As you’ve looked for new ways to market your small business, you’ve probably heard that Facebook ads are great for small businesses looking for marketing on a budget or a must-have in your marketing plans. But is it the best for your business? We’re here to help by first sharing what you need to know before getting started with Facebook advertising
With more than 2.3 billion people using Facebook every month, and nearly 1.6 billion users every day, Facebook offers up a unique opportunity for marketers to augment their organic efforts. Facebook’s incredible targeting capabilities and expansive reach is what makes it the most effective social media platform to invest your advertising dollars. But with its huge audience comes a huge list of advertising packages, which can make diving in pretty overwhelming. Not to mention, with both an investment of time and money on the line, there’s not much room for oversight.
It’s not uncommon for businesses to invest in Facebook ads and fail to see a meaningful return the first few times out of the gate. With so many options, it’s key to get a strategy in place so you can continue to test and iterate on your efforts.
It’s tempting to want to dive right in and purchase your place in the palace, but we recommend thinking through some important elements before getting started with Facebook advertising. In this post, we’ll walk you through basics to consider before investing, so you can be sure to make the most of Facebook advertising and set your small business up for success. In our next post, we’ll walk through how to create your Facebook ad campaigns.
A lot of people come to us asking what they need to do with Facebook ads. This can be challenging question to answer as every small business has a different set of goals they’re trying to hit. One might strive to generate leads, one might want to increase reach, and one might want sales and nothing else. Each goal will require a different advertising strategy when starting with Facebook ads, so it’s important to know why you’re going after them in the first place.
For most small businesses, their main goals might center around generating new leads, increasing sales for a particular product, or boosting online presence. Your reason could be different from those of your competitors, which is why it is important for you to clarify your goals from the start. Be sure to set time aside with your company to outline clear goals for social media advertising in order to gain team buy-in.
Facebook offers a few objectives for your campaigns. Depending on your goals, you should choose the type of campaign that best suits you. And then you have to measure your KPI’s. You can choose from:
Once you define your goals, then it becomes easier to use Facebook advertising to your advantage. It also becomes possible to measure the success of your ad campaign with the proper Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Without these important factors in place, it becomes almost impossible to know if you are on the right path to actualizing the dream of growing your small business.
This is just as important as your goals. The better you target your audience on Facebook, the more effective your campaign will be. Plus your cost per click or action will be a lot lower. That means you can reach more people within your budget.
Who do you think will be most interested in your offer? What type of potential client are you hoping to attract? Where do they live and how much are they willing to spend? What are their interests? These are just a few of the questions you’ll need to answer to effectively target your ads to the right audience. Make sure you’re focused on potential members in your local area. Look at nearby competitors to see what they’re advertising.
“It’s important to identify the different types of clients that you already attract and determine which ones you actually want more of,” says Nadia Walker Arnold, co-owner of Barre Forte in Denver. “Then market specifically to those people by finding common elements shared between them, such as they are all moms, millennials, make a certain amount of household income, live in a 5-mile radius and are interested in fitness. Focus specifically on those people. If this makes your potential pool of people too small, figure out which of those details are least important and remove them from your search criteria.”
Facebook ads are designed to target down to the nitty gritty details, including age and specific interests. The more you know about current audience and the audiences you’re hoping to acquire, the better. Once again, sit down with your team and pull together your buyer personas (or create buyer personas) so you know how to whittle down details when it comes to setting up your first campaign.
At your disposal is Facebook Audience Insights — a useful tool that can save you time and money by giving you the information you need to make the right decisions concerning your audience. For example, you can choose to target everyone on Facebook, those already connected to your page, or a custom audience. Once you choose an audience, you’ll glean insights into who they are and what will work best for them by studying their demographics, the types of pages they like and follow, their location, their purchasing activity, and so on.
When you’re planning your first campaign on Facebook, it can be hard deciding how much you should spend. Every time you run a campaign, cost will vary based on the goals of your campaign, model of bidding, size of an audience that you want to target, competition in a specific period of time, etc. For example, ads around Christmas time will be most expensive. Facebook then estimates the average cost while you’re setting your targeting in Ad Manager or Power Editor.
These tools aren’t perfect and won’t give an exact number. But they will give you estimations that are fairly close to what you might spend based on what you select. Remember, you’re just getting started and you want to be wise in your approach. Thankfully, social channels as big as Facebook offer plenty of help when it comes to establishing that budget.
It may go without saying, but what you plan to do on Facebook should align very closely with what you’re already doing in marketing efforts elsewhere. Images might look different, but messaging should be similar and consistent.
To help maintain brand harmony,be sure to outline your content calendar with your team and see where Facebook ads best fit into the overall strategy. Maybe there are specific times where ads might become more seasonal or perhaps highlight a special offer. Whatever the case may be, make sure it’s built into your future efforts.
Once you know when to place your ads, be sure to create more than one advertisement for your ad campaign to improve its efficacy. With multiple ads targeted at the same group and conveying a similar message, you can easily keep your audience engaged and entertained.
And then rotate the ads to see how your target audience reacts to them within a specified period. The Click-Through Rate (CTR) for each ad would help you identify the effective ones that can help you achieve your set goals. Take down ineffective ads so as not to waste money.
A good ad campaign is not complete without a well-designed, well-articulated landing page that clearly communicates what prospective buyers need to know about your business.
Before getting started with Facebook advertising — and specifically spending money on Facebook advertising — make sure your website pages serve your audience well. You won’t be able to say much in your advertisement, so make sure that your landing page does that for you via effective content and enticing imagery.
A landing page that relays a different message causes customers to click out and decreases the credibility of your brand.
There are a great many factors to consider when it comes to advertising on Facebook, but these are the most important to consider before getting started with Facebook advertising. Stay tuned for our next blog as we outline more practical steps for getting started with your first Facebook advertising campaign.