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How to Create Instagram Story Ads: A Social Media Guru's Foolproof Guide

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2 months ago
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Knowing how to create Instagram Story ads is one of the essential steps to mastering social media marketing.

Whether you're a business or an influencer, Stories are a phenomenal way to boost engagement and raise awareness. Aside from the basic steps to follow to get your ads onto your Instagram Stories, there are a few other key elements we'll explore in this guide.

Getting Started: What Are Instagram Story Ads?

Instagram Story Ads

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If you're a frequent Instagram user, you're likely aware of the advertisements between regular Instagram Stories posts.

They're typically not posted by specific users but appear organically to users viewing their regular Stories feeds. They can take up the whole screen of a smartphone and last for about five to 15 seconds.

The best way to tell Instagram ads apart from regular Instagram Stories is to look for the "Sponsored" label in the top right-hand corner.

This sponsored link allows the ad creator to link their post to a specific webpage or account. There are plenty of customizable features you'll have access to when designing Story ads, as we'll see below.

Why Are Instagram Story Ads Important?

We all know the general importance of ads; they help reach a large audience and spread brand awareness.

Instagram Stories are a phenomenal way to engage more people in your content while making them aware of your brand and products. You can also use it to continue building rapport with your current audience, letting them know about new products and updates.

Another massive benefit to Instagram Stories ads is they look just like any other regular Story post. They have the same appearance and quality; the only thing separating the two is the "Sponsored" tag.

That said, it's highly probable people will click on your ads more than with other types of advertisements on other social media platforms. A few other essential benefits to Instagram Story ads include:

  • Boosting Conversions: With this feature, you can easily drive more people to engage in practical actions on your Instagram or website.
  • Lead Generation: With the attractive style of these ads, you'll find it helps to bring in a larger audience. It lets you attract more people interested in buying your products or services, boosting engagement.
  • Establishing Reach: These advertisements appear organic, which helps you reach the largest number of people in your target demographic.
  • Boosting Followers: The more people learn about your brand, the more followers you're likely to get. It's one of the best ways to begin a follower generation strategy to improve your overall social media success.

What Are the Types of Instagram Story Ads?

Types of Instagram Story Ads

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Did you know there's more than one type of ad you can put into Instagram Stories?

Each has its own benefits and can help diversify your marketing efforts. With every format, you can engage your audience in a new way.

Image Ads

Image ads tend to be the favorite choice of most marketers as they're the simplest to create. However, they also appear for only five seconds at a time, which means your audience needs to make a quick decision.

With image ads, you'll be able to deliver your brand's message with a single image.

It's most important to focus on the design, image quality, and text on image ads. You won't want to overwhelm your audience or confuse them within five seconds.

Simply put, the more eye-catching and simple the ad is, the more clicks it's bound to get.

Video Ads

If you like the idea of image ads but want something a little more engaging, video ads are a great option. Most businesses use these advertisements to show their products and services in real-time.

Most video ads can be up to 60 seconds, but it's best to choose shorter lengths for optimal engagement.

Make sure you capture the audience's attention immediately to make the most of video ads on Instagram Stories. It's also a great idea to implement some engaging text that entices users to learn more about what you have to offer.

Carousel Ads

Carousel ads are available both through Instagram Stories and directly on your feed. They combine image and video ads, capturing the benefits of both worlds for digital marketing agencies. You'll be able to upload multiple videos and images per post for your followers to browse through.

When purchasing Carousel ads, you can share up to ten videos and photos at a time. On each slide, it's a great idea to add a call-to-action, boosting your conversions and leads.

How to Create Instagram Story Ads: Foolproof Steps to Follow

Instagram Story Ads: Foolproof Steps to Follow

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As someone new to social media, the concept of buying, creating, and managing ads can seem overwhelming.

Thankfully, Facebook and Instagram have made it particularly simple with their intuitive, user-friendly ad manager and marketing tools. Everything you need is built into the tool, and the steps for designing your ads are simpler than you'd think.

Step 1: Use Meta Ads Manager

Meta Ads Manager is the tool that has everything you need to get started with Instagram ads. From static images to Carousel ad formats, it's designed to handle all the steps for your marketing objectives.

Step 2: Begin Creating

Once logged into Meta Ads Manager, you will want to select "+ Create" to begin designing your ad. You'll have a step-by-step guide to help you design each ad's objectives.

After filling in your Story advertising details and ensuring your ad aligns with your goals, you can move on to the next step.

Step 3: Choosing Placement

The next step is to decide where you want your ads to be posted once you're finished designing them.

