Instagram Sponsored Stories

Instagram Introducing Ads in the UK

In amongst the usual pictures of peoples lunch, sunsets, and of course cats, Instagram users may have noticed something new. Ads.

We’d been warned that adverts were coming, but they’re now arriving in the UK.  If you haven’t already seen it, look out for a “sponsored” post popping up in your feed.

Ads will be rolled out “slowly”, the social network explains, starting with companies “already great” on Instagram. After this taster, Instagram said genuine adverts would be “coming soon” to UK users.

“Our aim is to make any advertisements people feel as natural to Instagram as the photos and videos they enjoy from brands who are already using Instagram,” said spokesman Will Guyatt.

“You can hide individual adverts and leave feedback by tapping the “…” button.

“We’re relying on input from people on Instagram as well as advertisers to help us continually improve the Instagram experience.”

Despite the test post receiving more than 18,000 likes, many users have been expressing their frustration online.

The company was bought by Facebook in 2012 for $750m (£460m), despite not making a profit, and it now needs to start making money and support itself. Ads is the natural way to go and we feel opens up an already creative channel to some hopefully great, creative ways of advertising.

Twitter Advertising

Twitter ads now based on browsing history

Twitter AdvertisingTwitter is making it possible for any advertiser to target users based on their browsing history. Twitter ads will be fuelled by browser cookies from websites users have recently visited and will appear on Twitter’s mobile app even if the sites you visited were on a desktop computer.

Tailored ads are powerful because they allow advertisers to zero in on users that already have shown an interest in their products. For example, a hotel can nudge Twitter users that have visited its website or joined its email-subscriber list. An email address is one of the few pieces of information Twitter requests when new users sign up.

Companies generally can’t tell when the same person visits their sites on desktop vs. mobile, and Twitter helps them bridge that gap. That’s attractive to advertisers since consumers increasingly are spending more time on smartphones.

“Retargeted adverts” as they are known, have not previously been successful on mobile, because phones and tablets do not leave the same level of cookies or trail of breadcrumbs about which sites you have visited that laptops and desktops do.

But by analysing the cookies in your desktop browser, it’s anticipated that Twitter will be able to use that information to target relevant adverts for mobile as well.

The use of cookies is thought to be part of Twitter’s plan to become an advertising powerhouse after the $23.8 billion valuation proposed by its $43.69 share price.

Twitter currently offers an opt-out of retargeting under “Promoted Content” on its “Security and Privacy” settings page.


[Source: WSJ; Telegraph; Techworld; TechCrunch]

Dispatches Episode Comment from Honey Digital Ltd

Channel 4 Dispatches ‘Celebs, Brands & Fake Fans’

Dispatches Episode Comment from Honey DigitalLast night Channel 4 aired its eagerly awaited (mostly by us industry folk) episode on the scamming that goes on within social media marketing. The tabloid like documentary highlighted how brands can unnaturally grow their online engagement figures whilst also exposing some of the darkside practices that rogue agencies and celebrities undertake to promote products.

Celeb endorsements and paid for brand recognition are nothing new and most consumers are savvy to the fact. Not sure what the shock tactic of exposing this part was. However, the element that exposed the unscrupulous, or as we call it ‘The Darkside’, tactics of so called ‘gurus’ and ‘Like Farms’ was of interest.

Such tactics are well reported in the digital marketing industry and dismissed as rubbish and worthless by any agency or consultancy worth their weight (ahem, like is, ahem). In fact, we’ve blogged about this issue before on a post called ‘Organic Social Media‘ which details these scrupulous tactics and why they’re pointless and of no value.

The deep routed point of social media is that your message is shared via your fans. So how is your message going to be shared if all of your 15,000 fans is one man in a small room in Delhi? What is the worth of that? Nothing.

Programme’s like this are good in that they will hopefully make brands realise that it’s not all about followers of Like numbers. The basic number to measure is a brands engagement and message reach, followed by website traffic and other useful metrics that will tell you a lot more than 15,000 fake followers.

So by all means make sure you have a good following, but get your messaging and engagement right and the numbers will grow.


Email us now at to talk to us about how we can help your company or brand with social media.

Happy Valentines Day from social media

St Valentines Day. A day for flowers, intimate dinners, romance, and some great advertising.

We think these are the best so far….let’s just say, they get the message across.

Seen anything better out there? Tweet us what you find – @Honey_Digital

Valentines Day advertising from Ikea

Valentines Day advertising from Ikea

Valentines Day advertising from Hovis

Valentines Day advertising from Hovis

Valentines Day from Lurpak

Valentines Day advertising from Lurpak

Ad Wars: The Greenpeace Strikes Back

Most of us have seen the fantastic VW advert with the child Darth Vader (if not click here to catch up…). I’ve not seen anything as inspired since Old Spice man (he’s on a horse don’t you know).

Today Greenpeace’s clever response to this ad has gone viral. Their microsite is a direct, albeit fun, response to VW’s advert highlighting their opposition to key environmental laws. Clever this one is…better than RIM’s Playbook dig at the iPad which comes across as more of a petty and desperate USP.

Parody’s are nothing new but this takes a clever ad and rolls the joke even further. Can this hurt VW? From an environmental stand point yes, but by piggybacking the VW ad are Greenpeace not just giving more promo to the car?

Let’s hope it’s not going to backfire and do a Lando…

Greenpeace Darkside Advert

UPDATE – there’s an Episode II!