Instagram has grown to become almost as dominant a force in social media as its parent company, Facebook. Like Facebook, the vast power and universal reach that Instagram has achieved can be utilised by advertisers looking to expand their visibility in the digital world far beyond their initial customer base.
We’ll explain what the benefits are to using Instagram ads in your digital marketing plans and campaigns, and how to do it successfully.
In 2017, Instagram had more than 700 million active accounts, representing people all over the world. Instagram is primarily a visual platform, which means that ads that display interesting images will generally perform better than ads that focus only on text. Keep this fact in mind if you’re considering launching an advertising campaign on Instagram.
The fact that Instagram is a visual social media platform hasn’t deterred more and more advertisers from turning to Instagram to market their products and services.
One of the big selling points for advertising on Instagram is the fact that Facebook now owns the website. This means advertisers can use Facebook data to target their ads as effectively as Facebook ads.
However, Instagram works differently than Facebook in the way it structures its advertising features and functionality. This is to do with the different, visual nature of Instagram. The website has six formats you can use to place your ads. All the formats are aimed at visual ads. Four are called Instagram Feed Ads, and two are called Instagram Stories Ads. You must choose between Feed Ads and Stories Ads as they both have different technical specifications, so you can’t run the same video in both formats.Read More...
The Instagram Feed Ads are further divided into the categories of Photo Ads, Video Ads, Carousel Ads and Slideshow Ads.
You can use Facebook Ads Manager for Instagram ads as well, and it has the ability to recommend the sizes of images and videos for each type of these four categories.
For Photo Ads, the process of creating the ad is fairly straightforward. Choose a photo of your services or products and upload it to your Instagram account. Then, you can add a caption of up to 300 characters that is displayed below the photo, but the website recommends keeping to 125 characters as the user will have to expand the caption to read the whole thing. You can also add a URL to your website as part of the caption.
Video Ads are created in much the same way as Photo Ads with additional caption features enabling you to add a video caption.
Slideshow Ads are created the same way as Video Ads. The difference is the video is actually a series of up to ten images on a loop with audio that the user can then scroll through.
Carousel Ads are Slideshow Ads that have replaced the images with separate videos the user can scroll through. The caption stays the same in both Slideshow Ads and Carousel Ads, no matter which image or video the user is viewing.
In the Stories Ads, you also have a choice between a Single Image Ad or a Single Video Ad up to fifteen-seconds long.
There are some subtle differences between Feed Ads and Stories Ads that may help you decide which format to choose.
Stories Ads are considered more of an 'immersive' experience. The length of these single videos demands attention from the viewer. It's up to you to determine whether or not the immersive nature of the format will work better or worse for your brand.
Well-known brands like fast-food and car manufacturers tend to favour Feed Ads. Everyone knows who they are, and they can focus on new products.
For smaller, less-known brands the Stories Ads can give them the introduction they need to register with an audience.
Once you’ve created your ad, you bid for its placement using the same system as Facebook. Whether you use the manual or automatic bidding feature will partially determine how much you pay for an Instagram Ad.
Facebook and Instagram ads cost roughly the same amount, depending on the bidding process and the competition, but if you set a daily budget, you won’t exceed that budget. Setting a daily budget of just 1,000 THB per day is enough to provide you with significant results.
Whether you choose Stories Ads or Feed Ads also has a bearing on your costs. One study showed that Stories Ads were more cost-effective than Feed Ads, depending on the brand and product.Read More...
Facebook has also noted that Stories Ads are a rapidly growing part of its revenue, which points to them becoming a more popular choice for many advertisers.
But there are so many factors determining the final cost of your particular ads that it's impossible to give a precise cost figure between the two formats unless you run head to head tests using your ads on both formats.
Primal is an award-winning digital marketing agency, located in Bangkok that makes financial sense out of all the ad formats offered by Instagram. We can also relieve you of the daily technical aspects of running ad campaigns on Instagram.
We can recommend which formats historically are better for your brand’s products and services and provide you with detailed reports, on a periodic basis, of the ongoing results of your campaigns.
Primal makes the decision to advertise on Instagram a worthwhile endeavour for your brand. Contact us if you’re thinking of embarking on an advertising campaign on Instagram.
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