BlogFacebook Advertising

Ready to bring in more business for your company? Business owners and marketers alike are increasingly turning to Facebook Ads to generate leads, drive e-commerce purchases, and increase brand awareness. According to Facebook, three million businesses currently advertise on the global platform. If you want to stay connected to your customers, your business should be one of them.

Before you get started with Facebook Ads, however, there are three things that you need to do in order to ensure your success. These rules for beginners hold true for any business–whether it’s brick and mortar or completely online. Here’s your Beginner’s Guide to Facebook Ads:

1. Install Your Facebook pixel

Before you start any Facebook ad, make sure that you have a Facebook pixel installed on your website. The Facebook pixel is a little piece of code that helps you to build, measure, and optimize your advertising campaigns.

Because it tracks the activity on your website, including who visits your site and when, the Facebook pixel allows you to target your website visitors (as well as lookalikes of those website visitors) with your ads. In addition to supporting these custom audiences, the Facebook pixel is the key to optimizing your campaign delivery. If you’re running a campaign with a conversion objective, for example, the Facebook pixel can tell which users completed the desired action–like registering for your event or making an online purchase on your website–so that Facebook can optimize for more of those conversions.

If you’re not familiar with computer coding, don’t worry. The Facebook pixel is quite easy to install; no coding background is necessary. Plus, you only need one pixel for your business, no matter how many campaigns you plan to run. Although you can certainly outsource the installation to a freelancer or a marketing agency, you can save yourself some money by creating and installing your pixel yourself. Just follow Facebook’s instructions.

To troubleshoot or check on the status of your Facebook pixel, download Facebook’s Pixel Helper Google Chrome Add-on.

2. Develop Your Offers

There’s no doubt that Facebook Ads can help you attract new potential customers to your business. However, it’s very rare that a business will achieve immediate success after launching its first campaign (although, it has certainly been done!). It’s also rare that a business will generate leads or conversions without a compelling offer.

You’ll more than likely find that your campaigns will require testing before you start to see real, sustainable results. That’s why it’s so important to develop and test your offers.

What’s an offer? It’s something that you can provide your customers or leads–like a discount, a coupon, or a free trial–in exchange for their contact information or for their purchase. Before you launch your first campaign, develop at least two different offers that might generate interest in your business.

If you’re running ads for a yoga studio, for example, your first offer might be a 10% discount on a monthly membership and your second offer might be a free trial pass. You’ll want to run both ads at the same time so that you can determine which offer generates the best results.

It’s imperative that you complete this step before your launch your campaigns because you’ll want to be sure that you can deliver on your promises. If your business can’t provide monetary incentives, don’t forgo the offer; instead, consider developing a lead magnet, like a  free, downloadable guide. Think about it from a customer’s perspective. Are you more likely to purchase from a business that offers you nothing or from a business that offers you something valuable?

3. Understand Your Campaign Structure

Before you create your campaign in Facebook Ads Manager, you’ll need to understand the campaign structure. There are three levels to a Facebook ad campaign, and each one plays a different role.

The first level is the campaign level. At this level, you’ll set your campaign objective so that Facebook knows what actions to optimize for. Here, you’ll let Facebook know what your end goal is. There are 11 objectives to choose from, including lead generation, engagement, messages, and more.

At the campaign level, you can also set your budget. Although it isn’t the only place that you can set your budget, it is best practice to use campaign budget optimization (CBO). Using CBO gives Facebook the power to distribute your budget across your audiences and automatically allocate your budget to the best performing audiences and ads. With CBO, you’ll have the option to use a daily budget or a lifetime budget. For short campaigns (less than a couple of weeks in duration), a lifetime budget will work. For longer campaigns, try a daily budget.

Here’s what you should ask yourself at the campaign level:

  • What action should customers take? What is the goal of the campaign?
  • What is the overall campaign budget? Is it a daily budget or an overall budget?

The second level is the ad set level. At this level, you’ll let Facebook know who you want to target with your ads. Start by selecting the geographical location of your audience. Then, apply filters like interests and demographics. Because you have your Facebook pixel installed, you’ll also be able to target custom audiences. It’s best practice to separate different subsets of your audience into multiple ad sets so that you can test who responds best to your ads.

At the ad set level, you’ll also input your advertising schedule and ad placements. You’ll choose the start date and end date of your campaign. Then, you’ll choose either automatic placements–which means that your ad will be served across all placements on the Facebook network–or manual placements, which allows you to determine where you want your ad to show up.

Here’s what you should ask yourself at the ad set level:

  • Who is the target audience?
  • What is the advertising schedule?
  • Where should the ad show up?

The third level of your campaign is the ad level. This level determines the content of your ad, also known as the ad creative. Here, you’ll pair an image or a video with text. You’ll want to test several variations of your ad to determine which image, message, and offer resonates best with your audience. If you have multiple ad sets (and you should!), make sure that you’re serving all audiences the exact same ads by duplicating your ad creatives into the additional ad sets.

It’s also important to keep in mind that Facebook favors ads with little to no text, so try to keep in-image text to a minimum.

Here’s what you should ask yourself at the ad level:

  • Who is the ad speaking to? Will this ad resonate with the audience?
  • How much text does the image contain?
  • How many ads will be tested?

Facebook Ads can absolutely be an effective way to bring in more business for your company. Before you jump right into your first campaign, however, make sure to install your Facebook pixel, determine your offers, and familiarize yourself with the campaign structure. With these tips in mind, you’ll be ready to successfully launch your first campaign!

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