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Creating the perfect Facebook ads campaign: 8 top tips

When executed in the right way, Facebook advertising campaigns can have a huge impact for any brand or business, and should be seriously considered as part of your marketing strategy.

With over 2.2 billion active users on Facebook each month, the global reach of this social platform is phenomenal, which is what makes their advertising so effective. No matter the type of products or service you’re offering, you can bet that your target audience will be using Facebook, and the many different micro-targeting features integrated in the platform allow you to target these people specifically; based on interests, locations, demographics and much more.

Setting up a Facebook ad campaign can be a bit daunting at first, since there are so many different options to choose from. It’s important not to be overwhelmed by this, but to see it more as an opportunity to really refine every element of your adverts, to ensure that you’re getting the most out of your budget and utilising it in the best possible way.

To help you get started, we wanted to share our top tips to creating the perfect Facebook ad campaign…

1. Experiment with different Facebook ad types

With the large amount of campaign types available on Facebook, it would be a mistake to just try one. For each business and its goals, the type of campaign required will change, and it’s important to get an idea of what they’re all about before you click on whichever pops up first.

different facebook ad types

One of the most simple, common types of campaign to manage is the boosted post – this is perfect for when you want to drive clicks to a piece of content you’ve already shared, or push a piece of important news out to a wider audience.

Video ads are another important type of Facebook advertising. This format is one of the best ways of grabbing the attention of Facebook users as they scroll through their news feed – it’s key to ensure your video content is instantly engaging to hold their attention, and ideally get them to convert their view to an action.

For those wanting to showcase a variety of products and services, a carousel ad is recommended, allowing the user to side-scroll through each individual item and click through to their dedicated landing pages.

The diversity of advertising types can be overwhelming at first, but we recommend trying several and comparing your results. When setting up a campaign, Facebook does ask you to select your goal type, and as such can point you into the right direction of types you should try.

2. Maximise your budget

You’ll be wondering how to set up the right budget for your Facebook ad campaign, and more specifically, how to get the most out of the money you are investing. Your spend should always be determined by your overall campaign goals, for example:

  • X sales over a defined period of time
  • X engagements on a particular post
  • X leads generated
  • X new page fans won during the campaign
  • X app downloads

Set out these goals before you specify any sort of budget, and this will help you to better plan out the money you have. From there you can begin to work on testing different ads to gauge ROI.

Any optimised Facebook ad campaign will be grounded in a well-planned testing phase. As explained above, you will want to experiment with various types of content to determine which one is the most compatible with your audience. After this you can begin to run smaller, £5-10 ads on 3-4 day cycles to test them and generate results data. Use this results data to make informed decisions on how you will allocate the bulk of your campaign budget, as opposed to setting up ads with a blind budget of £100.

It is also worth considering your Budget and Scheduling settings, which can be found in the Facebook Ads manager. You are given an option between setting a Daily or Lifetime budget for any Facebook ad that you set up. We opt for Daily budgets as opposed to Lifetime, as highly performing ads can drain a Lifetime budget very quickly while Daily will ensure that the ad remains on users’ news feeds for the specified ad duration. You can’t change this setting once you go live, so make sure you’ve considered this in detail first.

3. Get your ad placements right

Upon creating your Facebook ad campaign, you’ll notice that your placement options will be preset to “Automatic Placements (Recommended)”. Sure, you can leave it like that and Facebook will choose the best places to show your ads in correlation to their expected performance, but if you really want to give your ads the best possible chance of a high success, you’ll drill deeper into your ad placement options.

Now, when you choose to “Edit Placements”, you’ll notice there’s a plethora of different options which can be quite overwhelming and at this point, it seems a little easier to leave it ticked on automatic and move on.

Facebook ad placement options

However, it doesn’t have to be complicated, and depending on your ad campaign type, you have the ability to grow your reach further with different ad placements. Here are your options…

Facebook

  • Feeds – displays ads to your target audience on their Facebook News Feed in-line with all of the other content. Usually seen more frequently, and can be used on both desktop and mobile.
  • Instant articles directs users to straight to your online content (articles or blogs) when clicked.
  • In-stream videos – ads placed within videos on Facebook, in a similar way to an ad-break, where the user will have to watch the ad until the end before the video continues.
  • Right column – desktop only, ads displayed to the right hand side of the news feed, making them less preferable due to their easy-to-miss location.
  • Suggested videos – your video will appear in the list of “suggested videos” presented to a user once they have finished watching another video on Facebook.
  • Marketplace – displays your ads within Facebook’s Marketplace. The users presented with these ads are already looking to make a purchase, so are likely to convert.
  • Stories – shown to users as they’re watching Facebook Stories from their friends or other pages.

Instagram

You can also opt to have your ads shown on Instagram for increased reach, in two different places:

  • Feed – appear on a users’ Instagram feed when scrolling through content, and will display a CTA when the user hovers over the post for long enough.
  • Stories – in the same way as Facebook Stories, these ads will appear while users are watching through their latest Instagram Stories, and you have the option to add CTA’s such as “swipe up to see more” or “learn more”.

Audience Network

This is a cluster of apps and websites participating in Facebook’s advertising programme, which get paid to have your ads appear.

  • Native, banner, and interstitial – display in different locations within the apps or websites, and graphics can be adjusted to suit the specific layouts.
  • In-stream videos – this is the same functionality as the Facebook in-stream videos, however videos are located on external sites.
  • Rewarded videosspecifically designed for gaming apps to showcase what gameplay looks like. It allows the user to test out the game during the ad, before then seeing a CTA prompting them to download.

