A Detailed Overview of How to Run Instagram Ads

Let's figure out how to quickly and, most importantly, competently, launch advertising on this social network using free Facebook tools - Ads Manager and Business Manager. Unlike the ad account in the Instagram mobile app, they have a wide range of tools and interesting features.

In the article we will find out:

  • what must be done before launching an advertising campaign in order not to drain the budget;
  • how to calculate the budget and prepare ads;
  • what is needed to launch targeted advertising and how does Ads Manager and Business Manager differ;
  • what functions of the Facebook ad cabinet will allow you to work effectively on Instagram.
Before starting work, I advise you to read our AdsManager superguide , it describes the basics for beginners.

Preparing to launch targeted ads on Instagram

The success of promoting an Instagram business account depends on proper preparation. Before setting up targeted ads, pay attention to the analysis and the tools you need. Especially when it comes to sales.

Before starting an advertising campaign on Instagram, you must be sure of the following things:
  1. Your target audience is on this social network. Future bloggers will also have to pay attention to the target portrait and interests of users in order to attract their attention to themselves in advertising to increase awareness.
  2. Your profile is ready to receive traffic. Even if you are a blogger, you need to keep your profile in order. If you are not going to teach courses, you are exempt from tracking Instagram sales.
  3. You understand how a sales funnel will work for your product. Plus you know or predict what the sales cycle will be like.
  4. Your website or landing page (if available) is ready to receive traffic. That is, web analytics services are connected (Yandex.Metrica, Google Analytics), end-to-end analytics is configured (Roistat, Comagic), the Facebook pixel is correctly installed and working on the site. If CRM is connected, check if there is a link to Instagram Direct to track orders from the social network directly.
  5. The goals of the advertising campaign are clearly defined. For this, Facebook has prepared a list to choose from. Keep your goals simple and clearly reflected in your KPIs .

We calculate the advertising budget

Make sure you assess your chances adequately and have the required budget. Advertising effectiveness is an analysis of the money spent on attracting a client. Also, for example, you can find out how much it cost you not only customers (who made a purchase), but also those who just showed interest - subscribed to an account, asked a question in direct or comments, left a phone number or email.

In advertising, the user who took the action we want is the lead. The money you spent on its action is the cost per lead or CPL.

This is a forecast method. It does not take into account that conversion may change at different times or that the average purchase order will grow due to tripwires or promotional activities.

There is another method, the actual one: you can estimate the cost of leads based on the campaign. For example, you spent 50,000 rupees on advertising, got 200 sales, and the cost per lead was 250 rupees.

Preparing media for ads

Instagram ads can be a single photo or a multi-image ring gallery. The success of a particular format will be determined at the stage of testing creatives when launching a campaign.

If shopping tags are available to you (the function of marking products in publications), then product cards will be available.

The format requirements can be read in the official Facebook manual . Select your ad placement for detailed specs.

Be sure to prepare photos and videos of the appropriate format for different sections of Instagram. You will surely be posted in all available to determine the most effective one for you.

Choosing between Business Manager and Ads Manager

Facebook has an Ads Manager and Business Manager ad account - an extended account with additional options for advertisers. Let's figure out which one you need to work.

Let's summarize.

If you are an SMM specialist and need to maintain a lot of client accounts, use Business Manager.

If you are a large company that wants to see the results of the work of different contractors (agencies or advertising specialists), you would also better connect the Business Manager.

If you have one profile and do not have large management tasks, use a standard ad account.

To sign up for Business Manager, go to the home page and select Create Account. If you don't have a Facebook page, he will offer to create one.

If you already have a page, fill in the following fields:
  • Company and account name.
  • Name and surname.
  • Work email address.
  • Company information and other data.

How to launch advertising on Instagram: 

we take into account the peculiarities of the account settings for the social network

Technically, Instagram ads are created in the same way as Facebook ads. Therefore, I highly recommend reading the second part of our voluminous guide to launching targeted Facebook ads. The processes of launching advertising campaigns on both social networks are very similar, so in this review we will only talk about the features of working with Instagram.

To get started, you need to create an Instagram account and add it to Business Manager (yes, you can broadcast ads without a profile, but then you will have to use your Facebook page - this way you can advertise your app, website, collect requests in instant messengers).

