With over two billion users each month, Facebook is without doubt one of the most popular marketing channels on the internet today.
If you run an online store or a mobile app, Facebook is all the more lucrative given its highly niche targeting features and the relatively low cost of advertising.
For example, you could choose to target 20-25 year old males from Wisconsin who read Huffington Post and speak French. How niche is that? What’s more - the average cost to reach such users is way lower than what it costs on competing platforms like Google Adwords.
Given these deep targeting features, it is easy to over-optimize your campaigns and lose track of your marketing objectives. Here are a few tips to launch a Facebook advertising campaign that offers you the ideal ROI.
Targeting - one step at a time
Every business has a “buyer persona” that is essentially a profile of their ideal customer. For instance, Uber’s buyer persona could be a man or woman in their 20s and 30s who own a smartphone and who can afford a cab to work. There are of course younger and older people who may use the app for their own unique needs. But a buyer persona is typically the profile of a customer who provides your business with the maximum ROI.
It is a good idea to not restrict your Facebook ad targeting to parameters that match your buyer’s persona. This is because as a startup, you may have not identified the right buyer persona yet. Instead, it is recommended that you pick one parameter at a time and narrow your campaign down over time.
For instance, in the case of Uber, you could start targeting all smartphone users and add other parameters like age, gender or work profile over time. This way, you could measure your campaign performance with the addition of every parameter. If your buyer persona mapping is correct, you should see a gradual increase in conversions. But if that fails to happen, it could mean that you have not identified the right profile. You may want to go back to the drawing board in this case.
Call To Action (CTA)
As a marketer, you already know the impact of a good CTA on your conversion rate. A mobile app business will want to use a CTA like ‘Install Now’ while an eCommerce store may use a CTA like ‘Shop Now’ with their ads. The idea here is to nudge your customers into doing what you want them to do.
While this is true, your strategy could potentially backfire. It is worth remembering that Facebook users do not have a high purchasing intent. That is, these users are on Facebook to pass time by watching photos and videos - not to buy furniture or install an app. Using these CTAs right away could bring engagement levels down and thereby increase your advertising costs.
As social media consultant Bill Widmer writes in this guide, Facebook’s algorithm shows your posts to more people if they receive high engagement soon after publishing. That is, your cost of advertising is directly tied to how engaging your ads are to your viewers.
To put this in other words, an ad that points straight at the end objective of converting a customer may fail to be engaging. Consequently, your ROI from the campaign could drop. An alternate strategy is to nurture your customers through your ads, get these visitors click on your landing page or follow you on your Facebook page and convert them from here.
This is not to say that ads that aim for the end objective are all wrong. As long as you maintain a fine balance between advertising objectives and CPCs, you may continue to see high ROI on your campaigns.
Facebook advertising is an evolving platform and what holds true today may not necessarily hold true tomorrow. However, the pointers mentioned in this article are evergreen for the most part and should help you build an advertising strategy that stands the test of time.