Instagram Ads: Quickstart Guide + Bonus Tips To Save Costs


You're either new to Instagram advertisements or have been using them for a while. Either way, you'll want to figure out how to reduce your Instagram ad expenditures, because lower ad costs equal more money in your pocket.

Perhaps you've been hearing success tales about how people are getting amazing results on Instagram, either from our blog or from your friends.

However, you cannot appear to get the same result.

Continue reading if this describes you.

First, let’s ask ourselves:

How do you work out that Instagram advertising cost?

Since Facebook owns Instagram, you manage your Instagram advertising using Facebook Ads Manager.

When you arrive, you must select the campaign objective you wish to run.

The important point to remember here is that different campaigns charge for different things. Consider the following example:

When you choose to "Create a campaign," you first have the choice of selecting your buying type from auction, as well as your reach and frequency.

And you can see how it immediately limits your options for aims.

Since we always go with “auction”, we'll click that and it'll launch a new campaign for us.

After that, we'll navigate to the ad set level.

Scroll down to Optimization & Delivery and then click Show More Options.

Then look at "When you are charged." When you hover your mouse over it, you may click Edit and select from the options that appear.

We can decide between impressions and link clicks for the traffic campaign we've chosen.

 instagram advertising cost (campaign objective) , instagram ads price (retain impression)

However, if you go back and adjust your campaign objectives, for example, to conversions...

...and return to the Optimization & Delivery section, you'll notice that it won't let us alter it. It causes us to retain impressions.

instagram advertising cost (link clicks) , instagram ads price (Instagram campaign)

As a result, some campaigns provide you with options, while others do not.

However, whatever option you choose, you will be paid based on that metric.

For example, how many impressions or link clicks you receive.

It's also worth noting for first-time Instagram advertisers that you can completely limit the amount of money you spend on your campaign.

Whether you want it to spend no more than a specific amount per day, or whether you want to establish a lifetime budget and stick to it.

instagram advertising cost (setting spending restriction) , instagram ads price (conversion campaign)

Setting a spending restriction that Facebook and Instagram will not surpass is risk-free.

Knowing this, you may be wondering, "What if I don't get any link hits or impressions?" "How am I being charged?"

Facebook's response is that you are not charged.

instagram advertising cost (ad campaign) , instagram ads price (maximize return)

If you choose to be charged per link click and don't get any, they won't charge you.

If you select to be charged by impressions and don't receive any, they won't charge you.

However, in our experience, you usually always receive impressions, unless you have something in your ad campaign that is improperly set up.

So, if you invest $300 on a conversion campaign hoping for direct sales...

...but if you don't get any conversions, you'll still be paid $300 for all the impressions you received.

So there you have it, a crash course in how Instagram charges you.

Now that the crash course is over, let’s ask the question that we’re sure you’re dying to know the answer to:

How to lower those Instagram Ads prices?

Let's get started with our checklist for lowering your Instagram marketing prices.

Keep in mind that these are not in any specific order.

It's more of a checklist that you can follow if you want to reduce your cost per result.

You could think of this checklist as a troubleshooting guide for your campaign that’ll help you maximise your returns.

Examine your existing data.

instagram advertising cost (examine data) , instagram ads price (historical data)

Examine what has and hasn't worked.

What are the commonalities between your best-performing ads? Is there a specific demographic that responds better to your advertisements?

Is there a particular content topic revolving around your product or service that is finding traction?

For example, do consumers seem to respond more positively when you advertise service A than service B?

Examine any historical data you have and make a note of any patterns you notice.

It's because this will help you create more of what works.

If you don't have any existing data, look at what your competitors are doing well.

Did you know you may view the ads that a competitor is running on their Facebook business page?

Here's what it looks like:

instagram advertising cost (Ad library) , instagram ads price (target audience)

How to get there:

Go to their page and scroll down to the Section on Page Transparency.

Click "See all" and scroll down to "Advertising from this page," which will inform you whether or not they are running Facebook ads.

If they are, select "Ad library" and browse through to see all of the ads they have running.

You can also see if they're running the ad on Instagram by looking at the little grey icons.

It no longer displays the outcomes of its advertisements, but if they're a fairly successful firm, it must be doing something correctly. Wouldn't you agree?

At the very least, you may see how they address your common target audience.

If you haven't already, conduct an A/B split test.

instagram advertising cost (conduct A/B split test) , instagram ads price (ad type)

Perhaps you found yourself pondering that first step:

"I have data, and I have run advertising, but it was always the same ad." There aren't many differences to contrast."

If this is the case, you should begin A/B split testing alternative adverts.

A/B split testing is defined as "testing many ads or ad sets out at the same time, with one variable modified among them to see which performs best."

So, for example, you might use the same copy with four different films to determine which one performs the best.

Alternatively, if you're testing audiences, run the same advertisements to four distinct groups to determine which one works the best.

If you run separate ads to four different audiences, you won't know if the audience or the ad is driving the ad campaign's success.

And you want to be able to identify what is driving success so that you can capitalise on it.

instagram advertising cost (high performing ad) , instagram ads price (generate leads)

For example, if an ad type is driving all of your success, you'll want to be able to create more content comparable to that ad.

If the audience is what drives success, you should invest more money in that ad set to reach more of that audience.

You can then disable the problematic advertising or ad packs that aren't performing well.

And this is a significant, direct approach to reducing your Instagram ad costs.

Because if you're spending $90 per lead on one ad and $60 per lead on another, you'll want to turn off the ad with the higher cost!

Then, reallocate the money spent on that ad to the higher-performing ad that is generating leads at a reduced cost.

