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An Experiment with Paid Instagram Advertising and Etsy

etsy seller Etsy Success get featured on instagram instagram advertising instagram feature paid instagram adverising small business Small Business Tips Uncategorized work at home work from home

For January 2016 I set a goal to target Instagram accounts with high amounts of followers for paid advertising and gave myself a $200 budget.

I personally have 13.7k Instagram followers (@aminabaker.exsect) and have always had great success with sales when posting items on my Instagram account. Why not target a much larger audience that just my personal followers?

I contacted Instagram accounts created and managed by private persons who curate handmade items. They offer to feature your item/shop/story for a fee. Usually $15-30 a feature. The fee guarantees the featured spot vs. wishful tagging and crossing my fingers for a feature (no time for that anyway).

I targeted 7 different accounts that collectively have 1,000,000 followers. I have features that ran or are scheduled to run on all of the following: @etsyusa @hellolovehandmade @handmadeloves @etsyfavorites,@etsyhunter & @etsyelite

My features are scheduled all throughout January-July 2016 I absolutely understand that ‘pay to play’ isn't for everyone.

However, I find it to be very interesting.  



Instagram @etsyusa : 106k followers - $31.50 a feature - 875 hearts on my feature

My Jan 30th @etsyelite feature was a success! I landed a huge wedding order of 100+ luggage tags plus a few other little sales here and there came directly from the feature.

Despite have a lower number of followers, @etsyusa has more interaction with their followers. I do recommend @etsyusa.  

Instagram @handmadeloves : 125k followers - $25 a feature - 774 hearts on my feature

Ive seen no real ROI with my Feb 10th @handmadeloves feature. While I did have $427 in sales that day and 1007 views, there was no real difference in my stats from previous days this month.

There was an odd filter placed over my photo. Which is fine, but it looks a bit off.

ALSO, my @handmadeloves feature was scheduled for Feb 9th but was not posted. I had to email them the following day to inquire about why the feature was not posted. They then posted it that day.

For this reason, I would not recommend @handmadeloves  

Instagram @etsyfavorites : 161k followers - $30 a feature - 1,156 hearts on my feature

I had a small uptick in direct views on the day of this feature. The featured item sold 3 times on the day it was featured.
This accounts posts very often, sometimes up to 6 times a day. Your feature gets buried VERY quickly. Thus limiting the exposure.
Instagram @etsyhunter : 169k followers - $23 a feature - 1,460 hearts on my feature
I saw a HUGE uptick in direct traffic from this Feb. 15th feature. In fact, the most direct traffic views I've had in the past 30 days came on the day of this feature.
I also gained the greatest amount of new Instagram followers from the @etsyhunter feature (over 100) and the featured item sold 4 times on the day it was featured on @etsyhunter. This account posts 2-3 updates a day giving you far greater exposure.
I recommended @etsyhunter over all of the rest. I would personally use @etsyhunter again


My next feature is scheduled for March 14th on @hellolovehandmade  

And so the adventure begins... indeed.


featured instagram posts and so the adventure begins

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