Instagram ads are about to get a lot more personal.
For the last year and a half, you’ve probably seen an occasional ad in your Instagram feed from brands like Lululemon and Budweiser. Usually they look like something you’d normally see on Instagram anyway, like a hipster couple enjoying a drink on the beach.
But soon advertisers will know if you’re a 20-something living in Brooklyn who likes cats. How? Your Facebook profile.
On Tuesday, the photo sharing service, which Facebook bought in 2012 for $US1 billion, announced that by this winter, it will begin to use data from your Facebook profile to target you with more relevant ads.
Instagram ads can currently only target users based on age, gender, and country.
Instagram also said it’s going to let business “of all sizes” start displaying ads, a move to help make money off of its 300 million monthly users.
“To give all businesses the opportunity to reach the right people, we are working to make Instagram advertising available through an Instagram Ads API and Facebook ad buying interfaces over the coming months,” said the company in a blog post.
So will you start seeing more ads in your Instagram feed? Not necessarily. “People may see more ads in the future, but they will be much more relevant and targeted,” an Instagram spokesperson told Business Insider.
Right now only big brands with direct relationships to Instagram sell ads on the platform. Starting in July, Instagram plans to let select marketing partners work on ads for more brands. By the winter, Instagram’s buying tools will be integrated with Facebook’s, allowing any brand that advertises on Facebook to buy ads on on Instagram, too.
That means you’ll start seeing Instagram ads tailored to your Facebook profile and habits.
Earlier this year, select brands were given the ability to show slideshows with multiple photos for ads along with clickable links. Now companies that buy ads will be able to direct users to check out their stuff with custom “Shop now” buttons, that when tapped, will open an in-app browser where they can shop without leaving the Instagram app.
An Instagram spokesperson said that clickable links are only for advertisers and won’t be available to regular users in their photo captions or comments.
Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom said at last year’s Code Conference that he still personally approves every ad that runs in the app. In the future, ads will be curated more algorithmically based on Instagram’s guidelines.