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How to Advertise on Facebook

Advertising on Facebook It seems to be the trendy thing to do at the moment for lots of businesses.

Facebook ads can work out cheaper (in terms of CPC) than a lot of other forms of PPC.

I first became interested in Facebook ads when I was working as a community manager, which gave me some great experience in the social media world. The possibilities for businesses on Facebook are nigh on unlimited. Its an ridiculously sized network of users 1.32 billion according to Wikipedia and you can create targeted ads based on any number of criteria.

Thats really the beauty of social advertising as oppose to traditional, keyword based, pay per click marketing.

Youre targeting users not just based on the keywords theyre using. With the revolution in paid social ads, you can target based on a users identity. What they like, what they dont like, how old they are, where theyre based, whether they join certain communities, who they interact with, what theyve been doing recently and more.

Targeting the right user is crucial to effective paid ads. If you get that part right, youre well on your way to a winning strategy.

Theres been a few studies around the cost of Facebook advertising. As with any paid online marketing though, its really a case of how much do you want to pay to advertise on Facebook.

Unfortunately the nature of these ads means youre going to need a decent strategy that you know is going to work.

For that, you need data For that, you need to risk some cash.

Maybe you can risk £20.00 and end up running one incredible campaign that scales over and over until youre a millionaire. Maybe you end up spending £5,000.00 before you find that magic campaign.

Making any kind of estimation of what youll have to spend to see success isnt really for me to say. Base it on what you can afford. Start small, see what works and scale up.

The Facebook ad network has two different bidding options. Lets compare the two!

CPC
You pay for a click.
Priced in £/$ per click on your ad.
Lower cost if ads are poorly designed.
Cheaper when testing campaigns.

CPM
You pay for an impression.
Priced in £/$ per 1,000 impressions.
Same price regardless of ad quality.
Cheaper CPA for well performing campaigns.

There are advantages to both options.

The basic advice that youll find is using CPC for testing campaigns, finding out whats working best for you and ensuring that you dont burn through your entire advertising budget in no time.

Then, in time, you can move your very best performing ad campaigns across to CPM bidding. Again, youll need to test (as I always say) to ensure that youre getting the same value.

What you should find though is that your best performing campaigns work out slightly better value for money if youre using CPM bidding on Facebook. With the amount of people out there using The Social Network (see what I did there ) youre unlikely to run out of people to target.

Again, youve got multiple options here.

First of all you need to decide on what you want to promote. Now seeing as I primarily focus on websites on my blog, Im going to pretend that you have a website and a Facebook page.

If you want to promote your retail store, app, event or specific offer, I recommend you head over to AdEspresso and read up on different types of advertising. (Sorry guys Im only one man, cant be the expert of everything!)

Lets start with the website.

If the primary goal of your Facebook ad campaign is to attract traffic to your website then youll have two ad formats available to you. The first, Desktop News Feed ads will only be available to you if you can link the website youre trying to advertise to a Facebook page. If you dont have one I advise you create one. Theres a great guide written by ElegantThemes here.

Lets say I wanted to promote my homepage on the blog and Ive already got a Facebook page (which I have).

Our first option is the Desktop News feed ad.

I know it seems like Ive been really negative about sidebar ads here, but they certainly have their uses.

Sidebar ads, precisely because theyre less visible, have a much lower CTR. Therefore youre likely to burn through money at a much slower rate when using them. Thats no bad thing.

Plus it gives you the chance to test hundreds of different combinations of images and text. This is the kind of data youre going to need to finally make your ad campaign a success. Going straight into the news feed ads, in my opinion, means your testing process will cost you more money.

Theres a lot of people, Jon Loomer for one, have shown that you can be really successful with Sidebar ads too so never write them off! Theyre an important part of the mix for the majority of Facebook marketers.

There are a huge range of demographics that you can target on Facebook. Ive spoken on the blog numerous times about getting your target audience right. Hopefully you already know who your target audience are, where they tend to hang out and what other online properties theyre interacting with.

There are a huge range of demographic targeting options available to you on Facebook:

And this is just the tip of the iceberg If you think Im joking, check out this Qwaya infographic.

You dont need to utilise all of these targeting options at once. It all depends on the audience youre trying to reach.

One of the first things you can do to start generating an audience to target on Facebook is think about the following questions:

Now it might seem difficult at first, but answers to these questions are going to help you in every kind of digital marketing. Whether its SEO, content marketing, PPC or Facebook Ads.

