How to run Facebook and Instagram Ads

Running Facebook ads can be challenging. There is a lot to keep track of and it can be overwhelming if you’re not prepared. However, paid advertising is a sure-fire way to get leads so it’s worth the effort – after all, Facebook has over 2.9 billion users which makes it the most powerful social media platform for advertising. It also has a wide variety of audiences from boomers to Gen-Z, so you can always find the people you need to target.

Ads Manager vs. Business Manager

What’s the difference between Facebook Ads Manager and Facebook Business Manager? Ads manager is part of Business Manager and is only for running ad campaigns, while Business Manager has other features to help you manage your business presence on Facebook.

What is Facebook Ads Manager?

This tool helps you launch and manage your ads effectively. You can run ads using this service, without being a part of Facebook Business Manager. 

What is Facebook Business Manager?
This service by Meta lets you run ads through its products, such as Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp. Through Business Manager, you can also manage many Facebook pages, Instagram pages and ad accounts, and assign different levels of user access to your team members.  

Even though you do not need a Business Manager for Facebook advertising, it’s highly recommended, especially for those who work for agencies. Only through Facebook Business Manager can you advertise on multiple Meta platforms, so being part of this ecosystem is going to be very fruitful for you, and it’s free (except for your ad costs). 

Facebook Ads Manager Setup

Step 1 Go to your profile > Menu > Ads Manager or click here to set up an ads account.

Step 2 – Accept Facebook’s terms and conditions. You can also add your payment card information at this stage. Adding payment details at the end can be inconvenient if you want to start a campaign straight away, as Facebook does not always accept payment methods immediately. So, don’t leave it until the last minute.

Step 3 – You will now see the performance dashboard interface of Facebook Ads – I recommend you familiarise yourself with it. To start a new campaign, click on the “Create” button.

Step 4 – You will now have to choose the objective of your ad campaign, and it may be very different for each one. It provides the direction for your campaign, helping it to fulfil its purpose. So, choose wisely.

Step 5 – Select your audience. Choosing the correct demographic greatly affects ad performance. As I said before, Facebook has a huge audience and you do not want to target just anyone.  You can divide your audience into different segments which are called ad sets, and you can have multiple ad sets for each campaign. Some sets may be exclusively for targeting niche audiences and others can target a broader, more general audience.

Step 6 – Budget and schedule. Successful ad campaigns require smart budgeting and remember – a lavish budget does not promise leads or conversions. It’s the strategy behind the budget that determines its success.

Facebook ads can be assigned either of the following budgets:

  • Lifetime Budget – This type of budget lasts for the duration of the campaign, so if you want to run it for a long time without making any adjustments, you can choose this option. 
  • Daily Budget – This lets you specify the average amount you want to spend each day, and you can edit it based on the performance of your campaign.  

Advanced options: 

  • Schedule – If you are running ads on a lifetime budget, you can schedule their launch ahead of time. Be it right away or some days later, Facebook provides you with this flexibility. 

Step 7 – Select image assets. Image assets are divided into two categories – link and carousel. Link is used to display single image ads while carousel is used to display multiple image ads. Here is a comprehensive guide to image sizes for various social media channels including Facebook and Instagram. social media channels including Facebook and Instagram. 

Step 8 – Monitor ad performance. Facebook has a huge variety of metrics for you to track your ad campaigns. You will find metrics for the following categories:

  • Account Level – Here, you can view metrics that provide an overview of the performance of all your campaigns. 
  • Campaign Level, Ad Set Level, and Ad Level – Here, you can view data on specific ads, ad sets and campaigns, helping you to make precise changes. 

Step 9 – Ask for reports on your campaigns. Did you know that you can now get campaign reports sent to your email? No more hopping between tabs to view metrics and make that monthly report. 

Step 10 – Publish your campaign. Campaigns are automatically saved as drafts and will not be published until you do so manually. When you’re happy with the campaign settings, you can click the publish button to launch the campaign.  

Remember to take a long-term, strategic approach towards advertising, ensuring that individual campaigns align with your overall goal, and make sure you use your performance insights to adjust the ad copy, design, and overall branding.

