In Facebook advertising, there is a seemingly infinite expanse of possibilities. For this reason, the devil is in the details, making it stupidly easy to overlook the fundamentals. Before pushing live or even fleshing out your first Facebook campaign, it’s wise to reflect on the following:
Reset your perspective.
Let’s take a moment to take a step back. How do you behave on Facebook? Organic search is the method used when someone is actively seeking something of interest – “actively” being the operative word. In contrast, users log into Facebook to see what friends are up to, read an article from a favorite publication, watch a DIY video for red velvet cookie dough brownies, or maybe even to enter a political debate on a comment thread.
The key interactive difference is intent. The list of possible motives of a user signing in go on and on, but logging onto Facebook for the purpose of seeing ads is assuredly not one of them. These ads, particularly news feed ads, are fundamentally an interruption to the user experience. This is especially true if your ads link to another site. However, this user flow disruption is positive when the right ad is served to the right person in the right way. How will you stop them in their tracks with your Facebook campaign?
Broaden your horizons.
At this juncture, you may feel you have your audience nailed. You know with a certain degree of confidence the type of person that has typically interacted with your company. For this reason, you may be inclined to confine your efforts to this persona. Or maybe you don’t quite yet know your audience, but you have in mind an ideal target. Facebook is astoundingly valuable as an educational tool.
For this reason, broadening the target(s) for your first campaign is your best bet. The more applicable data you capture, the more significant information you have at your disposal to confidently refine your efforts moving forward. For example, imagine you are an e-commerce retailer (maybe you already are). You may come to find your ideal age cohort accounts for most of the overall site traffic from Facebook, but that another age cohort converts at a higher rate. You now know the age of your most valuable customer on Facebook and you have also been alerted that a re-evaluation of your messaging to your ideal age cohort is needed to in order to unlock its potential.
Depending on your industry and objective, other dimensions such as gender, geographical location, interest, and placement can be approached with a broader perspective and sequentially fine-tuned. Surprising discoveries from Facebook campaigns and advertising are plentiful and invaluable, and when addressed properly, lead to successive improvements that will ultimately increase your return on assets (ROA). Speaking of return…
Shift your attention.
Don’t focus on return on investment (ROI) …yet. I know this isn’t what you want to hear. The prospect of letting money go into the internet ether is daunting so you may be inclined to count every penny coming in and out. If you’re solely ROAS focused entering your first campaign, chances are you’ll be sorely disappointed.
Therefore, it is prudent to temper your expectations. As outlined above, Facebook’s education nature enables you to continually advance your marketing efforts, which will bring you closer to a positive ROAS over the span of – wait for it – months. I know that sounds like a long way away, but the increase in brand awareness and the learnings you’ll gather along the way will translate into tangible value.
Now that you’ve reset your perspective, broadened your horizons, and shifted your attention, you’re ready to build out a strong initial Facebook campaign. I believe in you.