Everything You Need to Know About Instagram Ads

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Screencap via Instagram

Did you know that Instagram boasts an astounding 400 million monthly users?

Of those, eMarketer estimates that 77.6 million users are located in the United States. With these kinds of numbers, it’s clear that advertisers will benefit from harnessing the power of the visual sharing platform. And now, thanks to the release of Instagram ads, they can. But as with any advertising platform, there are things you need to know before proceeding.

What accounts do I need?

You’ll need a Facebook account. Why? Because Instagram is owned by Facebook, which means all advertising filters through ad creation, Power Editor or the Facebook Ads API. You can also create your ad through Facebook’s Business Manager, which I suggest for larger campaigns.

I also advise opening up an Instragram account, although it’s not strictly required. If you don’t have one, you won’t be able to respond to any comments to your ad. Also, your Facebook Page’s information will be featured in the ad, but users won’t be able to click on the name or interact with the account.  Plus, if your page has a long name, it could end up getting cut off, which looks unprofessional.

So like I said, it’s better to have an Instagram account. Once you create one, you’ll need to attach your account to your Business Manager account or your Facebook Business Page Settings. For more information on linking your Instagram to Facebook, see Facebook’s Instagram Advertising Basics.

What are the Instagram ad guidelines and best practices?

If you’re familiar with Facebook’s advertising policies, then you’re in luck—because those bridge over into Instagram.

As on Facebook, text can’t cover more than 20% of the ad image’s overall area. Advertisers are also prohibited from featuring things like illegal items, tobacco products or paraphernalia, weapons, and inappropriate adult content. For the full guideline list, visit Facebook here.

It’s important to note that your Instagram ad is currently allowed one of four objectives: Website Clicks, Video Views, Mobile App Download and Mass Awareness. The goal you choose depends on the overall purpose of your advertising campaign.

Also, because Instagram is a visual site, ads pending approval will be held up to quality standards. The social media site recommends using square images that are at least 1080 by 1080 pixels. Images with low resolution, blurry subjects, unprofessional cropping or letterboxing will most likely be rejected.

Copy is also important to Instagram ads. If your copy is illegible or jumbled, your ad may be rejected. In addition, if your copy doesn’t relate to your image in any way, Instagram will probably reject your ad.

What are the benefits of instagram ads?

eMarketer estimates that Instagram will generate $595 million in mobile ad revenues in 2015, with the number expected to climb to $2.81 billion by 2017. That represents a 400% growth rate over 2 years. In addition, the Pew Research Center found that 28% of adult internet users are on Instagram, with the number jumping to 55% for young adults. Perhaps these statistics are why 85% of top brands have jumped onboard the Instagram train, according to 2015 State of Social Marketing Report.

From these numbers, it’s clear the Instagram has a lot to offer. Other benefits include:

  • Image-heavy content
  • High engagement rate
  • Ability to build brand recognition and brand identity
  • Interconnectivity between your other social media platforms

Do you have any questions about Instagram ads? Let me know in the comments!

Michael Freeman

Michael is the Content Writer and Editor at Chatter Buzz. A native of Massachusetts, he has more than 20 years of experience as a print and online journalist & has as a marketing writer for more than 50+ private firms in various industries. He loves red wine and spending time with his cats.

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