Are Facebook advertisements effective for your business or a total waste of money? The simple and surprising truth is that it depends on how wisely you use them.

Many businesses hear about Facebook advertising and get hit with gold fever. They invest a good portion of their budget in ads, thinking that, within little to no time, they’ll be skipping off to the bank with sack-loads of money.

Before emptying your pockets of your precious, hard-earned money, move forward with caution...

It seems like an easy solution: “Spend some to make some” – right?

Then why is it that many businesses experience momentarily high engagement, but receive very little revenue in return for their hefty investment? Not all that glitters is gold.

Before emptying your pockets of your precious, hard-earned money, move forward with caution. Here are a few guidelines to help you protect your investment and guarantee you reach your goals.

The Value – "What's In It For Me?"

Facebook ads are like billboards on a highway. You’ve only got a few seconds before your audience drives right past them – or scrolls right past them on their feed. Your ad needs to offer enough value to make people stop mid-scroll. 

The key to achieving that is to publish an ad that provides instant gratification.

Think of your audience and the value that you can create, and offer something that provides instant results for them, such as a product or a workshop. Even better, throw in something for free.

Once you’ve figured out what that is, lead them straight to a landing page with only the information about what you just offered them (your workshop, product, etc.)

Be a thoughtful and hospitable host. Serve your offer to your audience on a silver platter, straight to their table, instead of telling them to “make themselves at home” and sending them to the kitchen (a general website), where they must go through every cupboard to find what you just offered them.

Your Target Audience – Attract the Right People, Not All the People

After publishing an ad, many businesses get excited because they start seeing their engagement and reach skyrocket, only to discover later that their actual sales and revenue haven’t covered the cost of the campaign.

Before you get discouraged, it’s important to set the right expectations. When publishing an ad, you are casting a wide net; you’re bound to catch a whole variety of sea life and debris. Not everyone will be interested in what you have to offer, and it’s okay to toss them back into the water. However, in order to minimize waste and maximize your investment, be sure to narrow your target audience while keeping it large enough for the Facebook AI to learn and adjust.

When publishing an ad, you are casting a wide net; you’re bound to catch a whole variety of sea life and debris...and it’s okay to toss them back into the water.

How do you catch the fish you want?

Facebook advertising allows you to target specific demographics, interest groups, and people who like similar pages to yours. While you’re creating your new campaign, it is crucial to define your audience’s location, interests, age, gender, and language.

Now that you have the information you need, you can target the right crowd. “Stalk” your audience. Create a sheet that allows you to keep track of other accounts or brands that they are taking an interest in, and come up with a strategy to keep you aware of your competition and how you can stay in the game.

Remember to offer your audience free value that will transform their lives for the better. Offer a free digital resource, an exclusive music track, a tutorial video, or free advice. That way, you create an environment in which your audience feels welcome and cared for. They will click on your ad because it is actually serving them.

An audience that appreciates the value your business creates is an audience that will stay with you for the long run.

After offering your audience value, don’t forget to take it a further step towards building a long-lasting relationship by asking for their email, so you can keep them updated on more of the same thing that they came for.

A/B Testing – The Feedback That Measures Your Success

A/B testing is when you create two different ads in the same campaign.

Never trust your own personal preferences and gut feelings. Investigate what messaging angle is most effective and what makes your audience want to click through and close a deal.

A/B testing is the perfect way to measure what works and what doesn’t. Test different graphics, titles, phrases, target audiences, or even two different offers, and run them both in parallel. It’s about trial and error, and it’s okay if you don’t immediately find the right combination of elements. The only rule with A/B testing is to always test only one difference at a time. If you test more than one difference, you will never know which one made the ad the winner.

The only rule with A/B testing is to always test only one difference at a time. If you test more than one difference, you will never know which one made the ad the winner.

Rely on Facebook’s capabilities, such as Reach, Impressions, Cost Per Result, and Results, which will provide the facts you need. The winning ad should generally be the one giving you the most high-quality results for the least amount of money.

After identifying the winning ad, test it against a new ad with another (single) difference.

So, to conclude, Facebook ads are good – if you use them correctly!

If you feel you need a little more guidance through the world of ads and marketing, our professional insight will help you make the most of your money and time so that neither goes to waste.

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