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So you want to try Facebook ads?

March 17, 2017 SEO
Et si vous faisiez de la publicité sur Facebook ?

I appear in your Facebook newsfeed (which by the way, never stops!). I look just like what your Facebook friends post (a bit of text plus an image). I helped Facebook triple its profits between 2015 and 2016. I am… Facebook Ads! What makes these ads so appealing to professionals? What are their advantages? We’ve got your answers.

1. What are the benefits of advertising on Facebook?

Advantage #1: You’ll reach a very large audience
With more than a billion users worldwide, Facebook is the most popular social media network.  It’s ahead of WhatsApp, Instagram and Twitter whose respective subscribers “only” total 900, 400 and 320 million (Source / Statista). When you use Facebook for your online advertising, you’ll quickly reach a high number of potential customers.

Advantage #2: You’ll build a relationship of trust with your audience

Unlike Google, which consumers use to actively search for content, Facebook is popular with its subscribers because it lets them discover new content through what their Facebook “friends” share. Take advantage of this “passive viewing” to display your ads.  In addition to instilling a climate of trust, you can also create a sense of closeness between the users of this famous social network and your brand.  You’ll strengthen your company’s reputation considerably.

Advantage #3: You’ll be able to target your customers with more precision
When you advertise on Google (via an “ad” link at the top or bottom of search results), you are targeting Internet users who are searching for a certain product or service within a given region. This means that Google ads hinge on the business’s location and activity. In contrast, Facebook ads let you select the audience you’re looking for based on a multitude of criteria – age, gender, location and more! A Facebook Ads campaign therefore revolves around your pre-chosen target and criteria.  What’s more, Facebook Ads will give you access to stats that offer valuable information on your target audience. For example, let’s say you discover that one of your products is extra popular with young women aged 15-24, you can adjust your Facebook Ads so that they match their expectations perfectly. Finally, analyzing the performance of your Facebook ads may very well reveal new advertising opportunities for you.  You might discover a brand new market or a personalized and adapted way to connect with a specific demographic.

Advantage #4: You’ll gain new customers (and boost your business)
When you promote your products, services and offers on Facebook, you’ll generate traffic to your website. But Facebook Ads also let you generate qualified traffic to your website or Facebook page. So Facebook Ads offer double the benefits.  They’re great for your website SEO (diversifying your traffic sources has a positive impact on your website popularity and credibility) and your community (encouraging users to like your page will grow your community of clients and prospects).

Handy Tip

Do you run a convenience store and wish you could target the streets around your neighbourhood? Good news! Facebook offers local SEO strategies. When you aim to boost your “local reputation” through an ad campaign, your ad will display every time a Facebook user is in the vicinity of your business.

2. How do Facebook Ads work?

The simplest and fastest way to advertise on Facebook is to boost one of your posts.  This transforms any one of your Facebook posts into an advertisement that appears in the newsfeed of your fans, their friends or even users you previously targeted based on their age and place of residence. The only thing is, these posts might not be as effective as true Facebook ads.  It will be tough for you to determine exactly which users they need to reach at what location and how to control your budget. But you can always opt for a full-on Facebook campaign. Once you set your goals, refine your target audience, determine your budget and choose your campaign length, you’re ready to launch.  And Facebook ad campaigns have plenty of advantages. For example, you’ll be able to target your audience with precision. It’s possible to publish several ads and test the different versions (via an AB testing system). You’ll be able to master your budget, keep track of your statistics and more.

Handy Tips

  • To optimize the impact of your Facebook ads, make sure that they don’t look like traditional, generic advertisements. Create your own direct, original and engaging content. Taking the time to make high-quality ads is worth it. Your ads need to inspire people to click, like, share and buy when they appear in your users’ newsfeed.
  • But be careful not to overwhelm consumers. This means you need to avoid excessive punctuation (!!!) and words that imply free offers (“No charge!” “Complete refund!”), discounts (“Great deals!” “Special promotions!”) or any sense of urgency (“Call Now!” “Urgent!). A pile of promises and catchy phrases could end up counter productive.  Your ad needs to focus solely on highlighting a service, offer or product. You want to give your business the chance to stand out from the competition.

3. How much does it cost to advertise on Facebook?

The cost of a Facebook Ad campaign varies significantly.  You’ll have the choice of several bidding strategies:

  • CPM or Cost Per Thousand impressions (the amount that will be billed for 1000 views of your ad),
  • CPC or Cost per Click (amount you have to pay for every time your ad generates user “engagement,” such as a click, share or like.
  • CPA or Cost Per Action (amount that you need to pay every time your ad generates a predetermined action (conversion, like, download)

For CPC’s and CPA’s, you’ll need to define a bid.  This is the maximum amount you will be willing to pay each time a Facebook user clicks on your ad.

Financially speaking, a Facebook Ads campaign offers three main advantages:

  • Control (You can pause your campaign at any time),
  • Accessibility (It’s you and only you who defines your budget),
  • Customizable (You get to choose the criteria that meets your needs).

Handy Tip

FYI, in 2015, the average CPC for a Facebook ad was approximately $0.36, compared to $1.41 for the CPM. (Source: Salesforce).

Key Points to Remember:

  • When you promote your products and services on Facebook, you have the opportunity to bring the people you’ve targeted in your ad campaign to go to your website and convert them into customers.
  • To be effective, your ads campaign needs to target your ideal audience. This means original content created for the right people.
  • Just like in paid SEM campaigns, the cost of a Facebook advertising campaign will vary based on your goals, campaign length and pricing methods (CPC, CPM, CPA) you choose.
  • It’s all well and good to attract Internet users to your site. But converting them into your true brand ambassadors is even better.  And that’s exactly what Facebook Ads let you do.  Each time a Facebook user comments, likes or shares your post, their entire network is likely to see your ad.