Standing Out on Instagram Isn’t Impossible

By Madison Taylor
November 30, 2016
Lego Man

This just in: Instagram has officially hit half a million advertisers. Say what?!

Despite how irritated and angry some users became when Instagram started to allow advertisers the opportunity to jump into the mix, Instagram has flourished in recent years. Now, advertising is an accepted norm in the world of Instagram, and many users have actually found these ads to be helpful in directing them to goods and services that interest them. But because there are so many marketers making use of this popular social platform, you may feel that it’s impossible for you to really make your mark. Do not despair! If you’re willing to put in the effort, you’ll be able to extend your reach and connect with a whole new audience of Instagrammers who are ready to give you their business. Here’s how:

“Blend In”

Okay… sounds pretty contradictory, doesn’t it? You want to stand out from the crowd, but we’re telling you to blend in, so we must be crazy, right? Wrong! Back when Instagram first started out, it was all about those crazy “vintage” filters that wannabe hipsters enjoyed using to add some “age” and “character” to their photos. There was a strong emphasis on other wacky filters and editing tools, too. Now, though, the site has become a leading platform for artists, with an emphasis on creating perfectly-orchestrated layouts that make a statement. If you want to advertise on Instagram, then, you’ve got to consider your visuals and how native they actually appear to the site. You don’t want to use funky or weird filters and nonsensical flatlays; instead, your promoted content should actually blend in with the feed. In other words, you want to start things off by looking like you actually belong.

Start Strong

Now that your target audience accepts your promoted content as being a part of the scenery, it’s time to pounce with the first couple of lines of your copy. Yes, Instagram is image-based, but copy can make ads a whole lot more effective. Because only the first two lines of this copy will appear on Instagram, you’ll have to capture your audience’s attention and pique their interest enough within these strict parameters in order to get them to follow through by clicking the “Read More” link.

Know Your Audience

You can’t expect to just jump onto Instagram and start posting willy-nilly and get results. Businesses that take the time to get to know their target audience are the ones that enjoy the lowest costs-per-click on ads and sponsored content, with the highest rates of success. Find out who you’re trying to talk to. What are your prospective customers’ needs and struggles? What makes them tick? What fascinates or interests them? Knowing this will help you streamline your marketing efforts and generate ads that actually speak to them.

Keep It in Context

Context is everything, because given the context of a certain situation, your ad could either look organic and thrive, or it could appear out of place and totally fail. Think about this: if a reader is scrolling through their Instagram feed while they’re on their 15-minute break at work, they’re not likely going to remember your awesome ad promoting a free cover for your nightclub on Saturday nights. If, on the other hand, they come upon that ad while out on a Saturday night with their friends, they’re likely to respond and head on over. Using tools like Facebook Power Editor makes it possible to target people based on the time of day, the type of technology they use, and so on. Pretty cool, huh?