chapter 25

Advertise on Facebook

This is where the power of your Facebook page will become more apparent, especially when it comes to helping you generate sales.  Facebook advertising has a unique advantage over almost all of the other internet advertising channels, which is that is you can target your ads by:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Interest

Currently pay-per-click advertising networks like Google Adwords and The Yahoo! Bing Network can’t target this type of demographic and interest level. For an ecommerce business this is incredibly powerful in terms of direct targeting.

But before you get overly-excited and decide to throw your entire advertising budget into Facebook, you must understand that people on Facebook are there to interact with their friends, not necessarily to buy products.

When you’re advertising and marketing, always consider the intention of the target audience with regards to the website your prospects are on. For instance, people using Google are a good advertising fit because they are on Google actively searching for something. Therefore it’s a perfect venue to grab their attention.

The 4 Types of Facebook Ads

Over the years, Facebook has gone on to experiment and release a variety of different advertising options. The four that have worked the best for them have continued to stick around. They are:

    • Marketplace Ads : These are the most standard Facebook ad type and are usually the starting point for many small and medium sized businesses.

    • Page Posts Ads:These ads show up on a user's newsfeed. Known as native advertising, the ads appear and blend seamlessly into a newsfeed like any regular status post.

    • Sponsored Stories: These ads help people engage with brands that their friends like, and only show up in a user's newsfeed if a friend has engaged with company recently.

    • Promoted Posts: The funny thing with Facebook is that even when you post an update, it doesn't necessarily reach your entire fan base. If you want to reach everyone, you need to boost the percentage of the audience you reach - which of course costs money.

How To Build Your Facebook Ads The Right Way

There is a chance that your product will sell like hot-cakes using Facebook advertising. The best thing to do is to start out by attempting direct sales. This will get you used to the Facebook advertising platform.

Below, we’re going to go through the steps in which you should think about creating Facebook advertisements. They’ll guide you through a strategic way of thinking about your target customers and corresponding advertisements so that you build a better suited campaign.

Step 1 – Determine what you want to sell

Do you want to focus selling one particular item? Or let people select from a category of items? Because you can create more than one ad and you can send them to specific pages on your website. Remember, you probably want to send them to the page where they can buy the item without making them have to click through unnecessary steps.

For introductory purposes it’s probably best to focus on selling one particular item -probably a product that you have the largest margin on. That way you can afford to make mistakes and learn from them.

Step 2 – Who is this product for?

Let’s think about your target market. Who is this product for? Teenagers? Male teens? Does location matter? What are their interests? What products would they be interested in? Jot down these characteristics for all your possible personas.

Step 3 – Select an image

When you create your Facebook Ad, you’re allowed to include a small image. We suggest not just using your brand logo as your advertising image, however, you can always test this. Simply start by using a clean image of the product.

Consider picking out a product that is an attention getter. For instance, products that have vibrant colors or products that tend to sell well are good candidates for your first ad.

The image of these neon felt tennis shoes is an example of a vibrant, eye-catching product that may convert a bit better than more generic products.

Step 4 – Create compelling copy

Creating your Facebook ad is much like creating a PPC (pay-per-click) ad for Google. You will need to craft a headline and some trailing copy.

Again, this is the time to think about your personas. Reflect back and think about what language your target customers use. If you have been taking notes on how your customers talk about your products, go back to them and see if you can use any of that language in your copy. Remember, you want to speak like them.

Step 5 – Let your ad run for a week or two

The interesting thing about Facebook Ads is that they “wear out” fast. That’s because they are presented to the same group of people continually. Every time someone from your target group logs into Facebook, they are probably seeing your ad.

A good rule of thumb is to change up your ads every one or two weeks. Set a reminder on your phone or in your calendar to check back on your Facebook ads once a week. Be sure to record their performance in a spreadsheet or in a text file so that you can review which ads work. 

What If Direct Sales Don’t Work?

This is to be expected. Again, people are on Facebook to interact with their friends. If you’re selling and making a return, then that’s great! You should double down on Facebook advertising by creating more ads for different products.

However, the power of Facebook ads is that they are really good for generating demand, and there are a couple ways to do this with the platform. The first way is to simply use Facebook advertising to get people to Like your Facebook page. There is a genius reason for this; by getting them to Like your page, you can remarket to them for a much longer period of time (because people who will Like your Facebook page will see your updates), which can be a more effective use of your advertising budget.

The second way is to have them sign up for your email newsletter. As we said in previous chapters, email marketing is a safer bet when it comes to building your marketing list. Chances are your email list will out-live any social networking list years down the road.

Now the trick with getting people to sign up for your newsletter is to only find people who really want to hear what you have to say. There is no point in trying to lure people into signing up for your newsletter if they don’t really want to read it. All that will happen is that you’ll waste advertising budget on people who don’t care about your brand and they ruin your email subscription performance.

You need to create a value packed newsletter that really benefits your target audience. What’s compelling about it? Why would people want to read it? If you’re newsletter doesn’t have an angle yet, something unique that makes it attractive, then consider getting them to Like your Facebook page for now.

For example, let’s say you own an online kayaking store. You could run an ad to get people to receive your “Advanced Guide to Sea Kayaking.” The ad could have them Like your Facebook page to receive the guide or alternatively you can get them to sign up for your email newsletter to get the guide. Either way, they will probably be interested in your Facebook updates or email subscription because it will include more advanced practices when it comes to kayaking. And of course you would highlight that your newsletter will continue to have more advanced tips, articles and must have information in future mailings.

This is a great method to keep these customers and evangelists on the forefront of their minds when it comes to your brand and their interests.

Next chapter

26. Use Google AdWords

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