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Today we are looking at the advertising opportunities on Instagram, but in particular Instagram advertising for beginners. Instagram now has more than 800 million users and continues to grow unstoppably. It is only a matter of time before the one billion user mark is broken. Instagram not only has many users, but also 500 million daily active users. In comparison, Twitter only has 313 million monthly active users.

However, it's not the size of Instagram's user base that makes it such an attractive marketing channel - it's the level of engagement and customer loyalty that brands benefit from on the platform.

The economic benefit of Instagram in e-commerce is huge. Not only is the engagement on Instagram significantly greater than on Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ or LinkedIn - it even outperforms Facebook by a factor of 10 in terms of brands.

The "link problem" on Instagram

For a long time, getting your Instagram fans to your own website was the biggest problem with marketing on Instagram. Since you don't have clickable links in their own posts, brands must instead direct Instagram followers to the link in their bio and continuously update this link as soon as new products are posted.

But now for the really exciting part: you can now insert links to your own website in Instagram posts - if you are advertising. In the example below, the "ShopNow" button takes readers directly to a product page.

Online marketing vs. sales

A common misconception in online marketing is that marketing and sales are the same thing. Instagram in particular regularly falls victim to this misconception. As there is no direct link from the organic post to a website on Instagram, the impact of Instagram is often downplayed. However, people forget that Instagram has become the most important source of inspiration for young people. New brands, such as Kapten & Son are no longer building their brands through expensive advertising spots, but through well thought-out influencer marketing. The direct effect of Instagram posts on sales can only be partially measured (coupon codes), but since Instagram is a marketing or Branding canal, the brand effect should not be neglected just because it is not displayed in the analytics dashboard.

How Instagram advertising works

Since the end of 2015, anyone can now create Instagram ads via Facebook's Ads Manager.

Instagram advertising - the different advertising formats

You can now place four different types of ads on Instagram.

  • Photo ads " A simple photo in landscape or square format.
  • Videoshow " Videos can be up to 60 seconds long and in landscape or square format.
  • Carousel ads " Include up to 4 additional images that people can view by swiping.
  • Ads in Stories " Both photos and videos can be used as creative in Instagram Stories.

Campaign goals

You can also select different campaign objectives when placing Instagram ads. We are already familiar with the different campaign objectives from the creation of Facebook ads. Options include, among others:

  • Awareness - Create awareness and familiarity with a company.
    • Brand awareness
    • Reach
  • Consideration - Present products and services to potential customers.
    • Traffic
    • Interactions
    • App installations
    • Video views
    • Lead generation
    • News
  • Conversion - " Increase sales through product catalog sales or attracting store visitors
    • Conversions
    • Product catalog sales
    • Visits to the store

Instagram advertising

Targeting options

Instagram ads have the same targeting options as Facebook ads.آ These include:

  • Demographic targeting
  • Interest-based targeting
  • Behavior-based targeting
  • Custom audience targeting (retargeting)
  • Lookalike targeting
  • Targeting based on connections (people who like your page...)

Excursus: Custom Audience based on Instagram interactions

It has recently become possible to create a custom audience based on interactions with your Instagram business profile. This option can be found under "Target group" -> "Create custom audience" à "Interactions" à "Instagram business profile".

Instagram advertising guide

Here you now have the option of adding the following people to the Custom Audience to be included:

  • Anyone who has visited your business profile
  • People who have interacted with a post or advertisement
  • People who have sent a message to your company profile
  • People who have saved a post or an advertisement

Instagram advertising for beginners

Once the Custom Audience has been created, you can immediately create a Lookalike Audience be created.

How to create your first Instagram campaign

Now let's take a look at exactly how to create the first ad for Instagram.

Step 1 - Link the Instagram account to the Facebook page

The first step in creating an Instagram ad is to link the Instagram account to the Facebook page.

To do this, we select the "Instagram Ads" option in the Facebook page settings.

Now we click on "Add an account" and enter our Instagram login details. We confirm our registration by clicking on "Confirm".

Step 2 - Create an Instagram campaign

Once we have linked our Instagram account to our Facebook page, we can now use the Ads Manager to set up the campaign as usual.

To do this, we must first define our marketing objective. In this example, the goal is conversion on our website. For this reason, we select "Conversion" under "Conversions".

Since the goal of the Instagram campaign is conversions, the respective conversion must now be selected. To do this, the Facebook pixel must first be implemented on the website. You can find out how this works here.

Instagram Weanzeigen

In the second step, we now define our target group. We select our lookalike audience. In our example, we also want only men between the ages of 18-40 who live in Germany to see our ad.

Instagram campaigns

In the next step, we now select the Facebook placements of our advertisements. As we only want to advertise on Instagram, we must of course select this here.

To do this, we first select "Edit placement". We then receive the different Facebook platforms (Facebook, Instagram, Audience Network & Messenger).

Instagram placement

This is followed by the Budget & Schedule section where you define the desired advertising budget and the duration of the campaign. Here you can define the respective budget according to your own preferences and wishes.

Advertising on Instagram

Once the budget and schedule have been defined, the ad group is complete and the ad can now be designed.

Instagram offers a choice of five different ad formats (carousel, single image, single video, slideshow and a collection of several objects).

Instagram advertising for beginners

On Instagram, you can only enter your advertising message in the text field. With Facebook News Feed Ads, in addition to the text field, you also have the option of using the headline placement for the advertising measure.

Conclusion Instagram advertising for beginners

Placing ads on Instagram works in exactly the same way as with conventional Facebook ads. The only thing to note is that you select "Instagram" as the platform for the placements.

I hope that my contribution Instagram advertising for beginners liked it. If you have any questions, please contact me directly.

Tobias Dziuba

My name is Tobias and I am the founder and managing director of the Amazon agency Adsmasters GmbH based in Düsseldorf.

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