Messenger

Covering all bases, Facebook also allows for ads to appear in their Messenger app, in three different locations:

  • Inbox – users will see a full sized ad when looking through their inbox, amongst all of their messages. These ads look similar to News Feed ads and include a CTA.
  • Stories – shown in the same way as in the Facebook Stories and Instagram Stories sections.
  • Sponsored Messages – users will see a message in their Messenger inbox containing a message and a CTA, which makes it look like the brand has contacted them directly.

Facebook ad placements in Messenger inbox

It’s important to note that some of these placement options won’t be available depending on your campaign objective. So it’s in your best interests to see which options are open to you before deciding which placement method will be most effective for your specific ads.

4. Utilise Facebook remarketing

Remarketing is something that most of us will have come across before, and maybe not even known it. It’s used as a way of targeting people who have browsed your website before, in order to try and catch their attention and prompt them to return to make a purchase.

If you’ve ever been online shopping for a specific product, and later saw an advert for that same product whilst browsing other websites – that’s not a coincidence. The power of remarketing aims to target customers who have shown interest in a product or service, and draw them back to the website to buy. This is done by placing a code on product web pages and using cookies to track visits, then once the user navigates away from the website, the adverts with related offers will follow that particular user around the web.

This is a common practice on Google Ads, using websites within the Google Display Network to display adverts, but you can also do it on Facebook, too. The only difference with this is that the adverts will only show on Facebook. This is also known as “Custom Audiences”, and there are three different options you can choose from to set this up, which we discuss in the next point.

5. Set up a custom audience for your target audience

Marketers are in agreement that Custom Audiences are one of the most essential tools to use when setting up a concrete Facebook ad campaign. So, what do you need to know?

Facebook custom audiences

A Custom Audience is an ad audience you can create that includes sections of, or all of your existing customer base. You upload or import a hashed customer list, which Facebook used to match against the people on Facebook to target people already familiar with your brand or business.

This is so important and incredibly useful, in the sense that it’s easier to generate repeat business from your established customers than it is to spend money in the search of new ones.

There are many types of custom audiences that Facebook allow you to create, including:

  • Customer List / Standard Custom Audiences
    • A list of emails, phone numbers or Facebook User IDs that Facebook matches with its users, presenting you with a custom audience of Facebook accounts that are already familiar with your business.
  • Website Custom Audiences
    • Rather than supplying Facebook with a list of phone numbers or email addresses, you can insert Facebook Pixel tracking code into your website to target any Facebook users who visited specific pages on your site during a set time period.
  • App Activity Custom Audiences
    • Generate audiences based on people’s activity on your mobile application. If your business has a dedicated mobile app then you can use this data to create Facebook audiences that get results.
  • Lookalike Audiences
    • With a Custom Audience uploaded to Facebook, you can use this data to generate a much larger Lookalike Audience that uses the characteristics of your data to target similar Facebook users on a grander scale.

Just remember, if you’re planning on using your customer data as part of a Facebook ad campaign, you need to clearly explain this as part of your data usage policy.

6. Make use of Facebook insights data

If you already have an active Facebook page, the data you’ve accumulated on it should be considered when it comes to setting up your advertising campaign.

Facebook insights data

Every Facebook page has an Insights section to view, where you can find detailed information about your page audience and post engagements. You can segment statistics such as page views by age, gender, location and more, as well as find out what type of posts (mainly link, photo, and video) perform the best.

It’s well worth using this organic data when it comes to formulating your advertising campaign. Has your Facebook page performed well with 25-30 year old female users? Maybe this should be something you use when it comes to selecting your campaign audience demographics. Insights shows your video content gets 50% more impressions than your other posts? You’d be on the right path to focus on video content in your paid posts.

Read more: Facebook Insights Explained: Facebook Page Views, Post Impressions & More

7. Drive traffic to relevant landing pages

This point sort of transcends Facebook ad campaigns specifically, and is actually applicable to PPC campaigns on the whole.

Landing pages are an indispensable part of inbound marketing. If you’re going to put in all of this hard work to drive consistent, high quality traffic to your website… You’re going to want to make sure that you’re pointing people to a webpage that converts them into leads for your business.

Landing pages are web pages set up to specifically capture a visitor’s information through a lead-capture form. The best landing pages will be established with a particular audience in mind, tailored to their browsing habits and presenting the exact information they need to take the desired action.

This Formstack article describes the anatomy of a perfect landing page, running through the key design features to encourage a conversion. It provides best practice advice on headings, call to action buttons, content placement and more. Use it as a reference when building the pages you want to direct your audience to, and you won’t go far wrong.

8. Track your performance metrics and make adjustments

So, you’ve got your ad campaign up and running, but it doesn’t end there. Constantly tracking the performance of your campaign is equally as important as everything you did in the run-up to publishing it.

There’s some information about your promotions in the Facebook Insights section of your page (as detailed above in point #6), but you’ll find the most useful data on Ads Manager. This is where you can tweak your campaign settings, and look at how everything is going.

Facebook ads manager performance overview

The most important stats you’ll want to check out are the direct results of the promotion – how many likes, engagements and conversions you’re getting, in comparison to the number of impressions and amount of money spent.

You can go deeper though and see where things are performing best, with graphs breaking down your results and reach by age and gender. If you find things are going better with one demographic than another, it may be worth changing your targeting to direct your budget solely towards where you’re finding success.

You can also segment your data by placement, meaning you can filter your results by device type, and advert locations such as Facebook, Audience Network, Stories, Instagram, and Messenger. Again, if you’re noticing a high conversion rate through ads showing on Facebook stories, but a much lower one on Instagram, you should consider focusing more of your budget on the more successful medium.

Need more help with your Facebook advertising campaign, or want a knowledgeable, experienced team to assist you with running and managing it? Get in touch with Pixel Kicks now for a chat about your marketing needs.

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