Instagram ads help you target users at all stages of the funnel, so you can build brand awareness and get conversions at the same time. Also, users are more likely to engage with branded content on Instagram as compared to any other platform and the ad recall on Instagram ads is 2.8x higher than on other social networks. So if Instagram ads are not a part of your marketing arsenal, you’re missing out.
But getting started with these ads is difficult because you’ve got to decide your ad format placement, budget, targeting options, and more. That’s why we’ve broken down Instagram ads in this article and covered everything you need to know along with a simple tutorial that’ll help you create your first Instagram ad using InVideo’s online video ad maker in less than 10 minutes.
Here’s what’s covered in this article:
- How much do Instagram ads cost
- Types of Instagram ads
- How to choose the best Instagram ad type for your business
- How to run Instagram ads using the Instagram app
- How to run Instagram ads using the Facebook ads manager
- Top tips for running Instagram ads
- Ideas for Instagram ads
- How to create Instagram ads within minutes using InVideo
The quick answer is that Instagram ads cost between $0.50-$3.5 per click, so you'll need anywhere between $50-$350 to get 100 clicks for your ads. However, there’s no cut and dry method to predict the ad costs as it depends on various factors like the competitiveness of your industry, the time of year that you're advertising and the placement on Instagram (ad cost can vary between ads shown on Facebook vs Instagram).
Let's take a look at each of these factors so you can better estimate how much your Instagram ad will cost:
1. Targeting options
If you target a narrow audience or even a single interest, your ad's reach will be smaller and therefore your CPC (the cost-per-click) will be higher as well. But if you target a broader audience, your CPC will be lower because there’s less competition although it seems counterintuitive.
However, high CPC isn’t a bad thing. If you’re running retargeting campaigns, your CPC will be higher because you’re targeting a narrow audience, but they'll be more likely to convert because they match your ideal customer profile.
2. Time of the year
The time of year also affects pricing. For example, during the holiday shopping season in November and December, advertisers tend to pay more for ad space than in August and September (when most people aren't shopping for the holiday season and gift supplies).
3. Industry competitiveness
The more competitive your industry is, the higher the cost of ads shown to that audience will be.
For example, if you're selling baby clothes and you choose to target women who follow baby-related accounts, the pricing for your ads will be much higher than if you were using less-specific targeting and it was a less competitive industry.
4. Ad placement
Lastly, placement matters. Ads shown on Instagram have a higher cost than ads shown on Facebook. If you advertise on both platforms but only select Facebook placements while excluding Instagram placements, your cost per impression will be lower than if you had selected both options with the same targeting criteria.
5. Ad formats
Instagram has different ad types which will help you achieve different business goals. There’s no definitive guide for ad costs, but Instagram ad stories tend to be less expensive than other ad formats.
Pro-Tip: You can easily create Instagram story ads using fully customizable templates on InVideo. Check them out here.
6. Campaign objectives
Campaign objectives increase or decrease ad costs depending on where your target audience is in the funnel. For example, a brand awareness objective will decrease ad costs while a conversion objective will increase your ad costs.
7. Ad relevance
As you know, Instagram uses a bidding system to display the most relevant ads to its users. It assigns a score between 1 and 10 to ads, and a score between 1-3 indicates that the ad isn’t all too relevant to the audience while a score above 6 indicates that the ads are relevant and useful to your target audience. So, ensure that your ads have clear concise copy and compelling CTAs as they’ll cost less than vague ads with no CTAs.
Now that you understand the various factors that affect the cost of your Instagram ads, let’s look at the different types of IG ads you can work with for your brand.
Instagram supports several different content formats — feed posts, reels, stories, carousels, IG shops and more. At present, you can run Instagram ads for almost all of these content formats, allowing you to maximize your ROI and reach your target audience where it exists. Let’s look at these in-depth:
1. Stories Ads
Instagram story ads appear in the Instagram Stories section of your followers' feeds. They’re similar to organic stories but don’t disappear after 24 hours. Instead, you can run them for as long as you want by setting the campaign duration and frequency of ads on your Facebook ads manager.
