5 Examples of Instagram Stories ads that produce results

Learn from these brands that are using Instagram Stories ads to their full potential.

Instagram Stories ads are yet another way to effectively reach your audience with social media advertising. There are well over one billion users on Instagram with 400 million daily active users on Stories. On top of that, one-third of the most viewed stories are from businesses.

There’s no question not to work Instagram Stories ads into your marketing strategy. Instagram Stories ads are designed to fully immerse your audience in your content while users tap through their friends’ stories. Here are some powerful ideas and examples of Instagram Stories ads that produce results.

Capture users right away

Instagram Stories were designed for quick content. Users are tap-tap-tapping their way through their friends’ stories and aren’t interested in being disrupted by ads.

The goal is to keep users intrigued and prevent them from tapping on to the next piece of content. Here are a few key ways you can capture users from the start:

  • Be visually appealing. Whether you opt to display a photo or a video, it’s imperative that your content is fun, quirky and interesting.
  • Add music. Sound should hold just as much importance as your visuals. In fact, it’s a make-or-break factor when it comes to ads. Choose music that fits well with the creative.

Spotify example of Instagram Stories adSource

Here is a fantastic example of a simple ad on Instagram Stories, yet one that captures attention immediately without any gimmicks.

Spotify uses a single photo here and because bright colors and quirky images do well on Instagram, they pretty much hit the nail on the head. They also use large text that explains in only a few words what they offer.

Users have no choice but to digest this quick ad with its fun colors and brief messaging as they move through the Instagram Stories, even if they happen to tap right away.

Make your brand name visible

One of the more clear takeaways from using Instagram Stories ads is brand awareness.

Whether you’re announcing an upcoming event or launching a new product line, this avenue is a surefire way to get your brand name in front of new audiences. However, to make sure you really have that high ad recall, your brand name should be clearly visible.

Here are a couple key things you can do to stand out:

  • Don’t be afraid to show the brand name front and center. Some brands overlay the brand name or logo directly over the content. Your business name should be prominent and on the screen long enough for higher ad recall.
  • If you have a product with your brand name directly on it (Coca-Cola is a good example), show the product first! This way, you’re killing two birds with one stone. Tying a brand name to a product means higher brand recognition.

Outsider pizza example of Instagram Stories ad

Outsiders Pizza does a good job of showing their products right away for the entire length of the ad. They chose to create a simple video showing their various frozen pizzas, which turns out both simple and interesting to look at. And as you’ll notice, showing the product also shows off their brand name on the packaging. This type of ad creative is a standard for brand awareness success.

Create compelling, helpful content

Successful Instagram Stories ads are ones that offer helpful content and don’t push the product or brand too much. Lifestyle content and content that fits into people’s lives are what sells.

Whether it’s a quick tutorial or showing off a product line, offer value to your viewers and find a way to relate to them. Find a way that doesn’t say “I’m selling this product to you,” and instead show a helpful piece of content that is engaging for users.


This ad from The North Face uses relatable, compelling messaging while also showing off a few of their sleeping bag products. It doesn’t feel too “salesy.” With a bit of comic relief, the ad is actually fun to tap through. You can easily tell which audience they’re targeting and they’re feeding into that lifestyle. It’s simple, yet effective.

Start a conversation

Instagram Stories ads are a great way to promote conversation rather than simply display a product to sell (as discussed in our last section). These ads do well because they blend with the surrounding content on Instagram Stories.

Conversation helps move the customer past the discovery phase down the funnel, so why not create an Instagram Stories ad that does just that?


Target Style is engaging with the user here, without trying too hard. The “show us” is a great call to action to also get users to engage and send user-generated content to the brand.

Use influencers

Instagram is influencer heaven. And let’s face it: people love seeing content from their favorite celebrities, YouTubers, beauty gurus and music artists on Instagram.

Leveraging influencers is easily one of the most popular examples of Instagram Stories ads. If you’re already using influencer marketing, that’s great. Why not incorporate influencers into your Instagram Stories ads? Not only are people more likely to keep watching, they know that their favorite celebrity endorses the brand.

Using an influencer marketing strategy with Instagram Stories ads also mixes well with the original content already on the platform. There are plenty of celebrity Instagram Stories and adding an ad into the mix featuring an influencer makes sense.


Express’s ad features Karlie Kloss in a quick video. It’s a promotional announcement and they do well to have just enough overlay text about the sale. It’s enough for some users to know that Karlie supports the brand, and there’s no doubt her massive following will check out the sale.

While Instagram Stories was designed with quick content in mind, the possibilities are endless when it comes to creating ads. Use these ideas and examples of Instagram Stories ads when planning your next big Instagram campaign.


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