Things have been relatively quietly for Instagram since Facebook scooped up the company in April of 2012. The social network has been content with growing Instagram’s user base over the past year and a half and now with more than 150 million people on board, it’s time to cash in on that acquisition.
Over the next couple months, Instagram users in the US will begin to see an occasional ad in their feed. The company warned in a recent blog post that seeing photos and videos from brands you don’t follow will be new so they are starting out slow. According to the post, users will see beautiful, high-quality ads from a handful of brands that are already members of the Instagram community.
In the event you see an ad you don’t like, Instagram says you’ll be able to hide it and provide feedback about what didn’t feel right. It is not unclear at this hour which brands and companies will be among the first to run campaigns with Instagram nor do we know how often ads will appear in a feed.
For parent company Facebook, it’s an opportunity to create yet another revenue stream. For post-acquisition era Instagram, it’s never really been a question of “if” ads were coming, but rather “when” they might arrive.
Facebook played it smart by delaying the process rather than loading the service up with ads immediately. Users are much more likely to accept the ads (or at least put up with them) now than they might have been a year ago.