AAF-DC Board Member Brian Wohlert of Centro introduces Dan Higgins.
This week, I and dozens of my peers learned about creating strong Facebook ad campaigns. Dan Higgins, Director of Social and Content Marketing at the Plowshare Group, led an AAF-DC workshop How to Create Successful Facebook Ads on the best current resources and approaches. The event, held at Henninger Media Services in Arlington, also gave us insights on how Facebook is adding value for clients.
Higgins said that organic views are declining due to the feed algorithm, and that many customers and advocates are not fans of your page for a variety of reasons. With exception targeting parameters, testing options, mobile and the addition of the Instagram audience, Facebook is now the place to reach people — it’s where to scale expensive content, said Higgins.
A Stronger Toolkit
Facebook Business Manager allows you to access your page, ads, and interactions in one place. Business Manager users get access to Power Editor, a potent tool (also free) for creating ad campaigns for different targets and managing all of them. The catch? You have to use Google Chrome–it doesn’t work in any other browser.
Testing mechanisms include traditional A/B testing and multivariate testing. The latter allows you to test many variant elements, including text, pictures and calls to actions (CTAs). Higgins highly recommended the multivariate method, which takes advantage of Power Editor’s strengths.
Facebook also allows ad managers to choose their outcome. It’s not just about engagement anymore, largely due to objections from advertisers. Video views, click-throughs, conversions, and everything in between can now be measured with the CTAs and cookies on your site.
Creative placements let you see how an ad works in various media from desktop to mobile. In addition, you can use a carousel to show people different elements of your story and allow them to browse and unfold your story at will.
Targeting allows you to drill down by zip code, cities, states or even countries. Or you can choose your audience via financial demographics, home ownership, employers, business ownership, job titles, relationship status, gender, age, personal interests, forthcoming dates of significance (anniversaries and birthdays), and a variety of other personal data. You can also target based on interactions with your brand: Did they attend your last event or download your app?
Costs are often determined by size of audience, time of year, creative format, ad product and placement, context and messaging, and finally budget allocation. Seasonal events like political elections and Christmas can have a big impact on the cost. Completely aside from those considerations, bad creative can dramatically drive up your cost per click or other CTA; it’s crucial to test which content is working and which is not.