Facebook Advertising is powerful. You can specifically target the demographics you want to reach within the billion or so people who use Facebook on a daily basis. And if you craft your objectives for your ad campaign carefully, you can gain a lot of value. Our clients have increased their likes by thousands, simply by using Facebook Ads strategically.
In creating Facebook ad campaigns for our direct selling clients, we’ve come to identify some best practices that work regardless of the client or objective. If you’re considering running a Facebook Ad campaign, consider these tips:
- Plan first. With every Facebook Ad campaign we run, we start with goals of the campaign. Is it to increase the likes on the Facebook Page in order to build brand recognition? Is it to share a content piece that will ultimately help to increase sales? Whatever it is, don’t jump into Facebook Ads until you know what you want them to do for your business. This will help you plan the messaging of your ads.
- Keep them in Facebook. We find we get better results from our ad campaigns when we keep people within Facebook. This means making the landing page of the campaign a Facebook Page. Of course, it doesn’t have to be the main Page…it can be an app tied to the page. More on that in a minute. The other advantage is that we find when we send people to a website while they’re in social networking mode, they rarely convert. However, if we connect with them via the Facebook Page and build a relationship with them first, we’re more likely to ultimately achieve a conversion.
- Tie it to something free. We find Facebook ad campaigns work best when they lead people to something they can get for free. While contest enticements are second best (and they also work), free is my favorite way to get the most from Facebook Ads. We often will create a free content piece (ebook, typically) that everyone can get by clicking. Here’s an example of a free content piece that we just released at the Direct Selling Education Foundation (client): http://bit.ly/dsefebook2
- Use a “Like-gate.” Remember when I said you can send them to an app tied to your Page? Well this is where that happens. You can use a service like Pagemodo (the pro version) to create a tab on your Facebook Page where people can download your free content. However, before they can access the content, they have to Like your Page. It’s an easy and effective way to build the Likes on your Facebook Page, and if you’ve built your free content giveaway effectively, they will get additional brand messaging as they use it.
- Pictures are everything in Facebook ads. You have a 25 word headline and 90 characters for the main body of your Facebook ad. You will not be able to say anything significant. It’s all about whether or not your picture is eye-catching enough to entice them to click. I have found that having a pop of color in the photo (red often works) is helpful, and closeups of faces are also good. Nothing is guaranteed (you always have to test) but these two tips will often cause an ad to perform better. We’ve run the EXACT same wording in an ad with 3 different pictures, and one ad will perform SIGNIFICANTLY better than the other two (and we can’t always predict which one). And that brings me to my next point.
- Split-test. Whenever you run your ad campaign, you MUST create at least 3 different versions of every single ad you run. We always find that one will outperform the others. And you can learn from the ad that performs best, helping you create better ads throughout the duration of your campaign.
- Change it up. The beauty of Facebook ads is that you can run as many ads as you like at any given time, and you’re still only charged the amount you specify for the day. So we go crazy with ads…creating a bunch of them each day as we see what is resonating with the people we’re trying to reach, learning from each success. Keep the effective ones running as long as they’re still generating clicks, and pause the ones that are not performing.
- Pay per click means you only pay when something happens. While you can choose to pay for ads in one of two ways…CPM – Cost per every thousand impressions, or CPC – Cost per click…I always do cost per click. We usually wind up paying far less per click than we bid (and we bid for each click within Facebook’s recommendations for each ad), and this way you won’t get charged for underperforming ads, no matter how many times they’re displayed.
Have you used Facebook Ads? Have they worked for you? What advice would you give? Would love to read your thoughts in the comments below.