Facebook Ads – Get Off on the Right Foot

by | Aug 9, 2016 | Social Media | 0 comments

Facebook Ads – Get Off on the Right Foot

Facebook advertising has shown incredible results for businesses. While companies may associate Facebook with wasting employees’ time on the job, Facebook ads provide an ideal avenue for getting in front of your audience. What better way to get in front of your target than being where they are?

One in Five pageviews on the internet happens on Facebook. That’s a startling fact. Lucky for businesses (and disconcerting for users) is that Facebook analyzes each action a user takes. They even track how long a user lingers on a post to determine how they show future content.

All the information collected that helps Facebook optimize a user’s news feed is also used to segment them. Demographic data, interests, and behaviors are all aggregated and available for businesses to create highly targeted Facebook ads. These ads can be used to build page likes, drive traffic to a website, or gather information for future marketing.

While Facebook ads are easy to create, creating an effective and engaging campaign can prove more difficult. For that reason, we thought we would provide our ten basic steps to properly working with Facebook ads.

1. Where to Start

Have a Facebook Business Page

This may seem simple, but many companies will set up their business as a personal page. Doing so does not allow you access to Insights and will not allow you to use the page for Facebook ads. You won’t even be able to boost posts. To set up a page, go to www.facebook.com/pages

Utilize the Facebook Ad Account

Once you run your first ad, Facebook creates an ad account for you. Go into the Ads Manager and look around. Here you can begin new ads, set up new audiences, and review ad performance.

Configure Audiences

Do not boost posts or create “like” campaigns before you get to know this area. If you select all people within a certain radius, you are going to waste a lot of money displaying your page to people that will never buy from you. A major advantage to using Facebook ads is its ability to specifically target your audience. Use it.

Head over to the “Audiences” section and click “Create Audiences” and select “Saved Audience”. This will allow you to create a saved target audience that you can select for future boosted posts and ads.

2. Types of Facebook Ads

Like Ads or “Promote Your Page”

We have fallen out of love with these types of ads. While some pages still get a fair amount of engagement, Facebook has significantly dropped traffic to business pages. Most pages are seeing as little as a 2% impression rate. Why pay to have people like your page when they will never see its content.

Boosted Posts

Boosted Facebook posts are effective in promoting a valuable piece of content from your page. Boosted posts can be shown to fans of your page or a saved audience. We love boosting posts to a targeted audience as a way to drive engagement. A side effect of boosted posts can be page likes. Not as valuable as they used to be but, they make us feel good nonetheless.

Local Awareness

We don’t use local awareness Facebook ads often at SNAP Forward. On the plus side, they allow you to saturate the immediate vicinity with ads by allowing a radius as small as one mile. Most ads will only allow you a radius of 10 miles or more. A large negative is the lack of segmentation aside from age and gender. As a coffee shop, I’d rather target coffee fanatics within 10 miles than everyone within 1 mile including those that hate coffee.

Brand Awareness

Brand Awareness ads are designed to do just what they say, increase your brand’s awareness. These ads are relying on Facebook’s algorithm to place the ad in front of someone that is most likely to recall it later.  While these types of ads may be enticing, advertising money may be better spent elsewhere. Brand awareness ads lack the direct response metrics that most ads provide. We think more experimentation is needed before we can recommend them.

Website Clicks

Website click ads are one of the most common ads that we use. They are incredibly effective at driving the right traffic to your website.

While advertising on search engines such as Google will target users further down the sales funnel, Facebook delivers your ads where people spend more of their time. When properly segmented and targeted, Facebook ads reach valuable audiences that Google Adwords may not. Compared to Google Adwords, Facebook ads also allow you to be more creative, engaging, and provide a richer experience with video and photos. Besides, Facebook Ads tend to be much less expensive per click.

Event Attendance

This type of Facebook ad works like most other types of ads but promotes an event that you have setup on Facebook. You get the same segmentation options. The real advantage is the Facebook event itself. When someone marks that they are interested in a Facebook event, it will be placed on their mobile device calendar. Even if they forget about the event, they will see it on their calendar in the future.

Video Views

Videos are incredibly important on Facebook. They are the fastest growing and most engaging type of content on the Facebook platform. The video view ad objective in Facebook ads can give your video content a jump start in gaining an audience.

Lead Collection

Lead collection advertising is an interesting Facebook ad that allows you to create a form to gather information. You can offer free information, a follow-up call, or price estimates.

We do not recommend newsletter sign-up ads. Who needs more junk mail? We do recommend asking for the least information possible. The more that you ask for, the less likely someone will fill it out.

