How to Use Facebook Ads: An Introduction.

Facebook is by far the largest social network in the world. It currently has more than 1 billion monthly active desktop users and a further 600 million on mobile. To put that into perspective, if those people made up the population of a single country, it would be the third most populated country on the planet.

It makes perfect sense then that companies and organisations across the globe are tapping into this enormous marketing resource. Facebook also has its finger firmly on the pulse and regularly updates its advertising services to match whatever the new trend in demand may be. This week saw the launch of its new video advertising option, in lieu of the medium becoming the most favoured both now and in the future.

One of the best things about this particular avenue of marketing is how simple it is. Whatever the size and nature of your business, you can tailor the service to suit your needs, right down to every last detail. All it takes is a little background research and a solid understanding of what you want to achieve. Once you have these sorted, you just need to follow the steps on Facebook’s Ad Create Tool.

Facebook’s Sales Process

It is a good idea to have a basic understanding of how Facebook actually deals with its advertisers before you commit your company earnings to a full-blown campaign on the site. In short, there are three tiers of sales channels: DirectInside and Online. Each one offers a level of interaction relative to the amount being spent on the ads. In other words, it’s simple business. The more your company pays Facebook, the more personal the service will be. For the most part however, advertisers will be dealing with the Online channel, which is what we will continue to discuss here.

Different Types of Ads

There are currently ten types of ad to choose from, although this list continues to grow in accordance with marketing trends. Each ad has its own purpose and guidelines, and you can choose to use either one or more for your campaign. Depending on your reasons for advertising, these ads will drive traffic to external sites or Facebook entities, as well as promoting apps, events and special offers.

Traditional Marketplace Ads are where you supply the copy and creative (photo or video) and have the option to link the ad to your own Facebook page or website. These account for most of the ones available.

Sponsored Stories are also gaining popularity amongst advertisers and Facebook is seemingly pushing this particular avenue. They simply mean that your ad involves some kind of social interaction, which is very much in tune with Facebook’s focus on relationship advertising. For example, when someone ‘likes’ your story or page, it will appear in that person’s friends’ newsfeed, thus encouraging more interaction and two-way engagement as well as a bigger outreach.

Placement

Your ad can appear in the following places: mobile newsfeed; desktop newsfeed; right column of Facebook (on desktop).

Objectives

This applies to every aspect of marketing. If you want your ads to work then you need to know what your objectives are. In relation to Facebook Ads however, the social network site helps you out by giving you a multiple choice of objectives to choose from when you set up your ad. These range from clicks, to offer claims and driving traffic to your page, internally or externally. One thing worth noting however is that you will need to set up different ads for different objectives.

Audience

Identifying your audience is integral to your objectives and the two are codependent forces in any campaign. Again, Facebook will give you different groups of people to choose from. It then targets them by honing in on the data on people’s profiles such as age, location and job, as well as the pages they like and groups they are members of

Creating Your Ad

This is probably the easiest part of the process. For a standard Marketplace Ad, all you need to do is choose an image and write the text whilst adhering to the guidelines. You can then edit the text and links accordingly.

Budget

Before you panic about how little you think you know about spending on advertising, take comfort in the knowledge that Facebook will never allow you to exceed your budget. Its ads aren’t just for the millionaires either – the minimum daily spend is $1USD, which is about 61 pence. The only condition is that you must bid two times the amount of your cost per click (CPC). The other bidding option is cost per impression (CPM), where you pay for the number of people who see your ad. You can also choose between setting a daily budget or a lifetime one that covers the entire length of your campaign. If you aren’t sure then go for a daily budget and adjust it as your campaign proceeds.

Power Editor

Another tool that Facebook offers is its Power Editor. In essence, it acts as an advanced supplement to the Ads Create Tool, enabling advertisers to manage multiple pages, ads and campaigns with minimum effort and maximum efficiency. It has numerous functions including bulk imports and duplications, as well as newsfeed targeting and image management. You can easily edit any of your settings, such as budgets and scheduling as well as the content of your ads. The Power Editor needs to be installed in a Chrome Browser for it to work but is definitely worth utilising as it will really boost your ad’s potential.

And the Rest…

We have covered most of the basics that you need to know before delving into the world of Facebook Ads. However, Facebook provides a lot of further information on each of its services that will help you to create the best ads for your company. The most important thing is to realise just how powerful this marketing tool can be if you use it wisely.

Marketme

Marketme is a leading small business to small business news, marketing advice and product review website. Supporting business across the UK with sponsored article submissions and promotions to a community of over 50,000 on Twitter.

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