Once youve answered those questions, you can start adding in a few details to the Facebook Adverts Manager and youll begin to get an idea of what your potential audience is on the worlds biggest social network.

Heres an example of a Facebook audience that might work for my blog:

  • In the UK.
  • Likes digital marketing topics.
  • Doesnt use IE.

As you can see I can reach over 1.1 million people with this audience.

Thats going to burn through my money like nobodys business. I would definitely refine this. Maybe by reducing the age range, focusing on different interests, or adding another recent action.

Youll want to aim for a much smaller group of targets, unless youve got a MASSIVE budget to burn through.

As social media advertising becomes more and more popular, there are more and more companies popping up to create helpful tools that make managing your Facebook ads really easy.

The majority are paid, as youll usually find with any for of paid marketing. But there are some exceptions.

Lets start at the beginning with a free tool from Facebook themselves.

The Facebook power editor is primarily a tool for managing different adverts, campaigns and accounts while using Facebooks ad platform. Its not the prettiest tool in the world I have to admit but its effective.

You can easily control where your ads appear, what ads are included in which campaigns and adjust your bidding strategy.

If youre working with a large amount of ads, which you will be doing eventually if you want to find real success with FB ads, youll soon see how much time you can save with this tool.

This is an extremely popular professional tool for when your campaign starts to take off.

I never advise paying money to help with something youre losing money on. Dont expect it to turn a failing campaign around. The management, analysis and testing tools that Qwaya offer though will help you get more from the time you put in. This, in turn, will lead to better results.

They also offer automatic rules which will allow you to pause or start campaigns based on any number of conditions. This can be really useful if youve got a specific event in mind for example. Say if you wanted to run a campaign around the World Cup Final for example, youd want to get your ads published at specific times for maximum effect. You want to be in the pub when the World Cup Final is on, not sitting in front of your laptop.

The other nice thing about Qwaya is the team functions. Invite people you work with into the app and they can help manage your campaigns and share their expertise.

AdEspresso isnt just a tool It feels more like a community. Their blog is absolutely awesome Ive already mentioned them earlier in the post as the place to go to learn more.

Obviously all those great content marketing efforts are designed on bringing attention to their Facebook ad tool.

Again, it makes A/B testing your Facebook ads a breeze, gives you some powerful analytics and helps you reduce your CPC with some great advice.

There are three pricing levels, which gives even smaller users the chance to get on board. The more expensive packages increase the number of accounts you can use, the level of support and even give you some dedicated training to help you make the most of your new tool.

Remember Take the free trial available for any paid tools before you commit to purchasing them. Its important to know what youre going to be getting and if its right for you.

I could but Im probably not best positioned to give you tips. There are people using Facebook ads much more effectively than me! What I will do for my readers is round up some of the best paid Facebook tips I can find from the real pros of this game.

Promote a Benefit, Not a Product.

Instead of directly promoting a product or your business, you need to promote the value or benefit that I will receive by clicking on your Ad.

Use Colour and stand out on the Facebook page.

An easy way to stand out is to play with the colour pallete. Facebook is blue and white and has very cold tones. Greens, Oranges and Reds stand out.

Retargeting ads use a tracking pixel that you’ve put on your website. You can set the pixel to track for 30, 60, or 90 days.

Retargeting ads are great because they allow you to target the people that really care about your brand; they help you connect with your website visitors on Facebook.

Remember, in the world of Facebook advertising, you are never done optimizing! There is always something new you can be testing or trying to better engage your audience and get them to convert.

Ive read lots of case studies in my time on Facebook ads Including lots on the normal forums.

However, I could never do a better job than this amazing round up by Jason Keath:

I can only really cover the basics for you in this post.

Luckily for us, as usual in digital marketing, there are lots of places to learn more and constantly improve the way we work. Advertising on Facebook is no different.

Theres lots more out there obviously But Id say these four are a great starting point.

So there you have it folks. Hopefully a useful post that will inspire some of you to get into Facebook marketing.

Theres so much potential here, from the targeting, the the potentially low CPCs, youve got a great chance to create more revenue and dramatically increase brand exposure.

As you know Im a big advocate for diversifying your traffic sources. Primarily I work in SEO and I believe that organic traffic should be the backbone of your digital marketing plan. However, if youve got the opportunity to make more money why not take it!

Thanks to all the people who have created the amazing resources you can find in this post.

If you see something missing and you think it should be included in this post, or if you think Ive got something completely wrong Let me know!

Dont forget to leave a comment to without feedback from you how can I make the blog better?

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