Discovering secrets to Instagram Story ads that convert

How the newly rebranded shopping network used creative tagging and analytics to uncover micro-level insights about what parts of its creative drive sales.

Their Story

Not just a television station

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

Their Goal

Captivating new demographics

Rebranded as Today’s Shopping Choice 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.

Their Solution

Analyzing creative

Today's Shopping Choice developed a highly experiential campaign with a variety of fresh, spring-themed creative to introduce itself to its new target audience.

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.

Products Used
  • Ads
  • Instagram Stories
  • Interest Targeting
  • Website Conversions
  • Testing Creative
Their Success

Discovering what works

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

Creative that included a call-to-action had an 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

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


Blue color schemes outperformed white and pink color schemes

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


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.


Bringing the story to life

AdParlor, Today’s Shopping Choice’s partner for executing the Instagram Stories campaign, combines expertise from running thousands of campaigns per day and unique data-driven approaches to get the best performance from Facebook advertising for over half of the Fortune 1000.

The company provides proprietary solutions like Intelligence Tags to make advertisers smarter by providing them with micro-level insights about what creative elements are working across their entire ad library; including things like background colors, gender, and facial expressions.

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