These ads are effective because they seamlessly integrate into a user’s story viewing experience. Plus, they allow you to add a swipe up link leading to a page outside of Instagram. For instance, take a look at this story ad by Bolt Foods:
It showcases the most important aspect which is the low cost of delivery for food along with bright visuals and an eye-catching image. You can similarly use Story ads to improve your brand awareness, increase your reach, send more traffic to your website, and get more people to buy your product
These ads come in three formats— video ads which play for 15 seconds, image ads which play for 5 seconds, and carousel ads which allow brands to play both images and videos within the same ad. You can also have longer videos of up to 1 minute in length, and these will then present as four 15-second consecutive stories or will give viewers a ‘keep watching’ option.
To create story ads for your own brand or business, check out the hundreds of story templates we have on InVideo and then use InVideo’s Instagram ad maker to bring them to life.
2. Reels Ads
Reels ads will appear between Reels in the reel tab or in the Explore section. They’re similar to the regular Instagram reels but they can only be 30 seconds long and have a ‘sponsored’ icon underneath. People can like, view, comment and share these like regular Reels.
Reel ads are in their nascent stage right now but are becoming increasingly popular because the Reels tab is turning into the most used content format on the platform. These can be used to reach a global audience, build brand awareness, drive engagement on the platform itself, as well as educate and entertain the audience.
For instance, check out this Reel ad by cutesyandminis
The ad is entertaining and engaging and feels very much like a regular reel. As a result it drives more conversations around the brand and its offerings as well as improves engagement for the account. A benefit of creating Reels-based ads is that you can use trending songs and audio from the Instagram library to drive even more traction. This can help you use trends to grow brand awareness.
To make Reels ads for your brand, you can use InVideo’s Instagram Video editor along with templates with trending audio. Once inside the editor, replace the template’s media with your own and you can have your ad ready within minutes.
3. Image Ads
Image ads allow you to advertise your products or services using a single photo and an optional CTA. You can use these types of ads to increase interest in your brand or services, raise awareness about your products, and deliver a simple message that makes people want to take action.
These ads also typically work well for product-based businesses that can show off their offerings with a simple image. For instance look at this bicycle ad by Veloretti below:
The best thing about image-based ads is that they’re super easy to create, easily customizable, and can be used in multiple placements across Facebook, Instagram, Audience Network and Messenger, without being changed or edited. Image ads can also be tweaked to fit a variety of aspect ratios from within the ads manager, making it easier to fit them to a required placement.
To create image ads, you want to focus on clear, attractive imagery that grabs attention instantly. You also want to lean more towards using brighter images rather than darker ones. In addition to that, check out these best practices for creating and posting image-based ads.
4. Carousel Ads
Instagram Carousel Ads are made up of multiple images that users can swipe through. They let you showcase multiple products or services at once, and they're a great way to show off your brand story, bring attention to customer reviews, and highlight multiple offers. So, it helps improve your brand image and get people to buy from you.
When someone clicks on an item in your carousel, they will be taken directly to the corresponding product page on your website or app store. This makes them ideal for ecommerce businesses and brands looking to sell multiple products or promote a new collection.
You can either promote an existing carousel post and run it as a carousel ad or you can create an entirely new collection in the ads manager. In either case, you want to use eye-catching visuals and promote your popular products instead of running every carousel as an ad. Make sure to link each item in the carousel to its respective page on your website in order to get better conversions.
Pro tip: You can also have videos instead of images in your carousel ads and you can create these using InVideo’s Instagram ad maker. Simply select the aspect ratio you want the video to be in and then choose and edit a template of your choice to get the desired result.
5. Collection Ads
Instagram Collection Ads are similar to carousel ads but they show your products directly from your product catalog in a single layout instead of a swipeable carousel.
Collection ads include an Instant Experience (IX), which means you can make your ad more interactive and immersive for users. Viewers can fill a form, quickly view your products, and explore lifestyle images with tagged products. For more information on Instant Experience, check out this guide.
