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Social Media Marketing: Successful Facebook Advertising

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Facebook is visited by over 900 million people around the world every day. The companies, thanks to their page ( fanpage ), benefit from the gigantic reach that this network offers them. A successful Facebook marketing campaign, however, cannot be satisfied with a simple corporate Facebook page. Facebook ads are indeed very far-reaching and involve very effective targeting possibilities. This is why they must be taken into consideration in any marketing mix strategy.

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A Facebook advertising campaign in just a few steps

Starting a Facebook ad doesn’t take much more than a simple page. As soon as the administrator account is created, it is possible to connect and click on “Create an advertisement   in the menu to access the dedicated advertisement manager. If you are using this account for the first time, you will be asked to indicate your payment method and your bank details.

An advertising campaign can be carried out in four steps:

  1. Choice of campaign type and corresponding objectives
  2. Targeting: choice of the target audience
  3. Set a budget and a schedule
  4. Configure and finalize the campaign

1. Choice of campaign type and corresponding objectives

In the Facebook Ads Manager, you can choose from different types of campaigns. These will depend on the objectives of your campaign . There are a number of options for this, from promoting your personal Facebook page to targeting customers at a local store. 

In order to dig a little deeper into this topic, you will find below a summary of the main differences as well as the objectives of the various types of existing campaigns:

  • Showcase Your Posts
    Select “ Page Post Engagement Ads” to highlight content in isolation that you previously posted on your Page. The goal is to get more visits, likes , shares and comments and thus increase traffic to your website through links to it.
  • Promote your Facebook Page
    Choose the “Page Likes” option to attract more visitors to your company’s Facebook page and generate more likes . This form of advertising is mainly used to increase the notoriety of a Facebook page to get new “Fans” and as many potential customers.
  • Drive Traffic to Your Website
    In order to get more visits to your website through your Facebook page, select “Clicks to Website”. Here, choose the target of the link, whether it is a home page or a product sheet. You can also create a conversion pixel to track the actions of people who clicked on your ad and thus measure the success of the ad.
  • Increase conversions on your website
    The conversion pixel is not so much a form of advertising, but rather an additional tool for users who want to measure and increase their different conversion rates. It allows, for example, to measure the number of visitors who went to payment for a product after clicking on your advertisement. As mentioned in the last point, the operator of a website must therefore set up a conversion pixel in order to link his site with his Facebook advertisement.
  • Advertise Your App Installation
    Apps can also be featured on Facebook Ads. These are created with the URLs of the respective App-Store (online application stores), images or even short videos of these applications accompanied by the “install now” button. In the same context, it is possible to ”  increase engagement in your application  “. This is a form of advertising that allows you to animate and interact with the application.
  • Reach people near your business
    This type of advertising is primarily aimed at stores or service providers with a physical point of sale. This makes it possible to reach a local audience, we also speak of traffic or loyalty of a local or passing clientele. It is also possible to measure the number of potential customers at a specific location and with a flexible radius.
  • Gather more participants for your events
    The purpose of this type of Facebook advertising is to promote events such as seminars, conferences or exhibitions for example. The companies thus approach potential participants directly. The publication of new information, changes of dates or the cancellation of the event will be notified to interested individuals.
  • Encourage Internet users to consider your offer
    If you publish a status on Facebook, it can be presented as an offer. In this way, potential customers can be offered discounts, credits and other promotional actions. By clicking on “Request for offers”, you can reach a larger target audience than with just your Facebook page.
  • Increase the reach of your videos
    Video also plays a big role in online marketing, even independently of YouTube. In social media marketing, there are many advantages to using high quality videos as well. Companies can make themselves known widely through special videos that will be shared.

Facebook offers many possibilities for businesses and freelancers to create effective and target-oriented advertising campaigns. The tools offered make it possible to meet the different expectations of advertisers. The next step is to define a target audience. This is about precisely selecting the audience that you want to reach with an advertising campaign.

2. Audience – Target audience

Targeting customers is one of the most important steps in planning an advertisement. This device aims to allow an ad to reach its target audience and thus optimize spending on Facebook ads. To make the ad campaign as effective as possible, you will need to make individual settings and define a custom audience . An alternative is to use targeting settings predefined by Facebook.  

Personalized audiences
In the “personalized audience” section, you can set a special target for your Facebook ads. This presupposes that you own things like phone numbers or email addresses of former customers. This data can be downloaded from the Ads Manager. Facebook then automatically determines which customers are also users of the social network to establish a personalized audience. The protection of private data is quite strict in France, which is why we cannot use this kind of data without having first obtained the authorization of the users (through a subscription to a Newsletter for example).

