People have been talking about the rise of mobile for years. In 2013, Time welcomed us to the Golden Age of Mobile, speculating how mobile innovation and “connected intelligence” will continue to revolutionize everything from the way we do healthcare to the ease with which we book our favorite restaurants, hotels, and cars.


There’s no denying that mobile is already an intricate part of our daily lives. Today, Americans spend more time using mobile devices than watching television.


And, as the audience has shifted toward mobile video, so have advertising dollars. TechCrunch reports that mobile video ad spend in the U.S. more than doubled from 2013 ($720 million) to 2014 ($1.5 billion) and will reach $6 billion in 2018, representing about half of the total online video ad spend. The tech news site hypothesizes that an abundance of high-quality video content, higher ad prices, clear KPIs for advertisers as well as publishers, and the rise of more efficient, automated marketplaces to facilitate trade will launch mobile video advertising to the next level.


Social platforms have been tooling up their video ad offerings for some time now. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, SnapChat, and Instagram all offer video or some form of animated ads, and for good reason: mobile video ads drive more engagement and are more effective in influencing purchase intent.


Mobile video advertising is a complex landscape, with differences in video format, buying, targeting, and measurement options across each social platform. This chapter is an at-a-glance guide to social mobile video ads for the major social media platforms, including placement, targeting, availability, and case studies.

1.                Facebook Mobile Video Ads

Mobile advertising is a big part of how Facebook makes money. In fact, it accounted for nearly 75% of the social platform’s revenue in Q1 of 2015. And, at the same time that Facebook has worked to secure its position as the leader in social ad spend, it has also begun to make its mark on video. In fact, Facebook videos get nearly 4 billion views a day, making it, as Fortune points out, YouTube’s first real rival in online video and a strong contender in the battle for digital ad dollars. In 2014 Facebook accounted for 37% of all mobile display ad dollars – more than any other platform.


You can download Facebook’s official guide to video ads, and below is the rundown on what brands need to know about video advertising on the platform.


  • Introduced:Q4 2013.
  • Targeting: Advertisers can buy and target mobile video ads in two ways: as Standard Video Ads, which are targeted in the same way as regular Facebook ads, or as Premium Video Ads, which are targeted in a similar way to TV ads (usingGross Rating Points).
  • Mobile-Only Targeting:
  • Targeting by Device:Yes.
  • Video Length: Maximum 45 minutes.
  • Auto-Play: Yes (audio is muted until the user taps the video).
  • Full screen: Yes (once the user taps).
  • Viewers Can Click Through to External Site: Yes.
  • Call-to-Action: Facebook has a set of standard CTAs, including Shop Now, Book Now, Learn More, Sign Up, Download, and Watch More.
  • Availability: Standard video ads are available to all through Facebook’s advertising platform. Brands that want to run Premium Video Ads must work with Facebook reps directly and have their video adstested and approved.
  • Measurement:Dedicated video metrics are coming soon.
  • Results: McDonald’s used mobile video ads during the 2014 FIFA World Cup to promote its videos recreating action from the soccer matches, with french fries representing players. It reached over 100m mobile users and achieved a19% uplift in purchase intent in Germany, France, and the Netherlands.


How To Set Up Facebook Video Ads

Luckily, if you’re already running ads on Facebook, the process is quite similar. To get started:

Step 1 – Navigate to the top of your profile page and select “Create Ads.”


Step 2

Select the campaign objective “Get video views.”

Step 3

Define your audience (or select a predefined audience), budget, and ad schedule.

Step 4

Create your ad! This is where the fun begins.

You’ll notice there are a few options to build your beautiful video. You can upload a video, browse through your library, or create a slideshow with images. In most cases you’ll want to grab a pre-made video from your desktop or promote a video that you previously posted organically.

Take note of Facebook’s recommended video specs before uploading to ensure the highest quality viewer experience. A varying format could result in poor playback or black bars if your aspect ratio is off.

Step 5

Lastly, customize the copy above your video, preview it, and watch your video views soar.

