Do you have an Instagram account for your small business? Yet, it somehow feels like your posts aren’t having any impact on your audience and you are barely making sales from the platform.
As a business owner, creating content that showcases your products is one thing and knowing how to properly distribute those content to the right audience is another. Selling and getting noticed on Instagram has gone beyond sharing pictures and videos of your products.
The algorithm is constantly changing which makes it more competitive for your business to thrive solely by organic means on the platform. Many businesses are turning to Instagram to promote and sell their products. The number of posts shared on a daily basis can drown out your content.
What Are Instagram Ads and Why should you use them
Instagram Ads are paid promotions or sponsored posts by Instagram business owners to reach targeted Instagram users in order to reach a wider audience, increase followers and boost sales of products and services.
Ads play a huge role in influencing buyers purchasing decisions. There are over 1 billion monthly Instagram users worldwide, this means the potential to expand your business beyond your existing audience on the app exists, you just have to take your products to where your audience is, without leaving the confines of your home.
Other than the app’s impressive usage stats other reasons why you should promote your business on Instagram include:
- Boost Brand Awareness: Thanks to the app’s large user base, you’re sure to reach a wider audience for your business. More people would become aware of your goods and services.
- Budget Friendly: Many business owners often shy away from running ads because they cut deep into their business budget. However, Instagram ads are cost-effective. As a matter of fact, you don’t need to hire anyone to do it for you.
- Visual Appeal: Instagram is popularly known as an app for aesthetics. With the right creative images, videos and graphics that showcase your products, it’s a sure-fire way to grab the attention of your potential customers.
- Better Targeting: Unlike other means of advertising, you can target the audience you would like to reach more specifically by location, interest, psychographics, demographics and so on. That is the people that are in need of what your business offers. Better targeting makes promoting your products much more effective.
- Drive Sales: When you run ads to promote your business, your potential customers are aware of your business, they become interested in what you are selling, and then they make a purchase. Ultimately, the efforts and activities carried out by most business owners are to drive sales and make profits.
Types of Instagram Ads
Instagram is a versatile platform that allows you to create various types of ad formats, as well as choose which section of the app your ad appears that would be best suited for your niche. Let’s explore these ad types and how they can work for you.
Feed Ads: Feed ads are ads that show up on your Instagram. They’re usually image ads and video ads. Image ads are a single photo or image that promotes your business. They’re the most common and the simplest In terms of creative direction since they only require a single image, graphic or photo. For Instagram video ads, it is best to keep them at 5-30 seconds long, in order for the video to showcase the products in a way that would stimulate the potential buyer’s interest.
Story Ads: This is the ad type that pops up when you view your follower’s stories. They can be in any format such as a single image, carousel, video, gif etc.
Carousel Ads: With carousel ads, you have more creative control to promote different products, explain product features, tell a story and much more. They can appear on your feed or story.
Reels Ads: Reel ads are a full-screen, vertical experience, similar to Stories ads. They appear in between users’ reels and last up to 30 seconds.
Instagram Ad Campaign Objectives and Metrics
Every ad campaign must be tied to an overall objective. For business owners, this is to drive sales to the products and services they are promoting. There are several other campaign metrics that can be used to determine the success of a campaign. They include:
- Reach: This refers to the total number of people who have seen the product or service you’re promoting.
- Impression: This is used to determine the number of times your sponsored post was viewed.
- Brand awareness: This is the metric that determines how likely people are to be aware of your business.
- Traffic: You can measure the success of your promoted post by the number of visitors that visit your website from the ad.
- Lead generations: This is the number of people who are interested in your products by coming across the promoted post.
- Conversions: This metric determines the number of people who completed a desired action like visiting your page and making a purchase.
How To Run Ads on Instagram
At this point, you should already understand why running ads are critical to your business success on Instagram especially if Instagram is the key online platform you sell your products on. The easiest way to create ads on Instagram is to use your business or professional account to promote the posts you have shared. To run ads on Instagram, you must be using a business or professional account. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to go about it.
Step 1: Click on the blue “promote” button
Go to the post you would like to run as an ad, and click on the blue promote button at the bottom left of the post.
Step 2: Select where to send people
This can be to either your profile page, website or your storefront.
Step 3: Add an action button
This is the button the ad viewer would click to carry out an action such as learn more, shop now, contact us, book now, or sign up.
Step 4: Select Target Audience
You can choose your target audience automatically based on the people you follow or you can create your own target audience based on age, gender, location, interest and so on.
Step 5: Select budget and duration
This is where you put in the amount you would like to spend on the ad and how long the ad will run for.
Step 6: Add Payment
To add a payment method to your ad account:
- Go to your payment settings, by clicking on the ad account settings,
- In the Payment methods section, click Add Payment Method.
- Select the payment method that you want to add and click Next.
- Follow any additional instructions to add your payment method.
You can set a primary payment method if you have multiple payment methods saved to your ad account. Your primary payment method will always be charged first when you make a payment for your ads.
You can make payment using the following method;
Credit or debit card: Enter your credit or debit card details. Click Continue to finish adding the card as your payment method.
Pay U (Naira Payment with Mastercard/Visa): Add money to your ad account with Naira Payment with a Mastercard or Visa processed through PayU.
Note: This option is only available if you haven't tried to set up a credit card in the past
Step 7: Click Create Promotion
Once your promoted post is ready to go live, click on the create promotion or boost post button
Step 8: Measure and Track Post Performance
To track how your ad is performing, click view results or insights to check how your post is performing. Make sure you continue to tweak your boosted posts and audiences until you get the results you want. The best ads to drive Instagram sales for your business are ones that clearly explain how to make a purchase.
Instagram ads could be the secret sauce to getting more people to notice your business and getting more sales or clients. If you enjoyed reading this guide, don’t forget to share.
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