It’s time to get down to the nitty gritty of Facebook ads…
Over the last few years, we’ve seen Facebook emerge as a leading player in online advertising.
While the audience was already there, Facebook has developed an efficient, intuitive advertising system that allows businesses to easily connect with and convert Facebook users into customers.
While managing Google PPC costs have spiked over the last few years for competitive keywords, Facebook Ads still offers the potential for highly efficient use of your advertising dollars.
If you’ve decided to give Facebook Ads a try (which I recommend), you’ll want some help getting started.
That’s why we’ve put together a master list of 20 tips to help you get the most out of your Facebook advertising for days.
We’ll start basic and get more advanced as we go.
Let’s get started!
1) Start small
The worst thing you can do in paid advertising is commit big money right off the bat.
Paid traffic channels require continuous testing and refinement.
Create an ad group with your target audience, and try feeding just $10 per day for 1 week.
2) Be patient
Unlike with Google AdWords, sponsored Facebook content can continuously gather likes, comments, and shares, which are displayed along with the ad.
This is called social proof, and the more social proof you have, the more effective your ad will be.
Think about seeing a sponsored ad with 10k likes and 50 comments.
The stats add instant credibility.
The longer your ad runs, the more social proof it will accumulate, and theoretically, the more effective the ad could be.
3) …but not too patient
While it’s important to give ads a chance to run, they ultimately need to be taken down if they aren’t performing.
Depending on your budget, try giving 5 ads a $5-10 budget per day for 1 week.
At the end of the week, drop or adjust the 3 worst performers and continue with the ads getting the best results.
4) A/B test your ads
As you run your ads, you should be periodically tweaking them to see what will work better.
This is called A/B testing, and it’s mandatory for any type of ad campaign.
Sometimes making a single word adjustment in your CTA copy can have a massive impact.
You never know until you test.
Look at how users are engaging with your content and think out a few different adjustment that could increase engagement.
Make the adjustments and then analyze the results to see what performs best.
5) Expand moderately
It’s easy to get excited with good performing ad groups.
If your $10-per-day trial-run begins landing subscribers at $1 per conversion, that’s great, but don’t jump straight into $100 per day.
Costs per conversion don’t always scale, for one reason or another.
If you’re liking the results you’re getting, expand by no more than double and make sure your results continue.
You can always double again if results persist.
6) Include a compelling image
Your image will be a central part of any Facebook ad you run.
Don’t use a boring or highly generic image.
The more interesting your image, the better it will perform.
7) Utilize video
Videos tend to perform insanely well on Facebook.
While they are more difficult to make than a graphic or text post, if you have an interesting video that could work, give it a try.
Even if you don’t have videos currently produced, it’s worth investing in creating a video for your brand.
There are just too many effective video platforms available.
Don’t let those opportunities go to waste!
8) Make ads look organic
You can’t hide the fairly obvious “Sponsored Post” text displayed at the top of your ads.
What you CAN do is make your ads look like organic Facebook posts.
Surprise, surprise – no one hopped on Facebook today with the intent of viewing and clicking your ad.
They DID, however, hop on Facebook with the intent of seeing what their friends are doing, saying, and posting.
Most people aren’t posting highly produced and edited photos to Facebook.
While professional photos can do well, often it’s the normal, organic looking photos and videos that perform best.
9) Offer a compelling, immediately obtainable incentive
The best way to grab clicks and signups is to offer something compelling for free.
There is a ton of content vying for people’s attention.
By offering them something beyond simple blog post content, you are increasing your chances of captivating their attention.
Incentives that can be obtained immediately perform best.
Try offering downloadable informative content like an ebook or PDF.
10) Target your fans
Because of the way Facebook currently operates, you don’t really have the ability to connect directly with your page’s fans anymore.
However, paying to advertise to your existing fans is both cheaper and more effective than targeting an audience that has never heard of you.
Try selecting “People who like your Page and their friends” for best results.
Why not target your audience and their friends?
11) Target Facebook users based on behavior
In 2013, Facebook partnered with data brokers including Epsilon, Acxiom, and Datalogix.
What this means for you is that you can target users based on past behavior.
For example, if you wanted to target users who had recently made business marketing purchases, you could do so via the dashboard pictured below.
One of the most difficult tasks in marketing is identifying buyers within the throngs of window shoppers.
By identifying who has already made purchases in a given area, Facebook Ads give you a major leg up in your advertising pursuits.
