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Instagram enters the e-commerce marketplace, hooray

Recently, there has been an increased push across social media platforms to integrate external links; the newest of these is Instagram.


Instagram and your money

Recently there has been an increased push across social media platforms to integrate external links. This enables users to “buy now” or “learn more” without leaving their favorite platform. Twitter launched their dedicated pages to allow users to shop where they Tweet; Facebook has “buy now” capabilities in group pages and an option to send money to someone through Messenger; and now Instagram is joining the party.

Instagram unveiled a new advertising solution, much like Twitter’s dedicated pages. It aims at improving the efficacy of Instagram-based marketing by integrating those external links. Their new advertising solution also includes a new application programming interface (API) in order to allow a wider variety of advertisements. They will also be taking a page from Facebook and allowing sponsored content, related to user-specific interests.

What does this mean for your business and other smaller brands?

You need to know your audience and who you want to reach. Brands will be allowed to fine tune their sponsored content, so it is paramount you know your target audience. Consider this: Instagram has over 300 million active users and on average 70 million photos are posted per day. If your sponsored ads are not skillfully crafted, interested users may never see it.

Then Twitter rolled out their dedicated pages, they also rolled out “curated” pages: pages that were organized and endorsed by celebrities. This allows Twitter users to find something they love based on the item, or the person endorsing the item. The same possibility now exists for Instagram: rather than asking users to scroll through endless photos and advertisements, using and influencer may be a smart path.

An influencer, or a user with a large number of followers in a specialized area (beauty, celebrities, fashion), can help push your content. If an influencer’s followers like what’s posted, it has a tendency to spread like wildfire across the social media platform, something that is difficult to do on your own.

What you need to do now: focus, focus, focus

With the new integrated links, curating audience-specific content is more important now, than ever before. You may also want to look into who the influencers are in your particular market and try to use them to push your product or service to the next level. One thing is clear, social media platforms have gone from a casual communication place to an engaging e-commerce marketplace.

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Jennifer Walpole is a Senior Staff Writer at The American Genius and holds a Master's degree in English from the University of Oklahoma. She is a science fiction fanatic and enjoys writing way more than she should. She dreams of being a screenwriter and seeing her work on the big screen in Hollywood one day.

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