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Instagram's Changing the Look of Their Ad CTAs to Better Merge with User Feeds

18. 10. 2017.

Instagram has announced an update to their call to action buttons on promoted posts, which will see Instagram ads become a little more subtle - a change that may help them push more ads into user feeds.

Last September, Instagram rolled out an update to their ad CTA buttons which saw the action prompt turn blue whenever a user rested on the ad for four seconds or tapped on the profile name.

Now, Instagram’s updating the format again, with a new process that will see the button change to the main color of the ad’s photo or video, better integrating into the look and feel of the content.

The change may seem subtle, but it could have a significant impact – as noted by Marketing Land:

“By making the call-to-action bar feel more like a part of the photo or video, the difference may not be so obvious to people swiping through their feeds.”

As noted, that could then enable Instagram to push more ads into people’s feeds – and with more than two million advertisers now clamoring for the attention of the 800 million users on the platform, the benefits of adding even just a few more ads into each feed could be significant.

It’s the third major upgrade for Instagram’s basic ad format since being introduced. Last June, Instagram added full-width CTA buttons, as opposed to a smaller, single button at the bottom right of the main image.

They then upgraded to the blue colored option, and now this new format. Utilizing the dominant color from the main image is also something that both Facebook and Twitter have tested in different capacity on posts to help boost engagement, though neither has fully rolled out such as yet. 

On Instagram, however, the addition feels a little more natural, adhering to the aesthetic flow of the main image, which may help boost engagement. If anything, it seems like it could make ads stand out less without the blue bar we’ve become accustomed to, but as noted, that may be the point. The balance will be whether Instagram can prove that the change reduces user friction for ads, while also maintaining current click-through rates for advertisers.