The Instagram Stories Campaign Facebook Showcased at Cannes Lions

There’s only one way to find success with something new— jump in, start experimenting, and measure everything.

It’s not easy. It takes time, discipline, and often, Advil, but it’s how you get better than your competition.

At AdParlor, we’re no strangers to the process. Ever since ads were launched for Instagram Stories, we’ve been hard at work applying our Intel Tags to help our clients understand what drives results.

And that work has been paying off. Several of our clients’ campaigns have been recognized by Facebook at both F8 and Cannes Lions.

Jim Halpert - YES!

So, what was so special that made Facebook take notice and what can you learn that will help your brand succeed with Instagram Storie ads?

To answer, here is a behind the scenes look at the Today’s Shopping Choice Instagram Stories ad campaign that Facebook showcased at Cannes Lions.

Discovering secrets to Instagram Stories ads that convert

Since its founding in 1987, The Shopping Channel had grown to be much more than just a cable television station, with a powerful digital presence and thriving eCommerce business.

Rebranded as Today’s Shopping Choice (TSC) and equipped with an updated website, the company looked to attract a new demographic of customers— women under the age of forty-five.

With Instagram’s younger demographics and engaging new ad format for Stories, the company saw Instagram as the perfect medium to achieve its objective.

Getting in position to uncover insights about ad creative

To understand how to create high-performing creative for Instagram’s new Stories ad unit, Today’s Shopping Choice used AdParlor and its Intelligence Tags technology to analyze seven dimensions across sixteen ad creatives.

The Intelligence Tags technology enabled the company to tag individual elements of its ad creative and then analyze those elements across all of its campaigns to uncover what drove the best results.

Using Intelligence Tags, Today’s Shopping Choice was able to dissect the nuances of its creative, including:

  1. Color scheme
  2. Creative type— image or video
  3. Image focus— model or product
  4. Presence of logo

To ensure that Today’s Shopping Choice was attracting only new customers, AdParlor excluded existing customers from campaign targeting.

What TSC discovered about Instagram Stories ad creative

Each ad set started broad and was continually optimized toward the most responsive age groups and effective creative. Analyzing the Intelligence Tags data revealed that:

Adding a call-to-action to creative increased performance significantly

Adding a call-to-action to creative increased performance significantly

Creative that included a call-to-action had a 65% lower cost-per-sale than creative that simply used the native Instagram call-to-action.

Creative with text overlaid on top beat creative without any text

Creative with text overlaid on top beat creative without any text

Overlaying text on top of the creative drove a 47% lower cost-per-sale than images not containing any text.

Blue color schemes outperformed white and pink color schemes

Blue color schemes outperformed white and pink color schemes

Creative with blue color schemes had a 63% lower cost-per-sale than creative with white color schemes, and a 34% lower cost-per-sale than creative with pink color schemes.

Fashion drove more sales than beauty or home product categories

Fashion drove more sales than beauty or home product categories

The fashion category drove a 35% lower cost-per-sale than the beauty category, a 20% lower cost-per-sale than the home category, and a 55% lower cost-per-sale than a mix of all three categories.


By tagging and analyzing all of the campaign’s creative using Intel Tags, Today’s Shopping Choice found:

  • 65% lower cost-per-sale when creative includes a call-to-action
  • 63% lower cost-per-sale for blue color schemes over white
  • 47% lower cost-per-sale for images containing text compared to not containing any text
  • 55% lower cost-per-sale in the fashion category compared to other categories

These insights are now being used to optimize the company’s campaigns and create new creative for future campaigns.

Interested in more examples of Instagram Stories ads? Check out this video:

Rion Martin

About Rion Martin

Rion Martin is the senior communications manager at AdParlor. His name is pronounced ree-on, it's Welsh. He helps AdParlor tell its story, create messaging that resonates, and build demand. Outside of his professional passions, he's a mid-century modern furniture collector, cheesy 80s movie enthusiast, decent guitar player, new and interesting food taster, business and sci-fi book reader, free-spirited traveler, fine wood grain admirer, and father to Duncan (Border Collie), Gigi (Shih Zhu), and Cooper (Roomba 650).

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