Facebook advertising is one of the best kept secrets in internet marketing. It’s not a secret as such… after all, most of us have heard of Facebook at this point and we’ve probably seen the ads all over it!
But keeping in mind that this is a platform with a whopping 2 billion monthly users, you would probably be surprised to learn that a lot of people don’t actually use Facebook ads as part of their strategy.
You might also be surprised at just how powerful Facebook ads can be when it comes to growing your site on a limited budget.
And Facebook ads really are powerful. In fact, they’re probably a fair bit more powerful than Google AdWords and potentially any similar method of building traffic. And yet when you think about PPC, almost always the mind will turn first to Google AdWords.
In this blog report , we’re going to break down Facebook Ads and how to drive traffic to website using Facebook. Also we will look at why they are so powerful when it comes to getting more traffic to your site. Moreover, we’ll see how you can get the very most from them in order to grow your own channel.
Let’s start with the basics. What is it about Facebook ads that makes them so powerful? How do they work? And how are they similar and different to AdWords?
Well, like AdWords, Facebook ads are ‘PPC’. That stands for ‘Pay Per Click’ and it means that you pay out each time someone clicks on one of the adverts. You can choose precisely how much you want to pay for each click by setting what is known as the maximum CPC – the Cost Per Click.
Facebook ads, again like AdWords, work on a ‘bid’ system. When there is a relevant space on a page for your ad to go, you will be entered into an automated bidding war. You start by bidding the lowest amount possible and only if there are other relevant ads will your CPC go up.
As with bidding on eBay, your CPC will then go up to whatever the lowest price is that will beat the next highest bid. So, if your maximum is set to $2 but the next highest bid is 50cent, then you will only pay 51cent.
Also like AdWords, is the fact that Facebook Ads are targeted. That means you can choose precisely the kind of person you want to see your adverts and precisely the kind of person you want to reach with your message.
On Google AdWords, you target by listing your ad on a specific search term. You bid to appear at the top of the SERPs as a ‘sponsored result’. So, for instance, you might appear at the top of the SERPs for ‘Best Restaurants in Santa Monica’ and that way, you are paying for that term only.
Chances are that people who search for that phrase are planning to eat out and they are in Santa Monica! This means that you are paying to be seen only by people who might be potential customers.
On Facebook, you have even more control over your ads. That’s because you get to target based on hobbies, interests, job description, gender, age, marital status and more. In other words, you are targeting based on information the users have provided to Facebook.
This allows you to very specifically target a particular person. If someone has a particular hobby or interest for instance, then you can sell products to them based on that.
So, for instance, that means you can sell a fist and shin pads to martial artists, or promote your parkour website only to people who have shown an interest in parkour.
All this opens up a LOT of powerful potential when you consider how you can use Facebook ads to their fullest by combining these features.
Being able to control your CPC may not be something that is unique to Facebook but it is still highly powerful and especially when combined with that advanced targeting.
Setting the maximum bid means that you can potentially get a lot of visitors to your site without paying very much. But moreover, you can also control the maximum amount you’re willing to spend for each visitor.
This is good news, especially if you know your ‘CLV’ or ‘Customer Lifetime Value’.
The CLV tells you precisely how much a customer is worth to you. Let’s say that your customers typically buy three things from you. If you know this and you know that each of your products gets you a profit of $20, then you know that each customer is on average worth around $60 to you.
Some might buy more expensive products. Some might buy fewer products. Some might sign up to your mailing list and buy nothing (in this case we are calling any kind of lead a ‘customer’). But on average, you are getting $60 from each customer.
Therefore, as long as you know you are spending less than $60 on each customer, then you know that you are making a profit from your paid advertising.
Of course, it’s not quite so easy in practice. The reality is that a lot of people who click on your ads aren’t going to buy from you or sign up to your mailing list.
Clicking on an ad does not make someone a lead.
This is where it becomes useful to start considering your conversion rate. Conversion rates tell you how many of the people who land on your site, sign up to your mailing list or buy from you.
We’re interested in signing up to the mailing list, because that gives us concrete numbers we can work with.
So, let’s say you have a conversion rate of 2%. That means that 2% of all your visitors become subscribers.
