Optimising Your Facebook Ads

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Posted by christian on

Though all exponential growth curves have to flatten out eventually, it seems Facebook is far from reaching its critical limit. With nearly one quarter of the world’s population engaged with the platform, it has simultaneously become the news source, information gateway and preferred method of social interaction for an entire generation. So with Facebook only gaining more clout on the world’s stage, it has become evermore necessary for advertisers to use the platform for marketing. Here are some tips to help you optimize your Facebook advertising.

Building Interest

Though Facebook marketing has proven to be a lucrative method for product distribution, it can only be one if you recognise the behaviour of your consumers. Individuals rarely (if ever) use Facebook as a portal for product searches. Much more often, people only engage with Facebook ads as an ancillary consequence to some other action (for instance browsing their friend’s pages). This contrasts with Google Ads, in which people click on advertisements that they were already looking for.

So we are dealing with individuals predisposed towards indifference. As such Facebook campaigns should not be immediately focused around purchasing, but rather on creating interest for visitors. One way this can be achieved is by posting videos that are related to your product but are interesting in their own right. Steinway Pianos have utilized this technique effectively. Instead of directly marketing their products, they will advertise videos that show the construction of their pianos, all the way from the factory to the show room. They recognise that their Facebook audience first needs to be coaxed into buying, as they won’t be adamantly attempting to pursue a product from the outset.

Audience Insights

Facebook, realising its value as an advertising platform, has implemented a variety of statistical devices for would-be marketers, foremost being Audience Insights. Audience Insights is a tool that provides demographical and behavioural data of both your audience and your competitors. The data comes chiefly from self-reported Facebook data (gender, age, job, relationship status etc.) and third party data partners (household income, purchasing behaviour, home value etc.).

Audience Insights also allows you to narrow the purview of your campaign to those most likely to buy your product. You should narrow your scope such that your custom audience size (which will be displayed to you) is specific enough that it encompasses only one million people. Once your audience has been isolated, you are then given the ability to analyse this hypothetical audience’s affinity for certain pages (affinity being how likely they are to like a certain page). Ideally, you will want them to have a high affinity for pages with similar subject matter to your ads. If this is not the case, then you need to alter the parameters of your target audience (e.g. age and income range) until their affinity matches your subject matter. 

Reusing Old Data

Facebook users are statistically more inclined to engage with data that already has a bevy of likes and comments. Though it is impossible for every new post to rise to a high level of interest, there is a way to gerrymander the data to make it seem like this is what is happening. Through the “social stacking” technique, you can keep the likes and comments from your more popular ads, and carry them over to your newer ones.

When creating a new ad, you will be given the opportunity to “use existing post” in the page post option. In here, you should copy and paste the URL of a previous ad (with many likes and comments), and carry over all the likes and comments to the newer one. For maximum efficacy, you should only post the URL of similar ads, as you want to have the comments make sense in contest with your latest ad.

A Time And Place

Though these tips are no doubt valid currently, it should be noted that their efficacy might only be relegated to this year. Facebook has become a continuously adapting entity, one whose next manifestation is not known even to its developers. For an ad campaign to be effective on its stage, it similarly needs to be in a constant state of change, with attention paid to the smallest of optimisations.

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