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Instagram is arguably the best social network to advertise on. Instagram has seen growth as an advertising platform that sees it rival it’s parent company, Facebook. Statista have said that by 2023 the site will most likely exceed one billion users

Success on Instagram is usually gained by sharing stunning visuals and high-quality photos.

If you throw in a branded or targeted hashtag to go with the post, you’ll start connecting with your ideal customers in no time.

If you’ve considered trying to increase your reach on Instagram even further, then paid ads are going to be your new best friend.

If you’re not quite sure how to use Instagram ads or you’re worried about how much they cost then this article is exactly what you’re looking for.

So why should you advertise on Instagram?

Here’s why any business should consider Instagram as a way to promote their brand, services, or products:

  1. Anyone can advertise on the platform.
  2. You can target audiences with Facebook data since Facebook owns Instagram.
  3. Audience engagement is limitless. Businesses can interact with users in the comments section of their photos and through the direct messaging feature in the app.
  4. Post ads look just like any other shared post on Instagram, which makes them feel less conspicuous.
  5. There are multiple ways to advertise on Instagram, including in stories, videos, reels, and shopping ads.
What formats can I use for ads on Instagram?

Photo Ads.

Photo ads show up in your Instagram feed as you scroll through and will look like any other photo from an account you follow, save for the little ‘sponsored’ tag in the corner of the post. These ads will include a call-to-action button at the bottom to push people to a specific URL or your Instagram account.

If you’ve got an engaging photo to share then you’re off to a good starting as using this type of post when you have a specific product or message to share will be recommended by Instagram. Keeping it simple can help you stand out and grab attention as people are scrolling through.

Carousel Ads.

Carousel Instagram ads take photo ads to the next level. With this style, you can create a series of up to 10 photos or videos in a single ad.

As the photo ads do, the carousel ads also exist in the Instagram news feed, but each photo or video can connect to a different URL or location.

This allows you to showcase a collection or group of products.

Video ads.

Video Instagram ads are just as they sound. Like carousel and photo ads, they appear in the Instagram feed. You can post an ad as short as one second, as long as sixty minutes, or anywhere in between.

Videos will allow you to share more dynamic content, but people will have to stop scrolling to view it all, since they need to click the video to unmute it if they have their settings set that way. You need to catch their attention quickly and early in the video.

Instagram shopping.

Instagram shopping ads are an interactive option for showcasing your products, either in the Instagram feed or in the explore section of Instagram. When you use Instagram shopping ads, you can add shopping links to your photos for your audience to click for more information about the product, and they even purchase directly from the Instagram app.

You'll have to set up an Instagram shop to use this ad option.

Influencer ads.

Social media influencers play a big role in the content marketing world these days, and for good reason. They've cultivated an audience, and can influence a niche market of people. Branded creator ads are a component of this game. They can consist of photos or videos that one Instagram account creates, and another will share it as an ad.


Instagram reel ads are ads that show up in between reel videos as the user scrolls down. They follow the same format as an Instagram reel video, allowing the ad to feel like a natural part of the reel video feed. Instagram reel ads can be up to 90 seconds long and play in a loop on a vertical screen. Think of TikTok but on Instagram.


Over 500 million people use Instagram Stories every day, so why not pop in there with your Instagram ads? Similar to other Instagram ad types, story ads are placed natively within the stories environment to allow your target audience to see the content as they are scrolling through the stories of the accounts they follow.