Identifying Your Target Audience in Instagram

Instagram,Instagram ads,Identifying Your Target Audience in Instagram,Your Core Instagram Marketing Persona
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Identifying your target audience is critical to your success with Instagram Ads. If you get this wrong then your whole ad campaign can end up being a waste of money and time. Fortunately Instagram has a lot of good tools which can help you to identify your target audience.

A lot of people think that Instagram is just for teenagers who like to take selfies. There is certainly an element of that going on but there is a lot more besides. While it is true that Instagram appeals to a younger demographic, older people do use it as well. Here is the demographic breakdown:

• 18 to 29 year olds make up around 55% of the user base

• 30 to 49 year olds make up around 28% of the user base

• 50 to 64 year olds make up around 11% of the user base

• Adults over 65 make up around 4% of the user base

Another interesting thing is where Instagram users live. These are the latest location demographics:

• 32% of Instagram users live in urban areas

• 28% of Instagram users live in the suburbs

• 18% of Instagram users live in the outskirt

There are more female Instagram users than male users but this gap is a lot less now than it used to be. It is predicted that a lot more adults in their 30’s will be using Instagram in the near future just as this happened with Facebook.

You should at least have some idea about who your target market is. If you are not 100% sure then this is okay as you can learn more about your audience as you progress with Instagram Ads. But you don’t want to be wildly wrong about your target audience otherwise you can end up spending a fortune on ads and not achieve anything.

Your Core Instagram Marketing Persona

The best way to start to identify your target audience is with your core marketing persona. Other nuances can come later once you start to dig around into Instagram Insights and your Instagram Analytics after running some ads. 

So we recommend that you start with a simple persona for example – female, aged 18 to 30, and living in Malaysia. Once you have established this base persona you can use the tools available with Instagram, and third party tools as well, to go deeper. There have been a number of significant improvements to the options available for ad targeting with Instagram. There are also some external tools such as Falcon that will help you to learn more about your audience.

One of the best ways to find out more about your audience is to look at the engagement on your old posts to see which content they responded the best to. This will really help you to avoid creating Instagram Ads that will not provide your audience with what they are looking for.

With Instagram it is possible to create a custom audience based on the people that have interacted with your posted content on the platform already. If you have a list of business contacts you can also upload this to help create your custom audience.

Setup your Target Audience

One of the great things about using Instagram Ads is that you will use Facebook’s existing and comprehensive knowledge of demographics to present your ads to the right people. So for example using your base persona if you want to target females between 18 and 30 that live in Kuala Lumpur and are interested in healthy eating then you can easily do that.

Here are the most important audience targeting options that you have with Instagram Ads:

Location Targeting – You can choose to target a specific country, region, state, city and even zip code. You can include or exclude specific places as well if you want to do that.

Age Targeting – You can choose age ranges from 13 years old to over 65 years old.

Gender Targeting – You can choose to target males, females or both.

Language Targeting – It is recommended that you leave this blank unless the language you are targeting is not common to your targeted location.

Demographic Targeting – You can get into a lot of detail here. There are a lot of sub categories to choose from and some of these have sub-sub categories. As an example you can select the “Home” category then the “Home Ownership” sub category and then choose “Renters”. There are demographic choices around education, finances, life events, parents, politics, relationships and more.

Interests Targeting – Again you will find a number of categories and subcategories here. As an example you can find people that have an interest in aviation or fine wines or science fiction movies here. There are so many possibilities.

Behaviour Targeting – This is another targeting area with a lot of choices. For example you may be interested in a specific job role, purchasing behavior, anniversaries and a ton more.

Connections Targeting – You can use this to target people that have connected with your app, event or page.

Lookalike Audience

You also have the option to create a “Lookalike Audience”. Let’s say for example that you created a Custom Audience but you have tapped them all out. Well you can ask Instagram to find a lookalike audience composed of people that have similar traits to your custom audience.

Your Audience Guide

After you have made your choices to configure your target audience you will be shown a guide that explains how specific or broad your audience is. You will be told how broad your audience is, the potential reach in numbers and your estimated daily results based on factors such as your budget, previous campaign data and market data.

You really need to pay close attention to the information you see here. It is important that the size of your audience is not too large (which usually means that you haven’t targeted it enough) but also not too specific since the audience numbers may be so small that it would not be worth running an ad campaign.

When you are satisfied with your targeted audience be sure to save it so that you can refer to it again and maybe use it for future Instagram Ad campaigns. We recommend that you create a few different audiences so that you can test which works the best. This is possible by creating multiple ad sets which you will see at the top of the Instagram Ads Manager.

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