Instagram Ads for Cats: An Overview of My Results

I’ve been an Insta cat for more than a year now, and I’ve had a business account from the start. 

If I’m being completely honest, I only signed up for a business account so that I could have that little gray text underneath my name that says “public figure”. 

Cat Instagram profile Public Figure

When I first started on Instagram, I thought it was all about the number of followers, the fame, the fortune. But I soon learned that it’s more about the friends I’m making along the way.

Let’s be real though – who doesn’t want more followers? 

One of my key strategies for getting more exposure (and new followers and furriends) is running Instagram ads AKA promoting my regular posts. 

You might be thinking…Cathy, why would you spend money on ads, especially being that you have such a small account? (currently, I have a following of less than 2k). 

For one thing, Instagram ads are cheap. Like as little as one dollar cheap. 

So, my mom, being the not so thrifty hooman that she is, promotes my posts for me regularly. 

In total, I’ve placed 35 ads on Instagram as of today’s date, and I’ve spent…wait for it…one hundred and three dollars

In this article, I’m going to share some of my insights with you including how many followers my ads get me, how much I spend, what’s working, and what’s not working. 

I hope you will get a general idea of the types of results that you might be able to expect as a small cat account on Instagram! 

Let’s start with some overall stats.

Cat Instagram Ad Results

My promoted posts have gotten me 438 profile visits and 271 new followers. 

That means I spent about 38 cents for each new follow or about 24 cents for each profile visit. 

These aren’t the lowest acquisition costs in the world, but considering my goal is just to boost awareness of my account and open up opportunities to make new friends, it’s not too bad.

I’m not saying that if you spend $100 you’ll get around 300 followers, but that’s what happened in my case. I think I could have gotten much better results, however, so I want to explore which ads did well and what their qualities were. 

My Most Successful Instagram Ads

I mentioned that I ran at least thirty-five Instagram promotions, but don’t worry! I won’t go through all of them. I’m only going to examine my top three starting with the most successful. 

The Upside Down Ad

My MOST successful ad in terms of both the number of followers gained and profile visits was this one:

People went nuts over this photo of me lying on the bed. I got 39 new followers and 41 profile visits from the ad alone. It also got 19,927 impressions in Discovery, and 32% of those were from the promotion. 

And guess how much I spent. 

Two dollars. You can’t buy anything decent for two dollars anymore, but I got 39 whole human followers. 

Notes: Aside from being cute, this was posted on a Tuesday in the afternoon (North American hours). My audience for this promotion consisted of 70% women with 97% of them in the 13-17 age range. Most of them also lived in California and Texas. One day soon, I will post a similar photo in the same position on a Tuesday afternoon, set my target audience to match this audience, and see what happens! 

The Crazy Waiting for Santa Ad

On December 24, 2019 I posted a video of me going kind of nuts. The caption was “I’m going crazy waiting for Santa!!!!”

View this post on Instagram

I’m going crazy waiting for Santa!!!!!

A post shared by Cathy Permakitten 🐈 (@cathy_permakitten) on

I spent five dollars on this ad and got 35 new followers and 27 profile visits. I also got 10,288 impressions (31% from promotion). 

Notes: This ad was run on a holiday, so many people were probably on social media waiting for Santa as well. My audience turned out to be 62% women ages 13-17 and mostly from Texas with some from California. 

The Snaggletooth Ad

This one is cute too, so I can see why it got me 21 new followers and 37 profile visits:

View this post on Instagram

How do you like my snaggletooth?

A post shared by Cathy Permakitten 🐈 (@cathy_permakitten) on

I also got 7,945 impressions (77% from promotion) and 1.6k likes. But I also spent $4, twice as much as I did for my top promoted post. 

Notes: This promotion was run on a Sunday (December 29) also in the North American afternoon. I’m guessing many people were home for the holidays and had more time for Instagram. My audience consisted of 72% women in the 13-17 age range who also lived mostly in Texas and California. 

Is it accurate to say that promoting a post in the afternoon to mostly 13-17 year old Texan and Californian girls will get me better results? Possibly. But I want to take a look at some of my worst performing promotions before I make any assumptions.

My Least Successful Instagram Ads

I’ve had tons of not-so-successful Instagram ads over the last year or so. In fact, I ran several ads that didn’t get a single new follow. Since I’m not going to go through them all, I’ll just break down the two posts that yielded zero results in terms of followers and profile visits.

The Silky Sweater Ad

To be clear, I’m the one that’s silky, but I am also sitting on a sweater. In case you were wondering why I settled on “silky sweater”.

This was the third ad that I ever ran on Instagram, and it got me 463 impressions (only 23% of those were from the promotion). As I said earlier, I got zero followers and zero profile visits from this ad. I spent one dollar.

Notes: This ad was placed in the very early hours of the morning (North American time) on a Thursday. My audience turned out to be 71% women, and 34% of my audience was in the 18-24 years category while only 38% of my audience was in the 13-17 years category. Also, 13% were in the 25-34 age range while the rest of the audience were spread out all the way to 65+. Everyone in the audience was in Colorado, an interesting choice that I can’t quite remember making.

The Cute But Tough Ad

This was one of the first posts where I really showcased my small size, so I was surprised when it didn’t perform very well.

This ad got me zero followers and zero profile visits. It did get me 410 impressions, but only 33% of those came from the promotion. I also spent one dollar on this ad.

Notes: This ad was run on a Thursday afternoon. My audience turned out to be 100% women with the vast majority of them in the 35-44 and 45-54 age groups. I also had plenty in the 55-64 and 65+ age groups. None of my audience fell into the 13-17 years category. Finally, 100% of my audience came from California.

My Conclusion

I didn’t see any definite trends aside from the fact that I got way more follows and profile visits when I had 13-17 year old women/girls in my audience, no matter how small the budget was. In fact, the more 13-17 year olds were in my audience, the more follows and profile visits I got. My ads also performed better when I spread out the locations across a few states rather than just concentrating on one.

I left out a ton of information, but this mini analysis on my top three and bottom two ads has given me a little more insight into how to run a more successful Instagram promotion.

For one thing, I’m definitely always going to include 13-17 year olds in my target audience. If you mostly want new followers, I’d say give it a try as well, but this may not be the target age group for every Insta cat. If you’re trying to sell cat toys or want to promote affiliate codes, people in this age range don’t usually have their own money to spend. Since sharing my posts with more people who will enjoy my photos is my end goal, it works perfectly for me.

Do you promote posts on Instagram? Why or why not? What works for you? Let me know in the comments!


Cathy 😼

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