Why it pays to advertise on social media’s biggest platform.
Before focusing on best practices: Justify your budget with the reasons it pays to advertise on social media’s biggest platform.
Facebook is more than the world’s biggest social network. Its targeting options are incredible and audience saturation is huge.
And as with all social media advertising, you enjoy cost-saving opportunities.
To sum it up: (1) Facebook’s reach hits more people than any other U.S. advertising media. (2) Its targeting options enable you to get seriously micro-granular when reaching out to its users. (3) Low minimum spends let you play on Facebook for as little as $50. (4) It’s the least expensive social media advertising available, with an average cost per thousand impressions of $0.25.
So now that we’ve seen the whys for Facebook advertising, let’s explore best practices. And, how to employ them in creating ads.
Facebook Advertising Best Practices
1. Micro Target
Facebook lets you layer targeting options one on top of another, making your audience more and more specific. Use this to reduce your audience into small sets that you can test against each other.
2. Track Conversions
Track ad conversions by adding a Facebook tracking pixel to your website. It enables the platform to automatically track click-through rates and conversions and provide you the metrics.
3. Use Auto Optimization
Facebook has auto-optimization features for optimizing conversions. Therefore, set your goal and Facebook will auto-optimize the ads and the targeting to achieve the highest performance.
4. Try Low Cost Conversions
Facebook supports you in getting lower cost conversions. Such as those where you can experiment with driving demand but not fulfilling it.
5. Finally, Use High Quality Images
And not just high resolution files, but original photography and graphics, too. The closer an image reflects your messaging and your audience’s lifestyle, the better your response and conversions.
How to create Ads. But first we need to explore your biggest asset: Targeting.
Facebook advertising best practices includes precision targeting, which is what Facebook is all about. Therefore, let’s zoom in on some of your strongest options.
People’s personal and business lives are riddled with milestones they share on Facebook as Life Events. As a result you can match your campaigns to virtually every conceivable kind of Life Event. The reason, users tend to post almost all of them on their timelines.
Your best new business often comes from old business. Custom Audiences helps you nurture leads and build loyalty by connecting with existing contacts and customers. This reinforces your brand and increases lifetime customer value, order frequency, and loyalty.
Lookalikes: Your Audience Multiplier
Lookalikes let you rapidly create audiences that look like current customers or targets. Just upload your email or phone list to find a Lookalike audience that mirrors your current one. Also, you can use your Facebook following to create Lookalikes.
Demographics describe who users are, where they are and what they do. While Psychographics explain the whys. Understand these and you can expand your advertising to a wider range of audiences and micro-target within them. For example, include interests, occupations, life roles (mother, father, mentor), spending habits and values.
Getting creative with Facebook.
OK, we’re nearly ready for a walk through of building your ads using Facebook Ad Creator and Facebook Power Editor. But first let’s look at the kind of ads Facebook offers:
These standard Facebook ads are a good starting point for most small businesses. They appear on the right sidebar of your Facebook newsfeed.
Page Post Ads.
Page Posts display on users’ newsfeeds like status posts. They’re big and prominent, but remember: Your messaging needs to be spot-on relevant.
These show up in a user’s newsfeed if a friend engaged with the sponsor’s Facebook page – an implied endorsement if you will. But importantly, like Page Posts, they’re prominent.
Promoted Posts display just like Sponsored Stories. They’re only shown to your existing fans and your existing fans’ friends. But they are a great way to make sure fans see your ads.
Lastly, Premium Ads. Premium ads run only on users’ homepages and feature “friend” information (i.e. you and ten friends like this). Plus, Facebook only shows one ad at a time. Therefore, spend is high: $5,000 a month minimum.
Ad Creator: 10 Steps to Your Ad.
Ad Creator lets you create ads easily and with a decent level of targeting granularity. The steps are the same for all of the Facebook ads we’ve discussed. In this example we’ll setup a Marketplace Ad.
Step 1. First, find and click the “Create an Ad” button in Facebook.
Step 2. Next, choose your goal or objective.
Step 3. Upload photos for your ad.
Step 4. Connect your brand’s Facebook page.
Step 5. Add your headline and description.
Step 6. View how your ad will look.
Step 7. Create your audience.
Step 8. Create your account and campaign settings.