Track Your Campaign

Here are a few ways to track the different metrics

Conversion KPIs

Use a URL with UTM codes to track the traffic from the ad to your website. Your marketing software should make it easy for you to track incoming traffic and subsequent conversions, and compare your video campaign to other campaigns you’ve run.

You can also use Facebook Conversion Pixels to see the long-tail effect of your video campaign. For example, if someone visits your site after watching an ad, leaves, and then comes back, that information would be shown in the conversions column of your Facebook ad analytics.

Engagement KPIs

Tracking your engagement KPIs is a relatively straightforward process. Just go into the Ads Manager, choose “Campaigns,” and click on your ad to see how it performed.

Audience Reach KPIs

Similar to engagement, audience reach is simple to track on Facebook. On the “Campaign Report” page, see how many people viewed your ad and what your Relevance Score is. The Relevance Score will help you evaluate if your target audience actually liked your video. If your Relevance Score is poor compared to scores for other ads shown to your audience, Facebook will limit the reach of your video. The better the video and the better the targeting, the better your Relevance Score will be.



Evaluate Your Campaign

After your video campaign is over, it is time to take a step back and evaluate how successful your campaign was. Go back and check your KPIs and see if you hit your goals.


After you’ve evaluated your video campaign’s performance, it is time to do it again! Think about what went well and what you could improve. Is the video content you’re putting out good enough? Is your targeting on point? When you have enough data from previous campaigns, you can easily compare them to see what works and what doesn’t — and then make changes on future ads.

Strategies to Get the Highest Facebook Video Play, Engagement, and Conversion Rates

#1: Show videos that don’t require sound

No sound might sound bizarre until you take the time to reflect on how you view videos on Facebook. More often than not, a sound is not appropriate in these scenarios and since people are inherently lazy the chances of them plugging in their headphones to listen to a video advertisement on Facebook are slim.

Does your video simply not make sense without sound? Add captions! Facebook recently announced that they’re making it even easier for advertisers to automatically add captions to their videos because they’ve become aware that sound can be an issue. “Internal tests show that captioned video ads increase video view time by an average of 12%,” Facebook reports.

#2: Utilize CPM bidding to ensure your ads are on autoplay

Advertisers might shy away from autoplay in certain environments, but Facebook shouldn’t be that place. Why? Because there are enough distractions present on Facebook as it is, so you want to engage multi-tasking newsfeed scrollers as fast as possible, and playing your videos automatically is the best way to do so. To be eligible for autopay you need to bid by cost-per-impressions (CPM) rather than cost-per-click (CPC).

#3: Get to the point quickly

Facebook video ads can be up to 120 minutes in length. This is insanely long, and the chances of someone completing a 2-hour video while on a social network seem pretty unlikely.

Keep your ads short, sweet, and engaging to get to the big points faster.

#4: Advertise video content that’s performed well elsewhere

Which videos performed best organically on Facebook? Which videos perform best on your website? Which webinars have driven the most engagement? What does your audience like to watch?

These are just a few of the questions you should ask before running your video ads. You should be looking at metrics like engagement and play rate of your video content across channels before you determine what videos are worth putting money behind. Always promote your BEST content (i.e. the top 1%!).

2. Twitter Mobile Video Ads

Twitter has always been mobile-first, demonstrated by the fact that its ad revenue from mobile advertising climbed to 88% in Q4 2014. Twitter has aligned its ad offering closely with TV for some time now. It is seen as the second-screen platform and has various targeting options and initiatives that help TV advertisers get the most from their integrated campaigns.


A Nielsen Study commissioned by Twitter found that purchase intent was 28% higher for users who chose to watch brand videos on Twitter than for users who saw the same videos as pre- or mid-roll ads.


Twitter promoted videos appear in a user’s Twitter timeline and look just like Twitter Player Cards, which are used to play media within the Twitter platform. By using Promoted Video, it’s easy for brands to upload and distribute video on Twitter, and to measure the reach and effectiveness of this content.


