Turner’s House of Highlights is crushing it on Instagram Stories thanks to a surprising source

Steph Curry

Turner’s sports-centric Instagram property House of Highlights is finding success with Instagram Stories, generating between 1.5 million and 2 million views per story.
Surprisingly, some of the most popular Stories have been produced for paying advertisers. The record-holder is 5-Hour Energy, which created a Story that was tapped on over 6 million times.
Ad buyers say that breaking through on Instagram Stories is extremely difficult, and thus working with publishers with built-in audiences makes sense.
Scaling this kind of advertising will be a challenge going forward for both publishers and brands.

House of Highlights is known for capturing eye-popping highlights from NBA games (like this no-look pass) or touching viral sports moments (like a high school kid hugging his buddy after striking him out) – as well as having famous fans like Steph Curry and LeBron James.

But when it comes to Instagram Stories – brands are the breakout stars so far.

Indeed, since the Turner-owned Instagram channel, along with its sports sibling Bleacher Report, started producing content for Instagram Stories, many of its biggest hits have been produced for paying advertisers.

For instance, an Instagram Story for 5-Hour Energy drink is the House of Highlights record holder with 2 million ‘first slide’ views and 6.3M total impressions, according to Turner.

Overall, branded Instagram Stories are generating on average 5- to 10% more engagement than a standard House of Highlights Instagram Story– which is saying something in a medium known for the passion of fans, and their little love for conventional advertising.

The key for marketers and publishers posting videos and animated photos to Instagram Stories seems to recognizing the fact that Stories is a completely different medium. Or a medium within a medium.

According to House of Highlights general manager Doug Bernstein, the channel finds that while Instagram’s main feed is more polished, Instagram Stories are raw, ephemeral, and ideally interactive.

And you need to get to the point fast. Which makes brands’ success here all that more surprising.

Bernstein said that when Instagram launched Stories in the summer of 2016, the publisher took a wait and see approach.

“We wanted to figure out what that right approach was,” he said. “We found out that Stories is a fundamentlaly different experience with fundamentlaly different habits.”

That jives with Instagram’s own findings. Earlier this year Jim Squires, Head of Instagram Business, told Business Insider that 300 million people watch Stories each day, versus Instagram’s larger 500 million person audiences. And people blow through Stories 50% faster than they do their feeds.

So when making an Instagram Story, “you don’t want to slow people down,” he said. “You want to play into that.”

That’s what House of Highlights has tried to do via Stories, with and its own content and for advertisers.

“You’ve seen lot of publishers porting over from Snapchat, or doing very premium, polished content,” said Bernstein. But what we found in our own lives is that the stories we were gravitating towards were personal.”

Starting late in 2017, House of Highlights’ Instagram Stories, were generating between 500,000 to 700,000 views. But …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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