Do you know that Facebook has 3 billion daily active users? It is a social platform that’s being used by almost everyone. What’s more, 97% of marketers still choose to run their paid ads here.
However, despite the massive number of users on Facebook, it doesn’t mean that all of them are within your reach as an advertiser. Even if you have a large advertising budget, your strategy will be ineffective if you don’t know the best practices in running a Facebook ad campaign.
Facebook ad strategy is ever-changing. One example of a major change is the recent iOs update that restricts the data gathered from users. With this kind of update, strategies should adapt as well. We will discuss the best practices for you right here.
Facebook Ads Formats
Before we come up with strategies and best practices, we should first understand Facebook ad formats. There are 8 formats available for Facebook ads. These are based on the size, file type and where specifically you want to display your campaigns.
Photo ads are still shots or images that display what you want to promote. This usually works for campaigns where you want to highlight or promote specific products. A good picture of the product can attract attention and motivate visitors to check out what you’re offering.
The recommended size for ads in Facebook News Feed is 1080 x 1080 px.
Carousel ads are a series of images that can be viewed through rotation. It can be used to further describe what a product or service offers. It can also be a good way to promote a collection or a series of related services where audiences can choose or get to know what a brand or company is offering. Additionally, it can also be a good way to tell a story about the campaign you are running.
By now, we are all very familiar with Stories. These were first introduced on Instagram and later on Facebook. Stories Ads are becoming a good way to advertise campaigns. As a user browses stories, ads can also be shown in the same format. Because stories are viewed as a stream, occasional ads in between are a good way to advertise products and services.
Video ads can also be GIFS. These kinds of advertisements are very effective in demonstrating an event or product. According to a study, 80% of mobile data consumed on Facebook are videos. There are 6 types of video campaigns that advertisers can choose from. They are:
- Short Videos and GIFs
- Vertical Videos
- Instagram Stories
- Video Carousels
- Video Collections
- In-stream Videos
You can now put ads everywhere, even in the Messenger app. These ads appear as a direct message inside the Messenger app. These types of ads allow audiences to interact with the company or inquire about its products and services. You need to make sure the ads lead to a natural conversation and are not spammy.
Facebook Ads Best Practices to Create Engaging Ads
There are 2 aspects to consider before you run your Facebook ads. The first – your marketing strategy and the second – your creative strategy. Both are equally important to make sure that your ads are going to the right audiences (marketing) and when they are reached, they are presented with an interesting ad (creative). Let’s first discuss the best marketing strategies for your ads.
1. Take time to research your demographics. As we said earlier, Facebook is the home of 3 billion active daily users. This does not mean you need to reach out to all of them. Audience quality is more important than size. Facebook offers a good filter to target your audience. Instead of just targeting age range, you can also filter jobs, interests, pages likes, and a lot of other info a user shares with Facebook. You should take advantage of this by carefully analysing your target audience and working out how to make sure they are the ones most likely to see your ads. Effective targeting also means that only the users that have relevant or the same interest in what you’re offering will only be the ones who will see your campaigns.
2. Don’t skip on a good copy. We discussed different ad formats and it’s important to think about the format that is most appropriate for your campaign. However, the relevance of the copy and graphics are also very important. You need to make sure that what they are saying are aligned with each other. Good copy and creatives attract your audience to the ad and more importantly to stop scrolling and take action.
3. Remarket. Remarketing sometimes called retargeting, is when you adjust the list of audiences you target based on the result of the initial ads campaign. The first few ads can be used to test your audience. You should prepare different ad sets that cater to different audiences. After some time, the data gathered on who clicked, who bought, who viewed, etc. can be a good indicator of who to target and what ads may be interesting to these audiences.
Somewhat similar to remarketing is Facebook Lookalikes. This is a feature on Facebook ads that helps you target audiences that have the same likes and interests as the audiences you are currently targeting. After remarketing, this is a good way to find new audiences for your campaigns.
These two strategies are somewhat less effective than they used to be in the past, due to data privacy but with a bit of creativity, they can still be used to great effect.
