Facebook ads are an excellent way of getting your message out to potential customers. Whether you’re trying to drive traffic back to your website, promote a product/service, or even boost your online presence, this tool is an excellent way of doing so.
With over two billion users, the odds are that your target audience is on Facebook. This is a platform that has a very active and engaging community, a new timeline design that allows you to really show off your business/brand, and the ability to target specific user groups based on age range, location of residence, gender, etc.
Such an invaluable tool should never be overlooked; however, it can be a little overwhelming when you look at all of the different elements that go into creating an ad on Facebook and then actually going about getting it in front of your target audience.
Too many businesses simply create Facebook ads and hope it works out when in reality, a lot more needs to be done in order for an ad campaign on Facebook to actually work. This guide will take you through the basics of creating and running Facebook ads and give some tips and tricks that can help you get started today!
What makes Facebook ads so crucial for your business?
“Recently, we’ve gotten feedback from our community that public content — posts from businesses, brands, and media — is crowding out the personal moments that lead us to connect more with each other.”
This excerpt from a 2018 announcement by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg confirmed the decline of organic reach on the platform, which first began in 2014. Due to the massive amount of branded content that was being generated and how it affected user experience, Facebook decided to change its news feed algorithm.
Adam Mosseri, Facebook’s Head Of News Feed, explained that this was a move to “…shift ranking to make the news feed more about connecting with people and less about consuming media in isolation.”
In other words, Facebook decided to prioritize “meaningful social interactions” over public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media on the news feed.
If you had been operating a Facebook page before this change, you should have noticed a significant decline in organic traffic. The once coveted “reach” has now been watered down, and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to get your posts seen by the community.
This is where Facebook ads come in as a way for businesses to adapt to the change in Facebook’s news feed algorithm by using paid advertising instead. It allows you to bypass some of these restrictions and publish branded content for your target audience with greater visibility than ever before.
This is why Facebook ads are so important for your business and why you should never ignore them when it comes to promoting a product or service online. With over two billion monthly active users worldwide, it has become one of the most powerful tools in any marketer’s arsenal.
Once you decide to take advantage of the opportunities that Facebook advertising has to offer, you’ll be able to enjoy benefits such as:
- Gaining access and connecting with a brand new audience: Facebook allows you to limit your advertising to only those who haven’t been to your website in at least six months. This can help you reach a completely new audience entirely.
- Re-engaging prospective clients who haven’t opened the emails you sent them in the past: After promoting your product/service, your campaign can get underway in a matter of days. Interestingly, your Facebook ad account has a feature under the ad manager that allows you to exclude prospective clients who have already seen the post.
- Using pre-launch content to create excitement around your upcoming product/service: Facebook advertising effectively generates interest around your product or service, even before you officially release it.
This powerful tool can help you build up the customer base that will be looking forward to using or purchasing your product or service when it eventually launches, which is an excellent incentive for them to stay tuned in until then.
- Making more effective use of your sales funnel: A robust sales funnel can help you generate more leads, which in turn will give your business a greater number of opportunities to convert those prospects into paying customers.
This process is something that Facebook ads are incredibly useful for because they allow you to target just the right people interested in what you have to offer.
When you’ve captured some prospective clients, Facebook advertising can help you nurture your relationship with them and move them down the sales funnel. Some of them will have objections, so it’s essential to answer these questions and provide the information they need via a blog post in the form of an email. In straightforward terms, convert the email into a blog article and then spend some money advertising it.
- Getting higher quality leads for your email list: In your Facebook news feed, you’ve probably noticed a slew of list-building advertisements. Most of them provide a free guide, challenge, or webinar, making them easy to recognize.
In contrast, If someone were to stumble on one of your blog posts, read it, and decide to opt-in for your freebie, that’s a whole different type of prospect. Such conversions are more difficult to get and are usually higher quality than those “squeeze page” sign-ups.
You can create a Facebook ad account and run a campaign to get more exposure for your blog posts while simultaneously nurturing prospective client relationships on the same channel. In other words, Facebook marketing allows you to promote yourself on both ends.
- Improving your social media engagement: Facebook advertising can be used to improve your overall brand awareness across all of the major social networks, including Instagram and Pinterest. It also gives you additional opportunities to engage with customers daily via ads that are designed for visibility in the news feed.
