What Instagram’s Carousel Posts for All Users Mean for Marketers

TL;DR: All users on Instagram can now upload multiple videos/images to one post, similar to ad carousel units


Instagram recently rolled out the ability for every user to post multiple images/videos/etc. in one post – similar to their Carousel ad product which has been around for about a year.

While most marketers have already dabbled in this format, being able to do so organically means having a new tool in your content bag.


  • Users can upload up to 10 videos/photos to one Instagram post
  • No links (like ads have) attached to the post

Things to Think About

  • Opens up the creative canvas for supporting  paid campaigns with similar organic content
  • Means users will be more familiar with these types of posts, which could have both positive and negative implications for our ads:

o   Ad carousels could lose their “new” factor

o   However, users also will understand how these units work and possibly engage with them more

  • Opening the format up allows for more use and possibility of more creative hacks that marketers can draw inspiration from
  • Giving users the chance to post grouped images/video ultimately cuts down on the number of posts in a user’s feed, possibly lessening their feed browsing time
  • Fewer posts in feed means fewer opportunities for ad insertion without creating an overwhelming sense of promoted content – stay tuned to how Instagram is looking to handle this one.

10 Things I’ve Learned in 10 Days of Being a Dad

At 1:00 a.m. on August 20, our son came into the world. He didn’t come exactly how we thought. In fact, he didn’t come how the doctors thought he would either. Somewhere between the ultrasound on Monday the 15th and Friday night when we checked my wife into the hospital to be induced our son decided to become part of the three percent of babies who flip from upside down (the right way to be) to right side up (the not right way to be). That meant getting him out (as he was nearly two weeks past his due date) a different way. This is where I started learning things. I’m not saying they’re all right. I’m not saying I know anything anyone else doesn’t, but these are 10 things that jumped out at me since our son arrived: 

  1. There’s nothing to prepare you for seeing your wife on an operating table. I know it was planned and I know it’s something that happens every day, but I was sick to my stomach seeing her there. I would’ve switched places with her if I could, but the only thing they’d take out of my abdomen would have been some Annie’s mac ‘n’ cheese.
  2. Meeting your kid for the first time is insane. Yeah, I knew what the end game here was… I had taken high school sex ed. However, things became incredibly real when I heard him cry and saw this little guy that was hanging out inside my wife’s stomach for 9+ months. He looked weird and was screaming at me… and I lost it. He was perfect. I just kept yelling to my wife, over the sounds of the O.R. over the nurses, and over the blue tarp that basically sectioned her off from everything going on down south.  
  3. Babies eat. A ton. Seriously, I’m not sure where he’s putting all this stuff, but the kid eats constantly. It’s amazing. I’d say he has a hollow leg, but honesty he’s so damn long and skinny I’m not sure if that would help.
  4. Babies poop. A ton. See above, then this makes a ton of sense. Oh, also if they have wieners they pee everywhere, so there’s that.
  5. People are horrible drivers. Seriously, everyone is really bad. Maybe it’s me… maybe I’m more acutely aware of this, especially considering it took me about 30mins. to drive the less-than-a-mile route from the hospital to our house.
  6. You can function pretty well while sleep deprived… to a point. Our kid actually sleeps pretty well at night so far, just waking up (usually we actually have to wake him up) to eat every 3 hours or so. That said, it was definitely an adjustment not getting that 7+ hours of solid sleep in. I went to lay down for “30 mins” the other day and woke up 2 hours later.
  7. Strangers will talk to you about your baby. Oh, and touch your baby. And ask really personal questions about the birthing process. And share their really personal info. Just smile and nod.
  8. Everyone has an opinion on your baby’s name. We’re not Brangelina or anything, but we didn’t tell anyone besides some close friends what our kid’s name would be. This was mostly because everyone’s a critic, but also because we just didn’t want to constantly talk about it. 
  9. Your wife/partner/whatever… They’re a freaking badass superhero. You wouldn’t know it looking at her – all 5’8″ and blonde haired with bright, kind eyes… but my wife is so badass. She’s 10 days removed from getting sliced open and is up doing things around the house (and literally has been since getting out of the hospital early). She just magically knows stuff and can calm our son down in a second, usually after I piss him off by changing him or getting too excited and waking him up. I heeded the advice of a coworker who said “there will be a ton of people focused on the baby – focus on your wife,” but honestly, she had this all in the bag.
  10. Every baby is different. “Oh he’s so small!!!” What? Really? He was just normal sized earlier, maybe I put him in the dryer on high heat. Oh shit. Seriously though, he’s skinny, but the doctors (who are presumably trained on this stuff) say he’s just fine. Sorry we didn’t have a fully-formed toddler at birth. There are about as many books about how to raise a kid as there are kids out there. Nothing is going to 100% work for you, especially when your kid is young. Heck, what works for us now might not tomorrow… that’s life. The best you can do is your best. At the end of the day we all get kids who grow up to resent us and slam their doors, so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Like I said, I’m 10 days in… many more to go, but writing helps me relax and catalog thoughts that have been running around in my head.

