Instagram recently announced exciting developments in the digital advertising side of its business, including a new ad API and plans to roll out call-to-action buttons in the near future.

Instagram ads have huge potential to connect brands with their audiences, especially millennials. And if Capital One’s “What’s in your wallet?” campaign is any indication, influencer marketing will play a big role in shaping these ads.

Capital One’s Influencer Marketing

This January, Capital One and agency T3 decided to try something new on Instagram. The brand tapped into the power of Instagram influencers, giving three popular photographers access to its account for five weeks. The influencers – Kimberly Genevieve, Paul Octavious and Zach Rose – posted images of the significant mementos they and others keep in their wallets, tying into the brand’s “What’s in your wallet?” campaign.

The photos range from whimsical to bittersweet and, though they are polished and professional, they feel more emotional and real than typical studio shots.




Campaign Results

The images were published on both the Capital One and the influencers’ Instagram accounts. The brand used nine of the photos for Instagram ads, and its influencer marketing approach seemed to click with its audience.

  • The images increased Capital One’s ad recall 16%
  • Surprisingly, ad recall was highest – 25% – with people 45 and older
  • Capital One’s brand favorability went up 3% with millennials between 21 and 24

The brand is following up this success by continuing to explore new ways to leverage Instagram ads. It’s using Instagram’s new carousel ad unit, which allows brands to link several photos into a single ad, to advertise its reward program with Uber. These clickable ads let users swipe left or right to scroll through images – which have potential to tell a richer narrative than just one photo.

Capital One’s “What’s in your wallet?” Instagram campaign demonstrates just how important influencer marketing is for brands. With 300 million monthly active users and influencers with dedicated fan bases, Instagram gives brands the opportunity to reach a targeted audience in an authentic and fun way.

Want to know more about influencer marketing? Contact us!

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