The main advantage of Instagram collection ads is that they allow you to showcase multiple products in one ad unit. This removes one layer of friction where users have to scroll or swipe through various images. This can instantly boost engagement and help them see all items in a collection or group of related products.
To create effective collection ads, you want to use your best images and videos to be displayed in the collection. You can also create separate collections for each product category. And to create thumb-stopping videos for your collection ad, use the Instagram ad maker by InVideo.
6. Shopping Ads
Rather than redirecting customers from your Instagram ad to their website, Shopping ads allow users to shop for products within the Instagram app itself by allowing them to tap on a product tag for more information about an item and how to purchase it.
Instagram Shopping ads allow you to increase the reach of your product, re-engage shoppers, and find new shoppers for your store. Check out this ad below by Feroldis. The price of the shoe is visible as you tap on the image and you have a tag at the bottom left corner of the image to view the product in the store:
Shopping ads are fairly simple to create but you need to set up your Instagram shop before you can run these ads. Once your shop is set up, you can add product tags to photos and videos on Instagram and create a collection for your shop as well as run ads.
7. Explore Ads
Explore ads are a relatively new method of advertising on Instagram. They appear in the Explore section of the app, and can be targeted to specific demographics and interests and will be seen by users who are actively seeking out new content and products.
According to Instagram, Explore has 200M+ daily users and 83% of them discover new products or services using that space on Instagram. These people who use the Explore section are more likely to be interested in checking out new brands since they are not limited to just surfing through their regular newsfeed, so it makes them a high-value audience for any brand looking to succeed on this medium.
Since these ads have the potential to reach a wider audience than your current pool of customers, they are also more cost effective as brand awareness ads than any other type. To know more about how you can run Explore ads on Instagram, check out this in depth guide.
Now that you are aware of the different types of Instagram ads, it’s important to know that not every type of ad is right for your business. You need to figure out the best placement and format for your brand in order to get the best return on investment.
To create successful Instagram ads, you should take into account these three factors while choosing the type of ad you want to run:
1. The Goal
Simply put, this is the outcome you’d like to achieve with your ads and it could be anything from driving traffic to your website to getting more installs for your app.
So if your aim is to get more eyeballs on a new brand or new product your brand has launched, it makes more sense to run Reels and Explore ads as these are great for brand awareness and can get you a lot of visibility for lesser cost.
On the other hand if you want more sales for your online store or service based business, running carousel ads and Instagram shopping ads are a better bet because they’re optimized for driving conversions.
2. Target Audience
The demographic, location, age group and other details about your target audience are vital to deciding the type of ad you should run. For instance, if you’re targeting Gen Z consumers who spend a lot of time on Reels and the Explore page, you’re better off using both these types of ads. However, if you’re targeting moms interested in home decor, you will probably have better visibility and conversion through feed ads, carousel ads and shopping ads.
You need to know your budget before deciding what type of ads will work best for you. If you’re looking to work on a shoestring budget and target only your followers, Instagram story ads would work best for you. But if you’re willing to spend more to put yourself in front of a newer audience, Instagram Explore ads is a great option.
Pro Tip: Whether you choose to run ads on the feed, as a carousel, on the explore feed or in stories, using videos will give you higher engagement and conversion than simply using static ads. You can easily create video ads in minutes using InVideo’s Instagram ad maker.
Now that you know the different types of ads and how to choose the best type for your brand or product, let’s take a look at how you can run Instagram ads.
Instagram allows you to directly boost posts and run them as ads from your Instagram page. Follow the steps below to create an Instagram ad using the Instagram app:
Step 1: Select a post that you want to boost and click on the Boost Post button. Choose your goal and then select your audience.
Step 2: Next select the budget for your ad and the duration for which you want to run it. Review the ad for all the details.
Step 3: After reviewing, add the location and currency, and select a payment method. If you choose a credit card, you can start running your ad immediately. For debit cards and UPI options, your ad will be run after you add money to the wallet.
Besides the app itself, you can do more detailed targeting and run Instagram ads using the Facebook ads manager, which allows you to run the same ad on multiple platforms together like Facebook Messenger along with Instagram.
