How to Improve Instagram Advertising Campaigns

By Marianne Chrisos - Last Updated on September 19, 2018
How to Improve Instagram Advertising Campaign

Instagram boasts millions of active and engaged users every day, with billions of likes and comments on the content shared there. As a platform with such massive engagement, you already know that your business needs to be using Instagram marketing as part of the strategy. Here are some ways to make your content more successful and improve your Instagram marketing campaigns.

Understand the Types of Ads – And Use All of Them

Instagram used to be a one picture upload with a filter, but capabilities have exploded over the years since its launch. Here are some of the options available to marketers and how they can help improve your advertising impressions.

  • Carousel images:

    The carousel feature allows you to create a set of products that customers can scroll through. It can help tell a story about your product or give you the opportunity to showcase several images with the same theme, attracting more customer attention. For instance, if you’re a tech retailer, you can show the tablets that are on sale this week or your picks for best products of the year. With several images available to customers, it gives them a taste of the options available and makes them more likely to click through to your site from that ad to see what else is offered.

  • Video:

    Video marketing has been outpacing other forms of advertising in terms of performance for years. Using video ads on Instagram is an effective way to get more interest in your brand. They can help your company tell a longer story or showcase a product in more detail, so you want to make sure these are part of your campaign mix.

  • Stories:

    Stories ads disappear after 24 hours, so they’re a good way to promote a short-term sale or upcoming launch. Plus, your brand can use Instagram stories to help boost your brand awareness in a big way, which is certainly a benefit of marketing, if not an actual goal. Instagram stories give you an opportunity to showcase some of your brand’s personality and build a relationship with customers instead of just trying to push a product or service. Whether you showcase behind-the-scenes videos from the office, conduct mini-interviews with people who’ve used your product, or show a tutorial with your product in action, Instagram stories lend a fun authenticity to your brand that resonates with customers.

  • Go live:

    Unlike a video, which is often edited and purposeful, going Live on Instagram is slightly less scripted and more familiar. It’s not a great option for every brand, but it can be a great way to engage with customers and make important announcements to followers or share live coverage of an event put on by your organization.

Use Your Targeting and Segmentation Effectively

Segmenting your audience appropriately helps you get the best return on your marketing investment and make the most of your budget. Instagram offers several segmentation options, including the ability to target form an existing list of contact or CRM list and something called a “lookalike audiences”, which target customers who are like your existing clients.

Targeting and segmentation can significantly boost the success of your Instagram advertising, because its reaching the people most likely to be interested in your brand. This improves your ROI, your reach, and often your conversions, too.

Keep Your Captions Engaging

You need to put just as much thought into crafting good captions as picking the best images. Just because Instagram is a mainly visual platform, it doesn’t mean you can get lazy about your copy. Whether it’s a playful pun, a clever caption that encourages users to click through, or a description of the image or product shown, be as engaging and thoughtful on your Instagram content as any other marketing piece.

Make Sure You Blend In

A sure way to stand out – in a bad way – is to have sponsored posts and ads that look like ads. People enjoy Instagram because its mobile platform allows for seamless scrolling and visual consumption, as opposed to many other social platforms where advertising is obvious. Instagram advertising is more effective than banner ads, for instance, because it appears as part of the curated content and not as a sidebar of seemingly unrelated information. Some of the best Instagram advertising campaigns make use of their CTA button features (such as Learn More, Install Now, etc.) without making the actual Instagram look like an advertisement. That usually means one focal point, such as a beauty shot of a product or a model, with no text overlay in the image. Instead, the “pitch” goes in the caption.

It’s a delicate balance of not getting lost in the endless scrolling and making sure your marketing post doesn’t scream “ad” and immediately turn users off. This means limiting on-image text, sticking to your brand’s color palette so that an ad post looks like just another post in your feed, and making sure you’re balancing ads with organic and informational posts on your account.

Instagram advertising provides businesses a robust marketing and customer engagement platform with the potential for good ROI. Utilizing some of these best practices can help make sure your business reaches its Instagram ad goals with overall improved advertising campaigns with the power to reach and appeal to more customers.

Marianne Chrisos | Born in Salem, Massachusetts, growing up outside of Chicago, Illinois, and currently living near Dallas, Texas, Marianne is a content writer at a company near Dallas and contributing writer around the internet. She earned her master's degree in Writing and Publishing from DePaul University in Chicago and has worked in publishing, advertising, digital marketing, and content strategy.

Marianne Chrisos | Born in Salem, Massachusetts, growing up outside of Chicago, Illinois, and currently living near Dallas, Texas, Marianne is a content writer at a c...

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