With their supreme targeting and exciting opportunities for visuals, Facebook Ads offer a valuable tool for small businesses. If you’re looking to make an impression with your impressions, we’ve put together an article on everything you need to know about Facebook Ads, complete with our top seven tips.
Why Are Facebook Ads such a great idea?
In addition to winning selfies and brunch photos, Facebook is home to a wealth of customer data. Every time a user likes a post or page or joins a group, the social media giant gains key insights into their interests and consumer behaviour. From a call-out for chiropractor recs to an RSVP to a foot pain webinar, each interaction leaves a trail of data that advertisers can use to narrow down a highly precise target demographic.
Facebook Ads also offer an excellent return-on-investment. With Google Ads, you need to pay competitive CPC rates for select keywords. Depending on your sector, this can get expensive fast. But research has shown that Facebook Ads achieve more visibility at a lower cost. In 2022, the average CPC for Facebook ads was $0.94, with a cost per thousand impressions (CPM) running at $12.07. While users are not actively seeking you out like they are on Google, the platform is ideal for building brand awareness and growing your following. And with tips for tailoring your ad, you can maximize your approach to increase leads and conversions.
And finally, the Facebook Ad format is conducive to stellar visuals, thanks to the seamless integration of video content right into your customers’ newsfeeds. The platform allows for a variety of flexible formats to refine your campaign strategy.
How does the Facebook Ads bidding auction work?
For every ad space, the Facebook algorithm conducts an automated auction to determine which ad will be displayed to a targeted user. To win the auction, an ad must demonstrate the highest total value. Value is established on three factors: bid, estimated action rates, and ad quality.
So, let’s say that two Montréal gyms are trying to target new members with their January New Year, New You campaign. They’re both offering get-back-in-shape specials and hope to reach similar audiences. How does the Facebook algorithm decide which ad appears in the target market’s newsfeed? Let’s take a look at each factor.
Bid: When you set up your ad, you will select your daily budget and choose how long you would like to run the ad. Obviously, your bidding amount will have an effect on whether you will win the advertising spot. But it is taken together with other factors. If one gym’s ad is full of body-shaming and weight-loss messages, users may choose to “hide ad” from their feed, influencing the ad’s diagnostics and visibility.
Estimated action rates: This is a measure of how likely it is for the viewer to follow through with the advertiser’s set goals, whether that’s likes, clicks, or conversions. If the gym ad mentions yoga classes and the user has been posting about their new mat and gear, the algorithm will pick up that this could be a good match. Facebook’s business help center warns that “Engaging in clickbait and engagement bait does not improve ad performance.”
Ad quality: Here, the algorithm will consider overall relevance and viability of your ad. Are people consistently hiding it? Is engagement low despite showing it to people who meet all the criteria of your ideal customer persona? Facebook has access to viewer feedback who may report that an ad is manipulative or inaccurate. All this can reduce your impressions.
These threefold criteria work together to set up your ad for success—or not. As promised, for best results, here are our top seven tips for creating Facebook Ads that meet all your goals.
What are Linkeo’s Top Seven Tips for a Fabulous Facebook Ad?
1. Customize Your Call-to-Action to Match Your Objective
Facebook’s Meta Ads Manager is gradually introducing six categories of Facebook Ads: awareness, traffic, engagement, leads, app promotion, and sales. The nature of your ad may affect which options are available to you. But in any case, your call-to-action should clearly reflect the objective you’ve chosen in your ad.
For awareness or traffic ads, you’re looking to reach more users and build your following. So, while a “Shop Now” button won’t hurt, your call-to-action button is more likely to look like “Learn More,” or “Browse” or something earlier in the commitment process like a link to a blog post or option to click on a video. You want to spark interest in your company with compelling visuals and a clear message that speaks to your viewer.
“Engagement” and “Leads” ads strive to coax your customer further down the purchase funnel with concrete actions. Subscribe to save! Click to Follow! Shop Now! or Get in touch! The app promotion and sales stage takes this approach and works to achieve even more valuable goals that drive consumers to the end of their purchase journey. Buy Now! Download App! Register Here!
2. Visuals Are Critical
You only have a few seconds to capture your prospects’ attention before they scroll down to their cousin’s makeup tutorial or the latest recipe in the New York Times. Images and videos are what will capture their attention first and inspire them to pause. Remember that 65% of people retain visual information more easily than other types of communication. Add this fact to this everyone’s at best fragile attention spans and visual content is more crucial than ever.
Users are 40 times more likely to share content when it contains visuals. And on Facebook specifically, posts that contain visuals receive 230% more engagement than posts that don’t. The takeaway: it’s worth putting in the time and effort to create eye-catching visuals and videos. And while you’re at it, you have the opportunity to establish your brand’s graphic identity with your unique aesthetic, font, and colour palette. Make your content beautiful and recognizable. And don’t forget to incorporate your sleek company logo in all the right places!
