Monday, May 1, 2017

Facebook Ads: Are You a Lover or a Hater?

Facebook advertising can be like Marmite, you either love it, or you hate it. Which side of the butter knife do you sit on? If you're a hater, then maybe this blog can help.

Lovers

Marketers who love Facebook advertising tend to be people who have seen the huge potential of this powerful marketing channel for their brand. They will have almost certainly struggled with the many options presented to them in establishing how best to use the tool. However, they will have stayed focused on the end goal, persevered through the pain barrier and come out the other side. They will probably have run lots of tests to discover what resonates best with their audience in terms of advertising. And there's a good chance that they will have approached the task with the mind-set of a scientist; creating hypotheses to experiment with and then setting about proving. They may even have had a small experimental Facebook ads budget put aside for simply trying out different approaches. (This is a wonderful strategy as it can give you the freedom to think creatively around ways to utilise the platform).

As a result of their solid test and learn approach, this group of marketers will now be lovers of Facebook advertising as they will have had some positive results to shout about. They will also have had some failures that they've learnt from but they will be continuing to think innovatively about ways to utilise new Facebook features as they are rolled out. This is a pretty exciting place to be!

Haters

It's no secret that the back end of Facebook can be a complex beast. There are now so many ways that you can target different audiences with different ad types, that it can be boggling to know where to focus your efforts to get the best results. You can suffer from choice paralysis when faced with so many options, so it's not surprising that marketers fall at this hurdle. What more, it's very easy to get disheartened when you try out a couple of campaigns with high hopes and they don't quite get the results you were expecting. This is not a fun place to be, but all is not lost…

Haters Can Learn to Love!

Unlike Marmite, you can go from hating Facebook ads to loving them. I know because I am a convert myself. Experience, knowledge and a willingness to test and learn are the key factors that can dictate whether your experience with running Facebook ads leaves you running for the closest pharmacy for some pain killer, or hopping into a taxi to your local bar to celebrate. To help you move from a place of hatred to a place of joy, here are 7 key tips that I have learnt on my journey so far.

  1. Embed the Facebook pixel into every page of your website so that you can create a set of custom audiences from the data it provides. I can't overstate how important this is to the success of your campaigns.
  2. Focus on getting your audience targeting right. This is vital! Even if the wording, imagery, timing, budget and format of your ads are spot on, your ads won't be successful unless you are targeting the right audience for your product/ service.
  3. Prioritise the audiences that you target. Consumers who have already carried out a transaction on your website before are the most likely people to carry out another transaction, so if your objective is to maximise ROI, prioritise this audience. Also consider targeting those who have signed up for your content. Do this by uploading your database list to Facebook and then create an audience from the customers who Facebook is able to match up with the platform. Another great audience to target are those who have engaged with your brand on Facebook. There are of course many other audiences you can target, but these three audience groups are a good place to start.
  4. Timing is key! Consider where in the buying cycle your audience are in and target them with ads accordingly. Don't try and target people who have never heard of your brand with a 'buy me now' type advert. Warm them up first by targeting them with engaging brand content before moving on to anything more serious! (It's just like dating really!)
  5. Get creative and be relatable. Put yourself in the shoes of your potential consumers. Consider what creative content ideas will make your audience stop scrolling through their feed and pay attention to your ad.
  6. Always include a clear call to action (CTA) so that your audience isn't left wondering what it is they are supposed to do next. Test out a selection of CTAs and find the most effective ones for your audience.
  7. In fact, test out everything; ad type, copy, creative, budgets in addition to your CTAs. As you discover what works, be sure to make note of it for future use. Then just keep expanding your knowledge and understanding of the tool and how to use it within your market.

Love it, or hate it, Facebook advertising is an incredibly powerful marketing tool. It can yield fantastic ROI for your business when done correctly. However, it can also be pretty frustrating and costly when done wrong. Hopefully, with these handy tips under your belt, you're now in a position to move from hatred to love!

(Please note, some of the tips above, I have learned from my own direct experience in running Facebook advertising campaigns. Some have been inspired by an excellent Facebook webinar which was run by Jon Loomer, an industry expert in Facebook advertising.)



from Business 2 Community http://www.business2community.com/facebook/facebook-ads-lover-hater-01834125


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