That means that we can now afford to pay 2% of our CLV for each visitor. That means that each click on our links is worth $1.2 to us to break even.
If you make $1.2 your maximum budget, then you know that over the lifetime of your business – assuming nothing major changes (like a shift in the market), you will never lose money. But when a slot becomes available for less than $1.2, you will actually start to make money.
Now you want to start making this even more profitable, you can begin to look at the other elements. And this is where Facebook’s targeting comes in.
The very best way to improve the conversion rate from your clicks? That’s to make sure that the people clicking already have an interest in your products.
Let’s say you sell wedding dresses, or you have a wedding blog. If you show your ads only to women who earn a certain amount and are engaged, then you have narrowed down the people who will click to only people who are interested in buying from you.
It becomes much more likely that you’re now going to get conversions up to 20% or higher, meaning that you can pay much more for your ads and drive more traffic or just enjoy a much larger profit margin each time someone clicks through.
Both these strategies have just led to a lot more visits for your site and a lot more growth and cash simply as a result of leveraging the powerful tools that Facebook Ads makes available to you.
Google AdWords does have some additional tricks up its sleeve that make it more powerful in some ways. For instance, there’s goal tracking and remarketing. Then there are the ‘negative keywords’.
So, what does Facebook have up its sleeves? The answer is ‘CPA’. CPA is ‘Cost Per Action’ and this means that you’re no longer paying for each click, but rather for each action.
An action can mean liking your Facebook page, it can mean watching a video you uploaded or it can mean redeeming a special offer you are providing.
Redeeming a special offer means that you are only going to pay out if someone actually buys from you. That means you can only ever make profit on your clicks and there’s no chance of paying for purchases that don’t amount to anything.
Paying for likes meanwhile, means that you’re only paying for likes. If you can work out the CLV of your Facebook likes (which is likely a lot lower) then you can make sure once more that you only ever make profit.
This is a powerful strategy because you’ll now have the option to reach out to that audience again at any point completely for free. There are limitations here of course – keep in mind that only a certain percentage of your Facebook followers will see each post you make.
But if you make lots and they’re highly sharable then this is a strategy that can result in exponential traffic gains for your Facebook Ads spend. This is a VERY powerful way to grow your traffic.
There are a few things to consider when creating Facebook ads if you want to get maximum benefit.
Of course, you need to write your ad titles and the text underneath well if you want to maximize your chances of people clicking on those ads. A good headline should grab attention and it should make sure that people stop what they’re doing and take notice.
But your objective is not to ensure that everyone who sees your ads ends up clicking on them.
While that might sound like a good idea, the reality is that you actually want to use your ad copy in order to further target your audience – so that even within the correct demographic, you are filtering out visitors that won’t ultimately become life-long fans or direct customers.
To do this, you can try starting your titles with a rhetorical question that will qualify the audience. This might mean that you ask a question that will identify whether they are the correct audience for what you’re offering.
“Are you looking for ways to lose weight?”
“Do you love insane, 80s action?”
Not only does this work because questions are naturally engaging and good at grabbing our attention, but it also helps the user to know whether or not they should continue reading.
If the answer is ‘yes’, they read on. If the answer is ‘no’, then they can get on with their lives. Note that even when they don’t click, you will have benefited somewhat from the fact that they saw your ad.
They’re the right demographic thanks to that targeting, so maybe at a later date they will think to buy from you!
You can then go one step further in your text, in order to make sure that only serious customers click. For instance, why not include the price? That instantly means that you’re not going to waste your money paying for visitors that never would have been interested in spending money.
Only people who might potentially be convinced to buy an ebook will now click. See how we’re really narrowing this down and massively decreasing the likelihood of you losing money?
But that’s when you also add the little hook. Always include the value proposition – the promise or the emotional drive that will make people excited for your product.
That’s how you ensure that the people who get through those first two qualifying statements will actually then click through to buy!
And one last thing: consider the niche that you go into heavily. This is one of THE biggest factors determining your success with Facebook ads.
If your topic is in demand but is suitably niche – so that you’re not going up against companies with billions of dollars to spend – then you stand a much better chance of success.
So in many ways, the most important factor in determining your success is something that you decide even before you sign up to Facebook ads…
In our next post in this series we will look at retarget marketing via Adwords and Facebook.