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How to Create Instagram Ads with Facebook Ads Manager

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Instagram ads are one notch above Instagram promotions. They enable you to create campaigns optimized based on various goals and allow for more refined targeting (think remarketing). Ultimately, they help you guide audiences closer to the end of your marketing funnel.

If it sounds like something you’d like to add to your marketing strategy mix, read on. This post will teach you the essentials of creating Instagram ads with Facebook Ads Manager. By the end of it, you’ll be ready to roll out your very first Instagram campaign and be one step closer to your goals. But to get there, you need to learn a bit more about Facebook Ads Manager.

What is Facebook Ads Manager and why you should use it

Facebook Ads Manager (aka Business Manager) is a tool that helps you create and manage both your Facebook and your Instagram Ads. It’s a powerhouse platform that allows users create complex campaigns optimized based on objectives. 

Every campaign you create within the Ad Manag starts by selecting one of three primary goals: awareness, consideration, or conversion. Depending on the type of campaign you chose, Facebook tracks and reports different metrics to assess your ads’ success. 

Not only that, but with Facebook Ads Manager, you can serve Instagram campaigns to very specific audiences. And we do mean ultra-specific. While Instagram promotions enable you to define audiences to a certain extent, Facebook Ads Manager allows you to refine your target based on demographics, interests, and even behaviour patterns. 

In fact, you can work with three different types of audiences: saved, custom, and lookalike. These help you create complex targeting strategies that align to your customers’ journey.

How to create set up your Facebook Ads Manager and Ad Account

Before you can create Instagram campaigns, you must have a Facebook page that’s connected to the Business Manager platform. If your page is not yet connected, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Business Manager  and go to “Settings”.
  2. Next, open the left-hand menu and click on the “Pages”
  3. Click the “Add Page” call to action and select among the three options “Claim a Page”, “Request Access to a Page” or “Create a New Page”

Once your Facebook page is connected to your Business Manager, it’s time to create an ad account. If you think that sounds complicated, it’s not. Here’s how to set it up:

  1. Go to the Settings options in your Business Manager and click on Accounts 
  2. Select Ad Accounts and push the “Add Account” button
  3. Choose one of the 3 options: “Claim Ad Account”, “Request Access to an Ad Account” or “Create a New Ad Account”
First step to Instagram ads: create Ad Account on Facebook's Ad Manager

If you have no other ad account active, select “Create a new ad account” and follow the instructions on the screen to set everything up. For your ad account to be active, you’ll have to provide a few details about your business and add a credit card for payment. 

How to create Instagram Ads with Facebook Ads Manager

As soon you create your ad account, you’ll be ready to launch your first campaign. 

Once again, go to your Business Manager, open the burger menu and click on “Ads Manager”.

Step 1: Choose your objective

To start a new campaign, click on the “Create” button, which will open the “Campaign objective” menu. 

Here’s where you should carefully consider what you plan to achieve with your ads. 

Do you want more people learning about your business? Do you want to target people who already know about your brand and are ready to engage with it? Or do you want to create an ad that will tackle end funnel audiences to convince them to purchase?

Based on what you choose, the Ads Manager will help you track specific metrics. For example, page likes for awareness, event responses for engagement, and purchases for conversions.

Step 2: Name your campaign

Give your campaign a relevant name campaign, and make sure to flag it as a special ad category in case it relates to social issues, elections or policies. Given recent events, Facebook is diligent with campaigns that fall under these categories and might even block your account if you fail to be transparent.

Step 3: Set the budget

Facebook’s Ad Manager enables you to choose between two ways of setting the budget of your Instagram campaign:

  1. By imposing a daily budget 
  2. By setting a budget for the entire duration of the campaign

If you’re new to campaign management, it’s best to go with the lifetime budget option and let the platform’s algorithm figure out the most efficient way to spend it.

Step 4: Define your ad set 

The Ad Set category contains essential settings that tell ads how to run. Basically, this is the category in which you specify how, when and where to run your ads. It’s also the category where you can refine your audience to the nitty-gritty details. 

You’ll have complete control over things such as audience location, age, gender, interests, and behaviours.

More interestingly, you can also choose to exclude people from your audience based on specific interests OR even whole segments of your target. Let’s say, for example, that you’re trying to raise brand awareness. In this case, you should exclude from your audience people who like your page since they are already familiar with your business. 

The Ad Set section is also the place from where you select where to show your ads. For our purposes and intents, we want to create an Instagram campaign. To do that, switch from Automatic placements to Manual placements and tick the Instagram box. 

Step 5: Create your ad

Once you set the parameters of where, when, and how your ad will run, it’s time to actually create one. With Facebook’s Ad Manager, you can create both photo and video Instagram campaigns, plus you can add up to 5 different texts to display in rotation. 

Ready to create Instagram Ads?

Facebook Ads Manager might seem a bit daunting when you start out. Our advice? Take it one feature at a time and keep things simple. Once you get a hang of it, you’ll be on an Instagram roll.

Ilona Iftode is a copywriter with a taste for adventure. She lives to write, travel and explore new concepts in the realms of advertising, marketing, SEO and beyond.

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