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A Guide to Advertising on Instagram 

Just like Facebook, Instagram also has a billion users. If your business is active on the platform, the right ad can captivate the attention of the audience, drive leads and ultimately increase the revenue.  

But if you are thinking that advertising on Instagram is all about posting an appealing picture, then you need to read this blog. Here you will get to know everything about running an ad on Instagram.   

You are required to set up a campaign, select the right target audience, create a budget, post a schedule and monitor the performance – these are just a few steps that you have to go through.  

In this blog, we have simplified the process of running an ad on Instagram. So, let us take one step at a time.  

Steps to Create Instagram Ad  

If you have gone through the process of setting up a Facebook ad, then you are 75% aware of the steps. There are just a few differences in running both the ads.   

After Facebook acquired Instagram in 2012, the platforms conveniently merged, making setting up of Instagram and Facebook ads just a difference of a few clicks.  

So, even if you want to run an ad on Instagram, ad set up, scheduling, budgeting and creation are done through Facebook.  

Here’s How to Start! 

Log into your company’s Facebook page. (Make sure you have your own Facebook page). Pages are specially for brands, organizations, and businesses while regular accounts are for personal use only.  

Select the Editor and Create Campaign 

You can create Instagram ads by using different tools such as: 

  • Ads Manager 
  • Power Editor 
  • Facebook Ads API 

When choosing which tool to use, you would want to consider two things in particular- the size of your company and the number of ads you plan to run. 

If you are managing too many campaigns at once, you might want to lean towards the power editor.  

However, most marketers use the Ad Manager. Once you select an editor, you will get an option either to view all the campaigns or create a new one. To begin with the Instagram ad, you would want to create a new campaign.  

Know the Objective  

You will notice that there are different campaign objective options to choose from here on. Here is a list of things that you will have to choose from in order to make your ad eligible to appear on Instagram.   

  • Boost your posts. 
  • Send people to your business website. 
  • Increase conversions. 
  • Get installs of your app. 
  • Increase engagement on your application. 
  • Get video views. 

There will be an option – Traffic.  
When you select this option, you will be promoted to name a campaign. The steps might seem easy but it is recommended you get a sort of naming convention or set the process within the company.    

This makes it easier for you to keep campaigns straight and simple as you continue to create them.  

Choose Your Audience 

If you are new to creating Instagram ads, there is a possibility that you might not know the audience that you want to go after.  

This will come with time, and you may even have to play around with it in the first place. 

In this step, you will find that the platform’s built-in targeting can be simple and extensive as you might want it to be. To select the right audience, you will have to look into the following aspects such as:  

  • Location 
  • Age 
  • Gender 
  • Language 
  • Relationship 
  • Education 
  • Work 
  • Financial status 
  • Home 
  • Ethnic affinity 
  • Generation 
  • Parents 
  • Politics (for U.S. only) 
  • Life events 
  • Interests 
  • Behaviors 
  • Connections 

You can also create a custom audience to reach people who have already interacted with your business, or a lookalike audience to reach new people.   

The advertising platform allows you to save the audience you create to be used later in time. This can be good if you are experimenting and if you want to remember the exact audience you used for some ad campaigns.  

You would want more people on your website. For that, you will be required to target a specific group of people, those who are actually interested in the content present on your website.  

To set the right target audience, you would want to get into details like looking for different demographics, interests and behaviors that go in accordance with the present customers.  

You can choose different target audiences; Facebook also provides an audience definition gauge. It gives you immediate feedback on how narrow or broad your audience is, and the estimated of your ad.    

If you do not add a lot of criteria to your target audience, you will notice that your ad will fail to appear on a broader level.  

Setting the Placement 

This step is a big differentiator between setting up Facebook ads vs. Instagram ads.  

To move ahead with the Instagram ad, you will have to uncheck all the boxes except for Instagram.  

Create a Budget and a Schedule 

This point is quite similar to what we do in running Facebook ads. In this, you have to select from two options: 

  • A Daily Budget 
  • A Lifetime Budget 

Here’s the difference: 

  • Daily budget sets your ad campaign to run continuously throughout the day. It means the ad algorithm will automatically pace up the spending on ad campaign per day. There will be a minimum daily budget which will depend on various factors.  
  • Lifetime budget sets your ad campaign to run for a specified time period which means the ads algorithm paces your spending over that particular time span. 

Another aspect of setting your budget is creating a schedule. You will have to choose exactly when you want your campaign to begin and finish. 

There are also other options which set the right parameters so that your ad runs only at a specific hour of the day or during specific days of the week.   

You will get all these options in the ‘Ad Scheduling” section. 

