By Josh Ledgard
Thinking of braving the world of Facebook ads, but have absolutely no idea how to started? Pull up a chair, and read along as I share the easiest guide you’ll find to creating Facebook ads when you have no clue what to do first. And I’m not talking just any old Facebook ads, but the ones that are practically guaranteed to get more eyeballs on your products.
Let’s get to work.
But, first, let me start off with a disclaimer: We’re not delving into the entire mystical realm of Facebook ads in this post. We’re only tackling the easiest (and in my humble opinion, the best) ad strategy for beginners. If you like this post and want to learn other ways to utilize Facebook ads like a boss, let us know.
What do you want to accomplish from your ad campaign?
Please don’t say, “I want to get more likes for my Facebook page.”
While that may have been a noble goal back in 2014, things have definitely changed. Likes on Facebook don’t amount to much more than vanity metrics, and they sure don’t pay the bills.
From my perspective, the best use for Facebook is to drive traffic back to your website. You want to pull an interested audience away from your “rented space” (Facebook) and onto your owned real estate (your website). Here, you have a better chance of converting casual, first-time visitors into email subscribers, trial users, event attendees, and (fingers crossed) actual customers.
Another fantastic use for Facebook advertising is to target visitors who’ve come to your website before but didn’t engage any further than that. You can use Facebook to woo those visitors back to your site, this time with an interesting offer that they can’t refuse.
So, building from that perspective, I’ll ask again, what’s your goal with Facebook advertising?
If you’re stumped, here’s a list of the various objectives you can choose with Facebook. Let’s go over each option one by one.
Boost your post –
Promote single posts that highlight a product, event, or popular. This is a good option when you want to capitalize on the momentum of your popular post.
Promote your page –
Encourage people to like your Facebook Business Page. It’s not the best use of your time or budget.
Reach people near your business –
Speak to people who are located near you. This is a great option for local brick and mortar businesses who want to increase foot traffic.
Increase brand awareness –
Introduce yourself to potential (and current) followers.
Send people to your website –
Here, you’re pulling interested people to your website (or any other site of choice). This is a good option, but not the best one. More on that below.
Get installs of your app –
This is a no-brainer if you have an app. Your ad can include a button that directs the user to your landing page.
Raise attendance at your event –
Promoting an event is much easier with Facebook. It’s practically guaranteed that at least some of your potential attendees are on Facebook.
Get video views –
If you want to increase the likelihood of viral video, you can pay for promotion.
Collect leads for your business –
Find people who are likely to become potential customers, and show them your lead ad. Then collect their info on a pre-populated form.
Increase conversions on your website –
Track behavior on your website after people view your Facebook ad. This is my favorite option because it allows you to measure the effectiveness of your ad campaign and create lookalike audiences.
Increase engagement in your app –
Promote your app and keep engaged the people who’ve already installed your app.
Get people to claim your offer –
Offer an exclusive ad on Facebook and get people to act on it, such as an online promotion or a barcode coupon that your customers can use at your brick-and-mortar location.
Promote a product catalog –
Do you sell more than one item? Upload your product catalog and promote different products automatically and dynamically.
Pretty simple once it’s broken down, right? While there are a lot of different marketing objectives to choose from, you probably already know which ones are more important to you. By comparison, getting likes on Facebook isn’t as killer as collecting leads or directing highly targeted audiences to your landing page.
So, now that you have a pretty good idea of what ad options are available to you, let’s get into the nitty gritty of how to set it up.
Now that you have a marketing objective in mind, you’ll go to your settings option and select “Create Ads.” You can also head over to Facebook Business to create an ad. Select the appropriate option.
As you may have noticed above, I recommend starting with Website Conversions. While clicks to Website is a decent way to generate interest and pull people over to you, it’s not as effective as Website Conversions. According to Molly Pittman at Digital Marketer, Website Conversions generated five times more leads than Clicks to Website, and for a fifth of the cost.
Let’s discuss how to set it up below.
Setting Up a Website Conversions Ad
From the marketing objective menu in the Facebook Ads Manager, you’ll select “Website Conversion”. Here, you’ll be prompted to add the URL of the website you’d like to track along with the type of conversion you’d like to measure. You can choose:
Select the marker you’d like to track, and then click “Create Pixel.” From here, you’ll be given an HTML code to add to the header of the webpage you’d like to track.
If you’re tracking webinar conversions, you’d probably want to add the Facebook Pixel to the HTML code of the webinar confirmation page you show to new attendees.
You’ll be able to find the stats for your Facebook Pixel in “Conversion Tracking” from the Ads Manager menu in Facebook.
But that’s not all. You can use the information you’ve collected from those who’ve clicked on your website to find even more people like them. You’ll do this by using Facebook’s Lookalike Audiences (more on that below).
But first, you’ll need to create a Custom Audience. Fortunately, if you have Conversion Tracking, Facebook automatically creates a Custom Audience.
So, what do I mean by that?
Facebook actually saves the information on all of the visitors to your webpage with the pixel. They’ll use this information to build your custom audience.
But, there’s another way to create a custom audience. You can upload your email subscriber list or even a list of customer phone numbers into a TXT file. (Do this by selecting “Audiences” from the “Tools” menu in Ads Manager.)
Your Custom Audience is populated with people you already know (and who already know you).
Lookalike Audiences allow you to find people who are similar to your current customers. You can build a Lookalike Audience with the information used from Custom Audiences. You’ll use Lookalike Audiences to expand your marketing to those who are most likely to engage with your brand.
I highly recommend sending Facebook users to a landing page, and not just your home page. On your landing page, you can control the conversation. You can use your landing page to neatly deliver the exact content your subscriber is after, instead of forcing them to wander around your site aimlessly.
Before you get started on your Facebook ad, be sure to set up your landing page here.