Twitter also has a revenue-sharing video ads option called Amplify. Content owners, such as TV networks, use Amplify to distribute premium video clips on Twitter. Twitter then splits the revenue generated from the pre-roll ads it serves before the video clips.


You can download Twitter’s official guide to video ads, and below is the rundown on what brands need to know about video advertising on the platform.


  • Introduced:Q3 2014.
  • Targeting: Video ads offer standard Twitter targeting available with all ads alongsideTV ad targeting, which allows brands to target users on Twitter who are likely to have seen their TV ad.
  • Mobile-Only Targeting: Yes.
  • Targeting by Device:Yes. Advertisers can also adjust targeting settings according to mobile plan carrier, OS, and users on WiFi, or target users who have recently bought their mobile device.
  • Video Length: Up to10 minutes.
  • Auto-Play: Twitter has just announced that it’s rolling outauto-play video. Until June 2015, users had to tap the video to play.
  • Fullscreen: Yes, once the user taps. Audio is also enabled.
  • Viewers Can Click Through to External Site: No.
  • Call-to-Action: No.
  • Availability: Twitter’s video ads are only available to partners via their account representative, while Amplify is restricted tomedia companies and broadcasters.
  • Measurement: Twitter hasbuilt-in video analytics tools that can report on views and percentage of completed views as well as compare organic and paid performance.
  • Results: Adidas used TV Ad Targeting to continue the storyline from its #QuickAintFair TV spots with video content made specifically for Twitter. Adidas saw a59% lift in engagement rates and a 17% increase in top of mind awareness.


How to create Twitter Video Ads

You can Create Twitter Video Ads by following the steps outlined in the previous chapter – Social Media Ads.

Twitter Ads best practices

  1. Introduce yourself

Since one of the main points of Twitter ads is to engage with people who are not already following you, you can’t assume that people who see your ads will know what your business is all about. Use an image or some of the copy in your Tweet to highlight your unique selling proposition so that people who see the Tweet know why they should bother to click, follow, or otherwise engage.

You should also make sure that your Twitter bio and profile page are in great shape, since users may click through to your profile before deciding whether to follow you. Keep the branding and messaging consistent across your Tweets, your profile page, and the landing pages you’re sending visitors to so that they reinforce a consistent brand personality.

  1. Include a clear call to action

The key to any good ad is a great call to action, and Twitter ads are no different. Make sure users know exactly what you want them to do. A simple ask makes it much more likely that they will take action. Simply asking for a follow increases follows by 258 percent in timelines and 86 percent in search, and asking for a Retweet increases Retweets by 311 percent in timelines and 317 percent in search.

Since characters are in short supply, try something short and sweet, like “follow us,” “read more,” or “register now.”

  1. Include cards

You can now create cards directly within the Twitter ads manager. These powerful tools add extra functionality like website previews, app installs, and lead collection to your promoted Tweets, making the Tweets more engaging and interactive for users. Twitter internal data shows that Promoted Tweets that include a website card, for instance, see a 43 percent higher engagement rate than Promoted Tweets with regular links.

MVMT Watches used website cards with an enticing offer (“Free Shipping & Returns!”) to increase site traffic on Black Friday and Cyber Monday last year by 189 percent compared with the daily average for the rest of the quarter.

  1. Choose a custom fit over one-size-fits all

Campaigns with different goals need different creative. Even campaigns with the same goals should differ based on the specific offer or idea you’re promoting at the time.

Likewise, if you target different groups of users, you should adjust your creative based on some competitive research (or lurking) to determine what is most likely to appeal to each group. That includes tweaking your ads based on geography, since what converts well in Seattle may not do so in New Orleans.

Of course, many of the best practices that apply to organic Tweets also apply to Twitter ads—so make sure you incorporate what’s already working for you on Twitter into your Twitter ads.

3. Pinterest Cinematic Pins

Although Pinterest is a relative newcomer to advertising, big things are expected from the scrapbooking app. Its unique object-based setup means that advertising and e-commerce are a natural fit.


