Growth Marketer Academy: Episode 22 – How-To Run Facebook Ads For Massive Gains – Part 1
With 2 billion active monthly users, your customers are most definitely on Facebook.
But reaching them at the right time with the right message takes more than putting up an image and an offer.
Facebook offers a unique opportunity to build brand awareness and engage with new and existing customers.
We’re sharing the secret to building a Facebook campaign that can – with some nurturing – convert engaged leads into loyal customers.
Traffic is fundamental to generating leads.
You need to steer qualified traffic to your site if you want to make sales
You’ve got 2 options:
Invest time and man-hours in organic search
Invest money in paid search advertising.
We’ve said it before:
You should use paid search to gather info and hone your campaign BEFORE you invest the time and effort into building your SEO.
It’s not all about Google.
Facebook is different from Adwords:
People aren’t actively looking for a solution on Facebook.
They are on the platform to unwind, relax, and socialize.
Your job here is to tailor your message to gently guide potential customers down your sales funnel without disrupting their experience.
In this TWO PART series, we’re covering:
- How to determine which type of Facebook ad to run and,
- How to set up that ad so it converts
Why Choose Facebook?
Interrupting people with messages (like on TV, radio, and print) brings limited success.
You have to be active where people are listening.
People are active and engaged on Facebook
Unless you’re targeting only people between the age of 18-22
Your customers are on Facebook
It’s not just to laugh at a silly meme or post a comment on a family photo.
Nearly half of all Americans use Facebook as a news source.
Facebook and other prevalent social channels are the modern age equivalent to network news giants like NBC, FOX, ABC, and CBS.
When it comes to advertising on social 96% of marketers favor Facebook
Potential to reach an audience unparalleled by any other social network.
More importantly, they’re engaged.
Facebook users spend 35 minutes per day on the platform.
Compared to other advertising channels, Facebook is incredibly cheap.
Bonus: great analytics
- You can see right away when someone sees your ad or reacts to it
- Lets you make adjustments to style and copy more quickly than other marketing channels.
People are accustomed to seeing ads in their Facebook feed
BUT only those that blend in seamlessly are successful.
What Makes Facebook Ads Unique
Facebook knows a TON of stuff about your potential customer:
- Pages liked
- Groups they participate in
- Events they show an interest in
Facebook’s algorithm chooses relevant ads to show a user.
Facebook wants users to see ads that don’t feel disruptive or out of place.
Most Facebook ads displayed in a user’s newsfeed mimic native content.
Desktop users may see ads on the sidebar.
Side ads don’t prevent users from scrolling down their feed:
They don’t disrupt user experience.
Facebook Audience Network:
Lets you extend Facebook ads onto other platforms and websites
Appears like native content or video ads
Further increases reach.
The Different Formats of Facebook Ads
Regardless of the Facebook ad format you choose, your ads should encourage users to click-through, leave Facebook, and visit your website.
If viewers stay on Facebook, they’ll get distracted.
Most common ad formats:
The Image Ad
Appears on a user’s newsfeed with
- an image,
- accompanying text,
- and sometimes a CTA.
Goal: click anywhere on the ad and get led away from Facebook.
Upload an engaging & relevant clickable image of your choice
Recommended image size: 1200 x 628 pixels for best-quality.
Make sure your image:
- Tells a story
- Captures attention
- Leaves a lasting impression
Facebook prioritizes video content in the newsfeed
Videos now also autoplay
Gives video ads great reach.
Make sure to include transcripted text overlaid on the video
It will auto-play as the user scrolls
Allows you to engage passive viewers.
They see an expanded message without having to actually click to hear audio.
A carousel ad is basically 10 photo ads lumped together as one.
Users can scroll horizontally to view 10 different images
Each can link to the same or different CTA.
- showcasing a product,
- demonstrating how to use your service,
- Telling a story through pictures.
In case you’ve never seen these before, here’s what they look like:
The collection ad format lets you pair an image or video ad with 4 additional images within a single ad.
Lets you create an immersive experience.
Compliment your main featured ad with themes and stories
Each additional image can open in full-screen templates
User doesn’t have to leave Facebook.
Like mini landing pages within Facebook.
How to Decide Which Ad Type To Use
Some ad types are naturally better suited for certain objectives over others.
If your objective is to gather leads then running an image ad that leads users to an ungated blog post = mismatch
This will negatively impact the effectiveness of the ad campaign.
Facebook helps you match your objective with an ad type by configuring them to match the stages of the sales funnel.
When you go to create your ad in Ads Manager you’ll see:
To identify which stage you should target with your ads, ask yourself:
- What is your overall objective?
- Do you have an existing website?
- Do you have an email list that you already market to?
A new business venture needs to start with awareness,
An established brand might focus on engagement or store visits.
The most common ad offers used by marketers at each stage:
Ads in this stage are meant to increase brand visibility.
Provide users value without asking for anything in return.
Get users to follow your brand page and engage with future offers.