Conversion Ads

By utilizing the Facebook Pixel, this type of ad is created to measure and optimize your ads to maximize conversions on your website. This ad requires a level of trust that Facebook will show your ads to the proper people. For more about the Facebook pixel, keep reading.

Offer Claims

This type of Facebook ad allows you to create an offer on Facebook and select an audience to show it to. You can select a percentage off, dollar amount discount, BOGO, or “Free Stuff” offer.

Other Types of Facebook Ads

In addition to the ad types mentioned above, Facebook also offers ads to promote app installs, app engagement, and product catalog promotion. We don’t utilize them often and won’t go into depth here. If you have a specific need, let us know and we can provide more information.

3. Explore the Demographic Options

The beauty and power of Facebook advertising is to be the ability to drill down into a very specific market. A small sampling includes:

  • Income
  • Net Worth
  • Job Title
  • Home Ownership
  • Household Makeup
  • Property Size
  • Food and Drink Preferences
  • Restaurant Preference
  • Hobbies
  • Shopping Interests
  • Charitable Donations
  • Purchase Behavior

In each of these categories are sub-categories that you can choose to target.

Want to market to an Expat from Turkey, living in Pittsburgh, that is interested in Chinese cuisine? You can do that.

Are you a Beachbody coach looking to target middle-aged, single women interested in nutrition and fans of Autumn Calabrese? Perfect!

Are you a restaurant in San Diego that targets tourists traveling from other areas? You can do that too.

Facebook ad targeting is an exciting tool that allows any business to target their ideal client. As long as you know who that is.

4. The Facebook Pixel

The Facebook Pixel is the key to tracking conversions and properly retargeting visitors. Using it can be a little confusing to most people. We recommend setting up your Facebook pixel and placing it on your website. This will begin gathering information about your audience for future use.

5. Creating Your First Audience

Start small. Especially if you are a local business, designate the smallest possible ad radius, usually ten miles. Try to be as selective a possible. Remember that each category you pick adds people to the pool of prospective people that will see your Facebook ad. To refine your audience, you will need to exclude some people.

If you want to target cat lovers but know that your customers don’t like dogs, you would exclude people with an interest in dogs.

For more information about creating an audience, look to Facebook for a detailed step-by-step.


6. Be Creative

A compelling ad can mean the difference between a successful campaign and wasted money. Even if you hit your target audience, you have to give them a reason to click.

The Small Things Matter

You will be surprised at the small variables that influence a person’s reception to a Facebook ad. The length of copy, color, photo content, and more, all contribute to better click through rates.

Be a Copycat

Look at other ads in your feed and find what is compelling for you. Try to model your ad based on what you like and make changes as you analyze results.

Make It Fit

Ads for the desktop feed, desktop sidebar, mobile feed, and Instagram all have different dimensions. Ensure your ad fits where you are placing it.

Keep It Easy

Canva is an app that we use to create clean and compelling ads on Facebook. Even better, Canva properly sizes your ad depending on placement. No more guessing and setup. Give it a try.

7. Create a Landing Page

Do not send someone to your home page. When creating a website click ad, create a landing page that directly addresses the ad that got them there. Make it visually appealing and give the person a clear call-to-action. You have moments to make a good impression. Do not make the person hunt around to what you want them to do next. Finally, don’t be dishonest. Click-bait type ads only make you look bad.

8. Ad Sets

Inside of each Facebook ad campaign is the ability to create Ad Sets. This allows you to create multiple ads, targeting multiple segments, with the same objective. Ad Sets also allow you to accomplish A/B testing to determine which ad works best for your audience.

9. A/B Tests

We have found that something as simple as a background color can impact how many people click on a Facebook ad. Different photos may resonate better. Headline and copy length, calls-to-action, and more can all impact how well your ad performs. Developing two or three versions of that same ad and comparing the results can yield plenty of insight.

10. Placement

Before you publish an ad, Facebook allows you to preview it on all the placement options that you selected. You may find that what looks great for desktop, does not look good on mobile. It may certainly not look good on Instagram.

We have found that the majority of our clients’ ads are displayed to mobile users. Looking into the statistics, Facebook states that 80% of their traffic is now via a mobile device. Knowing that, it is important to ensure that you design an ad for mobile first.

If you are placing an ad on Instagram, be sure that it fits the platform. In other words, the users of Instagram are used to seeing creative and eye-catching photos and video. Don’t be the eyesore among the eye-candy.

You may need to create a separate ad for each placement depending on copy and visuals.

Getting the Edge on the Competition with Facebook Ads

Facebook advertising requires a lot of testing, trial and error, and patience. Follow these tips and get off on the right foot. With some creativity and a little work, Facebook advertising can be a cost-effective alternative to traditional advertising that gives you a leg up.


Discover Great Digital Marketing