Instagram Ads Best Practices To Help You Get The Most ROI

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Are you looking to start advertising on Instagram? Or have you started advertising but not getting great results?
For marketers, Instagram ads represent a massive opportunity to drive a large and highly engaged audience to relevant product and content pages outside of the Instagram environment.
In this blog post, I’ll be sharing some best practices for using Instagram Ads.
Before we proceed to the topic proper, let’s determine if advertising on Instagram for your business works for you.
This guide is for you if:
Are you a brand manager who is interested in reaching out to new customers on Instagram but don’t know where to start?
Do you manage digital advertising campaigns for clients and want to include Instagram advertising as another channel to reach their target customers?
Do you own an eCommerce store and looking for new ways to position products in front of potential buyers?
Are you a business owner who is looking for new ways to promote your products or services?
If you are one of these people, I recommend you to start advertising on Instagram and apply the best practices. So, let’s dive in.

Instagram Ads Best Practices To Help You Get The Most ROI

Use Lifestyle Images

Instagram is a social media platform and social isn’t about liking and sharing. It’s about engaging and interacting with your fans. That same goes for Instagram ads.
Creative should be engaging. Lifestyle images that represent your brand’s persona work better on Instagram. Don’t get on Instagram to just post photos of your products. I recommend posting promotional content only 20% of the time. Like in all social media marketing, you can tell your brand’s story with as much creativity and thought when you do content marketing posts.
Let’s take the Visit Singapore’s ad shown below as an example. The best part about their Instagram ad is that it looks like anyone could have taken it – a stolen shot. This was certainly intentional. The ad’s imagery is inviting and authentic.
Instagram Ads Best Practices To Help You Get The Most ROI

Create Images with Clear Focal Point

Creative should have a clear focal point. You don’t want a super-busy or overly complex image.

Marketers can use focal points in their Instagram advertising campaigns to direct attention to specific elements, enhancing brand recall and encouraging action.

When your audience’s eyes are drawn to your ad, their attention will be held for only a few seconds. So, decide what’s your focal point.

In this ad, Jollibee’s uses a mouth-watering photo to show off their product and catch the attention of their target market. The top background is blurred so it gives room to emphasize the product itself.

Instagram Ads Best Practices To Help You Get The Most ROI

Use Clear Call to Action

Ad should have a clear call to action.

Jeremy Smith, a conversion consultant,  says the modern web audience is accustomed to the call to action. He quoted,

“This doesn’t mean they are going to convert,” he says. “It simply means their minds are prepared for the experience of being called to act. They know it’s coming. Their minds have already decided that there will be a CTA.”

In this case, Nivea Philippines’ ad drives action. Their creative includes two strong CTAs in a push to reach their campaign goals. First, Nivea Philippines encourages users to join their giveaway – that’s very clear in their image. Additionally, users can take immediate action on the ad with the help of a “Learn More” button.Instagram Ads Best Practices To Help You Get The Most ROI

Whether you tell your audience click a link, subscribe to a newsletter, download a quote, or request a quote, being able to ask for an action is an opportunity to create impactful Instagram ads.

Ensure Ads are Relevant to your Audience

Ads should be relevant to your target audience. It is incredibly important to assess first your ad before it goes live. Here are the questions you need to ask yourself before launching your ads.

  • Are they useful?
  • Are they engaging positively?
  • Would they resonate?

Instagram uses a similar algorithm as Facebook, allowing a user to hide an ad they see and do not find relevant, and if this happens – Instagram will show your ad to less and less people.

If you don’t want this to happen, ensure your ads communicate to the right target market.

Split Test Different Ad Formats

Instagram offers multiple creative ad units such as video, carousel, single image, etc.

While you can generally use a single image ad format, is that the best thing to do?

Instagram ads are like any social media ad campaigns: You can learn a lot from testing. To keep it simple, use the standard A/B split test method to test one Instagram ad against another. You can run a small campaign trying all three. Once you know which variety provides the best results, you can split test the next element – caption copy.

Example of a Carousel AdInstagram Ads Best Practices To Help You Get The Most ROI

Example of a Single Image AdInstagram Ads Best Practices To Help You Get The Most ROI

Example of a Video Ad

Instagram Ads Best Practices To Help You Get The Most ROI

Final Thoughts

Instagram is one of the social media advertising platforms that you can take advantage of in terms of aesthetic, targeting and user base, so don’t just wing it. Use these tips to brainstorm ways your business can advertise on Instagram with positive outcome. Take time to formulate a strategy so that in every ad you run, you’re delivering value and engaging with your audience.

Bonus Tips

  • Make sure your Instagram ads are appealing and relatable by using images that showcase real life situations and people. It will make your ads more memorable and connects with your target market.
  • Standing out from the crowd is not easy if you want your ads to succeed on Instagram. Use bold, eye-popping colors to draw attention to your ads. Run different ads with different images to test which colors and other visual elements drive the most clicks.
  • Don’t use the same images in your entire campaign duration. Your audience will lose interest when they see the same creative multiples times!
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Carissa Coles

Co-founder and Head of Social & Digital at Emerge