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How to Boost Posts on Instagram

What’s a promoted post?

Like Facebook, Instagram encourages businesses to promote posts from within their own feeds and timelines. You can also set up comprehensive ad campaigns through Facebook’s Ads Manager (where you can also manage your Instagram content), but the easiest way to get started with promoting posts is through your feed. 

How to Promote an Instagram Post

Identify the content you want to boost. 

As an entirely visual social platform, it can’t be overstated how powerful strong imagery can be for your Instagram strategy. If you’re choosing to show your post to new customers, you’ll want to select an image that will resonate regardless of your audience’s familiarity with your brand (like a particularly enticing slice of pizza!). Video performs very well on Instagram, but be sure to avoid text-heavy graphics, as Instagram’s content policies are even more strict than Facebook. Your promoted post should stop users as they scroll through the feed but not feel like an advertisement. This means you also shouldn’t worry too much about putting your brand marks on the image; your post will appear next to your business name and logo (if that’s your profile picture), so new users won’t be confused about whose post they’re seeing.

Choose an objective.

Similar to Facebook’s advertising options, Instagram will give you three objectives to choose from for your campaigns: web traffic, profile visits, or promotion views. You’ll want to select the objective that most closely aligns with your overall goals for the boost — are you looking for more people to discover your brand? More follows? More deliveries after seeing a post about a sale? If you’re looking for a more in-depth look into objective types, Later has a great guide that also covers ad management through Facebook Ad Manager for Instagram.  

Pick an audience.

Because Instagram has such a high volume of users and sponsored content, creating promoted posts that speak to one specific audience is necessary for success. You’ll be prompted to make a selection from three audience types: Local, which are users in your geographic area; Automatic, which is a “lookalike” pool based on your existing followers; and Manual, which puts you in control of demographic data for your intended viewers.

Deciding on your budget. 

Similar to Facebook, Instagram will offer estimates for how many users you’ll reach for a particular price, as well as how many times they might click your post. Don’t forget that you can always add dollars to your total promoted post budget during the time it’s running (or as it’s about to end). If your content is performing well, don’t hesitate to add $5 or $10 to maximize its benefit. 

Choose how long to run the post.Depending on your budget, when you’re first getting your feet wet with Instagram post promotion, you’ll want to keep your efforts regulated. Try promoting a post for 1-2 days and check in on the results, assess, and then add a few more dollars if things have been going well. Like all marketing efforts, what works for one brand might not work for another, and every channel will take some experimentation before you land on the perfect strategy.