So, here are the steps you can follow to create an ad campaign for your page:
Step 1: Go to business.instagram.com and click on create an ad button. Then, select the ad objective to get started.
Step 2: Give a name to your campaign and select a category if any. Then click Next.
Step 3: You can now select where you want to drive the traffic, the budget, and the timeline for the ad.
Step 4: Choose your target audience, you can either go with a previously saved audience set or create a new one. Click on Next to go to the next stage.
Step 5: Add the media you want to upload as an ad. It can be a photo or a video or multiple photos and videos if you want to run a carousel or collection ad. You can also select how your ad looks on stories, Reels and posts.
Step 6: Fill in the details for primary text, CTA, links and other important details like tracking and pixel ID. And then click on Publish to start your ad.
Step 7: Save a location, time zone and currency for the payment of the ads.
This was an overview of how you can go about running your Instagram ads. The most important detail to focus on here is the goal of your ad and the placement. For a deeper look at how you can iron out these details, check out this guide:
While running Instagram ads can do wonders for your brand, you need to know how to do them right. So, here are a few tips and tricks that’ll help you improve the ROI on your Instagram ads:
Tip #1 - Use video ads
It’s no surprise that Instagram video ads have higher engagement and click-through rates compared to other ad formats on the platform. After all, video ads provide more context, they’re relatable, and they keep viewers immersed because they’ve a story to tell.
For example, look at this 15-second Instagram video ad from Asana. It outlines the problem and positions itself as the solution.
Compare that to this image ad from Asana asking businesses to sign up with them.
Since the video ad is more engaging and interactive, it captures attention better and is more likely to drive results as compared to the image based ad which doesn’t give a lot of clarity.
To create video ads for your brand, you need to focus on bringing out the USP of your product or service in the most easily-digestible manner. Write your copy and then use InVideo’s Instagram ad maker to turn it into a compelling video in minutes.
Tip #2 - Different ads for different stages of your sales funnel
Not every person out there is going to want to buy your product or service. When you start marketing your brand, you are reaching out to a wide pool of potential customers who will move through various stages of awareness and consideration before finally arriving at a decision to purchase your offering. These steps are part of a sales funnel and to make the most out of your Instagram ads, you need to design ads for each stage of the funnel with the goal of moving them one step further into the funnel.
Here are some tips to design ads in the different funnel stages:
- Awareness: Your prospect knows they’ve got a problem, but they don’t know your business provides a solution. So, for this stage you want to create an ad that highlights the problem and positions your brand as a solution.
- Consideration: Here, your prospect is actively looking for solutions and knows that you could be a potential solution. So, your ads will have to reflect how your product differs from others in the market.
- Conversion: The prospect is ready to buy from you, so highlight discounts and free trials to get them to sign up with you.
You can use InVideo’s Instagram ad maker along with the fully customizable templates to create compelling ads for each stage of the sales funnel. To know more about the sales funnel and how you can generate credible leads using this method, check out this detailed video on the topic:
Tip #3 - Hook your audience In The First 3-5 Seconds
Your prospects are bombarded with advertisements, notifications, and messages every day. So, they’re not going to pay attention to your ad right away even if you’ve got the best product.
That’s why it’s important to capture their attention in the first 3-5 seconds of the ad with a hook and compel them to take action after watching the entire ad. Here are a few tips that’ll help you open with a compelling hook:
- Take the contrarian route: One of the best ways to grab attention is to open with a universally accepted statement and go against it. For example, the health-conscious populace embrace the concept of diets. So, you could open with a contrarian view and educate the audience on everything that could go wrong if they blindly follow diets.
- Ask a rhetorical question: Rhetorical questions are meant to persuade the audience and get them to say “yes” rather than get an answer. For example, if you’re selling a project management software, you could open with: “Want to streamline your tasks and get more done in less time?” to hook the audience because they’re not going to say no to getting more done in less time.
- Rely on suspense: One of the best ways to keep your viewers hooked is through suspense. So, no matter what your ask in the ad is about, don’t go into the details of it right from the start. Give them a teaser by opening a loop in their mind and get them to click and find out more.