Pinterest recently announced the launch of its first animated Pin (and its answer to video ads), called Cinematic Pins. Strictly speaking, Pinterest’s Cinematic Pins aren’t video; they’re gif-like animations that play backwards and forwards as the user scrolls up and down.

Below is the rundown on what brands need to know about video advertising on the platform.


  • Introduced: Q2 2015.
  • Targeting: Pinterestrecently announced an upgrade to their targeting, which now allows advertisers to hone in on users based on interests like traveling, personas like foodies, or generations like millennials.
  • Mobile-Only Targeting: Not known.
  • Targeting by Device: Not known.
  • Video Length: Cinematic Pins are around 30-50 frames long. The animations must be short enough to play in full before the user scrolls past the ad.
  • Auto-Play: No. Animation is controlled by scrolling.
  • Full screen: When the user taps on the Cinematic Pin, the Pin opens full screen and the cinematic Pin plays full screen (Pinterest calls this action a “close-up”).
  • Viewers Can Click Through to External Site: Not reported, but based on the way Pinterest is set up this is highly likely.
  • Call-to-Action: Again, highly likely.
  • Availability: Not fully available yet. Pinterest is testing with select ad partners.
  • Measurement: Pinterest has ananalytics platform, but it hasn’t revealed any upgrades for Cinematic Pins.
  • Results: No public results yet.

4. Snapchat Mobile Video Ads

Snapchat is another newcomer to mobile advertising, and, like Pinterest, it’s pushing the boundaries of the format.

Snapchat has been experimenting with various mobile ad placements, which include two types of video ads. Its feature ad placement appears in a user’s friends list under the Recent Updates section. These ads are shown to all users in the targeted country, and users must tap the ad to play the video in full, just like a normal Snapchat message.

Snapchat also runs video ads within Discover, its news section. The ads automatically play as a user swipes to view the next piece of Discover content, and they can be swiped away if the user doesn’t want to view the entire ad.

Snapchat recently announced a restructuring of its Discover ads, standardizing the price for a 10-second video ad at two cents per view (this brought the price down from around $0.15 per view).

Below is the rundown on what brands need to know about video advertising on the platform.

  • Introduced:Q4 2014.
  • Targeting: Targeting is limited to country. Brands can target Discover ads based on the demographics of each channel. However, Snapchatgathers data about its users, so more detailed tracking is possible.
  • Mobile-Only Targeting: Yes, Snapchat doesn’t have a desktop version.
  • Targeting by Device: No.
  • Video Length: The standardized two cents video ads have a ten-second limit. Premium ads can be longer. There are no other publicized time limits.
  • Auto-Play: Only for Discover ads.
  • Full screen: All video ads play full screen in portrait mode. This means that users don’t have to rotate their device to view in full screen, which Snapchat saysimproves performance.
  • Viewers Can Click Through to External Site: No.
  • Call-to-Action: No.
  • Availability: Available to all.
  • Measurement: No tracking (other than views), so the effectiveness of campaigns must be measured externally (e.g., brand uplift or ad recall).
  • Results: There aren’t any published results for Snapchat ads. Universal reported “views in the millions” and followed up their Ouija campaign with an ad forDumb and Dumber To.

5. YouTube Mobile Video Ads

There are two main types of mobile video ads on YouTube. First, there are Mobile Roadblocks, which are one-day ads on the homepage of the YouTube mobile site (they do not appear on the YouTube mobile app). Then there are InStream Video Ads, which are shown to Android YouTube app users and mobile site users when they play a video from a premium inventory partner.


TrueView allows brands to pay only when a viewer chooses to watch a video.

Below is the rundown on what brands need to know about video advertising on the platform.