How do you run ads on Facebook?
For some people, the thought of having to create a Facebook ad is probably the equivalent of being asked to give a speech in front of their entire school/office. This can be an extremely daunting task for some people, especially if they’ve never had any experience with creating ads before.
However, creating a Facebook ad is actually easy—once you understand how it all works.
We’re going to walk you through a step-by-step process of creating an ad on Facebook to help you get the hang of it.
Create a Facebook ad account
Facebook ad manager is a self-service management platform that provides you with the necessary tools to create and manage your campaigns at any time.
This sophisticated dashboard shows you an accurate approximation of your daily expenses. Columns in the dashboard simplify sorting through your ads and getting a customized look at your campaign’s performance. Reach, frequency, and cost are easily obtainable metrics, making performance reporting a piece of cake.
Creating a Facebook ad account requires a Facebook business page as a prerequisite. This is because personal profiles cannot be used to run advertisements.
Adhere to the following guidelines to set up your Facebook ad account:
- Visit the Ads Manager page.
- Choose “Go to Ads Manager” from the menu that appears.
- Verify your details on the setup page.
- Decide on a payment method and enter your billing information.
- Finally, ensure that you SAVE changes when you’re finished.
Use the Facebook ad manager to create an ad
When you log in to your Facebook ad account, this area will be empty if your account has never been used to run a campaign in the past. Otherwise, you’ll see a performance dashboard that will display previous campaigns, ad sets, ads, and their results.
Creating an ad is quite straightforward. You’ll need to click the green “Create” button at the top left corner of your screen to get started.
Choose a campaign objective
This is an extremely important step that plays a vital role in determining the success or failure of your Facebook ad campaign. There are a total of 11 objectives, grouped under three categories:
a) Brand Awareness
c) App installs
d) Video news
e) Lead generation
b) Catalog sales
Assuming your goal is to boost your website traffic, you’ll be asked to input the website URL when you select this objective.
In order to measure visitors and conversions from this ad, it’s advisable to create a UTM Tracking URL in Google Analytics, especially if you’re using marketing automation software.
Select your preferred target audience
This is the fun part! The Facebook ad manager dashboard gives you various options when it comes to choosing your target demographic. For people who are just starting out with Facebook ads, you might need a bit of experiential knowledge before you can discover who your ideal audience is.
Your objective can come in handy when selecting your target audience. If your objective is to drive traffic, it’ll make more sense to advertise to a specific set of people who you feel will be interested in your product/service. But assuming your objective is to create brand awareness, there’s no harm in promoting your offering to a general audience.
Your Facebook ad account features a wide variety of targeting criteria such as:
- Job Title
- Life Events
- Ethnic Affinity
- Connections, among others.
If you identify a group that responds favorably to your ads, Facebook gives you the option to save that audience for future use.
Select a campaign budget
It’s time to decide how much money you’d like to invest in your campaign. On your Facebook ad account, you can choose between two options:
Daily budget: This option allows you to broadcast your Facebook ad to your target audience for a total of 24 hours. Facebook will attempt to optimize your ad to reach as many people as possible within this period, allowing you to get your maximum budget’s worth. The minimum daily budget allowed by Facebook for an ad is $1.
Lifetime budget: This option allows you to choose how much money you want to spend over the course of your entire campaign. It’s perfect for those who want to set a fixed overall spend for their ads. You can also use the advanced options to specify how much you want to spend each day.
Your Facebook ad account is also equipped with a campaign scheduler. Basically, this function allows you to schedule your ads for future dates. You can customize your start and end date and even determine specific hours of the day or days of the week that you want to broadcast your ads.
Pricing and optimizing your ads
Decide how much you’re willing to pay for your clicks, impressions, or campaign goals. (Your ad will be displayed and priced differently as a result of this change.) You’ll pay to have your ad seen by people in your target demographic who are more likely to take the required action, but Facebook will regulate the maximum amount you can bid.
Manual bidding is the way to go if you don’t want Facebook to make optimal offers for you. This option allows you to set your own price for each action that viewers take. In order to give you an idea of what to aim for, Facebook will advise a bid based on the behavior of other advertisers on the platform.
