It is evident that native advertisements on Facebook are becoming an integral part of the user experience. Nevertheless, with Facebook rolling out more features for News Feed ads and the overhaul of right-column ads, getting the most out of your real estate on the platform is more critical than ever. Here are three simple tips for optimizing your ads and placing you firmly above the competition:
1. Use first-party data whenever possible.
Whenever one advertises, the first question is often about who should see the ads. Though prospecting targets allows you to discover engaged audiences that react to your message, using first-party data to retarget potential customers hones in on those most likely to purchase your product.
There are a few ways that first-party data can be collected. If you have an email list of your fans, you can import the list into Facebook and it will securely compare the email addresses to any matching Facebook IDs so that you can retarget these people with your ads. Another way that you can retarget is by embedding a tracking tag onto your website so that you can capture website visitors into an audience. If you’ve ever wondered how you’re getting served Facebook ads for websites you recently visited, it’s because of these delicious browser cookies that inform Facebook about your optimal advertising experience.
The ability to track and retarget people who have already been exposed to your brand is an invaluable tool. According to marketing expert Dr. Jeffrey Lant’s “Rule of Seven,” one should expose a product to a potential consumer at least seven times within an 18-month period in order to have the person remember the message and perhaps, even buy your product. Retargeting further expedites this process because the consumer has expressed initial interest by signing up for an email list or visiting your website. You have their attention; now you just need to keep it and make a sale.
2. Make sure you’re picking the right objective.
When setting up an ad campaign on Facebook, the first thing you need to ask yourself is “What am I trying to accomplish?” In fact, Facebook asks you what your objective is before you start creating your ad. Examples of objectives include website clicks, post engagements, and page likes. Though these are similar in very nuanced ways, the most significant reason to choose your exact objective is that Facebook will optimize your campaign to help you reach that goal.
Many campaigns we run use the “website clicks” goal, as we want fans to arrive at the digital retailer after the click: the clicks lead directly to a point-of-purchase. Facebook optimizes the impressions so that they are served to the audiences that yield the most website clicks. It prioritizes website clicks over other objectives such as engagement (shares, likes, comments, etc.). Selecting the right objective allows Facebook to work in your favor.
3. Use look-alike models.
Prospecting potential customers incurs financial cost and can be an arduous process that may or may not yield positive results. In order to alleviate some of these uncertainties, you should create and target a look-alike model of the fans on your Facebook page. Look-alike modeling allows you to create a unique audience of people on Facebook who are very similar to the people who either like your page or are part of one of your first-party data groups. This similarity modeling is based on their interests, behaviors, and other demographic information. You can actually select a percentage between 1-10% to choose how similar and/or large you want this custom audience to be (1% being the top one-percent of people on Facebook who are the most similar and 10% containing a larger group of people who are less similar). You can create these for each country where you have enough fans for the algorithm to create a new audience.
Look-alike modeling opens the door to targeting people who are interested in liking your page or purchasing your product. These are people you would have never been able to identify through manual targeting. If you have a tight budget, you may not have the flexibility to discover new audiences on your own. Targeting a look-alike of your current fans is a viable and efficient method of engaging potential new customers.
With so much content on Facebook with which to compete, it can be a very difficult and daunting task to break through the noise and run an effective advertising campaign. However, following the aforementioned tips will ensure that your ads are reaching the right people and allowing for the appropriate type of engagement.