Personalized audiences from your website
The data collected on your website is precious. In the classic sense of retargeting, old visitors to your website who use Facebook are going to be targeted by your ad. The big advantage is the low proportion of delivery loss, as users have already shown interest in your business content or products. To use retargeting for your Facebook ads, you need to embed a code snippet (Pixel) on your site.

Similar Audiences
If you have already created a Custom Audience, Facebook is able to determine a Similar Audience. The goal of this process is to identify potential customers who have a profile and interests similar to those of individuals identified through the study on “audiences personalized from your website”. If there are matches in the data such as place of residence, age, or interests, Facebook compiles a new list and classifies these users in similar audiences who will be exposed to the same ads.

Standard targeting options
If you don’t have an address book handy, Facebook offers a targeting tool. You can thus define your target according to the product or the type of campaign, for example by following the following indications:

  • Location
    A Parisian store will, thanks to Facebook ads, reach customers who come from Île-de-France or who are there at a given time T. A company can also expand its target geographic area if its activity concerns the Europe as a whole, for example, and rely on other criteria. The key is to choose a commercially relevant area of ​​activity.  
  • Demographic data
    For many products, it is relevant to target a certain segment of the population: men, women or even a certain age group. By virtue of this selection of demographic data, a great loss of distribution through any advertisement is avoided . It is also possible to target an audience with a certain level of education, a certain professional background or with a certain income bracket.
  • Interests
    In addition, it is possible to choose predefined categories and sub-categories that correspond to the interests of Facebook users. These categories of interests are defined by Facebook on the basis of specific user metrics such as, for example, “likes”, activities, or places visited. Here, Facebook offers very general categories depending on the offer. For finer selectivity, this center of interest targeting must be carried out manually.
  • Connections
    Connections allow a final refinement of target audience selection. Users who have marked Facebook pages with a “like” mention, who use certain applications or who participate in certain events are included in this targeting. Thanks to “connections”, the friends of these targeted people can also be.

During manual targeting, the Facebook Ads Manager will display a target audience barometer . This will summarize your different data and determine their potential scope. Thus, you easily recognize if the chosen target is too specific or too wide. If your choice is made, you can save the resulting target audience for a future campaign and start working on the budget as well as the schedule.

3. Set a budget and schedule

When budgeting for a Facebook advertising campaign, you have two options:

  • daily budget : if you plan to publish an advertisement on a lasting basis, it is advisable to opt for a daily budget. Each ad group has its own budget. When an ad’s daily limit is reached, the ad is no longer running.
  • global budget (over the duration of the campaign) : if you want to publish Facebook ads for a specific period, you must enter the start and end date of the campaign while specifying an associated budget.

How much can a Facebook ad cost?

It is possible to choose or modify the invoicing mode in the advanced options, namely between automatic auctions or manual auctions. Facebook takes care of managing advertisements in the manner of Google AdWords, that is to say according to the principle of auctions . There is no single price list. The amount of bids and therefore the costs of Facebook advertising depends on different criteria. Firstly, it differs depending on the target you want to hit. Ads with a highly desirable target will naturally cost more than ads with very special interests, less exposed to strong competition. In addition, Facebook also assigns a quality factor , the relevance index (Ad Relevance Score)  : The better the ad is shaped and the more relevant it is to users according to Facebook. Thus the advertising campaign will be more profitable.

In any case, Facebook allows precise control of advertising costs . As an advertiser you hardly take the risk of spending more than what is foreseen in a budget. The high transparency associated with Facebook ads allows you to monitor your account, and therefore your spending, in real time. Advertisements or campaigns can be modified, optimized or even simply withdrawn at any time and in isolation.

4. Model ads and finalize a campaign

After determining the type of campaign, target audience and budget, it is time to take care of the advertising itself. On the ad editor, you can choose images, videos, texts and links for your project.

Select Images and Videos
The first step is to incorporate images, graphics or videos into your ad. The carousel format allows you to post up to five images or videos in a single ad. You can either use free standard images or upload your own content. In the editor, the images are adapted to the required format and dimensions.

Add text and links
The next step is to embed the text and the corresponding links. Make this descriptive text concise and don’t forget to add the title for your ads in the right column (if desired) as well as configure the preview (history, map, ratings). In the area on the right, choose where the advertisement will appear (news feed, right column or on the Facebook mobile version).

The “advertisement and placement preview” function allows you to view the rendering of your advertisement before it is actually published. This allows you to realize any changes to be made or to validate the final result if it suits you.

Getting started with Facebook advertising

The first ad campaign on Facebook is not complicated to carry out, and that thanks to the Facebook ad manager, designed to be as intuitive as possible. With a little training, we quickly assimilate the basic functions of this manager. The latter offers elaborate and complex custom settings, which require a little more experience. As a beginner, it is better to grope your way to discover the different strategies and possibilities of creation. You can then quickly measure their success.

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