Stories have been around for a fair amount of time now and many brands have joined the party. But some of them are thinking even bigger… Hopper, a flight-booking app, has gradually increased its spend on Instagram Stories since the platform enabled mobile app installs last May. The Stories format has become key to driving traffic via swipe-ups, making their Stories ads spend account for half of their total media spend.

Their app installs on Instagram Stories grew by a whopping 67 percent in comparison to those bought in the Facebook news feed. Equally, the conversions were three times more likely to happen on the ads bought in Stories, versus those in the feed. Interestingly, post views were also higher in the Stories ads than the ones in-feed. Because people aren’t just scrolling through their feed, the Stories ads grab their attention.

Busuu is another app reaping the benefits of Stories ads. The social learning app for languages has been able to buy its app install ads on a cost per impression that’s 40 percent lower compared to its in-feed ads.

The way these brands use Stories beyond just raising awareness shows how fast the format is evolving. Stories (on both Instagram and Facebook) were growing 15 times faster than feeds earlier this year, said Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who expects the format to take over from in-feed posts as the main way people share across its apps. Data suggests that many users already prefer Instagram stories to feed content on either Facebook or Instagram, pushing advertisers to think about how to use the format better and more creatively.

So how do you create a successful Stories ad? Once you have your strategy in place it’s really all about the creative. Grab the users’ attention in the first second or two because with Stories, time really is money.

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