If you’re here, I’m going to assume that you’re thinking about Facebook advertising for your brand and have some questions around how to do this.
Facebook Ads, IMHO, is pretty much one of the best advertising platforms you can use. It has an extensive range of ad formats, placements and budget management tools. Throw in its huge audience database and targeting beyond anything I’ve seen in other social platforms, and you’re on to a winner.
It’s a gold mine for B2C businesses in the digital age and while I would lean towards LinkedIn first, it can also be utilised by B2B businesses.
However, because of all of these wonderful features it’s very easy to get overwhelmed and not know where to start. So, in this article I’ve included some of the most common questions I get asked by our clients (and by family members who think I work for the internet) to help straighten a few things out.
Q1. Do I need a personal Facebook account to run Facebook Ads?
Yes. Facebook uses your personal account to confirm your identity and this helps keep everything related to your business secure.
In addition, you’ll need to set up a Facebook page for your business if you haven’t done so already.
Q2. How do I create and manage Facebook Ads?
The best way to create and manage your Facebook ads is through Business Manager. It is a Facebook tool that allows you the manage all of your business assets, as well as manage and give access to any agencies or 3rd parties who might be helping you with your account.
You can also “boost” your organic posts from your Facebook page. This is a form of sponsored content and I like to think of it as a “mini ad” that is designed to drive engagement on that one post.
Boosting is recommended when a post is performing well as it helps support the organic engagement it is already receiving. It doesn’t make sense to boost a post that has poor organic performance because that post is not engaging, so think carefully about which posts to boost when you use this feature.
For any other objectives, you’ll need to run Facebook Ads. Once you’ve set up a Business Manager account, you’ll need to set up an Ad Account too.
Q3. How much do Facebook Ads cost?
As my Nan always says, how long is a piece of string? Before setting up Facebook Ads, you need to decide on a budget.
I’m a firm believer that you need to spend money to make money when it comes to advertising, and in this case, bigger is generally better, although what you do with it still counts.
I’ve listed a few tips below to help you decide on your advertising budget:
- Do not set your budget to anything more than you’re able to spend.
This is an absolute, number 1 rule. Advertising comes with no guarantees, especially if your ads aren’t optimised. You should initially base your budget around what you’re able to spend and then work from there.
- Make sure you have a clear advertising strategy.
You could spend £1000 on a campaign to drive sales and see no results if you’re not optimising your campaigns and setting them up according to a strategy. This part is crucial – without some kind of structure that helps the ads feed the activity you’re looking for you won’t see the best results.
- Do your research.
Have a look at the average CPC for your industry and work your budget out from there. These numbers do fluctuate and you might see different costs depending on where you look, but it’ll give you a good idea of what you might get for a budget you already have in mind, or allow to you calculate what budget you’ll need for the kind of results you want to see.
- Consider your audience and your product/service.
This ties into the point above – you need to think about the audience you’re trying to target, what you’re trying to get them to do and understand what the competition might be. The bigger the competition, the more expensive your ads will be and the bigger your budget will need to be.
- Hire a marketing agency.
If you’re serious about your marketing and social advertising campaigns, hire a marketing agency (like this one here) to help you put together a strong marketing strategy and run the campaigns to support it.
Q4. What audience should I target?
Facebook has a huge audience database, so the answer to this question completely depends on what your business goals are and what your consumer base looks like.
When we set up audiences for our clients, we would look at buyer personas and available data. There are a few different audience types, so I’d recommend looking into and understanding these if you plan to set them up yourself.
Once you’ve looked at the different audience types and targeting available, you can start to understand how Facebook targets ads and begin to look at super-charging your ads with the Facebook Pixel.
Q5. What marketing objective should I choose?
This depends entirely on your advertising goals and your marketing/advertising strategy.
If you’re unsure, think about what it is you want users to do when they see your ad – do you want them to like your Facebook page? Visit your website? Watch your video? Or perhaps you just want to get your brand name in front of them with the Brand Awareness objective?
Every objective optimises your ads in a different way, so it’s important to select the right one for your advertising goal.
Q6. What ad format and placements should I use?
When creating your Facebook Ads you’ll need to select the format (image, video, etc) and the placement (Newsfeed, Messenger, Stories etc). Again, this should be optimised depending on your marketing/advertising strategy and goals and relate to the marketing objective you choose when setting up your ads.
There are lots of different ad format and placement combinations you can use, but I do have a few recommendations for these:
- Always make sure that your creative (imagery) is the right size for each placement. Nothing is worse for user experience than seeing an ad designed for the Facebook News Feed crammed into an Instagram Story. This includes video!
- Don’t use automatic placements. Selecting your placements carefully and intentionally and putting the right creative behind each one will ensure your ads are being shown where you know your audience is.
- Personally, I don’t like to use the Audience Network. While it is a great way to reach an extended audience if you have the budget, it is also a lot less controlled and is a common reason for increased costs. Facebook has also recently shut down the mobile web arm of its Audience Network, although it will still run on apps.
Q7. How long should I run my ads for?
Run time for your ads is guided by the size of your audience and your budget. Facebook gives you a minimum budget required when setting up your ads if you try to set a budget that’s too low. You can increase filtering on your audience and reduce the run time to help get the minimum budget to what you can afford if it’s too high, however, it’s worth considering the pros and cons of doing this as you will also be limiting the results of your campaign.
Facebook distributes budget across your ads and spends evenly during your run time, unless you select accelerated delivery which will show your ads to as many people as possible as quickly as possible. You’re also able to set scheduled delivery so your ads only appear at certain times of the day and days of the week if preferred.
Bonus Q8. Should you be running Facebook Ads?
Short answer; yes.
Facebook advertising can range from being very simple one-off ads to large scale, complex campaigns – it all depends on your industry and the kind of results you want to generate.
If you’d like to speak to a member of the team regarding your marketing and advertising strategy, as well as how we can help support your business with channels like social advertising, you can contact us here.