Facebook ad delivery is where Facebook’s advertising algorithm comes into play. The platform uses an automated system that includes ad auction and machine learning to determine who sees your ad, where it will be displayed, and when. This helps bring maximum value to both your business and viewers.
The appearance of your Facebook ad is dependent on your objective. If you’re looking to drive traffic to your website, two main formats will be suggested:
Carousel ad format: This format will allow you to showcase an array of images or videos (up to 10), each having its own link.
Such a format provides greater creative room to allow you to emphasize distinct products, present specifics about a product or service, and/or promote a story about your business that develops over the carousel.
Link ads: Link ads are a terrific method to get people to click through to your website and see the pages you want them to see. Use call-to-action buttons like Shop Now, Sign Up, Learn More, etc., to compel visitors to execute a desired action.
On the other hand, if your objective is to boost your posts, your Facebook ad manager will provide you with different options and ad placement types like Desktop News Feed, Mobile News Feed, and Desktop Right Column.
What are the most important metrics you should track in your Facebook ad campaign?
It’s remarkable how much information you can obtain from Facebook on the performance of your posts, demographics of your audience, and tracking of campaigns. Indeed, your Facebook ad manager is a gold mine of data just waiting to be explored.
While access to relevant data is amazing, it can only be effectively utilized if you know which data points are most vital to your company’s success.
There are some key metrics that every Facebook advertiser needs to keep his or her eyes on to make sure the campaigns are progressing as intended:
Engagement is one of the most important metrics to track in your Facebook ad campaign. Engagement is a measure of how much interaction your posts receive from viewers. The more comments and likes you get, the better your post performs – engagement drives up reach and organic impressions.
You can track engagement results in your Facebook insights.
Reach refers to the number of people who viewed a particular post on a Facebook page. In general, brands want to have a wider reach as being exposed to more people means the chance of them clicking on your post and interacting with it is greater.
Head over to your Page Insights to get a quick overview of your audience reach.
Impression is a metric that tells you how frequently your Facebook post appeared on viewers’ timelines and news feeds. It’s more of an exposure factor than performance-based, but this number still matters because the higher your impressions are, the more people see your posts.
You can track this by going to the posts section of your Facebook Insights. There, click on “reach” and switch to “impressions” from the drop-down menu.
Referral traffic from Facebook
This data shows how many visits your site receives from Facebook, which will help you decide which type of content performs well on the platform and what does not.
You can access this information in Google Analytics. Select Acquisition…Social…and then look under Network Referral.
Total follows and likes on your Facebook page
This data helps you determine the effectiveness of your Facebook marketing strategy. Your follower numbers play a major role in growing your website traffic and revenue, so you must track changes in these metrics over time.
Your fan numbers are the easiest to track, as they can be found right there on your page.
Facebook video retention and engagement
Facebook video metrics are important for marketers to consider because video has become the most engaging content on social media.
Retention rates indicate how long people watch your video, which is an important factor to consider when creating videos that will perform well on Facebook. The higher your retention rates, the more successful your video is with viewers. On the other hand, if you notice that viewers spend less time watching your videos, it could indicate that your video may not be engaging or it could be too long.
Engagement numbers show the interactions viewers had with your video (likes, shares, etc.) and can help you understand what type of videos best engage your audience.
You can track your individual video metrics from the posts tab within your page insights. All you need to do is select “All Posts Published” and click on the video title. You can also view your audience retention graph on the right side of your video, while your video engagement metrics become visible when you click on “post.”
Click-Through Rate (CTR)
Click-through rate is an important metric that cannot be overlooked in your Facebook ad campaign. It shows the percentage of users who clicked on your post after seeing it.
This metric is calculated by dividing the number of link clicks you have by the number of impressions, multiplied by 100%. You can use this to tell how effective your ads are at catching people’s attention and encouraging them to click through to your website or store.
Relevant reports show that the average click-through rate (CTR) for Facebook advertising across all industries is 0.90%. So if your CTR falls below that, then you should consider tweaking your ad copy or image to make it more enticing to Facebook users.
As soon as Facebook notices that your ads are being seen, but no one is clicking on them, it deduces that your target audience does not find the ads interesting. As a result, you may end up paying more for each click and receiving little or no value. So, pay special attention to your click-through rate (CTR).
