Instagram Ads Vs Facebook Ads – Choosing The Right Platform For Your Brand

by | Jan 31, 2024 | marketing blogs

  • Instagram and Facebook Ads are very similar advertising platforms since they are both owned by Facebook.
  • Whether you should use Instagram Ads or Facebook Ads depends on the company’s goals, audience, budget, and more.
  • Boiling Point is an experienced marketing agency that has a successful track record of gaining website traffic via Instagram and Facebook Ads using in house created content. 


Facebook and Instagram, being part of the same social media family of Meta, offer extensive audience reach, targeted marketing tactics, and data-driven tools. Deciding between the two for your advertising budget requires an understanding of their strengths and weaknesses. If you’re wanting to engage with your audience, build awareness, and grow your following, then Facebook and Instagram Ads might be just what you’re looking for. Creating social media ads isn’t just as simple as connecting your account and automatically getting new customers. If you want effective social media ads that will find you new customers and complete your campaign goals, you need to stay in the loop and schedule content. Before we get into what a successful Ad campaign entails, first let’s talk about Instagram Ads vs Facebook Ads. 


What Are Facebook Ads?

Facebook Ads is a platform that offers diverse ad formats catering to different business objectives. The advertising ecosystem of Facebook is renowned for its versatility, allowing ads to be displayed across various locations within the platform. Facebook ads show up in places including Stories, Messenger, and the home feed. Leveraging the extensive user data collected by Facebook, advertisers can run highly effective campaigns targeting specific audience segments. The platform’s diversity in ad formats is a valuable asset for marketers, enabling them to choose the format that best aligns with their specific business objectives.


Pros and Cons of Facebook Ads

Facebook ads, like any advertising platform, come with both advantages and disadvantages. Here are some pros and cons of using Facebook ads:



  • Targeted Advertising: Facebook provides a highly advanced targeting system that allows advertisers to reach specific demographics, interests, behaviors, and even custom audiences.
  • Massive User Base: With over 2.8 billion monthly active users (as of my knowledge cutoff in January 2022), Facebook offers an extensive audience for advertisers to reach.
  • Diverse Ad Formats: Facebook supports various ad formats, including image ads, video ads, carousel ads, and more, allowing advertisers to choose the format that best suits their content.
  • Detailed Analytics: Facebook’s Ad Manager provides detailed analytics and insights, allowing advertisers to track the performance of their campaigns and make data-driven decisions.
  • Cost-Effective: Facebook ads can be cost-effective, especially for small businesses. Advertisers can set a budget and bid strategy based on their goals.
  • Engagement Opportunities: Facebook ads provide opportunities for engagement beyond just clicks. Users can like, comment, share, and even click on the ad to visit the advertiser’s website.



  • Algorithm Changes: Facebook frequently updates its algorithm, which can impact the reach and effectiveness of ads. Advertisers need to stay updated and adapt their strategies accordingly.
  • Ad Saturation: As more businesses use Facebook ads, the platform can become saturated, making it harder for individual ads to stand out and reach their target audience.
  • Privacy Concerns: Facebook has faced criticism regarding user privacy and data handling. Some users may be skeptical about interacting with ads due to privacy concerns.
  • Ad Fatigue: If the same audience is repeatedly exposed to the same ad, they may become fatigued, leading to a decrease in engagement and effectiveness.
  • Competition: The popularity of Facebook ads has led to increased competition, potentially driving up the cost per click (CPC) and making it more challenging for smaller businesses with limited budgets.
  • Platform Dependency: Relying solely on Facebook for advertising means your strategy is dependent on the policies and changes made by the platform. If there are issues or changes that negatively impact your campaign, it can be challenging to quickly pivot.


Before using Facebook ads, it’s essential to carefully consider your business goals, target audience, and budget to determine if this platform aligns with your overall marketing strategy. Additionally, regularly monitoring and adjusting your campaigns based on performance metrics is crucial for success.


What are Instagram Ads?

Given that Instagram has been under the ownership of Facebook since 2012, their advertising approaches are very similar. With that in mind, it’s observable that Instagram Ads are seamlessly integrated into the social media app. Instagram Ads appear in places like Stories and In-Feed, mirroring the approach on Facebook. Despite these resemblances, Instagram has its unique features, such as a more streamlined feed and a stronger emphasis on visual content, making it distinct from its parent platform. 