Some ad styles that raise awareness:
- Promoting Ungated Content
These ads lead users to specific, valuable content on your website.
Provide something useful
Introduce your brand as a solution to a problem or pain point
Provide helpful tutorials
Establish yourself as a thought leader in the market.
- Blog post
- Helpful video.
Just click-through to access the content
Users don’t have to give up their email
Low level of commitment
An image ad could suffice.
A video ad is even better.
Make the ad copy (text above the image) short.
Make sure viewers don’t have to click a ‘see more’ option.
Hook users and quickly get them to leave Facebook.
- Promotional offer
Offer something free or risk-free
Goal: lure potential leads into engagement.
For example: Offer a limited period free trial version of your software
Promo offers can be highly effective for relatively inexpensive purchases.
Again, low commitment: an image ad with short copy will work fine.
This promo ad for Dr. Pepper is short and sweet.
This ad accomplishes a few things:
- Presents Dr. Pepper as altruistic and charitable
- It establishes goodwill for the brand.
- It’s not trying to sell you a product — lets skeptical scrollers to be more likely to engage.
Ads in this stage target users who are already familiar with your brand.
Not everyone will convert on an awareness ad
Especially if your ask is high.
For example, A high-cost purchase will require a longer warm-up process
An unknown brand will require more time to establish trust
You’ll have to move users along the sales funnel step-by-step.
Provide value in exchange for emails (leads)
You can then use email addresses to nurture leads to eventual conversion.
- Use a lead magnet
Entice viewers to trade email address for something of perceived value
LinkedIn entices users to give up their email with helpful eBooks.
An image or video ad.
Limit your copy.
Your lead magnet should do the talking for you.
Prominent call to action.
- Entice participation with a Quiz/Survey
Quiz and survey-based ads have a high engagement rate.
You’re basically ‘gamifying’ conversion and data mining.
Reduces a user’s guard by inviting them to participate in something fun.
Upon completion, a reveal or insight should drive further action.
For example: Motivate them to sign up for your newsletter (for more info or cool content)
Give an enticing offer to encourage a purchase.
Use long copy or even video.
Make sure it’s relevant to your brand and your target demographic.
Bonus: make results complementary and shareable
Encourage new leads to invite their friends to participate.
- Promote a webinar
Webinars = interactive workshops or seminars held online.
They happen in real-time
Give participants the opportunity to interact
Enhances the learning experience.
Use a webinar to show your expertise
Warm up cold leads
Ask interested participants for an email address
Maybe even a fee to attend.
Asking users to block off time and hand over something is a pretty big ask.
Use image ads with long copy or video.
This gives you an opportunity to convince users – why should they attend?
It’s tempting, but DON’T jump straight to conversion ads.
They’re the final step in a social media ad campaign.
The first experience of your brand on Facebook should NOT be a sales pitch. Disruptive marketing turns off Facebook users.
Only go for conversion with interested followers on Facebook or if you have a history with a customer
These ads are designed to get the viewer to take action.
Create some urgency.
These ads directly prompt users to make a purchase
Ad recipients need to be convinced on value.
Video ads work great
Especially for things that are not inherently self-explanatory.
For example, If you sell a $1,000 marketing automation software you probably need a lengthy video ad
Convince someone familiar with your brand why they need your tool.
Lower price point items (like $50-100) can use:
Long copy photo ads
Getting Ad Viewers To Act
You need to get people to
- stop scrolling
- pay attention
- click on your ad.
How to increase click-through rate (CTR).
Keep it short and sweet
AdEspresso studied successful Facebook ad copy
Found that the most popular headline is just 5 words long.
Gets straight to the point
Quickly engage the viewer
Positive phrasing (upbeat, focus on benefits).
This ad uses positive wording:
Effective trust builder
You don’t even need a testimonial or review.
Facebook ads show above the ad those friends or influencers from a user’s profile that already like the business page of the company showing the ad.
Viewer more likely to ‘listen’ and take action when they see that people they trust have already committed to the brand.
By now you’ve heard us refer to urgency in your ads and outreach
Urgency triggers a natural reaction to avoid loss.
When appropriate, time-limited incentives can encourage action
Similar to urgency
Scarcity works on the principle of loss aversion.
Instead of time-limits, implies a limited number of opportunities
Tells users that if they don’t act now, they might miss their chance.
Copy that evokes curiosity
Facebook users aren’t actively shopping
They aren’t looking for solutions
If your ad promises a solution to a common pain point it can catch the scroller’s eye
Suggests that therapists may develop health problems if they don’t take certain actions.
Target users with massage therapist listed as occupation
Questions can hook people
Get them to keep reading from one line to the next
“Are you frustrated by…”
“Do you struggle to…”
You get the idea.
Make them nod their subconscious head in agreement and you’ve got them hooked.
Alright so now you know what kind of ad to run to reach your objective. It’s time to dig into crafting the ad, right?
In the next episode/shownotes, we’ll take you step-by-step through creating a Facebook ad.
From setting up your campaign and setting your budgets to measuring success.