A Guide To Creating An Instagram Promoted Post

Since being acquired by Facebook in 2012, building an Instagram promoted post campaign is similar to creating a Facebook campaign. Instagram promoted posts utilize the same targeting options, very similar creative features as Facebook and the same approval process for promoted posts. Here we will highlight what is needed when creating a promoted post on Instagram.

As you may know, Instagram is predominately a mobile application meaning users post and view Instagram on the app on their smartphone or tablet. Although, when creating an Instagram promoted post campaign, it must be done on a desktop. Here is the layout of what an Instagram promoted post campaign would look like:

INSTAGRAM HANDLE: To run an Instagram promoted post campaign, we highly recommend creating an Instagram account for your business. Though it is possible to run a promoted post campaign on Instagram without one, you would not be able to address users’ comments on the post. Once the Instagram account is created, it is essential to link your business’ Facebook page to the Instagram account.

IMAGE/VIDEO: There is an option to place a photo or video in the promoted post. It is recommended to have a static image size of 1080x1080 (minimum is 600x600). This image should be attention-grabbing and ensure your ad feels like any other native post in the timeline. Instagram has recently changed their hard rule of less than 20% text within the image. Previously, Instagram would disapprove or shut down a promoted post campaign if the text within the image was over 20%. Within the last few months Instagram has implemented a new system:

If you ever wonder where your image will fall within this spectrum, Facebook provides a testing site for Instagram where you can upload your image: https://www.facebook.com/ads/tools/text_overlay

Should you choose to utilize a video instead of a photo there are few rules as well. The autoplay feature immediately begins playing the video for users on silent until the user clicks to hear the video. The maximum length a video can be is :60 seconds long. Instagram will also require a thumbnail image from the video. It is important to note that the thumbnail image must also abide by the new 20% recommendation.

TEXT: The text for Instagram promoted posts goes below the image/video. It is recommended that you limit the length of the text to 125 characters including spaces. A good rule of thumb for text is to have a strong call-to-action that grabs the attention of the user. A couple hashtags that jive with your brand can be applied here hyperlinking so users can view the conversation pertaining to that hashtag. Something to note here, is that Instagram will not support clickable URL’s in the text. In order to drive users to a destination URL it must to applied to the call-to-action button.

CALL-TO-ACTION BUTTON: Similar to Facebook promoted posts, Instagram offers a call-to-action button on promoted posts, however they only offer a “Learn More” button. This button will drive users to the given URL destination once clicked upon.

It should be noted that Facebook does have an approval process for Instagram. Once the promoted post is created and submitted Facebook will look through the ad and approve or disapprove before the ad goes live. We have found that they look for different things such as the 20% text rule in the image, inappropriate language, etc. They will also disapprove a promoted post if the text is “targeting” a demographic. For example, the text may not read “Have you ever suffered from…” or “Are you pregnant?” or leading questions similar to that. Facebook believes this targets a demographic in a negative way and will disapprove the ad if necessary.

If you have any further questions about creating the perfect Instagram promoted post, or want us to oversee the creative, please let us know! We would be happy to help!

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