  1. To add an Instagram account to Business Manager, open Business Manager and on the left side of the page, click Campaign Settings - Instagram Accounts.
  2. Click Claim New Instagram Account.
  3. Enter your username and password, then click Next.

To allow one or more of your ad accounts to use your Instagram profile, check the box for each ad account and click Save Changes.

If you are running Ads Manager, then you will need admin rights to the Facebook page that your profile is linked to in order to see your Instagram profile.

If everything is in order, you can go to the main page and work. There are four ad account tabs available.

Account and campaign overview

Campaigns. At this stage, you select your ad target, run split tests, and enable ad group budget management. Come up with a name that captures the essence of your ad campaign. For example: "Leads from 11.02", "Test traffic for the site" or "Conversion promotion". Please note that Instagram is only allowed to display ads for the following purposes:

  • Brand recognition.
  • Coverage.
  • Traffic (for clicks to your website or your app page in the app store).
  • Application settings.
  • Engagement (engagement only for posting).
  • Video views.
  • Conversions (for conversions on your website or app).
  • Messages (since January 2020, Instagram Direct has appeared in the settings, but the update is not available to all accounts and is rolling out gradually).

While I was writing this article, the ad account was updated: in the settings "Destination for messages" appeared Instagram Direct (the setting is available when you select the appropriate goal: "Campaigns" - "Messages").

Create advertising campaigns for each type of advertising message. For example, for showing a video, advertising an event, promoting a post, a promotion. This will make it easy for you to figure out what is happening with your ad.

Ad groups

In the "Name of the ad group" add your own name or use the default. In the name, it is important to be sure to reflect the audience you are working with: geolocation, age characteristics, and so on.

Create different mobile and desktop ad groups to gauge impression performance across devices. In web analytics systems, pay attention to who comes to you, where and from what devices they buy most often (there is a division into Android and iOS).

At this level, you choose where to drive traffic and set up audiences.

In “Audiences”, you can specify the target audience for your ad: indicate age, gender, interests and much more.

You can specify as many related interests as you like in one ad group at a time. Facebook will choose the best combination for you. By the way, it happens that interests work crookedly, that's why old-targeting specialists in Facebook accounts more often use settings by geo and age (especially important if your product is designed for a wide audience). 

But geo will also help you narrow the circle of potential buyers. For example, if we want to find a solvent audience in Moscow, then we indicate the addresses of expensive restaurants and boutiques, elite maternity hospitals and business centers:

By the way, all lists of places can be saved as a separate list. This is very useful: due to the recent update of the Lookalike Audiences functionality, you no longer need to specify the region right away, you can select geolocations for look-alike audiences directly when creating an ad.

Use Custom Behaviors to serve ads to those interested in online purchases. For example, you can choose demographic preferences such as Customer Engaged or Online Shopping.

It also became possible to select in the audience settings those users who have already interacted with your profile on Instagram: wrote to direct, visited your profile, saw ads. Based on this information, you can create Custom Audiences.

Even at the “Ad groups” level, you choose exactly where you will display your ads, how long and what budget you want to set up.

In the placement settings, specify either "Feed" and "Interesting", or a story on Instagram. Remember, it's best to separate ads in Stories and Feed. Remove the rest of the checkboxes.

Optionally, you can manually adjust the optimization and bid parameters. In the Optimization section for ad serving, you can adjust your ad output settings for better results. In the "Bet Amount" section, you can select the "Manual" setting.

Additional setting options also depend on the selected campaign goal. Let's take an example that will be of interest primarily to owners of online stores and sellers of goods on Instagram. Here's a tweak example where you rely on key events tracked by a pixel on your site:


At this level, you choose which account will present your ad. Here you write the text, form the necessary links and start tracking the results using the pixel.

In the "Format" section, select what will be used: photo, video, specific publication. Upload a photo / video or tag posts for promotion (posts can only be promoted if your Instagram account is connected to a Facebook page). You can promote branded content through our expert SMM Company in surat.

Instead of a conclusion

I understand that all settings can seem complicated and intimidating. Many of my colleagues prefer to work with the VKontakte advertising account and do not understand the logic of Facebook. But it pays off with practice. Remember, after a few days of studying the advertising office, you will understand that the main problem is not the launch, but the search for effective solutions for targeted advertising. Good luck with your work!

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