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Raka Weekly Roundup: Global Instagram Shopping and Quora Ad Targeting

Welcome to the Raka Weekly Roundup, where we cover the week’s news and trends and tell you exactly what you need to know. This week, we’re shopping ‘til we drop on Instagram and marveling over Quora’s growth and their introduction of Broad Targeting.

Instagram Shopping has our hearts aflutter

If you look around, you can see more and more brick and mortar retail stores are closing. Why? Because you can get just about anything online these days—even on Instagram.

Now you can sit on the couch in your jammies with a bag of chips, flip through your Instagram feed of cute puppy pics, and purchase that six-foot stuffed giraffe you’ve always wanted. Okay, maybe that’s not your ideal product. I think otherwise we nailed your persona.

Although Instagram Shopping officially launched in beta in June, they’re going global Monday, September 24, with some additional exciting features. Now, when you go to your Explore page, you’ll see a shopping channel that will show tagged shopping posts from brands you follow or might be interested in.

And, according to Instagram, “Businesses using shopping on Instagram can now use product stickers in Instagram Stories in addition to product tags in Instagram posts. With product stickers in Instagram Stories, people can quickly access product information and shop seamlessly.”

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Here’s Liz Cebron, Vice President of Innovation at Madewell, one of the companies included in the Shopping beta testing, telling Adweek:

“Since we introduced Instagram Shopping in our feed last year, we’ve seen our demand from the channel more than double and we expect to see similar results over time with the introduction of Shopping in Stories,” Cebron said.

Clearly, there is an interest in the ability to shop ‘til you drop on Instagram so these new features will probably do quite well. To make it even better, Instagram is capitalizing on the main premise of social media—to like and share—encouraging people to share the products they love with friends and family. Retailers welcome the power of this 21st-century version of word-of-mouth and realize it’s much more valuable than the 21st-century version of the door-to-door salesman, aka unsolicited digital ads.

Instagram’s intent to help retail business’ boost their sales through Stories and the Explore page isn’t entirely without a financial motive. They’re hoping if retailers see a boost in sales they’ll want to take things one step further and advertise on Instagram, or that they already do. Currently, 25 million businesses are using Instagram to boost their brand, but only two million of these businesses are purchasing advertising. That leaves a lot of untapped potential to increase the revenue of this popular social media channel, and perhaps a standalone app will be coming.

Quora launches Broad Targeting to help advertisers

Quora just announced they hit the 300 million monthly unique users mark, up from 200 million users reported last year. This is great news for Quora, but it could also potentially be great news for businesses as well. Here’s why.

In addition to hitting this huge milestone when it comes to growing their user base, Quora also launched Broad Targeting to their ad platform. Essentially, Broad Targeting uses machine learning to get ads in front of the users who are most likely to take the desired action.

According to Quora, “When an advertiser chooses Broad Targeting, Quora will automatically target their ads across the Quora audience. These campaigns will continue to get more effective over time as the Quora Ads platform learns which specific audiences are engaging with their ads.”

So if your business isn’t currently advertising on Quora, you might want to consider adding them to your digital advertising mix. Between the sizeable jump in unique users and the introduction of Broad Targeting, Quora is looking like a pretty attractive place to get eyeballs on your ads and traffic to your website from people who are already curious enough to go ask a question.

If you’d like to talk about these trends, or need help getting any of your marketing initiatives off the ground, reach out to us!

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