We tackled a general approach to social media advertising in our previous post. This week we are going to take you into the details of advertising on Facebook.
Know Your Metrics
Why are you putting a Facebook ad out there? Do you want to increase clicks to your website? Are you trying to promote specific conversions on your website? Are you looking to get people to see a video, read a blog post, download your mobile application? Are you trying to increase foot-traffic in your store? Do you want potential customers to claim a promotional offer or attend a webinar or offline event? Once you get an idea of what your end-goal is, the steps to take become clearer and you will be able to measure success more efficiently.
Know Your Platform and Medium
Consider the percentage of your target audience who will access your page through desktop, mobile browsers and mobile applications. On Facebook, desktop ads have a 8.1 times higher click-through rate than regular web ads, and mobile ads a 9.1 times higher click-through rate. Facebook has a strong mobile following, so create your ad accordingly. 68 percent of Facebook users access the platforms via mobile. 66 percent of Facebook’s advertising revenue was through mobile advertising in the third quarter of 2014. In general, people are responsive to images and short videos. If you’re in a country where the 4G is slow and the text loads first and the images and videos take even longer, make sure you optimize for that.
Know Your Budget
There’s no cookie-cutter price for a Facebook ad. The price of ads vary depending on your business and ad type. Some sources report Facebook ads averaging around 25 cents for every 1,000 impressions while others point to it being over six or seven dollars. Facebook has the option of running an ad indefinitely, or until a certain date, or up to the point you’ve spent a certain fixed amount. Sometimes, at the beginning, Facebook might even offer you a promotional code which gives you a small discount for trying out their advertising. Your best bet is to come up with an approximate budget at the beginning and try out a couple of different approaches. To begin with, we suggest setting an upper limit in budget (aim for one week to ten days of advertising) after which the ad automatically terminates. After this, adjust the same depending on the feedback and analytics.
Understand How Liking and Following Pages Works
Once someone “Likes” a page, they’re yours forever. Your posts will show up on their timeline. Moreover, how Facebook’s algorithm works is– the more posts from your page they like, the more of your post show up on their timeline! The fewer posts of yours they “like”, the fewer show up. Facebook has recently introduced a “Follow” button for pages- once someone “Likes” your page, they automatically “follow” your page as well. However, they also have the option of to “Unfollow” your page– which means they still “Like” it publicly, but your posts don’t show up on their timeline. Unless you go out of your way to be annoying, it’s extremely unlikely that someone who has liked your page will make the effort to “Unlike” or “Unfollow” your page.
Different types of promotions
Facebook offers the option of different types of promotions: Advertising for pages, “Boosted posts”- which lets you promote specific page posts- and Facebook Offers- which allows you to offer discounts and promotions that can increase the foot traffic into your store.
Facebook allows you to target potential customers based on various characteristics like: location, demographics, interests and buying behavior. Facebook even allow you to direct your advertisements to those who follow similar accounts (have liked “Similar Pages”) to your own social media account. Targeting those who have liked your competitors’ pages is a fantastic strategy as this means they are your target audience. Also target those who like products with a branding, aesthetic or lifestyle consistent with your own. For instance, if you’re a local pet grooming business, plan for your ad to reach those who “Like” the pages of veterinarians and pet food stores in your city. Ensure that the theme of your ad is appealing to your target demographic and you’ll have them eating out of the palm of your hand.
CPM or CPC?
Facebook allows you to pay on a cost per click (CPC) basis or a cost per thousand impressions (CPM) basis. CPM is preferred for branding and might be cheaper while CPC is generally better if you’re looking to get potential customers to “convert”– i.e. actually check out and “Like” your page. What you choose depends entirely on what kind of engagement you desire. Try a bit of both at the beginning and see what works better for your page. Also, pay attention to what to what the media analytics are telling you!
How to buy
There are several online tutorials detailing the exact process, updated for any changes in Facebook’s design. Whatever you do, make sure you check out Facebook’s in-house guide first.
Track your analytics
While best practices and effective strategies do exist, social media advertising for Facebook is not a perfect science. Thankfully, Facebook has a wonderful “insights” and analytics dashboard to track page activity in real time, and over the course of days, weeks, months and years. Tracking the analytics during and after your campaign will give you a good sense of what is and isn’t working so you can come up with the best strategies and make the best decision for your business.