Domino’s Pizza UK Gets Giphy

.GIFs, regardless of how you say the term, are easily some of the most visible pieces of digital content out there these days. They’re in Twitter, on Facebook, there are companies popping up that create .GIF keyboards. 

Domino’s Pizza UK, capitalizing on the move from Twitter to include a dedicated “add a .GIF” button in its mobile app, launched a series of .GIFs under the umbrella of “#Gifeelings” and let us all know with one tweet:

Once you search for “GIFEELINGS” in the app, you’re provided with a wealth of awesome pizza-centric .GIFs created by the brand.

The move from brands to pour dollars into creative that is pretty singular in use is interesting (such as emoji creation), but makes diving into ever-popular messaging apps, etc. Having their .GIFs on Giphy (and thus available on Twitter and via the .Giphy keyboard), Domino’s is setting themselves up as a brand that’s already ahead of others in these walled gardens.

Instagram Ad Recall Survey Sighting

With Instagram advertising hitting the entire market recently, it was time for the network to start offering similar advertising experiences and research to brands. No doubt Facebook’s own research offerings are being utilized here.

First time I’ve been served one of these in Instagram… and no, I didn’t remember the Jeep ad. 


Did The Verge Just Make a Banner Into Native Advertising?

I’ve been meaning to read this post from The Verge all day, but just got around to it.

I was getting into it when I saw this great use of editorial + advertising:

Banner Native

Did they really just do that? Oh yes they did.

Slow clap.

Redmond Calling

Like I said in my previous post, my decision to leave the agency world and to come back to Seattle from London was one I made to be closer to family. My next gig, gets me back closer to that world.

Starting July 6, I’ll be working at Microsoft as part of the Global Campaigns and Brand team, specifically focusing on social and mobile advertising. I’m incredibly excited to flex my creative side again in working with Microsoft’s creative network (IPG) and Microsoft teams around the world.

If this might seem like a bit of career déjà vu, you’re definitely right. In fact, I’ve spent the majority of my career working with Microsoft teams like Windows, Office, Windows Phone, KIN (RIP), Xbox, and Internet Explorer in the digital space. At one point, I spent 36 straight hours answering questions from users on Twitter and Facebook when Windows 7 launched and helped launch a campaign where we sent random fans pizzas with the number 7 on them in pepperoni.

2000px-M_box.svgMicrosoft has changed a lot since then – and that’s actually what drew me to that little company in Redmond. There’s a different feeling when you talk to people at Microsoft now – it’s electric. You get the sense the “One Microsoft” mantra is more than words in emails from CEO Satya Nadella. I found myself getting, even before this role was a possibility, getting fired up just listening to him speak or reading one of his emails. The guy is the type of person I’m sure many would run through a wall for – not just a motivator, but a doer as well. In fact, he recently brought Microsoft’s updated mission statement to the public: To empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. I was the perfect consumer target when Microsoft launched the Xbox. I’ve spent the majority of my life as a Windows user/evangelist. Today, though, I can say (without a doubt) I’m more excited than ever before about where Microsoft is heading – and I’m excited to be a part of it.

I’m also jacked up about the area I’ll be spending my time and efforts on – mobile and social. Working alongside Microsoft and other brands in EMEA and APAC during my time in London (with trips to Singapore), I had the chance to be part of some incredible campaigns – my favorite being the Xbox #keycode campaign in the UK. I’m looking forward to working with Microsoft’s agency partners to create ads that engage, entertain, and enhance the experiences of consumers around the globe.

We’re living in an incredible time where technology and media are a constant part of most people’s lives. That means we have the opportunity to tell a story about brands that is not just another ad, but a real story that does more than shout a price or drive a point home, but actually engages and enhances a consumer’s experience. Because consumers are living this digital first lifestyle, they’re seeing ads every day. Our goal is to cut through that ad clutter and deliver an experience that brings consumers closer to the brand.

I’ll push Microsoft’s agency teams hard, but expect them to push me equally as hard – all ideas are welcome. I’ll always fall back on something I learned from an advertising professor – constantly critiquing ideas based on if they accomplish three things well: Can we get someone to feel something? Can we get someone to say something? Can we get someone to do something?

I’m really excited about this next step. To steal a line from my old boss and friend, Clay McDaniel – onward!

Also, this:

Moving On


When I left London in March of 2014, I knew I was headed into something different – something outside my previous world of agency work. I didn’t know I’d love it as much as I have. The team at Simply Measured is one of the best I’ve ever worked with, which makes what I’m going to say next all that much harder. I’m leaving my role as the Director of Professional Services at Simply Measured, effective June 30, 2015.

