What’s New with Facebook and Instagram Advertising? (And How Changes Will Impact Your Campaigns)

By BKV in Social Media on July 13th, 2016

If you were ever skeptical about using Facebook and Instagram for your digital advertising campaign, it's time to put that aside. Trends show that more consumers buy things based on what shows up in their Instagram feed, and one study found that social media influence marketing is 11 times more effective than banner ads. That makes social media accounts with plenty of followers ("influencer" accounts) extraordinarily valuable to the brand that wants to directly reach new customers.

The popularity of Instagram advertising continues apace.

Digital advertising dollars are going increasingly toward social media-based paid advertising. Instagram hasn't been around that long, yet it has grown exponentially and is expected to account for more than 10% of Facebook (Instagram's parent company) revenues by next year. Web and mobile users are turning away from traditional information consumption, and brands are discovering that the payoff from television and print media advertising is decreasing, while the ROI for digital advertising (particularly social media) is increasing. 

Facebook recently rolled out some exciting changes to Facebook and Instagram advertising options. Here's what you need to know about them.

Dynamic Product Ads Have Been Extended to Instagram

Dynamic product ads are no longer just for Facebook - they are now available on Instagram. This ad format dynamically shows ads for items users have already expressed interest in by viewing it on a business's website, adding it to their cart, or purchasing similar items. Dynamic product ads on Instagram allow brands to effectively connect with more mobile users. More than two and a half billion products have been uploaded to Facebook dynamic ads, and now that they're an option on Instagram as well, this ad type is expected to become more popular.

Rather than using Instagram to promote products, manually tailoring and targeting ads, dynamic ads allow advertisers to showcase all their products automatically using dynamic content and targeting. The result is that brands can better show the right product to the right consumer at precisely the right time. Sixty percent of users learn about products and services on Instagram, and a full three-quarters claim to have taken action after viewing an inspiring post. Quite simply, these ads are an outstanding way to drive discovery of your products and services. And they're made in the same way you make dynamic ads on Facebook, so if you already do that, there's no learning curve.

New Dynamic Ad Options for Travel Sector

Travel advertisers will soon have access to new features specifically designed for the travel sector.

Facebook is also testing new dynamic ad features especially geared toward travel brands. It's the first in a Facebook push toward making dynamic ads better suited to particular industries. Currently, the new features are limited to promoting hotel rooms, but it means people who browse hotel websites or book flights can be retargeted with ads for hotel rooms in their destination city. Ads will display current room availability and rates, and hotel brands can target ads based on proximity to where someone is traveling, their booking window, and hotel class. Recommendations will be made based on actions a Facebook user took on a travel site, plus Facebook profile information and other demographics.

Advanced Options for Custom Website Audiences

If you're not using Facebook's Website Custom Audiences, what are you waiting for? These let you target your website visitors by page visited, duration on site, and other factors. Until now it has been difficult to impossible to separate the most promising website visitors from those less likely to buy, but new advanced features address that issue.

You can now target custom audiences not only based on device, visit frequency, and demographics, but also on how long they spent visiting or performing an action on your site. You can zero in on a range of dates when someone visited the site, or target ads based on a person's aggregate spending on your site. Additionally, you could create an audience of people who completed some action on your website at or above a specified frequency.

Facebook and Instagram ads were already highly sophisticated in terms of creative and targeting options, but Instagram dynamic ads and advanced custom website audiences, advertisers have even more powerful tools for maximizing ROI on Facebook and Instagram.

Are you using these powerful ad formats and targeting yet?

Let us know in the comments below!