People who do not do A/B split tests may be running ads that are producing results at $90 per lead and thinking to themselves, "wow, this is wonderful, I'm getting leads!"

Even though they might have gotten more leads at a lower cost if they had merely tested more.

Make use of whatever existing client data you have.

instagram advertising cost (retargeting) , instagram ads price (lookalike audience)

Custom audiences are frequently mentioned when discussing audiences with a cheaper cost per result.

And for this piece, we'll divide custom audiences into two categories:

  • Lookalike audiences

  • Retargeting audiences

A retargeting audience is defined as everyone who is already familiar with your company to some extent.

This may be your email list, website traffic, those who have recently interacted with your Instagram posts, and so on.

The majority of consumers do not convert on their first visit to your site.

They must become acquainted with you before feeling confident enough to make a purchase or fill out a lead form.

Unfortunately, many firms fail to retarget and consequently miss out on a large number of potential clients!

Retargeting can boost your conversion rate by 150%!

 instagram advertising cost (retargeting ad sets) , instagram ads price (customer data)

And, in our experience with customers, retargeting ad sets are nearly usually the least expensive ad sets by far when compared to targeting cold audiences.

Because the audience is already familiar with your company, they convert at a lower cost.

If it makes sense given the nature of your business, you can also retarget existing consumers to turn them into repeat purchasers.

So, if you aren't already running retargeting advertisements, you should start.

Now, for the lookalike audience. These are a new set of people who have never heard of your company.

And Facebook builds this group by evaluating a previously submitted list.

You can, for example, upload an email list of your existing clients.

You're encouraging Facebook to go find people that "resemble" your consumers.

So, while lookalike audiences are technically cold audiences, they are formed from a very warm crowd, making them more effective.

You want your initial list to include at least 1,000 people. Furthermore, the warmer your original list, the better for your lookalike audience.

Ideally, you'd want to upload a customer list.

If you don't yet have so many customers, you might start with your email list or website traffic.

Overall, the point is that you don't want "making the sale" to be the end of a customer's journey.

If you use your customer data correctly, you may use it to locate additional customers and drive more sales.

Uncheck any locations that aren't benefiting you.

This is similar to turning off your annoying adverts, which we discussed earlier.

Specific placements will not serve you as well as certain advertisements or viewers.

You need to determine whether the most return is coming from Instagram Stories or the Reels ads.

Don't waste money delivering to a placement that isn't providing a return on investment.

instagram advertising cost (Ads Manager) , instagram ads price (algorithm)

Simply navigate to your Ads Manager and look at the campaign you're running.

Click the three dots on the right side of the ad set screen.

Click breakdown, followed by delivery, and finally placement.

And this will show you which ad set's placement is performing the best.

Utilize the most recent and cutting-edge features.

Because this is a new location, you will most likely see a lower cost per result if you use it for your Instagram advertisements.

Because Instagram and Facebook want you to use these new features, they will reward you by favouring you in the algorithm.

Furthermore, fewer advertisers are likely to be using the latest capabilities yet, leaving you more freedom to dominate in the ad area.

The less you pay to deliver your ad, the more money you keep from purchases.

Keep in mind that if you employ Reels advertisements or any new function, the ad should be natural to that feature.

Reels, for example, are often brief, engaging, and to the point.

So, in general, your ad should be the same, because it is what people respond to well in that placement.

Just make sure your content is optimised for the new features you're implementing.

Make use of video.

Wouldn’t you know it, video is the way forward now.

They are the most extensively used media type because:

instagram advertising cost (sponsored social videos) , instagram ads price (studio-shot ads)

In comparison to articles, infographics, ebooks, and presentations, 68% of consumers prefer watching videos to learn about new products or services.

More crucially, they convert at a higher rate:

After seeing sponsored social videos, 64% of consumers make a purchase.

And if you're scared to experiment with video because it sounds like a difficult effort, let us assure you that it doesn't have to be difficult.

To get you started, we have some guides on how to build short Facebook video advertisements and how to design Instagram ads for your business.

However, if you have a smartphone, you can produce a powerful Instagram video ad.

Mobile-shot story advertising outperformed studio-shot ads 63% of the time.

Not only is video advertising feasible, but they are also more likely to be effective than an Instagram ad created on your phone.

Check your campaign aim again.

instagram advertising cost (check campaign aim) , instagram ads price (post engagement campaign)

If you've checked every other box on our checklist and are still not seeing decreased Instagram ad expenses, you may need to start over.

"Does the campaign objective fit my desired outcome?" you should ask yourself.

If you want more sales on your website but are only using the traffic campaign instead of the conversion campaign...

...and therein lies your issue.

It's the same thing if you want more leads but is employing the post-engagement campaign.

Many newer Instagram advertisers make the error of selecting the campaign that is "easiest to use" rather than the most effective.

The post-engagement campaign, for example, does not necessitate the installation of a pixel on your website, whereas the conversion campaign does.

But don't let a little extra effort in campaign setup prevent you from employing the strategy that will benefit your business the greatest.

We hope this has given you some further ideas for lowering your Instagram ad expenditures.

instagram advertising cost (instagram marketing) , instagram ads price (advertisement)

Closing Words

As you can see, the benefits and drawbacks of Instagram must be carefully considered when developing ad campaigns.

Remember that social media will play an important role in any successful digital marketing approach.

Ignoring the potential benefits of Instagram as a small business owner would be a mistake. You don't have to start with thousands of dollars. 

Begin slowly and use the data from the advertisements to create larger and better ads that target the people most likely to buy from you.

Although there are numerous benefits to using Instagram for marketing, it is important not to become overly focused on a single channel. 

Run testing across several platforms to see what works best for your company. The key to success will always be innovation.

Posted on 13 September 2022