Here’s a great example by Hubspot that hooks readers with its claim ‘collect leads in your sleep.’
Tip #4 - Understand and target the right audience
To design an ad that truly resonates with your audience, you’ve to know their likes and interests. You’ve to study content that they like and consume to create something similar. To do this effectively, here are a few things that can help:
- Use analytics: Insights from your own social media as well as google analytics or social media analytics can explain a lot about who is engaging with your content. This data shows the age, gender, location, and much more about your audience that can be used to find the right segment of customers to sell to.
- Look at your competitors: A great way to identify the people who are looking for solutions to problems you are solving, look towards competitors who come close to solving the same problem. Who are they targeting? Start there.
- See the posts that work well: Study the website performance closely on what type of content is performing better than others and is reaching more audiences. You can identify the best performing content areas, create more on those areas and promote it to increase your brand’s engagement.
- Engage more: Interacting closely with your audience helps you understand their pain points and demands more deeply and analyze how your brand can provide a solution. You will be able to identify a group of audience for whom your products fits in as a solution.
Tip #5 - Have a clear Call To Action
No matter how good your ads are or how great their reach is, you cannot get it to work if you don’t have a clear call to action in it. A call to action gives the user clear next steps about what to do and removes any friction in the process.
You might think the next steps in your ad should be obvious, but they are often not and it’s good to tell your customers what you expect them to do next. But your call to action has to be very specific and give clear directions on what to do next.
Remember that confusion is the biggest conversion killer. So, even if you’re directing customers to a landing page from your ad, you have to have one clear call to action that tells the customer what next steps they should be taking on that page.
Now that you’ve understood the different ad formats and the types of ads, let’s look at a few Instagram ad ideas you can take inspiration from.
1. Collate customer testimonials: Fenty Beauty
A study by BrightLocal claimed that 91% of the people who shop online read customer testimonials before making a purchase. You can use this to your advantage by creating customer testimonial ads. This means that showing off your products isn’t enough to convince a buyer. You’ve to show them proof that others in their community and space like the product. And the best way to do that is with customer testimonial videos.
This not only helps you build social proof but also helps you build trust and authority in the market. Take inspiration from this ad by Fenty Beauty, in which the brand has put customer reviews of their clay product, cookies N clean, together in one video. The video shows customers talking about the product and how it’s different from other clay masks out there. Customers have actually filmed themselves with the mask, shown how it works and the results other people can get using it.
To make a video like this brand did, you can put together a slideshow of video testimonials and promote it to your audience. If you have still images of customer quotes, you can put them together in a video and spruce it up with music, transitions, and some video effects. Here’s an Invideo template to help you get started with this.
2. Show how your brand empowers society: Microsoft
Social responsibility is a huge factor these days in helping brands market and sell better. And if your brand is involved in empowering society in any way, it is something that you should use in your marketing strategy to connect better with customers who associate with similar causes.
Here’s an ad by Microsoft that talks about how tennis star, Coco Gauff, is using tech to help children in Africa’s Achievement Centers for Children and Families (ACCF). The video shows students interacting with her in a video conference and showcases how teaming up with Microsoft has empowered these children to go after their dreams.
If you want to create a video just like Microsoft, start by first defining the causes you stand for and how your brand contributes to those causes. You can then partner up with a well-known personality to spread the message or simply create a compelling video to showcase your vision. After you’re done shooting, you can then bring the video to life using the InVideo Instagram video editor
3. Give your customers a discount: Dell
A study by Statistica shows that 92% of customers in the US want to use coupons and are looking for discounts when making a purchase. With so many customers looking for a good deal, discounts become a staple in ad campaigns, especially around the holiday season.
Creating a limited-time offer or discounts creates scarcity and increases the perceived value of the product because it’s limited. Also, customers often don’t want to miss an opportunity to save money and would likely buy from brands when they have an offer going.