  • Introduced:Q1 2010.
  • Targeting: YouTube Mobile Ads are managed throughthe same AdWords interface as Google Search ads and the Google Display Network.
  • Mobile-Only Targeting: Yes.
  • Targeting by Device: Yes.
  • Video Length: 45 minutes max.
  • Auto-Play: Yes. Brands have the option of using auto-play (skippable and non-skippable) and click-to-play within search listings.
  • Fullscreen: Yes, if the user is watching in fullscreen mode.
  • Viewers Can Click Through to External Site:Yes.
  • Call-to-Action: Yes.Fully customizable.
  • Availability: Available to all advertisers.
  • Measurement: YouTube has built-in video performance measurement including demographics, engagement, how viewers discovered your video, andmore.
  • Results: Rosetta Stone leveraged YouTube’s video Masthead on mobile and TrueView to target Millennials where they spend most of their time: on their phones. This generated a 10X increase in mobile traffic and a 51% increase in YouTube Channel subscribers.

How to Set Up YouTube Video Ads in AdWords

Step 1: Set Up Your YouTube Advertising Account

  1. Create an AdWords Account or get access by sending this video to your AdWords account manager.
  2. Create a YouTube Account

Step 2: How to Set Up a YouTube Video Ad Campaign

  1. Make sure the video you would like to use for your ad is uploaded as a public or unlisted video on your YouTube channel.
  2. From the AdWords Dashboard click the +CAMPAIGN button
  3. Select Video from the dropdown
  4. Name your campaign
  5. Select “Standard” (we’ll cover Mobile App Install & Product Overlay YouTube ads in future tutorials)

Step 3: Choosing Your Network – Where You Campaign Will Show! [VERY IMPORTANT]

In this step, you are setting the campaign level targeting and placement. You want to be careful here because there are a lot of different steps and distinctions that can really trip you up. After learning about YouTube Search Ads (In-Display Ads) and YouTube Display Network Ads (Pre-roll or In-Stream Ads), you may want to leverage both ads for your business. To run YouTube Search Ads AND YouTube Display Network or Pre-Roll Ads, you will need to create an ad group for each. To do so, you will simply select multiple Networks here and then repeat Step 5 for each Ad Group.

YouTube Search Ads (YouTube In-Display Ads): Similar to AdWords Search ads, YouTube ads with YouTube Search Network checked will show for relevant keywords within YouTube Search & related videos based on targeting specifications made at the ad group level in Step 5. Keywords and Video type will be set in Step 5.

Pictured below are the various placements on for your YouTube Search Ads: YouTube search results, YouTube related videos, YouTube overlay, Partner websites.

Youtube Video Search Ads

  1. YouTube Display Network (YouTube In-Stream Ads): Also known as Pre-roll ads, video ads with YouTube Videos Network selected will be able to target based on who is viewing the video, which video to show before, and/or which video topic you would like to show for. More on that later.

*Smart Tip* You will only be charged when a viewer clicks on the ad or if the viewer watches the first 30 seconds of the ad. If your ad is shorter than 30 seconds, you will be charged when a person views the entire ad.


  1. Video partners on the Display Network: Just as you can move outside of to show Text and Image ads on the display network, you can show pre-roll videos on Google’s partnered sites. This includes:
  • Pre-roll ads shown before any video embedded in sites you choose
  • Pre-roll ads shown before any video embedded in sites of a certain topic
  • YouTube Search Ads on Google partner sites

Step 4: Set Campaign Location, Language, and Devices Targeting

  • Set your preference for Location.
  • *Smart Tip* 80% of YouTube views come outside the United States, so location targeting is crucial to finding the right audience.
  • Set your Language targeting
  • Choose which Devices to show for.
  • *Smart Tip* Is your landing page mobile responsive? Run your site through Google’s Mobile-Friendliness Test
  • Advanced Settings Overview: If you’d like to have a start date and end date of your campaign, or would like to set up an ad schedule for when your ad will show, do so under Ad delivery.
  • Click Save and continue

Step 5: Creating Your YouTube Video Ad Group

As mentioned in Step 3, if you’re only doing pre-roll ads for a single video, or only doing YouTube Search for a single video, you only need to create 1 Ad Group. For multiple ad groups, simply repeat this step for each Ad Group.