As a beginner, you may want to choose "Automatic Placements" since it decides the most effective places for types of ads to be posted. Alternatively, you can choose "Manual Placements" but select "Stories" under the Instagram tab.

Step 4: Decide on Schedule and Budget

When establishing your social media marketing strategy, a budget is one of the most important things to note.

During this step, you'll want to decide how much money to put into the ad placements and when you want them posted. Be sure to choose a budget that gives you optimal potential growth without breaking the bank.

Step 5: Begin Designing Your Ad

Now, it's time for the fun part of getting your Instagram Stories ads ready for publishing.

At this time, you'll need to decide whether you want to post a single image, single video, or Carousel ad to be pushed to Instagram Stories. It's important to note that there are specifications posts must follow before approval.

After reviewing the ad requirements, you can then add the videos and images you want to be included in your campaign objective. There are other details to enter as well, such as specific objectives.

With Meta Ads Manager, the objectives include:

  • Traffic: Boost more traffic to your pages
  • Video Views: Attract more eyes to your posted pieces of content
  • Messages: Increase the number of followers that contact your business
  • Conversions: Boost the number of people that purchase your products and services
  • Store Traffic: Drive more of your following to your store

Another massive benefit of using Meta Ads Manager is its built-in design tools.

Using these features, you can customize all of your creatives in an assortment of ways. For example, adding filters and creating vertical Instagram Stories animations.

Some of the coolest features for Instagram Stories include:

  • Cropping options
  • Customization options
  • Interactive elements and action elements
  • Adding additional cards
  • Interactive stickers (ex. countdown stickers)
  • Customizable background colors

Step 6: Preview and Submit

Once satisfied with the information you've entered when designing your ad, it's time to preview it and submit it for review.

While previewing, ensure it looks great on multiple devices, including the image quality and size. There's also the option to create other mockup ads in the Creative Hub with added formatting options.

Another unique feature you'll love is the "View More Variations" tab. In this section, you can see how a single ad can be optimized for Instagram Stories. This feature can be essential for refining the finishing touches on your advertisements to boost their visibility.

After you've completely finished previewing, it's time to submit the ad.

Typically, Facebook or Instagram will review the content and approve it to be published. This process shouldn't take too long, as it's just to ensure your content meets their community guidelines.

Based on the goals you had set earlier, your ads will be automatically pushed to the right target audience.

Tips to Make Instagram Story Ads Look Amazing

Tips to Make Instagram Story Ads Look Amazing

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Whether you're an experienced marketer or a first-time Instagram user, everyone can use tips to make their posts stellar. Let's go over a few must-have tricks to help boost engagement, conversions, and bring in more followers.

  • Include Your Logo: Brand awareness means nothing unless your followers can attribute your posts to your specific company. Always include your brand logo when making ads and posts.
  • Use Motion: Video ads are often preferred to image ads, as they're far more engaging with moving images. If you're using image ads exclusively, try adding animated stickers to draw more attention.
  • Include a CTA: Without a call-to-action, your ads will fall flat and miss out on a massive opportunity. Always ensure you're directing potential customers down your sales funnel by telling them what action to take next.
  • Short and Sweet: As tempting as it might be to include dozens of different elements in your ads, short and sweet is best. Get your point across within a few seconds, capture the viewer's attention, and leave them wanting more. Doing so can help drive more traffic to your website and social media accounts.
  • Use Compelling Stories: When designing IG Stories, you want to ensure you're guiding your audience through a journey. An attractive Story makes customers feel like they're a part of your brand and want to support you. Ensuring you tell a fascinating story with your ads within Stories is a sure-fire way to succeed.
  • Add Clickable Elements: There's nothing better than attractive Stories ads that are also clickable stories. With design elements such as polls, animations, and more, advertisers on Stories can make their marketing more interactive. Also, clickable links allow you to direct traffic to different parts of your socials or website through Instagram.

Other key tips include:

  • Make sure the design looks good in mobile format
  • All ads should meet IG's privacy terms
  • Focus on optimization and delivery
  • Send a key message to a specific age range in your audience
  • Test out different Story ad formats
  • Consider time-lapse video for 120-second video ads or longer
  • Add audience testimonials to build your advertising campaign
  • Avoid blurry images and use compelling images

Create Effective IG Story Ads

When learning how to create Instagram Story ads, there are plenty of key features to remember. That said, creating ads is incredibly simple, especially with the help of Meta Ads Manager, designed specifically for Facebook and Instagram.

If you're ready to build your custom audience, begin creating your ads today!