After this, your ad will be sent for delivery. Here as well, you will have three options which will potentially influence your ads.  

  • Link Clicks: Your ads will be delivered as per the most clicks on your website that too at the minimum cost. This is based on the algorithm of the platform. 
  • Impressions: It also means that your ads will be delivered to people as many times as possible. If you ever see the same ad on your newsfeed throughout the day, it means that the company is most likely using this option. 
  • Daily Unique Reach: In this, your ad will be delivered to people just once a day. People might see your ad multiple times, but at least not just in a day. 

After choosing the method of delivery, you will have to figure out the bid amount. This will determine how effective your ad is.  

You can choose from two options:  

  • Manual  
  • Automatic  

In the automatic option, Facebook algorithm delivers your ad automatically – this gets you the most clicks that too at the lowest cost.   

Manual allows you to set the price to get links on the click. You are given the choice of making payments based on impressions or click on the links.  

This is entirely up to you.  

After that, you can schedule your ads. Here are the options you have for the delivery: 

Standard Delivery 

In this, your ad will be shown throughout the day.  

Accelerated Delivery 

It helps you to reach an audience really quickly with time-sensitive ads.  

Important Note: The accelerated delivery requires manual bidding price. Finally, you will have to name the ad set so that you can identify it in the Ads Manager later.  

Add Creativity in Your Ad  

Here, you will be required to be creative. Here, you will be deciding what you want your ad to be like, which will also depend on other objectives, of course.   

On Instagram, you will have a couple different options for your ad such as  

  • Single image or video 
  • Carousel or collection. 

After picking the ad type, click on it and you will be prompted to browse and upload the imagery, whether that be a video or an image.  

For any ad type, the Facebook ads platform recommends not to use more than 20% of the text.   

Earlier, an ad with over 20% of text was not even approved to run.  

Requirements for Instagram ad imagery are as follows; 

File Types 

  • .jpeg 
  • .png 

Text or Caption 

  • Recommended- 125 characters 
  • Maximum- 2,200 characters 

Build Your Page Links 

The next step is page building and setting up the links. Select the Facebook Page of an account where you want your ad to come from. Even if you are not planning to run the ad on Facebook.  

Since our intent is to post ads on Instagram, you will also have to connect your Instagram account to Facebook. To do so, just click the option of “Add Account”. 

If your business does not have any Instagram account, you can still run ads on Instagram — this can be done from your business’ Facebook page. In other words, your Facebook page name and profile picture will also be used to represent your business within the ad as it will run on Instagram.   

Next step is very important i.e., to put the website URL on which you are trying to drive traffic.  

If you use marketing automation software, make sure you create a unique tracking URL using UTM parameters. Through this, you will be able to keep track of conversions and traffic from this ad.    

Next step is to write an appealing headline.   

The headline is not displayed to the ad viewers on Instagram, but is always a good idea to complete it, just in case.  

Write a Caption 

Next step is to write a caption. You will be allowed to write up to 2,200 characters.  

A Call-to-Action 

You will be given different options for your CTA button such as: 

  • Learn more 
  • Apply now 
  • Book now 
  • Contact us 
  • Download 
  • Sign up 
  • Watch more 

The Performance Report  

Once you run your ad, the next step will be to run it on Instagram. It is important to keep an eye on how the ad is doing.  

You can also edit your ad, and tweak most aspects of the ad so that if you catch a mistake, you can edit it. You can also look at the results of your ads here:    

  • The Facebook Ads Manager 
  • Your marketing software 

In the Ads Manager: 

There is an extensive dashboard which provides users with an overview of the campaigns. Without customizing any settings, you will find data on reach, cost per result, and the amount spent. 

These are the categories in which the available metrics fall into.  

  • Performance – Reach, results, and frequency, etc. 
  • Engagement- Likes, comments, and post shares, etc. 
  • Videos- Views and the percentage of videos viewed. 
  • Website- Checkouts, payment details and add to the cart. 
  • Apps- Installs, engagement and cost per app engagement. 
  • Events- Event responses, and cost per event response. 
  • Clicks – Unique clicks, social clicks, CTR, and CPC. 
  • Settings- Start date, end date, ad set name, delivery, ad ID, and the objective. 

With Your Marketing Software 

There will be so many metrics to track so it is easy to lose sight of the big picture. In order to track the success of the campaign, take advantage of the marketing software and the UTM codes you use in your ads to measure the full-funnel effectiveness of the campaign.    

If you are also looking forward to running Instagram ads effectively, follow the above-given steps or you can reach out to The Big Unit, the best digital marketing company in Dandenong.   

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