When it comes to online PPC advertising, Facebook and Google steal the show. This is where most marketers are allocating the vast majority of their budgets (and for good reason). But it’s a mistake to totally ignore Instagram. In fact, Instagram advertising could become your secret weapon, if you know how to use it.
Instagram is celebrating its 12th birthday in 2022. It’s changed a lot over the years, but mostly for the better. The latest data shows Instagram is the seventh most visited website in the world, attracting 2.9 global visits per month. And while it’s only the fourth most used social media platform (coming in behind Facebook, Youtube, and WhatsApp), it has one of the most loyal followings.
From an advertising standpoint, one of the most attractive aspects of Instagram is the audience. The highly sought-after 18-to-34 age bracket makes up the biggest share of Instagram’s audience (roughly 60 percent) and is rated as Gen Z’s favorite social platform. In total, 59 percent of American adults use Instagram on a daily basis, while 38 percent of daily visitors log in multiple times per day.
Nine out of 10 Instagram users follow at least one business account, while one in two people have used Instagram to discover a new brand in the past. It should come as no surprise then that Instagram’s advertising reach is outpacing Facebook over the past year (increasing by 20.5 percent).
If you want to win with PPC advertising, ignore Instagram at your own risk. It has the potential to change everything for your business.
Tips for better Instagram ad ROI
Just because Instagram is a powerful advertising platform, doesn’t mean you’ll have automatic success. In order to generate a positive ROI, you’ll need to get the details right. Here are a few tips:
Warm up your account first
If you’re brand new to Instagram, there are some steps you’ll need to take to warm up your account before jumping straight into advertising. (A failure to do so could attract the wrong kind of attention from Instagram’s ad review team and hamstring your efforts.) Here are several tips for warming up your account:
- Register a single Instagram account on your IP address. (Avoid creating multiple accounts, which the algorithm notices)
- Fill out every square pixel of your profile, but avoid cramming in links for now
- Spend some time browsing the platform after creating your account. (In other words, don’t register and immediately leave)
- Start following 10 to 15 new accounts per day for the first week. Then scale back to three to five accounts per day for an additional two weeks
- Post once or twice per day
- Like and comment on at least five posts per day
If you follow these instructions, your account will be warm within 30 days. At this point, you can start advertising.
Think like a scroller
The best advertisers don’t think like advertisers. Instead, they think like users. More specifically, they think like scrollers. Instagram users are conditioned to scroll. Their thumb swipes up and up on the screen until something catches their eye and compels them to stop. To win with advertising, you have to stop the scroll.
The most effective way to consistently stop the scroll is to do something that breaks up the monotony of everything else a user is seeing in their newsfeed. This is why integrating motion into the front end of Instagram advertisements is so effective. This can be done with video, quick cuts, flashing colors, etc.
Partner with influencers
If you want to stand out, you have to cut through the noise. And one of the best ways to cut through the noise is by partnering with people who already have an active following on Instagram.
“Instagram is an excellent platform for marketing and brand building,” entrepreneur JP Brosseau writes. “However, with over 8 million registered business accounts, it is extremely competitive. If you want to get desirable results in such an environment, my tip is to team up with Instagram influencers.”
The beauty of working with influencers is that you get to tap into their existing audience. And if you do your research, you can find influencers whose audiences land squarely in the middle of your target demographic. This allows you to put your brand in front of qualified prospects who may not already know about you.
Putting it all together
Instagram might not be the first advertising platform that comes to mind for most businesses, but it’s certainly one of the most powerful. If you’re serious about stretching your advertising dollars and getting a positive ROI from PPC ads, we highly recommend including Instagram in your advertising arsenal. It’s not a magic bullet, but it will definitely move you forward!