Here’s an ad by Dell that shows how customers can avail offers with spotlight deals and avail Dell laptops at 40% off prices. The ad showcases the features that an updated Dell laptop has and promotes it to the audience saying it’s time for a refresh.
The best part about these ads is that you don’t have to invest heavily in conceptualizing and shooting. You can use high-quality product images and then put them into an InVideo template like this one, add text, media, and effects and you have a great discount ad ready in minutes.
4. Grab attention with a story: Perfora
According to Jennifer Aaker, a marketing professor at Stanford, people remember stories 22 times better than facts. When you tell a story you take people on a journey with you and make them believe in you and your brand. And we all agree that nothing connects us better than a well told story that’s relatable.
Here’s an ad by Perforacare that uses the story of one of their customers to talk about dental hygiene and why that’s important for everyone. The ad talks about the pain that the one goes through when doing a dental surgery and how preventive measures with the brand can easily avoid that.
To create ads like these you first need to write a compelling story — it can be about your brand’s journey, how a product was built, or the story of a customer achieving results through using your product or services. Once you have the basics down, you can either choose to share it in a text format, with images or by creating a video around that story.
To make story-based video ads, you can use InVideo’s online video editor to edit all your clips and turn them into a thumb-stopping video.
5. Share memes: Get Basis
A study by YPulse shows that 75% of millennials share memes, and 38% follow meme accounts on social media. And most businesses recognize the immense marketing potential in memes and want to include it in their marketing strategies to engage followers.
Using memes in ads will attract followers and help you reach an audience that can connect to your brand. The right memes can significantly improve brand recall and get your brand gain more traction with shares and likes.
Here’s a great post by getbasis that’s centered around a very relatable situation for women. The brand ad makes fun of how society perceives financially literate women and encourages women to check out the brand.
To make ads like Getbasis, you've to understand your buyer persona deeply. So, monitor conversations online to find the topics that resonate with your audience and create memes around that. Lastly, test out how the meme is performing organically before you create an ad out of it.
Pro-Tip: You can create engaging meme videos using InVideo’s meme templates.
6. Provide value for free: Mell
81% of the people who purchase online research about the products and the factors they should consider before buying a product. If you can educate customers at the start of the buying journey, then customers are likely going to trust you more than a brand that just popped up when the customer was ready to buy.
Not only that, research shows that 45% of a company’s reputation is related to what it says and customers want to check this out before buying. So, if you approach buyers and educate them on the problems and solutions to them with your ads, then customers are likely going to consider buying from you.
A good example is this ad from Mell that’s educating customers on what changed when she started using Instagram stories to promote her services. She’s educating her prospects on how they can get business out of posting on instagram and she can probably help them with it (a bit meta)
To create an ad like Mell, you need to understand the audience’s pain points and them write a compelling copy to showcase how you solve those pain points in the most effective way. Use InVideo’s templates to create a video educating your audience. You can add in photos and video clips to your videos to make it appealing and also enhance it with text animation and effects. Here’s a template that you can use:
Instagram ads must be appealing to the eyes to grab your audience’s attention. You can create such ads for Instagram posts, reels and stories using InVideo’s Instagram video ad maker that offers a number of templates to make one within minutes.
Follow the below steps to create a stunning, creative ad for your instagram page:
Step 1: Go to Instagram video ad maker and click on Make a video and choose an aspect ratio. For Instagram, an aspect ratio of 9:16 is suitable.
Step 2: Select a template of your choice and click on Use this template to start creating a video using it.
Step 3: Double click on the text, remove the existing text and type in your own text to customize it.
Step 4: Go to Uploads and upload your media. Drag and drop the image/video on the template where you want to include it and then click on Replace.
Step 5: Click on the Music button and select a background music of your choice. Click on the replace music option to replace the music that already came with the template.
Step 6: Click on Download to download the video into your computer.
Instagram ads help cater to audiences in all stages of the marketing funnel. They help you re-target audiences, reach new people, and keep your existing followers engaged with relevant content.
And if you prefer learning via video, definitely check out our YouTube channel, where we share daily video creation tips and tricks, the latest video trends and ideas, and help you make more money as a video creator.