12) Target users experiencing “life events”
If your business caters to recognizable life events, like weddings, birthdays, anniversaries, or even funerals, Facebook Ads allow you to target those events.
Simply select the event you are targeting within your ad group for highly relevant campaign views.
13) Target your competitor’s audience
Have you ever looked at a Facebook page and thought, “This audience would love what I’m doing”?
Unfortunately, you can’t simply promote your content on your competitor’s page.
But you CAN directly advertise to their audience using Facebook ads.
When setting up your ad group, you can select up to 4 “interests” for Facebook to target.
These can include specific brands or businesses.
So for example, if you wanted to target a competitor’s brand, simply include that brand as an “interest” when setting up your ad group, and you can directly target that brand’s audience.
14) Target “lookalike” audiences
Once you’ve built a targeted audience that fits your ideal customer profile, it can sometimes be challenging to scale without losing quality.
“Lookalike” audiences are an easy next step in your Facebook Ads journey, allowing you to target new audiences that look similar to your existing audience or an audience of your choosing.
15) Manually select pricing instead of letting Facebook bid
Through the advanced settings, you can manually set a CPC price in advance instead of letting Facebook bid on CPM for you.
This can save you a lot of money in the long run, and help you attain real results instead of an abstract impression count.
When just starting out, it’s okay to play around with Facebook’s automatic bidding, but if you are going to run a serious campaign, manual bidding is the way to go.
16) Target ads at your non-open email subscribers
While email marketing nearly always out performers social media marketing, a 30-40% open rate is about as high as you can hope to get (if that) on your campaigns.
That means 60-70% of your email subscribers aren’t seeing your content.
They are very likely interested in your content (they subscribed, after all), but for one reason or another, they aren’t seeing or opening your emails.
A great way to utilize these non-open subscribers is to retarget them on Facebook.
To do this, make a list of subscribers who haven’t opened your last 3 emails, and upload it to Facebook as a “custom audience”.
You can then target these users with Facebook ads, giving them a chance to see your content and engage with your brand via Facebook.
17) Collaborate with other publishers
Have you ever seen a Facebook ad promoting a joint webinar between two experts in a given field?
That webinar will be 100% as promotional as any other webinar ever made.
It is no less of an advertisement, but somehow, when multiple experts collaborate on something, it feels less promotional to the viewer.
When you collaborate with other brands or experts, the added value to your offer makes your ad seem more organic.
The increased effectiveness of these types of ads is one of the reasons you’ve probably noticed a major influx in cooperative “events” over the last few years.
18) Include social proof in your ad text
People who are interested in your offer might still be afraid to say “yes”.
Their is always the potential your product is terrible and they will end up wasting their time or money trying you out.
One of the best way to assuage this fear is social proof.
In addition to the naturally building social proof your ads will collect over time, you can also insert social proof directly into the text.
A great example is this Dropbox ad, which highlights how many customers are currently using their cloud storage.
19) Get emotional
When it comes to getting social media results, emotion is the name of the game.
You want to capture your viewers’ attention by resonating with something important to them.
The easiest way to do this is to focus on the benefits being provided rather than the features offered.
You aren’t building them a website, you are making their ecommerce dream a reality.
You aren’t teaching them to blog, you are teaching them to achieve the lifestyle they’ve always wanted.
Focus on the “why” behind the “what”, and you’ll much better results from your ad copy.
20) Place the right ads in the right places
Different ad placement work better for different ads.
Match them correctly for best results.
- Desktop Newsfeed:
The desktop feed is ideal for engagement and generating direct sales or leads.
Unlike other placements, you can include longer copy and contextualize your CTA’s fairly easy.
- Desktop Right Column:
This is the cheapest placement, but it won’t convert as well as the newsfeed.
This column is best used for targeting users already familiar with your brand.
The key is to catch their eye with recognizable or highly compelling image.
- Mobile Newsfeed:
If you are looking for page likes or promoting a mobile app, the mobile newsfeed is perfect for you.
Copy length is MUCH more constrained, however, so be sure to use quick, snappy headlines in place of longer desktop headlines.
Wrap Up on Facebook Ads
So, the basic plan for running Facebook ads is to start slow, test, retest, and scale.
As you get more and more familiar with Facebook’s ad system, give each of the tips listed here a try and see what happens.
The exact formula for your success will probably look very different from someone with a different audience.
Keep testing and keep learning.
There is a lot of success to be had via Facebook ads.
Think you’ll give some of these tips a try? Let us know which ones in the comments below!
P.S. Did you learn something new? Share it with your followers so you look even smarter