How do I set up Instagram ads and is it part of Facebook?

TL;DR – use Facebook Ad Manager

In previous blogs on Instagram for desktop and about the rise of influencers, I’ve alluded to the tie up between Facebook and Insta for advertising.

But I didn’t really go in to much detail about how that relationship actually works…

UNTIL NOW. So here I’m going to look at what the score is, and how you can get the most out of a branded Instagram account with a bit of media spend.

So what’s the agenda, Brenda?

Facebook bought out Instagram for a billion dollars back in 2012 – and it’s since grown.

A lot.


You’ll probably know what Instagram is about – it’s a network for sharing beautiful photos.

And people bloody love great photos. It might be something to do with pictures having higher bandwidth than words – and it certainly has a lot to do with the fact that Instagram has always encouraged users to post beautiful things. Instagram photography is supposed to look pretty.

And it works – organic engagement remains very high. This is partly due to its algorithm promoting posts – but there does seem to be a natural tendency towards people liking more things.

The network’s rise is also strongly linked with the emergence of Selfies as a thing. That’s the obsession everybody has with photos of their own face (I think it’s unhealthy and weird tbh, but that’s another blog for another day.)

So what’s the deal with ads?

Insta and Facebook may be very different networks from a user’s perspective – but for advertisers they are very similar. Certainly in terms of setting up campaigns.

To set up an Instagram advert – you actually have to do it via Facebook’s Business Management software.

And you don’t even need an Instagram account anymore. When setting up an ad in Facebook ad manager, you can see the Instagram option in the page and post section:


This is also the place you’ll see all the Instagram accounts you have set up in Business Manager (details on how to do that on the bottom of this blog).

So in this respect, Instagram is really no different to desktop newsfeed or audience network – it’s simply a distribution channel for ads via Facebook.

But shouldn’t the content be different?

This is a tricky one – as it’s often easier to just post the same content via Facebook and Insta.

But yes, for the best results content should be posted to Insta with a specific audience in mind. The engaging click-through post with a question as the title might work great on Facebook, but is not going to cut the mustard on Instagram.

  • Did I mention you can follow me on Facebook?

The audience goes to Instagram for INSPIRATION above all else.

It made its name with beautiful, inspiring content. And so for the best results, brand content should aim for the same impact.

So is it still worth doing organic content on Instagram?

Short answer is yes. As mentioned above, organic engagement is still very high, (as I previously wrote about in my blog on Influencers). This won’t last forever – and they will likely one day kill it off like they did with Facebook’s organic reach.

But that day hasn’t happened yet – so if you’re trying to promote something, get hoovering up that free reach.

How to set up Instagram accounts on Business Manager

This is super easy, and I’ve demonstrated with a few grabs below.

First up, head to Business Manager Settings – this should be the place you handle all of your different accounts from.


Then go to the Instagram Accounts section…


Then Claim New Instagram Account to find the one you want. It’ll ask you to log in – and then you’re away! See? Easy.


Once this is done, you’ll be able to post ads from this Instagram account using Facebook ads as described above.
Here’s a ‘well done’ gif – you’ve earned it, tiger.
well done



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