Using Instagram Videos for Marketing: How to Advertise on Instagram

Running ad campaigns on Instagram is easier if you follow our pro tips from this article!

Social Media Video

Instagram has quickly become one of the best platforms for advertising. An ad on this social media giant can reach over a billion people over the age of 13, which is why it has become critical for anyone in advertising to gain proficiency in running Instagram ads.

It can be hard to know where to focus your paid social budget, but Instagram video ads are shown to perform particularly well on social media, and we at Gillespie Productions are happy to help with your advertising video production.

Now, let’s get into what makes Instagram marketing so important!

What Are Instagram Ads?

Paid ads on Instagram can show up in stories and in users’ feeds, appearing as regular posts. However, they’re always marked as “Sponsored”, and they allow for more features than a personal post — this can include anything from CTA buttons to links to product catalogs.

How Much Do the Instagram Ads Cost?

There is no set fee for Instagram advertising, and many factors will affect your final cost. Different demographics will cost you differently, and the same applies to the time of day you’d like to run your ads. The types of Instagram ads you use will also affect the price too.

Types of Instagram Ads for Video Marketing

how to advertise on instagram

With the massive cultural impact we know social media to have, it has never been more important to know how to advertise on Instagram. Stories, reels, in-feed videos, and more have the potential to reach millions, and advertisers need to keep up with the ever-evolving digital landscape, including the many Instagram advertising types.

Instagram Reels

Paid ads on Instagram should always include reels. These 90-second videos are short, snappy, and endlessly popular. Videos should be adapted to a vertical format and should be quick to get to the point, or you’ll risk losing your audience.

Instagram Feed Videos

Targeted Instagram ads can appear in a user’s feed directly while they are scrolling. These video ads are featured between the user’s followed content, so you’ll need to catch their attention quickly. Seek to maximize engagement through likes, comments, and shares by including buttons and links in your ads.

Instagram Stories

Can we talk about how to advertise on Instagram without mentioning stories? Of course not! Millions of users post stories every day, so Instagram story video ads have a high chance of generating engagement.

Like reels, video ads for stories should be kept as short as possible, with 15 seconds being the standard, though Instagram can accommodate up to 90 seconds. Shorter is usually better, though you can always opt for the “Keep Watching” feature. Another major benefit of these types of Instagram ads is that users can swipe up to see links!

Some users watch stories with their sound on, so consider using audio effects in your story ads. For users who watch with the sound off, you’ll want to include captions as well. As with all Instagram business advertising, all stories can be skipped, so it is vital that your video ad captures the user’s attention from the get-go.

Instagram Explore

The Instagram Explore page is designed to help users discover new content from creators they don’t follow, including ads. Knowing how to use Instagram for marketing via the Explore section is essential: your target audience is already interested in content similar to yours; therefore, it has a higher potential ROI. Keep in mind that explore page video ads should ideally include both sound and captions.

Instagram Video Marketing Best Practices

Now that we’ve discussed Instagram advertising types, let’s review some tips to ensure you know the best way to run Instagram ads.

Keep Your Instagram Videos Short

You may think 60 seconds isn’t nearly enough time, but some studies have actually found that even that is too long! In fact, paid ads on Instagram are often under 30 seconds. Keeping video ads short and succinct is the best way to grab users’ attention quickly before they can scroll away.

Use Pre-Designed Thumbnails for the Videos

Some users will turn off their autoplay feature, which is where thumbnails come into play. These can tell users what the video is about and hopefully pull them in enough to hit that play button. Even overlaying the video with the title text can help boost engagement.

Tag Products Where Possible

targeting instagram ads

Instagram actually lets you tag products in posts with a shoppable posts feature. Never underestimate this tool, which lowers the number of clicks users will have to use to get to your site. Linking directly to the product minimizes their opportunities to click away!

Add Subtitles to the Videos

Over 80% of Instagram users watch videos with the sound off, so subtitles and captions are incredibly important. You can use tools like InVideo to paste your video script directly into the video, then change the font, size, and color of your text to make sure it’s readable and user-friendly.

How to Create Your Instagram Ad Campaign?

Now that we’ve gone over tips and tricks for how to market on Instagram with video, it’s time to design your campaign! Log into your Facebook Ad Manager to get started.

#1. Define Your Campaign Objective

Once you’ve created your new campaign, you need to give it an objective. Describe the type of ad you’re creating and its goals as plainly as possible.

#2. Give Your Campaign a Name

Give your campaign a clear and unique name. This will help you keep track of your different ad campaigns in the future.

#3. Choose the Design for Your Ads

running instagram ads

You can either design your ad manually, or use the “dynamic creative” option, which will generate different designs for you, though you’ll need to upload any images, links, or copy.

#4. Decide on Delivery

Delivery here means how you’ll be charged for your ads. Options will generally allow you to change optimization for delivery, as well as when you’ll get charged.

#5. Figure out the Budget & Schedule

Here you can choose either a daily budget or a lifetime budget, as well as set a schedule for when to run your ads.

#6. Set Up the Audience Targeting

Always know your audience with Instagram ads. You can’t target everyone, so try to narrow it down as much as possible. Think about your target audience’s age range, gender, interests, and more.

#7. Decide on Ad Placement

Your ad placement will be where the actual ad is displayed. What platforms will see your ad? Will it be played in reels, stories, or feeds?

#8. Choose the Type of Ad

Of course, video ads are always preferable, but you can also opt for slideshows, individual photos, or carousel ads. All of these will help you reach more users.

Instagram Marketing Tips to Consider

We’ve reviewed what Instagram business advertising entails and how to do it, but here are just a few more tips for optimizing user engagement.

Utilize Hashtags

paid ads on instagram

Hashtags are a great way to target certain audiences. Many users will follow certain hashtags, so look into the kinds of topics and trends your target audience is interested in.

Make Your Video Content Engaging

As we’ve gone over, the first few seconds of an ad are precious! Videos need to be short and hook users immediately. Instagram ads are under 60 seconds, but that doesn’t guarantee that users will watch the full video, so making creative and engaging content is a must for Instagram business advertising! Our experts at Gillespie Productions can help you create engaging content that will work for marketing, so don’t be shy to reach out!

Test, Review, and Optimize

Unfortunately, there’s no one best way to run Instagram ads. Test and review your advertising strategy constantly, then make sure you optimize for the best results. If something isn’t working, don’t be afraid to turn in a different direction. Instagram for marketing isn’t an exact science, but that’s why experimentation is key!

Post at the Best Time

Depending on your goal and your audience, different times will be best for running Instagram ads. B2C businesses often do the best advertising in the morning, during lunchtime, or after work hours. B2B businesses, on the other hand, benefit from ads during lunchtime or in the evening. Though, again, always review your results!


Instagram is one of the best ways to reach a broad and diverse user audience in the modern age of social media. Now that you’ve learned how to advertise on Instagram and optimize your marketing campaign, you’re ready to actually create your video ads!

Making engaging and exciting video ads is a must to drive user engagement on social media, and we at Gillespie Productions have years of experience as an expert Instagram videographer company. Ready to get started on your new Instagram ad campaign? Contact Gillespie Productions today for help with your Instagram videos!


Are you ready to bring your message to life? Let’s start the conversation about your goals and how Gillespie Productions can help you meet them. 

let's get started