Grow Your Business Using Instagram Ads9 min read

What comes to mind when you hear the word "Instagram"? Beautiful pictures, right? But what if we tell you that you can also grow your business using Instagram ads.
What comes to mind when you hear the word "Instagram"? Beautiful pictures, right? But what if we tell you that you can also grow your business using Instagram ads.
Reading Time: 7 minutes

SMRT Digital: Guide to Instagram Ads

What comes to mind when you hear the word “Instagram”? Beautiful pictures, right? But what if we tell you that you can also grow your business using Instagram ads. Yes, this picture and video sharing channel can also put your product or service in the spotlight.

Why Instagram Ads?

With more than 1 billion users every month, Instagram is a great channel to reach as many target as possible
With more than 1 billion users every month, Instagram is a great channel to reach as many customers as possible.

Well, why not?

Instagram has 1 billion users every month-way more than Twitter and other social media. Take a look on these stats to see why you need Instagram right now:

  • Instagram is the second most downloaded free app in the Apple store (second to YouTube).
  • Instagram ranks 10th in the most popular search terms in Google query.
  •  There are 9,442,000 Instagram users in Australia, which accounts for 37.2% of the population. Meaning, you can target your ads to reach more than nine million users! Simply amazing, isn’t it?

There are many more reasons why you should consider Instagram Ads. They all lead to one conclusion: Instagram is a useful tool to drive impressions and increase sales either through organic marketing or paid advertisement.

Instagram Ads vs. Facebook Ads

Every day, there are 200 million Instagram users who visit a business page. It can be your page!
Every day, there are 200 million Instagram users who visit a business page. It can be your page!

There is no denying that Facebook is more prominent than Instagram in many aspects. In terms of reach, Facebook has two times more visitors than Instagram, with 2.6 billion users every month.

However, this number doesn’t mean that Facebook Ads are always better than Instagram Ads. There are many situations where Instagram Ads can outperform Facebook Ads.

Instagram Ads vs. Facebook Ads: Brand Engagement

With Facebook, your company can have more engagements (likes, shares and comments) than Instagram. However, it’s impressive to know that Instagram has more loyal and returning followers than Facebook. Consumers find Instagram Ads more visually striking, professional-looking, and emotionally connected to them than Facebook Ads.

How about video ads?

In this department, Facebook wins hands-down. Facebook gets over 8 billion views for videos daily. In short, using Facebook for video ads and Instagram for photo ads is the perfect combo to up your game.

Instagram Ads vs. Facebook Ads: Audience and Targeting

As mentioned earlier, Facebook has a wider reach than Instagram. In terms of targeting, research shows that the average active users of Facebook are men aged 25-34 years old.

On the other hand, Instagram’s main audiences are both men and women aged 18 to 34 years old.

These stats suggest that if you like to target both the Generation Z and Millennials, use Instagram Ads. If you’re targeting the older generation, both are excellent platforms but you have bigger chances of reaching them through Facebook.

Instagram Ads vs. Facebook Ads: Cost

How much do Instagram Ads cost?

Quick answer: The average Instagram Ads cost-per-click is around $0.50-$1.00. If you’re targeting highly competitive industries (e.g., apparel), it can reach up to $3.00.

Meanwhile, the average CPC for Facebook Ads is $0.35. More about Facebook Ads pricing here.

Pro Tip: Don’t get distracted by the cost of either Instagram Ads or Facebook Ads. What’s important is you correctly identify the right campaign that can give you the highest ROI.

Need help in finding the best marketing channel to grow your business? Talk to a SMRT Digital marketing expert by booking a free consultation here.

Instagram Strategy: Best Practices

An Instagram page with thousands of followers looks amazing. But from the business perspective, these numbers mean nothing if they don’t convert to sales. 

With a clear goal and correct Instagram strategy, you can dramatically increase awareness and sales of your product. Here are some best practices when creating Instagram Ads:

1.    Getting started

Sign-up for both Facebook and Instagram business accounts. It’s easy to set-up an account on each channel. If you need help, there are many video tutorials on YouTube that you can watch for free.

Instagram and Facebook are social media partners. You can link your Instagram account to Facebook in just a few clicks. Facebook Ads Manager allows you to create Instagram Ads.

