ESM Digital's Higher Ed Marketing Blog

Your Beginner’s Guide to Instagram Ads: 3 Ways to Start

As Instagram kicks its advertising into high gear, the marketing potential for your school is huge. The platform has become more than just a place to show off your Valencia-filtered vacation photos. Rather, it allows you to zone in on a younger demographic of highly engaged mobile users. Over 90 percent of Instagram users are age 35 and under.

How can your school take a bite out of the Instagram advertising pie? Take these 3 steps to get started:

Strategize. As with any social media strategy, your goals should be clearly defined. Think about what you’d like to achieve with an ad campaign and how you will measure its success. If your goal is to drive leads and ultimately enrollments, conversion rates will be your key performance indicators.

Set up. Create new landing pages. Instagram users are 100 percent mobile, so all your landing pages need to have responsive design. If you want to cater to the user’s experience – and you do – your pages need to adapt to their device.

Build up. Post regularly – 1.5 times per day is recommended for brands – and engage with users who interact with your content. Over time, you’ll build a large audience that will serve as a strong foundation for when you are ready to launch your ads.

Optimize. If you’re already creating ads in Facebook, creating ads for Instagram is quite similar. Instagram uses the same audience targeting – including interests, behavior, and custom audiences – that Facebook, its parent company, does, providing you with the opportunity to target the demographic that is most likely to convert.

Test. Make sure your ads are tailored specifically to the platform. The catch? Instagram is a visual platform and has a larger visual audience than Facebook does. More than ever, your ads shouldn’t look like ads. Develop content that is unique to the platform. Swap out various images and captions to see which types of content your audience responds best to.

Your prospects are on Instagram, so why not promote your content on a platform that will help it stand out? The setup and execution of a social media ad campaign can be both daunting and complex, but we’re here to help! Interested? Contact us at Effective Student Marketing to get started.

~ Alyssa Taliaferro