  1. Name your Ad Group. including the intended placement, In-Stream or In-Display, in the Ad Group Name
  2. Paste your ad’s URL from YouTube
  3. Choose In-Display versus In-Stream. Scroll up to Step 3 to see the difference.
  4. Set your maximum CPV or Cost Per View bid strategy. ◦Bidding for Pre-Roll / In-Stream Ads: You will be charged on a Cost Per View (CPV) basis. A view is a broad term that is counted when someone watches 30 seconds of your ad OR if someone clicks on your ad.
  5. Bidding for Search / In-Display Ads: You will be charged on a Cost Per View (CPV) basis. In my opinion, this terminology is super confusing because a user clicks on your ad to view the video, but you are charged when the user clicks. So, for all YouTube ads, a click is equal to a view.
    1. Smart Tip* Bids normally fall between $0.07 and $0.73.
    2. Smart Tip* Think: what is the highest price you are willing to pay for someone to view your video? For more insight think about it this way: How much is a conversion on your ad’s landing page worth? Now multiply that dollar value by your landing page’s conversion rate. That gives you your MAX CPC. To get Cost Per View, take that resulting CPC and multiply it by your projected CTR or Click-through-Rate. Or, how many people who see your ad will click? You may not know these variables, but they’re important data points to keep an eye on once your ad starts running.
  6. Finalize targeting ◦
    1. Set your Demographics to narrow your targeting to certain Ages, Parental Statuses, Age, and gender
    2. Set your Interest targeting to access people who are interested in certain categories or are currently in certain markets like currently employment industry or education status
  7. To even further segment your audience, click the Narrow your targeting (optional) dropdown.
    1. Keywords: if your ad is showing on the YouTube search network, set the keywords for which you would like your ad to show. For even more control, check out our Guide to Keyword Match Types.
    2. Placements: if there are certain YouTube channels or videos you would like to pre-roll your ads on, enter them here!
    3. Remarketing: Show your ads to people who visited your website and are now watching YouTube videos
    4. Topics: not sure which specific channels or videos you’d like to show before? Topics are a great way to target a more relevant audience to your product or service
  8. Click Save ad and ad group

6.                Create a TrueView video campaign

TrueView video ads are an exciting way to reach and engage your audience on YouTube and across the web. You can create and manage your TrueView campaigns in AdWords, using the “Video” campaign type.

Following steps you’ll need to follow to set up a TrueView video campaign and ad group.

Before you begin

Here are some things to keep in mind before you create TrueView campaigns and ads:

·         TrueView ads and ad groups are created with the “Video” campaign type. Within this campaign type, TrueView video ad formats, CPV, and Target CPA bidding strategies are supported.

·         TrueView video campaigns cannot include text, images, or other video ad formats.

·         To create a TrueView video ad, your videos must be hosted on YouTube.

·         Reporting for TrueView campaigns and ad groups include metrics specific to video ads, including views, view rate, and earned actions, that aren’t available in all AdWords campaign management tools.

·         Ad groups will each be assigned a format (either in-stream or video discovery), and can contain only ads of that same format. For example, an in-stream ad group can contain only in-stream video ads and their associated targeting criteria and bids. Likewise, a video discovery ad group can contain only video discovery ads and their associated targeting criteria and bids.

·         If you want to run both in-stream and video discovery formats in the same TrueView video campaign, you will need to create multiple ad groups.

·         To create a TrueView video campaign with only one ad format, follow the first set of instructions below.

·         Note

·         Each ad group can contain only one TrueView ad format, either in-stream or video discovery. To create bumper video ads, you’ll need to create a separate campaign.

·         You can’t use a portfolio bid strategy with a video campaign.

How to Create a Truview Video Ad

1.Sign in to your AdWords account.

2.Click the Campaigns tab.

Note: Your video campaigns are located with your other campaign types (if any) from the “All campaigns” drop-down menu. You can also use this drop-down menu to view only your video campaigns by selecting Video campaigns.

3.Click +CAMPAIGN, and then click Video.

4.Enter a campaign name.

5.Choose a campaign subtype:

6.For “Standard” campaigns, do the following: •Next to “Video ad formats” select In-stream or video discovery ads.

•Enter a budget.

