With 1.16 billion monthly active users, Instagram is one of the largest social media platforms in the world. With Instagram ads, you now have a wide range of options to target users along the marketing funnel and increase your brand awareness. This blog post will show you which ad formats are available and how to use them the best way possible.
What are Instagram Ads
Instagram displays its ads in users’ Instagram feed, just like organic posts. The big difference between organic and paid posts is that businesses pay to have their ads displayed in the users’ feeds. In addition, Instagram labels the ads as “Sponsored,” and they may show a call-to-action.
Instagram ad formats
Instagram offers a variety of ad formats. Each format has different characteristics and is suitable for achieving other goals. The available formats are:
- Photo ads
- Video ads
- Carousel ads
- Collection ads
- Shopping ads
Photo ads consist of a single image played out in landscape or square format. It, therefore, has the most specific requirements of all ad formats. Photo ads can be played out in the Instagram feed, Explore, and Stories and are suitable for showcasing your product, service, or brand.
Like photo ads, you can show video ads in the Instagram feed, Explore, and Stories. Additionally, you can also place video ads in Reels.
Try to grab users’ attention in the first few seconds if possible and show your product or business in a new light.
Videos can be up to 1 minute long, should come in portrait format, and don’t forget to add sound.
Carousel ads consist of up to 10 photos or videos that users can swipe through.
They are suitable for highlighting different products, specific details of a product or service. Carousel ads also allow you to tell a story that spans multiple carousel cards.
You can play out this format in the Instagram feed and Stories.
Collection Ads consist of a cover image or video and three product photos. They allow users to buy products directly from the ad.
You can use this format in the Instagram feed and Stories.
Shopping Ads are photo, video, or carousel ads that feature a product tag. They can appear in the Instagram feed or Explore.
When users click on the product tag, they are taken directly to a product detail page to learn more. From there, users can go to your website to purchase the product.
To add a product tag to your ads, you first need to create a store on Instagram. Please read here on how to do it.
How to get the most out of your Instagram Ads
Before setting up ads and campaigns, decide if Instagram is a good fit for your business. Check your business and marketing strategy to assess whether Instagram is the right channel for you and your business.
If Instagram is a good fit, determine your goals next: What do you want to achieve with Instagram and Instagram ads? Do you want to increase brand awareness, do you want to sell your products, or would you like to generate more leads instead? The marketing strategy will help you decide on your goals.
Next, make sure you have an Instagram business account. If not, you can quickly change this in your settings. To do this, select “Account” in the settings and tap “Switch to business account”. With the business account, you now have access to Instagram’s Insights, which provides valuable data about your followers and posts: you can view statistics about impressions, engagement, and other KPIs. You can also get an overview of your followers by demographic details, including age, gender, location, and when they are most. All these insights allow you to get an accurate picture of your followers and how they interact with their content. The better you know your followers, the more successful you can be in setting up your campaigns and ads.
You should set up your Instagram ads and campaigns in the Facebook Ads Manager to leverage the above insights. With the Ads Manager, you have more options to customize your audiences and access to additional individual settings.
Once the campaign is up and running, don’t forget to test: test different ad formats, images, videos, texts, and placements. Don’t be afraid to pause those ads that don’t perform well and focus on the winners.
Round out the campaigns by interacting with the ads, especially when questions and comments come up.
Finally, Influencer campaigns provide another opportunity to promote your business, products, or services successfully.
Our experts will be happy to help you define and implement your Instagram strategy.