Facebook has announced this week that moving forward, new advertisers in the U.S. and Turkey who want to promote an Instagram post will no longer need to have a Facebook page.
“You can now create Instagram ads without having a presence on Facebook. If you are promoting a post from your Instagram business account for the first time, you won’t have to connect to a Facebook ad account or Facebook Page.” – Instagram Ads Help Page
How It Works
Users who want to promote a post can go to their Instagram profile and tap on the post they want to run as an ad. They can then tap “Promote” below the post’s image.
Options for audience targeting, budget, length of campaign, and ad destination can then be selected.
All ads will be subject to the same review process they have been previously.
The thing to note is that this is ONLY available to accounts that are promoting a post for the first time, and it must be a business account. Those who have already promoted posts would have previously linked their Instagram to their Facebook presence.
Does This Affect Anything for Existing Advertisers?
It shouldn’t. If you’ve previously run Instagram ads through your Facebook ads account, it will all look and operate the same way.
How Do I Know If My Instagram account is connected to a Business Account?
You can check this by going to your profile, and hitting the three-bar symbol in the upper right. Then hit “Settings.”
In the list of Settings, hit the Payments option:
Tap the first option for “Promotion Payments.”
If you see a number, your Instagram account is NOT connected to your Facebook presence.
If you see a name, then it IS connected.
For more details, you can read their Help Center article.
Is This a Big Deal?
On the face of it, it might feel a little, “So what?”
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But taking a step back and watching the ad ecosystem may make this a lot more interesting than it seems at first blush.
It’s creating a small split between Facebook and Instagram.
Traditionally, Instagram ads are just a parent/child relationship on the Facebook ads platform. It exists as placement option where the boxes are checked.
While you can certainly run ads only on Instagram, that parent/child setup meant it was ultimately tied to your Facebook page. While it’s probably too much to untangle those two within Facebook’s ad account setup as it stands today, it’s making a tiny, quiet step in possibly making that the norm for the future.
Instagram’s growth has been undeniable, and has just started to gain traction among the over-35 demographic that has been hanging on to Facebook as younger demographics have bailed for other apps.
It distances Instagram ad dollars from Facebook
While Facebook asserts this has nothing to do with the recent criticism over its stance on politics and questionable content, the timing can’t be ignored. Large brands have been publicly mulling over boycotting.
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Six civil rights groups are organizing a boycott under the banner of #StopHateForProfit for the month of July, and Facebook is no stranger to controversy.
While owned by the same company, outwardly the ire is usually directed at the umbrella of Facebook, with the Instagram app still being seen as somewhat separate.
With Instagram seen as the company’s best hope for continued ad revenue growth in the future, it need to be protected. This change doesn’t accomplish that, but it does signal that might be on the internal minds of Facebook revenue strategists.