January 19, 2018 | By:

How to Effectively Advertise Your Business on Instagram

Instagram is undeniably growing at a fast pace, with over 800 million monthly active users to date, quickly surpassing other social media platform giants like Twitter and LinkedIn. For businesses, this means that Instagram is becoming one of the most important social media platforms to focus your marketing efforts on. In fact, Instagram now claims it has over 8 million accounts using business profiles.

What’s more is that Instagram not only supports business profiles, where companies can tweak their profile to include a call-to-action and contact information, it also offers a seamless advertising tool, much like Facebook’s advertising platform. Businesses who take the plunge and make use of this advertising tool can reap various rewards, such as increased brand awareness, encouraging customer engagement, a sense of community, and sales.

Here we’ll show you how to get started with Instagram advertising and how to effectively promote your business on Instagram with ads.

Getting Started with Instagram Advertising

Instagram advertising goes hand in hand with your Facebook business tool. This means that you need to have a Facebook business page set up before you can run ads and create a business profile on Instagram. Facebook owns Instagram, so the two platforms work in conjunction with each other.

If you’re new to both Facebook and Instagram, you can use the resources below to get started, in the following order:

  1. How to create a Facebook business page
  2. How to convert your personal Instagram profile to a business profile

Once you have that covered, you can easily begin advertising on Instagram. All you need to do now is to go to Facebook Ads Manager and get started. You will then be prompted step-by-step on how to create an ad.

  1. Choose an objective for your campaign, then input your campaign name. While there are several options available for your marketing objective, only the following objectives will allow you to create ads on Instagram:
    • Brand awareness
    • Reach traffic
    • App installs
    • Engagement
    • Conversions
  2. Create an ad set. This section is further branched into three areas: audience, placements, and budget & schedule.
    • Defining your audience – You can choose and specify your desired audience’s characteristics, such as their location, age, gender, language, interests, behaviors, and more.
    • Choosing an ad placement – This is set to “automatic placements” by default where Facebook algorithms automatically show your ads in places they’re likely to perform best. However, you can manually edit your placements to your liking according to device type, platforms, and device operating system.
    • Setting your budget and schedule – You can choose between two budget options: daily or lifetime. Your daily budget is the average amount you’ll spend per day; your lifetime budget is the maximum amount you’ll spend for a period of time. You can also choose between two schedule options: continuously or on a set start and end date.
  3. Choose your ad format. Instagram ads support four types of ad formats:
    • Photo ads – You can tell your story through visual imagery. Photo ads can be in square or landscape formats.
    • Video ads – This type of ad drives more engagement. Instagram supports up to 60 seconds of video content, also available in both square and landscape formats.
    • Carousel ads – For ads with 2 or more images, this type of ad is the best. Your audience can swipe to see additional images and a call-to-action button that takes them to your chosen landing page. Instagram supports up to 10 images in these carousel ads.
    • Stories ads – You can run full-screen, vertical-format ads in both photo and video (maximum 15 seconds in length) formats to create a more immersive experience. This type of ad disappears after 24 hours. Instagram Stories ads can only be created on Facebook’s Power Editor or Ads Manager
  4. Curate your Instagram ad content. Choose your headline, add text, a call-to-action button, and a landing page URL, if needed. Double-check your ad if it makes you happy through ad preview, and then publish it by clicking on the Confirm button. You’re done!

Tips and How to Effectively Use Instagram Advertising

There’s a certain stroke in how you advertise on Instagram, and for your marketing efforts to really make a splash, we highly recommend the following Instagram advertising best practices:

1. Build a content theme

With Instagram ads, visually appealing content is key. It’s also equally important for your brand identity to resonate throughout your ad campaigns, and this means having a content theme that’s consistent with your branding.

Building a content theme includes determining the type of imagery style, dominant color theme, filters, and more. Content with bright and vibrant colors, and those with people’s faces are seen to do well in terms of catching attention and encouraging engagement.

2. Write a compelling caption

Captions on Instagram ads and posts are king, much like how content is king to the rest of the internet world. Writing a compelling caption in your Instagram ad is key to getting your message safely across to your audience, plus it is also a means to engage and show off your brand personality.

Instagram supports up to 2,200 characters in its captions, including emojis, but that doesn’t mean you need to max out all the character space. When writing captions for Instagram ads, be sure to be mindful of the length; keep it short and sweet. The ideal length for Instagram ad captions is 125 characters so that your text doesn’t get truncated. You also should be able to catch your audience’s attention the moment they read your ad caption, so make it a point to place the most important words at the beginning.

3. Use hashtags

Hashtags are useful in making your content on Instagram easily discoverable, as well as helping you organize your content better. Most importantly, Instagram posts including ads with at least one hashtag drives 12.6 percent more engagement than those without one.

That being said, be sure to use hashtags on your Instagram ads, but don’t overdo it. While Instagram supports up to 30 hashtag in a post, the ideal number of hashtags is around 5 to 10. You can also use this handy tool to identify and discover relevant hashtags you can use for your post. It’s also best practice to set off your hashtags from the rest of your ad caption by using periods with line breaks to avoid clutter. You can also exclude hashtags from your caption altogether and only add the hashtags in the comment section.

The success of your advertising efforts on Instagram takes more than posting attractive photos and engaging videos. It takes careful planning and a well-defined marketing strategy to help you achieve positive results.

If you want to know more about Instagram marketing, or if you’re interested in working with Ilfusion to help you with your social media marketing, give us a call at 888-420-5115, or send us an email at creative@ilfusion.com.

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