•Choose the networks you want the video campaign to run on.

•Choose the locations where you want to target (or exclude) your campaign.

•Choose the language of your customers.

7.(Optional) Choose the devices you want to show your ads on. You can target particular operating systems, device models, and carriers. By default, your ads will show on all eligible devices.

8.(Optional) Edit your campaign’s advanced settings.

9.Click Save and continue.

10.Enter an ad group name.

11.Next to “Your YouTube video,” choose a YouTube video.

12.Next to “Video ad format” choose either In-stream ad or Video discovery ad. Enter the required information.

13.Set a bid amount.

14.Edit the targeting methods you want to use for your ads. By default, your ads will show to all viewers.

15.Click Save ad group.

7.      Instagram Mobile Video Ads

Video was a huge success for Instagram when it was introduced in mid-2013, so introducing video ads was a natural next step. And while other platforms still struggle to generate revenue or profit, Instagram is expected to pull in $2 billion in ad revenue next year – all from mobile ads.


Apart from a “Sponsored” label in the top right corner, Instagram’s video ads look the same as user-posted videos. Videos on Instagram are limited to 15 seconds in length and play within the Instagram feed (they don’t pop out fullscreen).

You can also download the official guide to Instagram ads, and below is the rundown on what brands need to know about video advertising on the platform.


  • Introduced: Q4 2014.
  • Targeting: Advertisers can adjust targeting according to age, gender, and country. More optionsare expected to be released soon, such as wider demographics and custom audiences (the ability to upload existing customer data, including a list of email addresses, and target those customers on Instagram).
  • Mobile-Only Targeting: Not known.
  • Targeting by Device: Not known.
  • Video Length: Maximum 15 seconds.
  • Auto-Play: Yes.
  • Fullscreen: No.
  • Viewers Can Click Through to External Site: Instagram is currently experimenting withclick through buttons.
  • Call-to-Action: See above.
  • Availability: Not widely available yet, but Instagram isworking toward an ads API and adding Instagram ads to Facebook’s ad buying interfaces.
  • Measurement: As Instagram video ads are not yet widely available, there aren’t any details on measurement. Instagram ads are integrated into Facebook’s ad interfaces, so it’s likely that it will also use Facebook’s measurement tools.
  • Results: No published results from video ads.


How to advertise on Instagram

To run ads on Instagram you’ll first need a Facebook page. Facebook now owns Instagram and the two platforms work in conjunction. Pages are for brands, organizations, and public figures.

Like Facebook profiles, Pages can be customized with stories, events and more. People who like a Page can get updates in News Feed. Once you set up a Facebook business Page, you can get started with Instagram ads.

First, sign up for Business Manager

  1. Go to
  2. Click Create Account.
  3. Enter a name for your business, select the primary Page, and enter your name and work email address. If you don’t yet have a Page for your business.
  4. Move through the rest of the on-boarding flow by entering the rest of the required fields.
  5. Learn how to add people to Business Manager.

Once you have Business Manager setup, you can add your Instagram account

  1. Go to your Business Manager.
  2. On the left side of the page, click Business Settingsthen Instagram Accounts.
  3. Click Claim New Instagram Account.
  4. Add your username and password, then click Next.
  5. To authorize one or more of your ad accounts to use the Instagram account, check the box next to each ad account and click Save Changes.

Now you are ready to create your Instagram ad.

  1. Go to ad creation.
  2. Choose an objective from the list. Keep in mind that only the following objectives will allow you to create ads that will be eligible to appear on Instagram: Brand awareness, Reach, Traffic (for clicks to your website or to the app store for your app), App installs, Engagement (for post engagement only), Video views, and Conversions (for conversions on your website or app).
  3. Note: Some of these objectives may look different when you create an ad.
  4. Next to Campaign Name, add a name for your campaign or use the default name that appears.

Now it’s time to choose the audience for your ad.

In the Audience section, create an audience for your ad. You can choose audience characteristics such as age, gender, interests, behaviors, ethnic affinity, location, and even politics. Learn about the targeting options available.