Pros and Cons of Instagram Ads

Instagram, being owned by Facebook, offers its own set of advantages and disadvantages for advertisers. Here are some pros and cons of using Instagram ads:



  • Visual Appeal: Instagram is a visually-centric platform, making it ideal for businesses with visually appealing products or services. High-quality images and videos can grab users’ attention effectively.
  • Large User Base: With over a billion monthly active users, Instagram provides access to a vast and diverse audience.
  • Engagement: Instagram users are often highly engaged, and the platform offers features such as likes, comments, and shares, providing opportunities for interaction and brand engagement.
  • Targeting Options: Similar to Facebook, Instagram provides advanced targeting options, allowing advertisers to reach specific demographics, interests, and behaviors.
  • Integration with Facebook Ad Manager: As Instagram is owned by Facebook, ads on Instagram can be managed through the Facebook Ad Manager, providing a seamless experience for advertisers using both platforms.
  • Stories and Carousel Ads: Instagram offers unique ad formats such as Stories and Carousel ads, providing creative flexibility for advertisers.



  • Algorithm Changes: Like Facebook, Instagram’s algorithm evolves, impacting the visibility and effectiveness of ads. Advertisers need to stay informed about changes and adapt their strategies accordingly.
  • Ad Saturation: As more businesses leverage Instagram ads, the platform can become saturated, potentially making it challenging for individual ads to stand out.
  • Visual Content Requirement: Given Instagram’s visual nature, businesses that don’t have a strong visual component may find it challenging to create content that resonates with the platform’s audience.
  • Competition: The popularity of Instagram ads has led to increased competition, potentially driving up ad costs, particularly for popular demographics and placements.
  • Limited Linking Options: In regular posts, Instagram allows only one clickable link in the bio. Although ads can include clickable links, users are generally cautious about clicking links from unfamiliar sources, potentially limiting click-through rates.
  • Youthful Demographic: While Instagram has a broad user base, its primary demographic tends to be younger. Depending on your target audience, this may be an advantage or a limitation.


Differences Between Instagram and Facebook Ads

Comparing the two platforms involves analyzing demographics, costs, ROI, targeting options, engagement rates, buyer intent, ad formats, campaign features, ease of use, and tracking results. Each platform has its strengths, and understanding these differences helps in making informed decisions. The focus on visual ads rather than written ads is just one of the things that differentiates Facebook Ads from Instagram Ads.



While both platforms share a significant user base, Facebook boasts a larger monthly active user count at 2.96 billion, compared to 2 billion that Instagram has. While the audience size of Instagram is slightly smaller, both platforms offer colossal reach. Many users are common to both platforms, providing an opportunity for brands to launch cross-platform campaigns targeting diverse audiences. Understanding the demographics of each platform, particularly the age distribution, is essential for targeted advertising. 


Typically, Instagram excels in reaching a younger audience and driving engagement, while Facebook offers broader reach and cost-effective conversions. Data shows that 61.9% of Instagram users are between the ages of 18-34. 23.6% of Instagram users fall into the 35-55 age range.


A recent examination of Facebook age demographics reveals that the age bracket with the highest concentration of users falls between 25 and 34 years old, accounting for 29.4% of all active Facebook users. Following closely, the 18-to-24 age group comprises 22.6% of the total Facebook user base worldwide. When combined, these two predominant age demographics encompass 52% of all active Facebook users. In simpler terms, more than half of Facebook users fall within the age range of 18 to 34. This underscores the fact that, despite reports of younger individuals disengaging from Facebook in recent years, the younger generation remains a significant user base, constituting a substantial portion of Meta-owned platform users.


Cost to Advertise on Facebook and/or Instagram

There are numerous factors that can influence how much you pay for your Instagram and/or Facebook ads, including your ad budget, ad type, industry, and more. It’s important to note that the following figures are simply estimates. Ad costs fluctuate during competitive time periods like Black Friday/Cyber Monday, etc. It’s important to always be prepared and plan for increased ad costs during the holidays.


The average cost of Facebook Ads as of January 2024 is: 

  • $0.26 – $0.30 per click
  • $1.01 – $3.00 per 1000 impressions
  • $0.00 – $5.00 per download


The average cost of Instagram Ads as of January 2024 is:

  • $0.00 – $0.25 per click
  • $0.00 – $4.00 per 1000 impressions
  • $0.03 – $0.08 per engagement


ROI (Return on Investment)

Although we aren’t able to do a direct comparison of guaranteed ROI between Instagram and Facebook, we’re still able to look at their key performance metrics click through rate (CTR). The more clicks you generate through your campaigns, the more potential customers you’ll drive to your site, hence a higher ROI possibility. On average, Facebook Ads deliver a CTR of 3.06% whereas Instagram delivers an average of 0.68% CTR.



