When Facebook acquired Instagram back in 2012 for a cool $1 billion, they not only bought into a built-in community that, today, has more than 400 million monthly users, but also grew to include a new advertising platform.

Last year, Instagram users shared over 40 billion photos, (that’s 80 million photos a day), making it the leader in photo sharing not only in the US but around the world. It’s true that 61 percent of Instagram users are millennials, so if you are trying to recruit them, you’ll have to learn the language. This is a great opportunity to reach college graduates for entry level positions with just an image, a few words and a clear call to action.

instagram ads

Facebook has made it easy to set up your Instagram ads using the same targeting options, pricing model and objectives. However, using the self-service Facebook platform to create the Instagram ads limits their exposure in that they will only appear to people using the Instagram app on iOS and Android devices, so your landing page better be mobile optimized.

Here are some of the components of an Instagram ad and what you need to get started using Facebook’s Power Editor or Business Manager.

Instagram ads consist of 4 parts.

instagram ads

Source: Facebook

1. Your Instagram Handle

You can easily link your Instagram account to your Facebook account under settings on your main Facebook Page. If you don’t have an Instagram account, no problem! Facebook will allow you to create the ad using your Facebook avatar (or thumbnail) and publish ads on the Instagram app on iOS and Android for your selected target audience.

2. An Image or Video

Images should be 1080×1080 pixels with no more than 20 percent text in the image or it will be declined by the Facebook interface. All photos should be of the highest quality and resolution. Groups of people or smiling people tend to work better than pictures of buildings or static images. Remember, you are trying to tell a story with just one image. For videos, you are allotted 30 seconds (30 MB), which should also be of the highest quality with a clear message for your viewing audience. You can find out more technical details about video requirements here.

3. Call to Action Button

So you’ve captivated your audience with a stunning image or amazing video. What do you want them to do now? Each Instagram ad should have a clear call to action. Facebook provides a handy dropdown menu to help you choose your soft-sell call to action, including “Watch More,” “Contact Us,” “Learn More,” or even “Apply Now.” Notice there are no hard or harsh terms like “Buy Today,” or “Everything Must Go” – the text of your ad should reflect as such. The call-to-action button will appear below the ad image on the right-hand side.

4. Text & Hashtags

All Instagram ads will have a “Sponsored” icon on the top right and your ad’s caption will appear below the image and call-to-action button. Like all social media ads, there is a maximum amount of characters that you are allowed: 300 is the magic number. Don’t forget to include at least one hashtag that is specific to your campaign or the message you are sending out.

instagram ads

And that’s it! Instagram has opened up a new environment of mobile ads that reach millennials in the US and around the world. With just a few steps you can begin a new form of ad placement to reach a targeted audience for a new era. Not sure you’re ready? Give us a call! We’d love to help you with your first Instagram ads – after all, that’s what we do! Comments are always welcome, so give us a shout back.