Ask marketers to pick their favorite social media channel and they would all say: “Facebook”.
Facebook has earned that reputation for a number of reasons; the biggest two reasons being: maximum user base (2.2 billion monthly active users) and plethora of advertising options.
Facebook ad options come with numerous features which offer a glimpse of the audience insights, making it the best channel for brands to start advertising on social media.
Here are 5 best practices to help you get the most out of a Facebook ad campaign:
1. Narrow down your audience demographic
For any campaign to perform well, the first requirement is to reach the right audience. And while businesses know their target audience, reaching out to them on Facebook is more about reducing the breadth of spectrum you are trying to get onboard.
Factors such as age, interests, and location play a key role in helping you narrow down the list of your potential consumers. The more specific you are when targeting your users, the better is the likelihood of finding a consumer.
Building a social audience relies more on resonating with a specific set of people than targeting diverse groups.
But the key is to ensure that the targeting is neither too broad, nor too narrow. While an excessively broad spectrum wastes your efforts, extremely narrow targeting doesn’t allow you to reach as many people as you should.
Facebook lets you understand your target spectrum through a barometer. Analyze it to fine-tune your targeting strategy.
2. Use best practices for different ad formats
Facebook offers a number of advertising formats to engage your audience at different points in their journey. Some of the best practices for these ad types are:
- Use automated captioning tools to optimize your video for a scenario where it is played without sound.
- Focus on creating short form content and engage your viewers in the first few seconds.
- Use the different panes in carousel ads to create a single big compelling image.
- Ensure that the images included in the carousels are visually enticing.
- Canvas ads employ a mix of carousels, images, videos etc. Use these components to make the user a part of your storytelling journey. Utilize the lifestyle and grid canvas layouts.
- You can use your existing well performing content to get exposure to new audience through boosted posts.
When creating campaigns, make sure that you experiment with the different ad options offered by Facebook. Additionally, to get the best out of them, use their individual best practices. For videos, the trick is to keep them short and engaging. In case of carousels or canvas ads, visual appeal is vital.
3. Split-test your adverts
Facebook offers you the option to split-test different versions of your ad to see which one works best.
This allows you to create variations of your ad campaigns and understand your viewers’ response to these variations.
Since split testing divides your audience into non-overlapping groups, the “comparison effect” is removed (when the same audience comes across two different versions of your ad, there is an inherent comparison that affects the end results).
Here are the few test cases for variables upon which you can test your campaigns:
Target audience – Gender, Age, Location
Delivery optimisation – Conversions, Link Clicks
Placement – Mobile, Desktop; Automatic, Customized
Creative – Video, Image; Image, Different Image
Use split testing to understand which ad version performs better than the other. Utilize this information to create more user-friendly and less interruptive advertisements.
4. Track your campaigns to create better future strategies
The best practices for any campaigns arise from trial and error.
It’s important to track your campaigns to get a better report on how users are interacting with your advertisements.
Facebook Ads Manager helps you monitor your campaigns and has a friendly user interface too.
In fact, Facebook Ads Manager works extremely well in guiding you to launch new campaigns, adjust different metrics like budget, goals and also helps you keep a real time track of your campaign results. These results help you in crafting better strategies for future campaigns as they inform you of what works with your audience and what doesn’t.
Monitor your campaign results to get better equipped in managing your future campaigns. Our advice: Install the Facebook Ads Manager app to stay informed on the go.
5. Target local audience by taking them to your physical business address
Local targeting is a great way for small businesses to achieve visibility. 56.5% of Facebook users only log in from a mobile device.
So local outreach makes sense, especially when targeting mobile users (most local searches happen on mobile devices).
Adding a get directions button on a local ad can translate an online ad campaign into offline results by bringing the customers to your business location.
Additionally, using a dedicated button to show directions to your user reduces the hassle of going over to another app, just to find the exact destination.
When targeting local audience, always rely on a CTA that has a “local appeal”. Here, a ‘Get directions’ button which guides the user to your business address, will do the trick for you.
Facebook ads are filled with features waiting to be explored. A key factor, however, is to determine the objective of your campaign and how much you are willing to spend. The advantage offered by Facebook is that it caters to diverse budgets so it is a great platform for small businesses to get a level field against the big companies.
Also, the best practices for any ad campaign will depend largely on the type of ad you choose. But the point of origin is always the same: using Facebook to reach the right audience.
From there, your advertising journey may take different routes such as video ads, carousels or canvas ads. The key is to employ the ad tactics which work in alignment with your goals: targeting local audience? use CTAs with local intent, trying to increase engagement? rely on visuals.
Keep experimenting with different tactics to see what works best for your campaign.
Sahil is the CEO and Founder of Rankwatch – a platform, which helps companies and brands stay ahead with their SEO efforts in the ever growing internet landscape. Sahil likes making creative products that can help in automation of mundane tasks and he can spend endless nights implementing new technologies and ideas. You can connect with him and the Rankwatch team on Facebook or Twitter.