4. Keep monitoring. Make sure you monitor your results regularly. You shouldn’t set our ads up and forget about them and hope for the best. You should be reviewing which ads are most effective at reaching different audiences, getting clicks and conversions and which ads work best on which devices. You should be monitoring your ads at least weekly and even daily if you have a lot of ads running. This will make sure you will not miss important data that you can use to improve your ads.
5. Be mindful of your budget. This might be the trickiest strategy, especially for small business owners. Your Facebook ads budget can easily be drained if not allocated properly. Put more budget on quality audiences. Split testing is also a good strategy when allocating your budget. These are some of the tests you can do for your campaigns:
- Ad Creative – same copy, different graphics
- Ad Copy – different copies, same graphics
- Ad Headline – different headlines
- Target Audience – same campaign, different audience
- Call-to-Action – different call to actions or no call to action
- Offer or Incentive
You can set up rules so that ads automatically pause when certain rules are met – e.g. when spend reaches a certain level or when clicks drop off. This can help make sure you are not wasting your budget on poor performing ads.
6. Nurture your list. Paid Facebook ads don’t always result in instant returns. You may reach audiences and they might engage with what you offer but they may not purchase instantly. It is important to nurture these leads in order to convert them to buyers in the long run. You should offer your audience something of value so that they continue to engage with you and when they are ready to purchase, you are top of mind.
These strategies may be too advanced for beginners. If you’re looking for guidance on how to do these, don’t hesitate to contact us!
Now that you know some marketing strategies, it is important that when you reach your target audience, they are presented with the best graphics you can produce. Here are the best practices that you can put in place:
1. Use videos OFTEN. Facebook actually encourages advertisers to use videos for their ads. There is a reason TV commercials have been an effective way of marketing for a long time. Think of video ads as tiny commercials for your brand. It can be as entertaining and informative as you like. Vertical video is effective since most users use their mobile phones to browse. Vertical videos are also more natural so don’t look like an ad.
2. Less text on images. The 20-80 rule (20% text, 80% graphics) is still a very good gauge on how much text-to-image ratio you should follow. Leave the explanation on the copy or better yet, make a video that explains what you are offering.
Keep the start of your copy interesting and engaging. Facebook cuts the copy on every post. Make sure that you grab attention in the first couple of sentences of your copy. Keep it clear and concise!
3. Call to Actions. Facebook ads offer a variety of built-in calls to action. It may be to invite audiences to read more, shop, message, etc. Take advantage of these to have a convenient way for your audiences to interact or navigate to where you want them to be. It’s a good idea to test ads – some with a CTA button and some without.
How About the Updates on iOs 14?
We’ve mentioned the updates that iPhone had with the iOs 14. This effectively limits the data gathered by FacebookAds on mobile devices. So, what are the workarounds for this? How can we track data to use in marketing and remarketing paid ads? Here are some of the tips we can give:
- Use Facebook Conversion API. This is a tool that creates a direct connection between your marketing data and Facebook systems. It helps in optimising ad targeting, measure results and decrease cost per action. Without the ability to track user movements from their phones, you can track events directly using Facebook Conversions API. If you want to know more about this tool. Contact us!
- Use UTM tags. UTM tags are extra characters attached at the end of any links. This can be used to track where the clicks of a link come from, what your ad position was at the time of the activity and who is buying or engaging in your link. It can also measure activity to see the conversions of your ads.
- Strengthen your Lead Generation Strategies. Lead generation is still one of the foolproof ways to collect a list or data from your subscriber. You can insert lead gen forms into your ads to collect the data you need.
Facebook ads can be very intimidating. There are a lot of factors to consider before posting your first ad. After all, you don’t want to waste resources on an ad that will not get you any results. Facebook Ads do work – that’s why some businesses spend hundreds of thousands of dollars a month on them. But even with a small budget, you can get great results if you focus on your marketing and creative strategy.
If you want to know more about Facebook ads, contact us. You can book a free discovery call and we can analyse your brand and how you can start advertising on Facebook. We also help brands that have poor performing ads to reach more audiences and get more engagement. To know more about the work that we’ve done, you can click this case study to see our work!Book a Discovery Call