Qantas and L'Oreal first to launch video ads on Instagram

Rosie Baker
By Rosie Baker | 11 March 2015

Qantas and L'Oreal are among the first brands in Australia to launch video ads on Instagram as the platform rolls them out this week. The first spots from Qantas are expected tomorrow, Qantas executive manager, group brand and marketing, Stephanie Tully, told AdNews.

L'Oreal is also running video ads on the platform for its Maybelline brand after seeing success with its previous paid ads on the photo-sharing app.

Christophe Eymery, L'Oreal head of digital, told AdNews: “We know that video is performing really well for us because it’s a format that can transform an emotion in a more powerful way than a still image, and that it can be very complementary to a still image campaign as well. So with that knowledge, we’ve been exploring multiple options [on Instagram].

“And now going into the video space is really the next step to utilise the format that we’ve known had been the most successful to connect with consumers. We’ve done it via TV and we’ve done it via digital advertising for a long time so[Instagram video] was a natural evolution.”

Eymery said he believes the success it has seen in static ads on Instagram will be surpassed by video ads.

Instagram launched ads in Australia in October with brands including McDonald's, Ben & jerry's and Vegemite among the first to trial it. It has so far run around 20 paid campaigns for brands.

There is limited information around the pricing of Instagram paid ad campaigns, with Facebook and Instagram spokespeople both declining to comment on cost.

Matt Jacobson, Instagram's head of growth, who visited Australia last week ahead of the launch of video ads, told AdNews that video would “change everything” for Instagram.

“I think video will be big and it's going to change everything. That thinking of Instagram in terms of still images and being able to tell the story visually and then being able to tell it through a photo or auto-play video, that’s a lot for a brand to understand - and our users,” he said.

“If there’s a new platform, a new way to tell stories, a new way to use video, we know it’s initially complicated to produce 1x1 aspect ratio video and tell a story in 15 seconds but there’s a good discipline and meditation around that that I think makes really good work.”

Late last week, Instagram revealed a number of new commercial features rolling out for advertisers in the US, including a carousel similar to that used on Facebook ads. While Facebook was this week unable to offer a date that the features would be available to Australian advertisers, it did confirm that they were on the way.

Read a full profile of Jacobson and find out more about how Instagram has evolved for advertisers in the US and what's coming down the line in the 20 March issue of AdNews. Subscribe in print here or get the iPad edition here.

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