram shoot-out: @teymur, @koelnformat, @marioroman_pictures, and @fuenfkommasechs.

The bloggers’ photos appeared on the official Mercedes-Benz Instagram account, @mercedesbenz, and as part of the installation. Each blogger uploaded one photo per hour over the course of the night with #mbshootout. The Instagram community then had until Wednesday, September 18 to vote by liking their favorites.

Photographer Mario Roman Lambrecht, @marioroman_pictures, led the pack with over 242,000 likes across his 12 photos. His prize? Lambrecht will manage the international Mercedes-Benz Instagram account, @mercedesbenz, in November.

And even though the show ended on Sunday, Mercedes-Benz has continued to share images from the event on Facebook, allowing the high-impact campaign to live on.