Cost Per Thousand Impressions (CPM) and Cost Per Click (CPC)
These are two major billing methods used to determine the cost of advertising on Facebook.
Under CPM pricing, your Facebook ad account will be charged for every thousand impressions that your advert receives. For some businesses, the fact that you will be charged regardless of whether anyone acts on your ad or not is a turnoff. Here, you’re only paying to put your ad in front of prospects, so make sure your campaign is strong enough to garner attention.
CPM might be really beneficial if you’re running numerous ad variation tests. It’s a somewhat speedy and less expensive method of determining which of your adverts is successful and which one is performing poorly.
On the other hand, by opting for cost-per-click (CPC) pricing, you’ll be charged each time your ad is clicked. As a result, it’s the most popular choice because you only pay when actions are completed or when prospects interact with your Facebook ad, rather than when your ad simply appears in front of them.
The disadvantage of using CPC is that your advertisement may receive fewer impressions than if you utilized CPM, especially if your ad has a low click-through rate.
When determining an optimum CPC, consider who you’re trying to reach. The cost per website click should be no more than $0.50 if you’re advertising to your fans, people on your list, or your website visitors. But if you’re trying to reach people who have never visited your website before, then you should be less concerned about your cost per website click and focus on your cost per lead.
If the cost of your leads exceeds the price of an average list-building campaign, it won’t be necessary to spend more than the money you have set aside for your advertisement.
Regardless of which billing method you choose, ensure that you keep an eye on the metric to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck.
Cost Per Action (CPA)
When you set a cost per action (CPA), your Facebook ad account will be charged when someone performs a specific action on your website. Such actions can include anything from email subscription to making a purchase to downloading an app, etc.
The advantage of this billing method is that you only get charged when the action you’re hoping for is completed. With the help of this Facebook metric, you’ll be able to determine your return on investment on your campaign.
A lot of Facebook advertisers often underestimate the importance of ad frequency, but in truth, it can have a huge impact on your Facebook advertising campaign. Ad frequency represents the average number of times a unique user saw your Facebook ad.
If you have a habit of displaying your ads to people too frequently, then you may end up irritating them and having them turn cold on your brand. The worst thing you want to do is waste your advertising budget on people who have made up their minds to ignore you.
No one likes to see the exact same thing over and over and over again, within a short period of time. It’s important to allow prospects (and your Facebook ad account) some breathing room by not bombarding them with ads.
It may sound like common sense, but you should definitely keep an eye on how frequently your ads are displayed to the same person. You don’t want to risk running into spam territory. Instead, aim for different variations of your ad copy, as well as visuals.
Many Facebook ad specialists have varying views on the ideal ad frequency. However, if your goal is to reach those who have never seen your advert before, it’s important to avoid oversaturating them with Facebook ad banners, blog posts, etc. Try to keep your maximum frequency between 2 – 2.5 for this type of audience.
You can increase the frequency to 3 if you’re sending to fans, subscribers, or website visitors.
Keynote: In your Facebook ad manager, the “Daily Unique Reach” under “Optimization & Pricing” lets you reach more of your target audience by showing your ad only once a day to a larger percentage of your audience.
If you’re about to launch a new product or service, then this is a terrific option. Pre-launch content should aim to reach as many people as possible who are already in your target audience.
Pro tip: Keep an eye on the Relevancy Score for each of your ads to help you determine the tipping point.
Facebook ads are a great way to promote your products and services online. They’re cost-effective, somewhat easy to create, and you have the option of optimizing them based on various metrics. Facebook ad accounts are user-friendly, which means that even if you don’t have any experience with advertising for other platforms, you’ll have little trouble creating one.
With the speed at which Facebook is changing, it’s important to keep up with all the latest features and ad types available. In this guide, we’ve covered a lot of the basics and some more advanced marketing techniques that you should definitely have in your Facebook marketing toolbox.
The Facebook ad manager can be a bit intimidating with all the choices you have to make, but if you follow our advice and put in the time to fine-tune your Facebook ad campaigns, you’ll see an uptick in your return on investment.
Our Facebook ad specialists have been around for a while, so we’ve seen the platform grow from its infancy to what it is today. If you have any questions about Facebook marketing or navigating the Facebook ad manager for effective ad management, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’d love to hear from you!