Step 9. Add your campaign optimization settings. Then hit “Review Order”.
Step 10. Finally, place your order and pay for your ad.
Facebook Power Editor
What’s the difference between Power Editor and Ad Creator?
There’s not a lot to know about Ad Creator. It gets you where you need to go – slowly, but surely. But with Power Creator there is plenty to know. Understand its features and you can do in minutes what would take hours. And, create far more effective Facebook ads.
But don’t worry, Power Creator isn’t complicated…
The Duplicate Button lets you create multiple versions of a campaign, set of ads, or a single ad. Imagine you have one campaign and you want to test it according to two different targets. Just highlight that ad, hit Duplicate and you’ve got two identical ad sets.
Unpublished Page Posts
This enables you to create ads for the news feed that look like Facebook posts, but without showing up on your Facebook page.
Custom and Lookalike Audiences
We’ve spoken to these but here’s a recap. Custom Audiences let you upload current customer lists using email addresses or phone numbers. In contrast, Lookalike Audiences let you target users similar to your customers.
This feature allows you to save and reuse targeting groups.
Mobile Device Targeting
Remember, only Power Editor enables you to show your ads to users of specific mobile devices and platforms.
But remember, whatever type of ad you’re running, relevancy to the user is key.
Feel free to share this blog, Facebook Advertising Best Practices, and How to Use Facebook Ad Creator and Facebook Power Editor. We only ask that when shared no changes are made, and credits are given to the authors.
About the Authors
This post was authored by John Thyfault, Vice President of Search & Social Strategy, and Laurie B. Beasley, President of Beasley Direct & Online Marketing.
John Thyfault (Contact John at firstname.lastname@example.org.) John has more than 19 years of marketing, sales and product development experience. He brings a proven track record of successful campaign, program and product development expertise. His knowledge of search engine optimization and marketing, combined with an in-depth understanding of customer identification, market analysis and segmentation, allows him to deliver high returns on our client’s marketing investment for both business-to-consumer and business-to-business markets.
Prior to working with Beasley Direct, John was Senior Client Services Project Director at ThirdAge.com, a first wave baby boomer lifestyle and community website. At ThirdAge he successfully led major client sponsorships for Fortune 100 companies in healthcare (Tylenol), financial services (American Century), technology (Intel & IBM) and consumer products areas (Revlon & Viactive). He was responsible for strategic and tactical goal setting, project management, new product creation and web site production. John previously worked in Channel Marketing and National Account Sales for IDG Books Worldwide, the publishers of the immensely popular “…For Dummies” book series. Additionally, he managed the wholesale distributor sales channel for Tor/Forge Books, an imprint of St. Martin’s Press.
Direct Marketing Association
John is active in local marketing associations. Including the Direct Marketing Association, the Business Marketing Association and is currently serving on the board of directors for the Silicon Valley American Marketing Association.
John has taught search engine marketing fundamentals extensively. He has led workshops for the Silicon Valley American Marketing Association, Northern California Direct Marketing Association and the Business Marketing Association. He also teaches Search Engine Marketing at UCSC Extension in Silicon Valley.
Laurie B. Beasley is co-founder and president of Beasley Direct and Online Marketing, Inc. Beasley Direct is a Silicon Valley direct marketing agency that has managed search, email, online, and demand generation campaigns for nearly 100 companies. Ms. Beasley serves as President of the Direct Marketing Association of Northern California. Laurie manages the eMarketing Roundtable for the BMA Northern California. She is also an instructor of online marketing at UC Berkeley Extension and teaches for the Online Marketing Institute. Ms. Beasley frequently speaks on online marketing and demand generation topics for marketing organizations, including the DMA, BMA, AMA, Tech Council, and the Online Marketing Summit.
Beasley Direct and Online Marketing, Inc. is known for bringing the latest marketing strategies to online and direct marketing. The company provides services in email marketing, search engine optimization, social media, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, website design, media planning, direct mail marketing, lead generation and nurture campaigns, and database management. Beasley Direct and Online Marketing, Inc. helps clients in both B2B and B2C marketing. Beasley Direct and Online Marketing is privately held and headquartered in the Silicon Valley suburb, Morgan Hill, California. For more information, go to www.BeasleyDirect.com or call Laurie Beasley, President, at 408-782-0046 x21 or email email@example.com.