How to Create Eye-Catching Instagram Story Ads

Over the last few years, Instagram has become one of the most popular social media websites. With over 1 billion monthly active users, 50% of whom access their Instagram profiles daily, the network is a great marketing tool for brands that want to raise brand awareness, reach their potential customers, and even boost sales in-app.

Just imagine: over 25 million businesses and 2 million advertisers hope for the attention of the Instagram audience.

This means the competition is high on the platform, so brands should run paid ads to cut through the noise and reach their target audience fast. Luckily, Instagram offers a great variety of ad format options that give you an opportunity to reach your set goals with ease. If you want to start with one ad format, make it an Instagram Story ad.

Why Create Instagram Story Ads?

The phenomenon of short-lived content isn’t new on social media. Instagram Stories appeared back in 2016 as an analogy for Snapchat’s feature and it gained in popularity fast. 

With the growing potential of this content format, the platform now allows marketers to create Instagram Story ads and here are top three reasons to do it:

  • People use Instagram Stories daily. Over 500 million people create or watch Stories daily which gives businesses of all sizes and niches an opportunity to reach their potential customers while being engaged.
  • Instagram Stories create a sense of urgency. Stories have a short lifespan of 24 hours which creates a sense of urgency, the fear of missing out effect that encourages people to watch Story before it vanishes. It also affects the customer decision-making process which can lead to more sales.
  • Stories have a great variety of functions for advertisers. From clickable Story links to interactive stickers, there are many ways to engage your target audience in a meaningful conversation and provide interested people with more information about your product or service. 

Now that you know the importance of Instagram Story ads, it’s high time to understand how to create ads that stand out from the crowd and grab the attention of the potential audience who can become your followers or even customers. Here are five ways to create eye-catching Instagram Story ads:

  1. Invest Time and Effort into Visual Content

People are visual learners and 65% of us perceive visual information better than texts, so it’s important to create appealing visual content that grabs the attention. Not only does it help to engage more viewers, but it also helps to reach a wider audience as users are more likely to share content they find beautiful with their friends and family.

Whether you create photo or video ads, you can always choose from graphic design tools and make stunning visuals that match your brand identity without hiring a professional designer. 

When it comes to promoting your products with Instagram Story ads without being too salesy, you can design your own merch and wear it in your content to give viewers a sneak peek of your cool designs. However, make sure that your featured items match the overall design of your ads and make the whole picture look cohesive.

  1. Utilize the Power of Storytelling

The amount of information people receive daily is constantly growing which makes the attention span shorter and shorter. But if you want to stand out from your competitors and encourage your ad viewers to learn more about your product/offer, it’s a great idea to utilize the power of storytelling.

The secret is that people love stories as they make us feel like a part of something important. What is more, storytelling helps to grab the attention and engage viewers, so it’s no wonder that many marketers give digital storytelling a try, especially when creating ad campaigns. 

To create eye-catching Instagram Story ads that include storytelling, you can use the carousel format that allows you to include up to 10 cards about your product or company. The best thing is that viewers see only 3 cards and then interested ones can tap on  “Expand Story” to see the remaining cards. It helps to interact with people who show interest in your story and convert these viewers into leads or customers.

  1. Feature Influencers or Customers for More Trust

People buy from people they trust, not brands. That’s why most internet shoppers seek out social proof before making the purchase decision: we check out customer reviews, read success stories & case studies, look through fan-made content, etc.

One of the best ways to grab your audience’s attention with Instagram Story ads is to feature niche influencers or real customers. Whether you invite a relevant influencer to become a campaign model, ask influencers to do product reviews, or show real customer testimonials in your ad campaign, there are many ways to provide viewers with social proof and increase brand trust.

  1. Add Interactive Instagram Story Stickers

Wouldn’t it be great if you could increase sales with Instagram Story ads? Or would you like to understand your customers better? Maybe you want to generate more leads? Instagram offers various Story stickers that help you achieve your goals while interacting with your hooked audience.

Here are several ideas on how to use Instagram story stickers for business goals:

  • Clickable links – to redirect interested people to your landing page and provide them with more information or convert them into leads
  • Shoppable stickers – to provide users with product information and allow them to buy products in-app
  • Poll stickers – to understand your audience better and ask for customer preferences
  • Question sticker – to collect customer thoughts 
  • AR filters – to help online shoppers try out your products before buying them and therefore help them make the right purchase decision
  • Donation stickers/Small business sticker – to support your company when you need it

Remember, people love buying from brands that show interest in them, too. This means they want to interact with brands and make online communication useful for both parties. Instagram Story stickers help to do it the right way, no matter what business goals you have.

  1. Include a Time-Sensitive Offer for Customers

Instagram Stories vanish fast and when it comes to Instagram story ads, people don’t have an opportunity to come back to your ad after skipping it. As a result, people pay much attention to this ad format and brand offers companies feature. Why? People are simply afraid of missing out on something important.

To convert viewers into potential customers, it’s a great idea to include a time-sensitive offer that is valid for a certain period of time. For example, you can add a discount code, promote a seasonal sale, or offer a free trial to grab the attention of your target audience and encourage people to act fast.


Instagram is a popular social media platform that allows businesses to get in touch with their target audience, deliver a brand message to potential customers, and turn interested people into real buyers. But if you want to cut through the noise, it’s important to create eye-catching Instagram Story ads that grab the attention of the right people and help you stay ahead of your competitors. To make the most out of Instagram Story ads, give the above-mentioned tips a try and see your business growth.

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