I came here, about a year ago, to help Simply Measured deliver custom reporting solutions and strategy for its top clients – brands like Microsoft, Chipotle, and Alaska Airlines. Having the chance to work with brands like that is something that I’ll never forget. Their teams and the teams at Simply Measured are pushing the idea and practice of social analytics forward in a time where marketing in the digital space is moving at breakneck speed. We, as a Professional Services team, were on the front lines a lot of times, building things that help take our core product and elevate it in the minds of our customers. We didn’t always have the easiest road, but we pushed forward (with the help of the extended team at Simply Measured) to create experiences for our customers that helped meet goals and bring value.

The decision to leave Simply Measured hasn’t been an easy one for me. I loved the work so far. I love my coworkers (Seriously, Simply Measured is a great place to work and the people are hands down the most passionate team I’ve worked with. They have open roles. You should check them out). As I looked at where I am in my career and what I want to be doing a few years from now, it became obvious to me that I needed to get myself on that trajectory.

I made my last decision to leave a job (and a country) when I took this role at Simply Measured to be closer to family here in Washington. I’m making this decision for myself – to set myself up for the next 10 years of my career and life.

I’m still Simply Measured’s ‘#1 Fan’ – that’s not going to change. Their products are incredibly valuable and I’ll continue singing their praises after I walk out the door, just like I did before I ever walked in. I’m excited to see what’s next for the team as they continue to define the social analytics space and show enterprise brands what it means to take control of their data. I have complete faith in the leadership team to continue driving Simply Measured toward the greatness they’re bound for. I’ve even told the marketing team they can call me up for a guest spot on the podcast anytime. I can’t miss a chance to hang with Kevin and Lucy.

I want to thank my colleagues here at Simply Measured for welcoming me and helping me grow, especially my manager Mari. Mari believed in me and helped grow the role of Professional Services from non-existent to a fully-fledged (but still scrappy as all hell) team. Kristin and Lauren, the two people I worked with most on the Account Services team, showed me what it meant to understand and be a voice for our customers, and along the way we became friends. Avenicio and Dylan (+David before), the longest running PS team members created great work for our customers day in and day out – often in the face of challenges. There are too many others to mention, but everyone I worked with here helped and challenged me along the way – something we should value in colleagues.

On the home front, I’d like to thank my wife Camille for her support – always – through moves, job changes, and everything in between.  She’s amazing in her unwavering support, even when I’m unsure of things myself. I’d also like to thank my past colleagues and sounding boards Clay, Kevin U., and Kevin D. for listening to me (and offering great advice).

While I have a new adventure ahead of me, I wanted to focus on the team I’ll be leaving. More about what’s next coming soon. Until next time.

#ChevyGoesEmoji for Launch of New Cruze

Emojis are everywhere. They’re in your texts, in your Instagram feeds, all over Facebook, Twitter, and now… they’re in press releases too.

Chevrolet has been using the #ChevyGoesEmoji hashtag for a few days, bringing celebs and the likes into the mix with coded emoji messages turned into branded content videos.

They’re going full emoji, though with the release of yesterday’s all-emoji, all the time press release:


You’ve got about 5 minutes to decode the release before they give the answers. So, get at it!

NYT, BuzzFeed Going Native on Facebook

Facebook’s new Instant Articles have arrived. After being a major driver of traffic for publishers the world over, Facebook now has a way to make a little money out of that relationship, while also creating a more seamless user experience. 


 The program, which began today with the New York Times, also includes BuzzFeedNational Geographic, NBCthe Atlanticthe Guardian, and BBC News.

The experience is great, from a user perspective. There’s a nearly-instant transition from the enhanced content in the News Feed to the article, which goes full-screen and includes high-res imagery and in-line video. 

Sharing directly from the content is easy as well and actually includes Twitter!?!

In my mind, this is a great move for Facebook on a number of fronts:

  1. Better user experience through inclusion: Users have a smooth transition that doesn’t rely on kicking them to another site.
  2. Repurposing some work: It’s hard to look at the full-size articles and not see a bit of Facebook’s Paper app in them. Facebook has done a great job of solving small problems and then bringing those learnings into other aspects of their apps.
  3. Keeping users in the app: The less friction users feel when navigating content in and out of the News Feed, the more likely they are to stay in the app. This ultimately means more cumulative time on Facebook and more opportunities for ad serves, which means more ad revenues.

I’m excited to see how implementations from BuzzFeed and others roll out as the NYT, style wise, isn’t a big leap.

Stay tuned.

Facebook Just Built an Airplane

Facebook’s F8 is a news-packed event that used to really focus on how developers could work with Facebook’s ever-expanding platform. When they announce Internet.org a few years ago, F8 also started to take on this future vision role that continued today as Mark Zuckerberg announced their latest endeavor. Click the image to go to the full post:

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