Facebook and Instagram Video Advertising Tips for Small Businesses

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Is your small business looking to gain exposure and acquire more customers through Facebook and Instagram video advertising?

We’ll steer your business in the right direction when it comes to social media video advertising by following these tactics :

  • Come up with the right concept
  • Shoot the right piece of content
  • Target the right audience
  • Learn from your campaign
  • Continuously try to improve

What Makes us Experts?

Our marketing agency has worked with hundreds of small businesses and managed millions in ad spend on social media. We know what works and doesn’t work from a decade of experience with social media advertising. We’ve worked with professional sports teams and Fortune 500 brands. That being said, we have a special place in our hearts for the small businesses we work with.

This doesn’t mean the tactics below can’t work for medium and larger businesses, they absolutely can. The examples provided were local businesses.

You Don’t Need to be Fancy 

The beauty of Facebook and Instagram video advertising is you don’t have to put forth a fancy production to yield great results. Back in the day, to put a commercial on television, you needed to invest thousands on just the production. While a quality production can help, it doesn’t need to be fancy. We’ve actually seen great success for our small business clients when the videos used for social advertising are shot on a Smartphone.

Why does a Smartphone work when filming a video?

  • It doesn’t look or feel like an advertisement
  • It flows naturally in Facebook’s newsfeed or Instagram’s feed
  • It fits well into Facebook and Instagram stories
  • There’s more room for error. Rather than having one video that has to last several months, you can constantly shoot new videos

TIP: Make sure to order a tripod for your smartphone like this JOBY GORILLA-POD for under $30. This will keep your phone sturdy during filming, which is key! Make sure there’s good lighting and audio as well as this can make or break your video.


Bill Belichick, arguably the greatest football coach in history, is fully prepared with a game plan prior to game day.

A great movie or television series all starts with a great script. If a screenwriter puts forth a bad script, it’s an uphill battle.

Make sure you’re prepared prior to filming a video and that you have a great script to follow.

Below are key ingredients to coming up with the right concept:

  • Be Timely
    • When you can hit on relevant, timely topics, performance tends to spike with your Facebook and Instagram ads.
  • Be Interesting
    • If your content is boring and comes across as a hard sales pitch, engagement will be suffer and so will performance.
  • Be Informative
    • Ask yourself the simple question: Is the person watching my video going to learn something new? If the answer is no, it’s time to go back to the drawing board.
  • Be Authentic
    • We already discussed filming a video on a smartphone and how that can help authenticity. Be yourself on-camera or pick someone at your company who will represent your brand well. When you are authentic, it’ll come across in your video.
  • Be an Expert
    • When you are an expert on a subject manner, people will want to listen as you’re a trusted figure. This will improve performance rather than having some Joe Schmo on camera.

If you need help coming up with the right concept for your video advertisement, send Media Captain a note!


LB MUSIC SCHOOL  turned to social media video advertising. During the COVID-19 pandemic, they had to convert students that came into their physical location into virtual students through Zoom lessons. They also had to find new students via virtual lessons to be proactive in new business development. The owner of the company recorded a video and turned the content around within 24-hours.

The video below was served to parents with kids between the ages of 6-17 within a 20-mile radius around LB Music’s physical location.

In order to convert more students at a lower acquisition price, we targeted more locally, even though LB Music School would could technically convert students across the entire U.S. We felt the tighter radius around their base would help from an awareness and referral perspective.

LB Music School was able to retain 90% of their business during the pandemic and video advertising played a big part. They filmed the right piece of content at the right time and moved quickly in doing so.

EASTSIDE DERMATOLOGY turned to Zoom meetings as well during the COVID-19 pandemic for Telehealth visits. Once again, this local dermatology practice had to move fast to spread the word about virtual appointments. They filmed the video below on an iPhone, sent it over to our agency and we were able to promote it for $50/day on Facebook and Instagram targeting Columbus, Ohio, where this dermatology practice is located.

Eastside Dermatology had an expert (their doctor) speak on camera. He informed his audience of the new technology, which was informational. He was authentic with his tone and the message was timely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This video covers all of the check-marks mentioned above. If you have this list handy, it’ll greatly improve the content you create.


Once you create the right content, that’s when advertising and targeting comes into play. If you are a local business, you have to critically think in terms of who you are going to target.

Let’s say you own a dog kennel in Columbus. You can target pet owners in Central Ohio, which would work masterfully. If you are a dermatologist, it’s tough to predict who would be a patient.

For local clients, we often like to target the entire market to analyze initial performance. In many instances, we’ll segment out certain age groups but we let it ride in the local market where our client is locate. Too often, we see the mistake in a local market where the business advertising gets too narrow on marketing, which limits their reach. If you need help deciding who to target in your ads, contact The Media Captain for a free consult.


Dr. Brad Hylan recorded a video about how their dental practice was open for emergency procedures during COVID-19. We invested $55 per day into this advertisement and it doubled the amount of patients for Emergency Procedures.

We always look into quality ranking, engagement rate and conversion rate ranking. All three metrics in this video were above average. We generated 2,565 link clicks for just $0.20 per link click! It’s crucial you analyze the data. If you are seeing good results, double down, which is exactly what we did!

Just look at the engagement on this post (highlighted in yellow). 75 comments and 223 shares for a dental practice. Wow!

TIP: Always put captions on your video. 85% of Facebook videos are watched without sound, according to WordStream. Facebook has amazing technology to automatically detect captions. Let Facebook auto-generate the captions, make sure to proof this and include it in all of your videos, it makes a world of difference.











The beauty of shooting video on your smartphone is that you have more frequency in the content you produce. Wayne Gretzky (or Michael Scott, depending on who you ask) famously said, “You miss 99% of the shots you don’t take,” Each new video is a registered shot on net. Not all shots are going to cross the goal line and register as a goal.

You have to produce video content, test different targeting until you find the winning combination! Once this happens, you’ll find certain intricacies that worked and you’ll be able to utilize these tactics in the future.