3. Create Excellent Copy—But Not Too Many Words!
Again, concentration is at a premium these days. In the Facebook newsfeed, there’s no time for meandering or mediocre copy. Or typos! Get your you’re and your straight and nail your text to make your readers curious and want to learn more. Give them a taste of what you have to offer so they feel compelled to click. Good marketing tells a reasonably to irresistibly riveting story. Aim for irresistible. If you need a few writing tips, check out our article, How to Write a Fabulous Blog Post.
And remember, when mixing texts and visuals, too many words is overwhelming to readers. All the tried and true cliches apply: Keep it short and simple. Less is more.
4. What are the Facebook Ad formats?
Facebook offers five different types of ad formats. Each one prioritizes visual content which we’ve just finished singing the praises of. Here’s what you have to choose from:
Standard Image Format: This refers to a static visual that showcases your products or services. Facebook supports a wide variety of image formats but for best results, the platform recommends a JPG or PNG file.
Video Ads: Always a crowd-pleaser, videos are fabulous for all of your Facebook Ad objectives. Best practices include
- Lead strong (feature your offer and hook in the beginning)
- Make it short and sweet (15 seconds or less)
- Use a vertical or square aspect ratio (4:5 vertical video)
- Assume the sound will be off and include captions and texts/visuals that get your message across silently.
Carousel Images: These feature several panels of images of videos, showcasing different products and offers with the potential to link to multiple landing pages. Carousel images are great for telling a story, outlining benefits, or walking people through a process step by step.
Instant Experience: An Instant Experience begins as a regular ad before transforming into a fullscreen presentation once someone clicks on it. It’s just another way to fully immerse your prospects in your offers. Best practices are similar to what we listed for video ads.
Collection Format: This version of the Instant Experience showcases multiple products at a time.
As long as you stay committed to stellar visuals, any of these formats provide a sure bet for a successful Facebook Ad. Beyond ad format, you also have your choice of placement which includes the Facebook newsfeed, Facebook stories, Facebook messenger, or in the right-hand column wherever people are logged in. For our purposes, we have mostly focussed on newsfeed ads, which tend to be the most common and offer vast opportunities for reaching new prospects. You can also decide to run your ads on Facebook Marketplace or on Instagram.
5. Refine Your Audience
Facebook Ads are glorious for pinpointing a super specific target market and connecting with the customers who count. Available data is so rich that you can narrow your audience down to late-thirty-something single straight women who have hankerings for library books, natural skincare, and $10 Middle Eastern sandwiches. Deep in the world of Facebook Meta Business Suite, you can refine your reach by demographic (age, gender, income net worth, kids or no kids, partner or no partner, living situation, location (Plateau Montréal, Soho, the Mission, Perth Ontario), or interests (manual washing machines, musical theatre, Strip Spelling Bees). The process is infinite and that’s a good thing. The Meta Business reports will let you evaluate who is responding to your ads and from there, you can refine your audience with even more precision.
While you are narrowing down your audience, you’ll notice that Facebook will calculate your estimated audience reach. Facebook recommends that you aim for between 2 and 10 million people. In your Meta Business Suite Ad Center, you’ll know you made it there when the meter in the scale falls in the green range, so your audience is clearly defined and neither too broad nor too narrow.
6. Set Your Budget and Duration
People get nervous when it comes to costs, but you can console yourself with the fact that Facebook Ads offer a promising return on investment. As for your budget, you’re going to think in terms of a larger marketing strategy. Your total will depend on your field and competition, where you are in your business journey, and whether you are investing in other advertising channels. While a Facebook Ad can cost as little as $1 per day, we recommend that you start with at least a $5 and ideally $10 daily investment. Looking at your advertising strategy as a whole, your marketing budget may range from 5% to 12% of your sales turnover, though to grow a new business, you may benefit from a more hard-hitting approach.
To give your ad the chance to expand its reach, Facebook recommends that you run it for a minimum of 7 days. You can review your results and pause and resume your campaign at any time.
7. Try Facebook Ads With Linkeo
As you can see, there’s lots to learn in the world of Facebook Ads. And even with this vast introduction, we’ve really only scratched the surface. If you feel your time is better served at other endeavours, you can always call in our SEM team at Linkeo. With a specialty in small businesses, we know what it takes to define your target marketing, create a stunning ad, and design a strategy that lets you meet your goals. Once your campaign is live, you can count on us to monitor your performance and make the necessary tweaks as we go.
With more than 2 billion users online, Facebook offers a massive marketing potential, with millions of customers scrolling every day. Get in touch, so we can make sure they find you.