Facebook advertising can be a brilliant way of getting your name out there to the people you want to see it. When you think about how many people are on Facebook (over 30 million accounts in the UK alone), the chances are that your target market are on there too.
In fact, Facebook is so popular that, according to this rather awesome (and eye-opening) video: Social Media Revolution, in the US, Facebook actually gets more traffic than Google!
Which is why you can’t overlook Facebook advertising as a means of engaging with your customers.
What is Facebook advertising?
You know when you go on Facebook, and you see those boxes to the right of your profile? Those are the ads, and the companies behind them will have most likely used Facebook to note what you like, how old you are, whether you’re male or female and a whole host of other info, and to serve their ads to you, trusting that you’re the kind of person that is going to buy from them.
For example, I have “Liked” arty, crafty things, so when I logged in earlier, I saw this ad:
Facebook ads consist of a headline, thumbnail image and copy. You do get slightly more characters with Facebook than with, say, AdWords,(although I think they are reducing this soon), but it’s still not a lot, so make sure your ad is concise, memorable and contains a call to action to encourage people to click “Like”.
Like AdWords, Facebook advertising is pay per click. However, you can instead opt to pay for impressions, if it’s simply brand awareness you’re looking for.
Facebook advertising – advantages
- The big advantage of Facebook advertising is how super-targeted you can make it. If you’ve cater for broad demographic, you can tailor your ads to each segment of this (different images & copy for younger users vs. older, for example, or for men vs. women). If you have a smaller target market, you can really focus your efforts in on that particular segment of Facebook users.
- You can think local – Facebook’s targeting allows you to only serve your ads in a certain area, a particular town, say. If you’re a local business, this is a huge advantage. Say you’re a solicitor in Lincoln. Facebook advertising gives you the opportunity to show your ad to anyone who has put Lincoln as their hometown, and there’s your market right there.
- You can see your potential reach – When you’re designing your ad, Facebook lets you know how many people are likely to see it. This is good for knowing what’s worth targeting and what isn’t.
- It snowballs – once someone Likes your page through your ad, this fact shows up on the Facebook news feeds of all their friends. And because people tend to trust recommendations from their friends, they may well click Like too.
- You can use images – choosing an eye-catching image that speaks to your target market is vital, Try split testing ads with different images to see what works.
Facebook advertising – disadvantages
- Low clickthrough and conversion rates. If you’ve used AdWords, you should be looking at a clickthrough rate of around 2% on your ads. The same for a conversion rate. With Facebook, both are far lower, which can be discouraging.
- Irrelevant ads – some ads that are shown are not targeted at all, and can leave you frustrated with the perceived intrusion.
- It’s difficult to catch people’s attention – People are so busy on Facebook that they often don’t pay any attention to the ads. They are far more interested in chatting to their friends.
But if you can get the right mix of demographic, copy and image, then you can really make Facebook advertising work for you.
For a great resource on Facebook advertising, take a look at Marty Weintraub’s book, Killer Facebook Ads: Master Cutting-Edge Facebook Advertising Techniques.
Have you tried Facebook advertising? Or are you a bit daunted by it all? Let us know!