To get started, log-in to your Facebook account and head over to your Ads Manager. Now, click on the “Create Ad” button.

Step 1: Click on “Create Ad” button.

2.    Choose your ad objective

In this step, ask yourself: “Why am I creating this ad?”

Typically, there are three categories for an objective: Awareness, Consideration, and Conversion.

Awareness is when you want to generate interest in your products and services. Choose Consideration if you’re going to build excitement and lead the audience to seek more information. Lastly, pick Conversion to push for sales.

Here are the choices per category:


Brand awareness: Ideal if you want to increase brand awareness.

Reach: If you want your ads to reach the highest number of audience possible.


Traffic: Direct the audience to your page; landing page, a blog post, shop, etc.

Engagement: Do you want to get more likes, views, or comments? Pick this one.

App installs: The goal here is to direct the users to the app store to buy or download the app.

Video views: Convince the audience to watch and share your video.

Lead generation: Create ads that will collect info from page visitors.

Messages: Urge users to connect to you using Messenger, Instagram Direct, and WhatsApp.


Conversions: If you want your ad to make sales right away.

Catalog Sales: Show products from your catalog to attract people to buy.

Store Traffic: If you have multiple physical stores, use this to convince people to visit them.

Step 2: Choose your ad objective

3.    Name your Instagram Ad Campaign

This part allows you to create a name for your ad for tracking purposes.

Moreover, this step allows you to create a split test (A/B testing) to determine which version of the ad performs better.

When you turn on Campaign Budget Optimization, your budget will be spread automatically across all your ad sets. Otherwise, you have to set your budget for each ad manually.

4.    Target your audience

Step 4: Identify your market.

Your ad cannot target anyone and everyone because not all people need the product or service that you promote. Therefore, it is a must that you correctly identify your target audience to avoid wasting money on ads that don’t work.

If you click on “Custom Audiences,” you can choose which targeting options you need based on pixels that you’ve placed on your website. These pixels target previous visitors to your website or lookalike audience with similar online behaviors.

There are six categories that you need to fill-out to be able to reach the desired audience:

Locations: Use specific postal or country codes for areas where you want to show your ads. Similarly, you can leave out audiences in places where you don’t like your ads to appear.

Age: Choose the specific age range.

Gender: Choose between all genders, men, or women.

Detailed Targeting: You can choose between:

  • Demographics: Select which audience to include or exclude based on their lifestyles, employment, and education.
  • Interests: Filter your audience based on their previous engagement history.
  • Behaviors: Pick your audience based on shopping history, activities attended, and travel plans.

Languages: Typically, you can skip this category unless your target audiences are those who speak a language uncommon in that area.

Connections: Select an audience based on their previous engagement with your app, event, or page.

5.    Choose your placement

If you choose to skip this page, your ad will automatically appear in the platform where it is more likely to perform better as per algorithm.

For the sake of this tutorial, let’s tick on “Edit Placement” and choose the Instagram Feed.

Step 5: Choose Your Ad Placement

6.    Set your ad budget and schedule

“How much does Instagram Ad cost?”

That amount is really up to you. At this stage, you have full control of your budget, and when your ads will run.

If you choose “Daily Budget,” your ad will run continuously until your budget is exhausted. On the other hand, lifetime budgets will allow ads to run for a set amount of time.

Step 6: Choose your ad budget and schedule.

7.    Choose your Instagram ad format

This step takes you to the ad creation dashboard. Here, you will create the content of your ad, write your ad copy, and publish it. There are many formats to choose from; each carries unique advantages for your ad.

instagram ads infographics


Instagram is more than just posting beautiful pictures together with random hashtags. If used correctly, it can be a worthwhile investment. 

Many factors affect the value of paid advertising on this channel. If you follow the Instagram strategy outlined above, you will have more chances of penetrating the right market.

For newbies on Instagram ads, content creation can be very challenging. At SMRT Digital, we have expert content creators who can help you make an attractive and effective ad.

Whether you need an image, video, or carousel, our team can take care of them. Reach out to us, and one of our marketing experts will be in touch with you on the fly!

Book a Strategy Session