8 Popular Ad Trends That Can Help You Advertise Better on Instagram

Instagram, as a platform, is ever-evolving. It has new features and formats coming up constantly, giving an extremely dynamic opportunity for brands to tell their stories and grow their business.

While it started off as an image sharing platform, Instagram soon grew into a place that became a marketing tool for several businesses. Some of them had the first-mover advantage, taking over a captive audience that was still navigating the interface of a fairly new platform. Others came in later with strategies built to give them an edge over their competitors.

Over the years, Instagram has innovated itself as a platform, putting forth new and interesting tools and formats for the creators to play around and innovate. They also gave way to the culture of social media influencers who were seemingly normal people like us but wielded a huge amount of authority on the general populace in their chosen fields.

When it comes to advertising on Instagram, price is barely a factor. Based on your objectives, you can choose the amount you want to invest for the maximum impact that you visualize.

Creating content on Instagram is easy if you keep in mind the popular trends that can make or break your brand.

Here are our top 8 Instagram ad trends that you must experiment with for your brand

1. Instagram Shopping

Instagram has rapidly become a place for brands to showcase their products, using it as a virtual store. Some brand accounts have shoppable posts that allow the user to directly select a product from the photo and purchase it.

Brands who have over 10k followers or are verified on the platform can use the ‘Swipe Up’ option on their stories to redirect their followers to their store page. For those who don’t fit either of these criteria, they can promote their Instagram stories to add a swipe up link to their online storefront.

Moreover, owing to the layout of the Instagram feed, brands can use it as a virtual boutique and promote these posts to redirect the user to their website for direct purchase.

2. Vertical Videos

About 2 years back, Instagram launched IGTV videos creating a whole new trend of vertical videos that brands lapped up. Vertical posts were already popular thanks to Stories and IG Live, but with IGTV showcasing videos longer than a minute gave brands and creators a whole new route for storytelling.


These vertical videos can make for interesting ads on stories breaking down a long-format video into smaller snippets or creating a teaser for the audience to check out the whole video. Using a free photo slideshow maker with music, you can easily come up with videos for your brand.

3. Instagram Stories

Instagram stories are the most favorite tools on the platform. Since its launch in 2016, they have been the go-to format for brands using Instagram as their online marketing platform.

The stories come with a host of options, allowing brands to innovate and come up with extremely fun ways to showcase themselves. They can be used in a bunch of ways such as –

  • The brands can use the poll widget available on Instagram stories to make their audience interact with the brand. They can garner the audience votes on launching a new product, creating a new event, or even selecting a guest for their next AMA. They can use it to get their audience’s opinion, run personality tests for them, or simply play a game and run contests for the brand.
  • Brands also use Instagram stories to announce major events or product launches. They are eye-catching, smart, and short, allowing the audience to grasp the information they need in a tiny time window and move on to the next thing on their story feed.

4. Influencer Marketing

Influencers are the perfect marketing ploy for brands on Instagram purely cause of their huge fan following on the platform. If you find an influencer who suits your industry and has a sizeable following, you should not be shying away from investing in collaborating with them.

Besides their huge follower base, influencers also have very smart content creation strategies that are high-quality and well-planned. With the right kind of influencer, your brand can truly get their value for money.

5. Instagram Live

Instagram Live allows audiences to get up, close, and personal with their favorite brands or online personas. In a live session, a brand can do everything from launching a new line of clothing or cosmetics to a new store tour, AMA with a celebrity brand ambassador, or even a live concert for their audiences to see.

It’s a great way to come close to their followers and show them the human side of their operations.

6. Interactive Content

Audiences love to engage with their favorite brands and creators, and this is an amazing place for brands to leverage this exact interest. On Instagram Stories, brands can use the widgets to run a poll or a quiz where they can test their followers’ knowledge of the brand.

Brands can also use the Q&A widget available on stories to let the followers directly ask the brand questions. This can give the latter a sense of gratification while also allowing the former to get up, close, and personal with them.

7. Instagram Story Ads

Instagram story ads are effective, simple, and eye-catching – much like the stories. Additionally, they also allow the brands to add swipe up links to their Instagram profiles, event pages, or their online stores, allowing their potential followers to get a feel of their products.

They appear in between the stories of people a particular person follows, and thus, are not easy to miss. With good popping creatives, Instagram Story Ads can really take your brand to the right people who will adore it.

8. The Explore Tab

The Explore Tab shows people content that is similar to the things that they are interested in. It could be the brands they follow, creators they look for, or even the kind of activities that they like.

Using the right hashtags, a brand can make their way into the Explore tab of their target audience. Thus, creating a high chance of them getting noticed by the people they want to reach.


Instagram and its advertising is a perfect help for your brand. They are easy to use tools, interactive features, and visually appealing content, get your brand noticed by the right people. So, use the most popular hacks for Instagram advertising to find the most interesting strategies for your brand.

As our second lead editor, Anna C. Mackinno provides guidance on the stories Great Lakes Ledger reporters cover. She has been instrumental in making sure the content on the site is clear and accurate for our readers. If you see a particularly clever title, you can likely thank Anna. Anna received a BA and and MA from Fordham University.