Audience engagement is what makes a successful ad campaign. Engagement grows brand awareness, increases likelihood of a sale, and builds a greater following base. A study from 2019 shows that Instagram delivered an average engagement rate of 1.60% compared to a Facebook average engagement rate of only 0.09%.  


Ad Formats

Despite the similarity in ad formats between Facebook and Instagram, their deployment strategies can vary. Instagram, with its advancement in e-commerce features like Advantage+ Shopping, remains predominantly centered around aspirational visuals. Optimal for enhancing brand recognition, offering shopping inspiration, and displaying product imagery, ad placements on Instagram serve these purposes effectively. On the other hand, Facebook may be perceived as having a lower impact on creative visuals, but it excels in driving e-commerce conversions. Ad placements are distributed across the site, featuring clearer ad text for product details, and offering more granular audience targeting. There are numerous ad formats available to choose from on Facebook and Instagram. 


These formats include:

  • Image Ads
  • Video Ads
  • Carousel Ads
  • Collection Ads
  • Instant Experience Ads
  • Stories Ads
  • Reel Ads


Campaign Features

Not surprisingly, Facebook and Instagram share many similarities in terms of campaign management and marketing features. Both platforms have been equipped with paid social advertising in mind, offering comparable tools for brands to enhance their performance. Automated bidding strategies, for example, are accessible on both Facebook and Instagram. Marketers have the option to define their preferred bid goals (such as ROAS, cost-per-result, conversion volume) and let the Facebook and Instagram algorithms autonomously handle their bids. Additionally, Advantage ads (formerly known as dynamic ads) can be utilized on both Instagram and Facebook. Advantage campaigns have the capability to automate various aspects of your marketing, ranging from campaign setup to audience targeting.


User Friendliness

Unlike Google Ads, both Facebook and Instagram provide straightforward options for paid advertising. Although Instagram offers a more streamlined approach to audience targeting, managing campaigns on both platforms is seamlessly integrated through the Facebook Ads Manager. The Ads Manager consolidates all your marketing activities, allowing you to oversee audience targeting, bid strategies, and creative assets in one centralized location. Implementing ad testing and making in-flight adjustments is also remarkably straightforward, making running campaigns across both Facebook and Instagram exceptionally convenient.


Should You Advertise on Facebook or Instagram?

As with any advertising platform, it’s crucial to carefully consider your target audience, business objectives, and the nature of your products or services when deciding on your marketing strategy. Regularly monitor performance metrics and be prepared to adjust your approach based on the evolving landscape of both Instagram and Facebook Ad platforms. 


Instagram’s visually-oriented platform excels in capturing the attention of a highly engaged audience, making it ideal for visually appealing products or services. On the other hand, Facebook, with its extensive user base and diverse ad formats, provides powerful targeting options and comprehensive analytics. Pros for both platforms include sophisticated targeting capabilities, large user bases, and engagement opportunities. However, challenges such as algorithm changes, ad saturation, and competition exist. To choose between the two, consider your target audience, the nature of your content, and campaign goals. If your content is visually compelling and caters to a younger demographic, Instagram might be preferable. For a broader reach and diverse ad formats, Facebook is a solid choice. 


Maximize Impact with Facebook Ads AND Instagram Ads

Combining Facebook and Instagram in campaigns can increase total reach, reduce costs, and enhance brand lift. Leveraging Advantage campaigns that optimize across both platforms ensures efficient budget utilization. Applying cross-platform learnings enhances campaign performance by replicating successful approaches on the other platform.


Getting Started With Social Media Advertising From Boiling Point Media

Launching a successful advertising campaign on Facebook and Instagram involves setting up a new ad campaign on the chosen platform. The campaign setup process allows advertisers to choose desired ad placements, deciding whether to run ads on Facebook, Instagram, or both platforms. Leveraging available resources on ad formats, best practices, and performance measurement ensures effective utilization of your advertising budget. Navigating the social media advertising landscape requires a strategic understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of Facebook and Instagram. Whether you opt for one platform or embrace both in a cross-platform strategy depends on your brand goals, target audience, and budget considerations. 


Remember to stay informed, creative, and data-driven to make the most of your paid social campaigns on Facebook and Instagram. The best and easiest way to ensure a successful Facebook and/or Instagram campaign is to choose a trustworthy marketing agency. At Boiling Point Media, we pride ourselves in our expertise of not only Facebook Ads and Instagram Ads but all advertising channels. Working with our marketing agency will ensure that your PPC advertising campaigns are designed to succeed from research to execution. Give us a call today and see how we can harness the power of Facebook and Instagram Ads to bring you more customers!


Contact Boiling Point Media


(405) 286-9635


7801 N Robinson Ave STE J-11, Oklahoma City, OK 73116


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