Instagram Ads are fast becoming the number one choice for businesses that want to get the word out about their brand and their products and services. There are a number of good reasons for this including the staggering growth of the social platform and its high levels of engagement. This is How to Use Instagram Ads for Your Business.
How does an Instagram Ad look?
There are different types of Instagram Ads but the good thing is that they look a lot like regular posts. They will have the word “Sponsored” on them but apart from that they look and feel like a normal post.
With ordinary posts it is not possible to add external links to your website. You can add direct links in Instagram Ads as well as a call to action button to persuade a user to take a specific action. The different types of ad have different call to action buttons available.
How do you create an Instagram Ad?
Facebook now owns Instagram and you can use the Facebook Ad tools when setting up your Instagram Ads. This is good because you can use the advanced tools in Facebook to target your specific audience based on demographics, interests, location and more.
You can satisfy a number of business objectives with Instagram Ads.
These objectives are:
If you want to increase the awareness of your brand then you need to select this option. When you do this you will maximize the number of impressions for your ad among the audience that you have specified.
If you want your ad to be seen by the largest number of people in your target audience then go with the “Reach” option.
This is the best objective to choose if your goal is to increase the number of clickthroughs to your website or online store. You achieve this by using persuasive call to action buttons.
If you have an app and want to increase the number of installs then select this objectives option.
Increasing your engagement levels is always a good thing to do on social media so choose this objectives option if you want more comments, likes and shares or you want users to show up for a specific event.
If you want to increase the number of views to your videos then this is the best objectives option. You can use videos to put out brand messages or showcase your products. Do this in an inspiring and creative way and you will get great reach and high levels of engagement.
This is the objectives option to choose if you want to increase the level of conversions on your website.
Identify your Audience
Once you have chosen your desired objective you can now identify your target audience by selecting users based on their age, gender, interests, behaviors, location and more. Once you have create an audience you can save it for use with other ad campaigns.
This is a very important step. With 80% of the users on Instagram following a business you want to make sure that you get this right and that your advertising message will resonate with your target audience.
Choose the right Ad Type
Instagram offers a number of different types of ad and these include:
- Boost or sponsored ad – you can extend the reach of an existing post
- Image Ad – use a single image for promotion
- Video Ad – use a video for promotion
- Stories Ad – base your ad on a story
- Carousel Ad – use multiple images in your ad
What You Need to Know About Instagram Story Ads
Instagram Story Ads were only introduced in March 2019. This caused a lot of excitement among advertisers as the story format is very immersive. Around 50% of brands that use Instagram have made story posts. Time spent on Instagram rose to around 28 minutes when they introduced the story format.
What are Story ads?
Stories are available to Instagram users at the top of their news feed. An Instagram Story Ad will display inside Instagram stories. Usually you will see a Story Ad as you are transitioning from one story to another. It is not easy to tell a Story Ad apart from a normal story post so they tend to work very well and be accepted by the Instagram community.
As with all ads on Instagram a Story Ad will have the word “Sponsored” on it. Whether you go for an Image Story Ad or a Video Story Ad they will be full screen to the Instagram user. There are around 500 million Instagram users looking at stories every day so you have a huge marketing opportunity with this ad format.
It is best to use Story Ads if you want to promote a limited time offer. Why? Because all stories will disappear from Instagram after 24 hours. You can use a number of different call to action buttons with Story Ads and here is the complete list:
- Apply now
- Book now
- Call now
- Contact us
When you create a Story Ad you will be able to create a target audience (or use a previously saved one) and also specify how often your audience will see your Story Ad. You can enhance your Story Ad with filters, video effects and add text to make your ad really appealing.
Stories Image Ad
If you choose to go with an Instagram Stories Image Ad then you will be able to add up to 6 images and a swipe up facility that will guide your viewers to a destination URL (your website or online store). The ad will last for five seconds.
Here are the important specifications for a Instagram Stories Image Ad:
- The recommended resolution for an Instagram Stories Image Ad is 1080 X 1920 pixels
- The resolution should be a minimum of 600 X 1067 pixels
- The correct aspect ratio is 9:16
- Image format can be either PNG or JPG
- The maximum size of any one image is 30 MB
One of things that you need to be careful about with Instagram Stories Image Ads is the amount of text that you overlay on any image. If you go to far with this then Instagram will not accept your ad.
Stories Video Ad
When people are browsing through stories nothing captures their attention more than a video. One thing to bear in mind though is that when users are viewing stories they don’t usually turn on the sound. So you need to be able to deliver your advertising message with a Stories Video Ad with or without sound. The video length is 15 seconds.
Here are the important specifications for a Instagram Video Image Ad:
- The recommended resolution for an Instagram Stories Video Ad is 1080 X 1920 pixels
- The correct aspect ratio is 9:16
- Use either the MOV or MP4 movie format
- The minimum resolution of a Stories Video Ad is 720p
- Video size must not exceed 4GB
The Benefits Of Instagram Ads
Instagram now has over one billion active users and the platform is growing very fast. It was not so long ago that they announced that they had 700 million active users and now it is over a billion. Instagram is a very popular social platform and there is no sign of this changing.
This means there is a great deal of marketing potential with Instagram. It has the highest levels of engagement of all of the major social platforms at around 4.2%. Facebook and Twitter combined can only manage around 0.1% engagement.
Here are the major benefits of advertising on Instagram:
Huge User Base that is still growing
Instagram is growing at an alarming rate and now has more than a billion active users. The estimates suggest that this growth will continue in the next few years so it offers you a huge potential audience.
It is connected to Facebook
Facebook owns Instagram so you will find targeting your audience a lot easier using Facebook data and tools. You can set up everything for your Instagram Ads through Facebook including audience identification, budgeting and ad creation.
This is great news if you have used Facebook Ads before. There is no need for you to learn about Instagram advertising from scratch. You can just jump right in and create ads for both social platforms.
Non Intrusive Ads
Instagram Ads will not annoy Instagram users like ads on other social platforms do. They appear seamlessly to the user which helps with the level of engagement. This is a major benefit as your ads are less likely to be skipped.
Higher Engagement Rate
Engagement is everything with social media marketing and Instagram has the highest levels of engagement for any social platform. If you create your ads properly then you will receive comments, likes and shares like never before.
Success through Awareness
With Instagram Ad campaigns, success is measured based upon awareness. You will be able to see your follower counts and growth, the reach that your ads are getting and the level of likes and comments.
Instagram perfect for Mobile Users
These days everyone has a smartphone with a high quality camera included. Smartphone users are usually very interested in social media and Instagram is usually their number one choice. Many users will user their camera phones as an amateur photographer and post their pictures on their Instagram account.
Get the best results with Instagram Ads
Instagram Ads usually provide the best results in terms of cost and return on investment. It is a very effective marketing channel and it is quicker and easier to post compelling ads on Instagram than it is on other social media channels.
If you are not taking advantage of the marketing opportunities provided by Instagram then you need to start right now. You can set up an Instagram account for free and easily convert it to a business account so that you can place ads.
The user base is huge and will only get bigger. With the Facebook integration you can identify your target audience precisely and target them with your advertising messages. There are different types of ads that you can post depending on the needs of your business.
When you know your audience really well you will be able to provide them with exactly what they are looking for using Instagram Ads. The cost per click is cheaper than other platforms so you will get the best bang for your buck.
Are you ready to dig into Instagram Ads for your business?