Like Facebook ads, Instagram ads offer options to pay per engagement or by impression (CPM). The average cost per click for an Instagram ad in Q3 2016 was $0.72. If your boss has given you a specific budget for your Instagram ad campaign, you can set it in the Budget and Schedule section, where you can choose a budget and set your ad’s schedule.

You can choose either a daily budget or a lifetime budget for your campaign. Choose wisely.

  • Daily budget sets your ad up to run continuously throughout the day, meaning that the algorithm will automatically pace your spending per day. With this option there is a minimum daily budget depending on different factors in your campaign.
  • Lifetime budget gives your ad a run for a specified length of time, meaning the algorithm paces your spending over the entire time period that you set for the campaign.

You can set your optimization and bid options manually. In the Optimize for Ad Delivery section, you’ll update how you want to optimize your ad. In the Bid Amount section, you can choose a manual bid.

Next to Ad Set Name, add a name for your ad set or use the default name that appears.

In the Format section, choose the type of media you’d like your ad to include. Review the technical and design recommendations to make sure your photos and videos are putting their best foot forward.

Photo design recommendations

  • Image ratio: 1:1
  • Image size: 1080 x 1080 pixels
  • Caption: text only, 125 characters recommended

Photo technical requirements

  • Image ratio: Landscape (1.91:1), Square (1:1), Vertical (4:5)
  • Minimum resolution: 600 x 315 pixels (1.91:1 landscape) / 600 x 600 pixels (1:1 square) / 600 x 750 pixels (4:5 vertical)
  • Caption: text only, max 2,200 characters
  • Limited support for landscape format
  • Maximum resolution: 1936 x 1936 pixels
  • File type: .jpg or .png
  • Maximum size: 30MB
  • Your image may not include more than 20 percent text—Use Facebook’s text overlay tool to see how much text is on your image

Video design recommendations

  • Aspect Ratio: 1:1
  • File type: .mp4 container ideally with leading mov atom, no edit lists
  • Video: H.264 video compression, high profile preferred, square pixels, fixed frame rate, progressive scan
  • Audio: Stereo AAC audio compression, 128kbps + preferred
  • Caption: Text only, 125 characters recommended

Video technical requirements

  • Caption length text: 2,200 characters Max
  • Video aspect ratio: Landscape (1.91:1), Square (1:1), Vertical (4:5)
  • Minimum resolution: 600 x 315 pixels (1.91:1 landscape) / 600 x 600 pixels (1:1 square) / 600 x 750 pixels (4:5 vertical)
  • Minimum length: 3 seconds
  • Maximum length: 60 seconds
  • File type: Full list of supported file formats
  • Supported video codecs: H.264, VP8
  • Supported audio codecs: AAC, Vorbis
  • Maximum size: 4 GB
  • Frame rate: 30fps max
  • Bitrate: No limit to bitrate file if you’re using two pass encoding, as long as your file doesn’t exceed 1 GB. Otherwise, 8 megabits per second for 1080p and 4 megabits per second for 720p.
  • Thumbnail image ratio: Should match the aspect ratio of your video. Your image should include minimal text. See how the amount of text in your ad image will impact the reach of your ad.

Fill in the details of your ad. Choose your headline, text, and call-to-action button (if needed). Click Show Advanced Options for additional creative options. Keep in mind that creative options may differ based on the ad objective you choose.

Below Ad Preview, you’ll see all of the placements your ad will be shown on. By default, all of the placements will be selected. It’s recommended that you run your ads on Facebook and Instagram at the same time. But if you’d like to only show your ads on Instagram, click Remove next to all of the placements except for Instagram.

Once you’ve completed your ad (hooray!), click Place Order in the bottom-right corner. Don’t forget to review your ad closely before hitting the big green button. Since your ads have the potential to be seen by a large audience, you can’t risk a typo or inappropriate joke. If you’d feel better getting a teammate’s eyes on them before they fly out into the world, set your schedule to include a delay, but still place your order.

Over to you: which mobile video ads will you be adding to your media plans this year?

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