Facebook-owned photo sharing platform Instagram is bringing ads to Reels, the company announced on Thursday. Instagram said that the ads on Reels will be up to 30 seconds in length, like Reels themselves and will be vertical in orientation, similar to the ads found on Instagram Stories. Like Reels, the ads will also play on loop and people will be able to like, comment on them, and save them - same as other Reels videos. The company had previously tested Reels ads in select markets earlier this year, including countries like India, Brazil, Germany, and Australia and then expanded those tests to Canada, France, the UK, and the US more recently.
Brands like BMW, Nestle (Nespresso), Louis Vuitton, Netflix, Uber and others are the early adopters of the new format. Instagram told TechCrunch that the ads will appear in most places users view Reels content, including on the Reels tab, Reels in Stories, Reels in Explore, Reels in users’ Instagram Feed, and will appear in between individual Reels posted by users. However, the company says that in order to be served a Reels ad, users need to be in the immersive, full-screen Reels viewer.
In terms of the experience, Instagram hasn’t said how often a user might see Reels ads, but the company said that the number of ads a viewer may encounter will vary based on how they use Instagram. According to a report in TechCrunch, Reels ads will launch with an auction-based model. Currently, Instagram is declining to share any performance metrics around how those ads are doing, based on the tests the company did in certain regions.
Instagram is also not offering advertisers any creative tools or templates that will help them get started with Reels ads. It is being said that Instagram assumes that advertisers already have creative assets on hand or know how to make them because of Reels ads’ similarity to other vertical video ads.