Your Guide on How to Target Ads on Instagram

how to target instagram ads

With over two billion monthly active users, Instagram is one of the most popular and successful platforms in the world! For online businesses, Instagram provides a tantalizing opportunity to expand their target audiences with the help of Instagram ads. Coupled with search engine optimization (SEO), Instagram ads can maximize an enterprise’s digital marketing strategy by increasing brand awareness, generating more traffic, creating new customers, and increasing revenue.

What is Instagram Ad Targeting?

Instagram ads are posts or stories companies create to advertise products or services in Instagram users’ feeds. Companies can narrow their advertising approach by targeting a specific audience known as a “target audience.” A business’s target audience is a collection of potential customers who are most likely to find the products or services useful. They share certain characteristics, such as age, gender, location, interests, consumer habits, and more. Instagram ad targeting utilizes digital marketing campaigns to reach an enterprise’s target audience. 

How Does Instagram Ad Targeting Work?

You can create an Instagram ad directly from your business’s Instagram account or utilize Ads Manager to focus your marketing efforts on a target audience. Ads Manager is an all-in-one tool for creating, managing, and tracking ad campaigns. The Ads Manager app for iOS and Android makes it convenient for business personnel to have a hands-on approach anytime and anywhere. You can create the target audience you want to reach. With Instagram ads, businesses can produce high-quality photos and videos relevant to a target audience, showcasing products and services and promoting their brand. They can also include text such as a targeted hashtag or brand-relevant content. From photo, carousel, and shopping ads to videos, reels, and stories, Instagram ad formats allow businesses to create exciting ads in a way that can captivate their target audience. 

5 Steps to Targeting the Right Audience on Instagram Ads

The key to any successful marketing campaign is knowing your target audience. Here are five steps to help you discover yours!

Create a Buyer Persona

A buyer persona is a fictional character representing the detailed qualities of an ideal customer in your enterprise’s preferred target audience. To create a buyer persona, you’ll have to decide which specific characteristics to include, such as demographics (age, gender, location), interests or hobbies, education, job type, spending power, values, beliefs, social media preferences, and possibly more. A detailed buyer persona gives your business a clear understanding of what motivates your ideal customer. You’ll be able to create and shape content to help you engage with those customers more effectively. 

Analyze Your Active Followers

To fine-tune your target audience, it helps to look at your current audience. Check out the profiles of your most consistent followers and note their comments on your content. Besides their comments, pay attention to which influencers they follow, how they interact on Instagram, and the topics that seem to capture their attention the most. With this new data set, you’ll be able to compare actual followers with the buyer persona that was created. It will give you a good idea if you’re moving in the right direction. How are your actual followers similar to your buyer persona? How are they different? When you create content, it will be important to cater to the needs of your current audience while enticing new followers based on your buyer persona.  

Use Instagram Insights

Instagram Insights is an Instagram analytic tool that allows business accounts to collect several kinds of data about their content. Along with gathering demographic details, Instagram Insights offers a deeper understanding of your followers’ engagement with your content. You’ll be able to determine which days, and even the time of day, followers are most active. It’ll also tell you which posts are the most popular among your followers. Wondering which followers view your content the most? Instagram Insights will tell you that, too. This data is extremely valuable because it will allow you to adjust your content to suit the needs of your audience more efficiently. 

Take a Look at Your Competitor’s Audience

Naturally, if you have a competitor in your market, it stands to reason that their audience is also yours. You can follow the steps to analyze your audiences’ accounts and apply them to your competitor’s audience. While you may see several similarities, it may surprise you to discover some unique differences. For instance, you may find a whole demographic that your marketing strategy has overlooked. What does the competition offer that attracts that particular group of followers? Perhaps your products and services are different enough to warrant it. But if not, you’ll want to see what you can do to engage that new group. 

Check Out Hashtags and Communities

When you build your buyer persona, one of the details you may want to consider is which communities they may be involved in. You can even create a list of possible hashtags that your ideal customer would use when commenting on posts. With your list of hashtags, you can search your followers’ Instagram accounts for any matches. Likewise, you can apply this idea to your audiences’ accounts for community engagement. Do the most active members in those communities you’ve discovered mirror your ideal customer? Why or why not? 

Can You Target Instagram Ads to Specific Users?

The whole point of utilizing Instagram ads is to attract specific users known as a target audience. With over two billion active users on Instagram, your enterprise’s products and services will most likely not appeal to all of them! Marketing strategies work best when they seek to engage the intended buyers. Instagram ads allow businesses to create target audiences by honing in on certain elements, such as age, gender, location, interests, and more. 

Are Instagram Ads Worth It?

In a word: Yes! It’s hard to ignore the convenience of connecting with such a large target audience. The beauty of digital marketing is that it can be extremely flexible. With so many analytical tools for Instagram ads, digital marketing consultants and businesses can use real-time data to inform their advertising strategy. If data suggests certain content is missing the mark, it can be very easy to edit and implement changes rapidly. With over two billion users, Instagram is an extremely popular communication tool. The convenience of mobile devices enables businesses to engage their target audience anytime and anywhere, which makes Instagram ads an important tool in any enterprise’s marketing toolbox. 

Instagram Ad Targeting with Cadence

Incorporating Instagram ads into your digital marketing strategy can be daunting. CadenceSEO is a full-service digital marketing agency specializing in all things SEO, including Instagram ads. We can help you identify your target audience, create high-quality content, and engage with new and existing customers. Not sure where to start? Let our team of SEO nerds guide you. Contact us today for your free consultation!

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