December 27, 2017
Year after year, Facebook reports an increased number of users and increased revenue from ads. And that’s perfectly normal given that 93 percent of marketers use Facebook ads regularly. Yes, you read that right.
I could fill a solid book with stats about Facebook and its advertising platform. But I don’t want to bore you.
So I’ll wrap this up by saying that no business can afford to ignore Facebook advertising. No, not even B2B ones. At the digital marketing agency I run, social media marketing and management are a big part of our daily routine. We created a lot of Facebook campaigns for both B2B and B2C clients. And I can say without a shadow of a doubt that they have worked wonders for both these categories.
Of course, not all Facebook campaigns are successful. Some fail spectacularly. This article is meant to prevent you from investing in under-performing ads.
6 tips for unbeatable Facebook ads campaigns
1. Target the right people
One of the reasons why advertisers flock to Facebook is the constant upgrade of their targeting capabilities. The advertising platform goes way beyond age, gender and location.
Yes, you can set a campaign in five minutes or less. But the more time you spend looking at targeting parameters, the more successful it will be.
For instance, did you know that you can target certain behaviors? And I mean VERY relevant behaviors like “people in California who are in the market for a luxury car.”
You can also target people who have already expressed interest in your competitors (if your industry is big enough) or professionals in literally any field.
Before you set your campaign, take an in-depth look at your buyer persona. What services or products that are complementary to yours would they use? What brands do they love?
You may not be able to add the need for your product or service as a stand-alone behavior. But you are very likely to hit close to home with complementary ones.
2. Refrain from being to inclusive
If you’ve ever set up a Facebook campaign, you already know that, with every targeting parameter you add, your audience size increases. This metric shows you how many people on Facebook correspond to at least one of your criteria.
It’s important to note that you won’t reach all those people for various reasons: you are overbid by other advertisers, some of them use ad blocking software and, most often, you don’t have enough budget to reach them all.
Despite all that, most marketers still feel tempted to add as many parameters as possible. It’s a relic of old-school marketer. If you reach as many people as possible, someone is bound to buy, right? Much like: if you throw a ton of spaghetti against the wall, some are bound to stick, right?
There’s no such thing in online advertising. When you reach too many people, the only thing that happens is that you spend money on irrelevant segments. No matter how high your bid is, some people just won’t buy your products.
Think about it: would you buy Chevrolet parts if you drove a Honda?
3. Remember that it’s about them, not you
This one is pretty straightforward and it goes for any type of copy, not just ads: don’t sell products, sell benefits or emotions.
Here’s an example: “We have a great offer on pink unicorns” will always perform much worse that “You can’t afford to miss this offer on pink unicorns” or “Get your own pink unicorn at a special price.”
In other words, make the buyer the star of any campaign. Stir emotions, paint pictures with your words. Your goal is to make the reader understand how great they would feel using your product or service.
4. Don’t track vanity metrics
Link clicks and views are irrelevant. Traffic doesn’t pay the bills.
Sales, on the other hand, do.
Make sure you track your sales or conversions through Facebook Pixel. This is how you can tell exactly what the ROI of your Facebook campaign was. Even if you’re not selling products, you can still track the number of leads you acquired via Facebook ads.
Pro tip: Facebook Pixel has been known to be error-prone and overly “optimistic” in terms of reporting conversions. My advice is to double-check those metrics through Google Analytics and/or UTM links.
5. Test, test and then test some more
We all have that perfect photo that we think works wonders with Facebook ads. Or that quote. Or that excellent offer.
However, no matter how well you know your buyer persona (and you should know them VERY well), you still can’t predict with 100 percent accuracy what’s going to work at any given moment.
So you test. You never use a single photo or video for your ads. You also use multiple audiences. And multiple versions of the copy.
Why bother, you ask?
Because this gives you the chance to save big on your ads.
Let me offer a real-life example: we managed to save 30 percent of the monthly costs of Facebook ads for a client. And it was as simple as A/B testing with two different photos of the same car.
As usual, overdoing might kill your ads’ effectiveness. Make sure you don’t test too many variables at once. You won’t be able to get any relevant information from the results. You can start by testing the graphics. Once you’ve found the ideal one, test your copy until you find the perfect match to the creative.
6. Mix it up
Even if you found the perfect mix of graphics, text and targeting (thanks to your awesome A/B testing skills, of course), you can’t run the same ad forever.
Sorry to ruin this for you, but even the best of ads get obsolete at some point.
Depending on your audience and your budget, I suggest you change your ads every month or every two weeks. You’ll see an instant spike in results as soon as you change even the smallest thing, like the CTA or the dominant colors in your image.
Facebook ads may seem like a lot of hassle. They may be, even though there still aren’t as many variables as on other platforms, like Google AdWords, for instance. Setting up that first campaign can seem like an impossible mission.
But here’s the good news: setting up the second campaign would be much easier. Optimizing the eighth will be a breeze. Much like physical fitness, online advertising fitness comes from continuous exercise.
Adriana Tica is an expert marketer and copywriter, with 10 years in the field, most of which were spent marketing tech companies. She is the CEO of Idunn, a digital marketing agency that helps clients all over the world with copywriting, social media marketing and marketing strategy. Follow her blog here: http://idunn.pro/blog.