How to Advertise on Instagram

Running Instagram ads is much simpler than running Facebook ads. Images play a huge part in Instagram advertising, so be ready with powerful imagery to create impact. 

Before using any method to promote anything on Instagram, you need to make sure you have a Business Account or a Creator Account. 

Method 1:  After uploading a post on your feed, the option to promote your post will be visible.  Simply click on “Promote” and you will be asked to add details about your budget, audience, destination URL, payment information, and duration. 

Yes, that’s all you need to do to run Instagram ads. However, it can take at least 24 hours for your ad to be approved.

Method 2: If you want to track your ad more accurately, you need to advertise through Facebook Business Manager. Begin by connecting your Instagram account to Facebook.

Step 1 – Once your accounts are connected, go to the Ads Manager page and click on the “Create” button.

Step 2 – Based on the goals of your ads, you need to select a specific objective. This is vital, as your results depend on what you choose here.  

  1. Awareness – The objective here is to capture the audience’s awareness in order to help build your brand’s reputation. Since it focuses on reach and views over leads, it’s mostly used for content marketing purposes.
  2. Traffic – This option helps you drive visitors to a certain web page, app, or discussion on Facebook Messenger. 
  3. Engagement – This helps with gaining more page followers and increasing post engagement and event attendance. To reach out to a large audience, special offers may be promoted here.
  4. Leads – Your audience will often get lost in the sea of content and products online, so use this option to bring new customers into your sales funnel. 
  5. App Promotion – If you want more people to download your app, this is the best option – it’s designed to get people to download apps directly via Instagram. 
  6. Sales/Conversions – This option encourages people to purchase or use your product or service. You can encourage visitors to perform a certain action on your website (such as joining your mailing list or purchasing your product), through your app, or through Facebook Messenger. 

Step 3 – Select your audience.   It’s important to understand how to target your audience correctly (I would suggest targeting Gen Z through Instagram). You can also choose to show or exclude your adverts to people in specific locations.  You can display them worldwide, to multiple countries, individual countries, states, cities, and even post codes. You can choose from a range of ages (the youngest being 13 and the oldest range being 65+), and you can target based on gender. The best part about using Instagram ads is that you can also target or exclude people based on their purchase intent or behaviour, device usage, travel behaviour, activities, and various other factors.

Step 4 – Set your budget and schedule.  Instagram Ads are similar to Facebook Ads in that they use the same system (you can check the section for Facebook Ads). The spend is determined by a number of criteria, including your budget and whether you choose Manual or Automatic bidding. Don’t worry, you will never have to spend more than your budget.

Step 5 – Image placement. This is where the process of publishing an ad on Instagram differs from publishing on Facebook. Here, you can choose to publish ads on both Facebook and Instagram, and you can set ad placement in one of two ways: 

  • Automatic Placement – Through this option, you can give Facebook control over when and where your audience sees your ads. 
  • Manual Placement – As the name suggests, you can manually control ad visibility. 

Step 6 – Creating the ad. You need to get your ad copy and visual assets together for this step. Select your preferred Instagram account and enter all the content.

Instagram Ads vs. Facebook Ads
Which is better? Making use of both platforms is the best option if your budget allows for it but if not, you need to make a choice. It’s all about the audience – which platform is your target audience using the most? Run some test ads and see which has the most potential. You can also alternate your campaigns between the two platforms.

While running ads, we need to remember the importance of optimisation. Tweaking the ad copy or creative elements then running tests is crucial if you want to get the most effective results. You may also want to tweak other aspects such as targeting – for example, how broad or specific your audience is.   

Time is another factor that increases the need for optimisation. If you run a campaign over a long period, your audience may tire from the same messaging and seeing the same ads again and again. They may choose to ignore it, lowering your conversion rate, or they may hide it from their feed. To prevent that from happening, regularly introduce new photographs, videos, and captions to keep your target audience engaged while still delivering your message and getting results. 

Sometimes, it’s the little things that make a big difference. Focus on the finer details and make changes as you go based on what the data says. 

That’s all for now about advertising on Instagram and Facebook. The process of running advertisements is time consuming and often challenging, with lots of trial and error involved. If you want to build a strong advertising strategy, my team and I can help you. Click here to book a free consultation.  

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