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Organic social media is great and all, but sometimes it’s not enough [thanks algorithms!]. Enter paid advertising and one of the most cost-effective advertising investments - Facebook and Instagram ads.

But where to even start? Fear not, Neon Moose has broken it down into a few actionable and hopefully easy steps...

⚡️ First off, you need to have a Business Manager and Ads Manager account to run ads. Do not boost posts (repeat – do not boost!) or run ads from your page as they will not be optimised and you miss out on so many features.

Basically, you’re wasting your money! Always best to run ads in Ad Manager— targeting or retargeting specific audiences based on their age, hobbies, interests, careers, etc.— and showing ads to people who click on your website.

⚡️ You need a Pixel installed on your website. You can find the pixel in your Facebook Ads manager account. Then add the code to your website (in the header section). The Pixel allows Facebook to track user behavior so it can optimise and track results.

⚡️ Once you have installed your Pixel, you should go into Events Manager [in Ads Manager] and prioritise your Standard Event. These are things like Purchase, Lead, Ad to Cart. This allows Facebook to optimise as it knows which events are most important to your business - e.g. for most of us, this is Purchase as we want to make sales.

⚡️ Before creating an ad – like any good marketing - start with a strategy. Ask yourself these questions… Which platforms is your audience mainly on? What’s the objective behind the ad? What will the thumb-stopping content aka the creative (both copy + images / video) be? Who will see the ad (your target market? Hot or cold audience?). What’s your call to action? How long will the ads run (best practice is anywhere from one month – 3 months). What’s the budget (start from $10 per day). Will it be an awareness campaign (to reach new people) or a retargeting campaign (to drive conversions among people who have interacted with your brand in the past).

⚡️ Create custom audiences. To create a Facebook custom audience, go to the Audiences section in your FB Ads Manager - click Create Audience. YThen click custom audience. Here you can add mail chimp database under 'customer list'. From there you can create lookalike audiences too.

⚡️ Before running an ad, you need to slowly gain their trust and warm up your audience by offering them something that they want [or need] – ideally for free! Think webinar, downloadable, checklist etc… Because let's be honest, people don’t go on social media to be sold to. They go on there to check out what their fave celeb is doing. Or their friends and family members. Maybe see any update from one of their fave cafes or clothing stores they follow.

So - firstly, highlight who your target demographic is, and put together a product or service offering they would love to get their mitts on (for nix). EG: a ’free social media calendar template’ they can download in exchange for their email address (being subscribed to your email list).

Since paid advertising should be at the very start, and end, of your sales funnel, you can start by offering the ’free social media calendar template’, and then later in the funnel you can use ads to retarget anyone who downloads your template or visited your website (and more likely to hand over their kitty cash aka paying customers!).

Some sweet retargeting facts:

👉Ten times more people click through to a retargeted ad than they do a standard ad on Facebook.

👉People who are retargeted with social media ads after visiting your website are 70% more likely to convert into paying customers.

👉People need at least seven touch points with you before they commit to purchasing.

Oh and while we're talking funnels and FB ads here's a tip - Awareness and Reach for Top-of-Funnel audiences, Traffic for Middle-of-Funnel, and Conversions or Product Catalog Sales for Bottom-of-Funnel.

⚡️ Once you've created the ad/s, split test them. A split test (or A/B test) is a marketing strategy that tests two elements of the ad against each other to find out which delivers the best results. A/B testing lets you change variables, such as your ad creative, audience or placement to determine which strategy performs best.

⚡️ Lastly, be patient. FB ads use algorithms to learn, adapt and deliver the best result possible for your campaign. When you create an ad campaign on Facebook and select an objective, Facebook optimises your campaign for that objective and show your ads to the people that are most likely to take the desired action. To do this effectively, Facebook experiments early on in the FB ads ‘learning phase’ and shows your ads to different types of people within your target audience, figuring out who is most likely to take the desired action.

Happy advertising!

Neon Moose is an Adelaide based creative with over 18+ years of experience in social media, marketing, PR and copywriting.


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