5 Mistakes When Using Facebook Ads

There is no question about it. Facebook, with its 1.4 billion users, offers businesses a huge marketing opportunity to reach people where they currently are, online. Will Facebook fade out like Myspace? I’m not sure, but what we do know is that for every 3 hours spent on our mobile devices, Facebook tells us that 1 out of every 5 mins is spent on the social media platform. Why spend hundreds of dollars with a EDDM provider to blanket a neighborhood, when you can spend the same if not less, to reach more people with more relevant, targeted outcomes? 

Facebook’s ad platform has become pretty robust as months go by. As a revenue provider for Facebook, this is sure to be an area of consistent updates, support and investment for the company. As someone who wants to advertise to Facebook users, it is going to take a bit of a learning curve to figure out the right tools, metrics and techniques to effectively use the Facebook ads platform. Here are a few tips a beginner user needs to know before you spend too much time and money marketing the wrong way:

1. Have clear goals
Before you spend money marketing anything, you must have some clear objectives in place to know how effective your campaign is working for you. With Facebook, you can have a few different types of goals to measure how effective your campaign is working. These include, page likes, sign ups for your newsletter, downloads, clicks to website and more. For more advanced users, Facebook allows your configure your e-commerce shopping cart to allow users to even shop online. These are all clear, actionable objectives that you must have in mind before you begin your campaign. 

example: My goals is to obtain 100 new Facebook likes per month.

2. Your using the wrong ad format
Facebook has 5 different ad formats for you to choose from. Each different ad format will gain different results for your ad. Often time, new users only will choose one ad format type because they don’t necessarily know how, or they may just have a “go to” format and never have stopped to really analyze if the type of ad they are running needs to be tweeked or not. Study the ads closely and choose the one that is appropriate to meet your ad objectives with the audience you’re targeting.

3. Keep’em separated
There is a difference between an ‘ad group’ and ‘ad set’. On the ‘ad group’ level, you can set your daily or lifetime budget, schedule, bid type, bid info, and targeting data. What you want is multiple ‘ad sets’ within your ‘ad group’. For example, let’s say you sell travel vacations. Your ‘ad group’ might be labeled “inclusive travel vacations”. Within your ‘ad group’, you might have several ‘ad sets’. One could be “Mexico vacations”, one could be “French vacations” and another could be “Hawaii vacations”. Facebook will give more reach to only one of the ad sets in your group. Therefore, make sure you have enough of them in your ad group and diversify as needed.

4. Your target is to broad 
I get it, you think your product or service is for everyone! (insert pet peeve here). When I ask people about who their target audience is, 99% of the time people say: everyone! Wrong. If you are a beer company, 13 year old Charlie is probably not within your target market. None the less, you’ll continue to waste money showing your ad to people who likely aren’t interested or are not relevant buyers. When you make your target too broad, you run the risk of wasting ad spend on irrelevant viewers. 

5. Get to the point
You’re ad isn’t there to sell the product or service, its there to sell the click through. You only have a few seconds to really draw in the user with short ad copy and a visually appealing image that will catch their attention. What do you want them to do from there? Don’t go into benefits and features here. Grab their attention and sell them on clicking through for more details. Don’t lie, don’t use click bait and switch tactics, use honest, thoughtful copy and imagery. 

Facebook ads can be a powerful tool to reach hundreds if not thousands of relevant users. It can also help new businesses and brands create awareness and build a following. The key is learning how to do it right, avoiding the pitfalls mentioned in this article and measuring outcomes. 

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Russell is the founder and owner of Severity Design. Severity Design is a digital marketing studio located in Elgin, Illinois, a Northwest Suburb of Chicago. We help small businesses get the word out and gain attention.
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