Facebook is a behemoth for advertising. Why? It’s probably the most effective way of reaching your ideal consumer. If you’re not advertising on Facebook already, you should be. If you are, great! Either way, here are some tips we use when setting up campaigns for our clients.
Define Your Ideal Customer
Sounds easy. But how well do you know your ideal customer? Facebook knows them very well. Building out a customer profile that paints a picture of who your ideal customer is is a great way to start reaching the right people on Facebook. Start with age, gender, interests, behaviors, psychographic and socioeconomic information. Looking at who the bulk of your current customers are and figuring out what they have in common is a valuable piece of information to have when building out a Facebook ad campaign.
Leverage Your Current Customer Data
One of the most important things we ask for when setting up an ad campaign is current client data from your CRM. Who already does business with you? We can take this information, upload it to Facebook and do some great things with it. For example, you can super-serve, or hone in on, your current customer’s ads and tailor them to people who already do business with you. By using your CRM database, you’re virtually cutting out anyone who hasn’t done business with you. If you’re like most businesses, a lot of your business comes from current clients, so super-serving them is a great way to maintain a relationship with them.
Build On Your Current Customer Data
One of the best features of Facebook advertising is the ability to leverage your current customer data to match with new customers on Facebook. Basically, we take your current customer database, upload it to Facebook and build out a Look-A-Like audience from that. This is an audience of people who match characteristics of your current customers. This information allows Facebook’s algorithm to build out a customer list with characteristics of people who you may not think of. Simply put, this is a great way of putting your message in front of people who are similar to your current customers but aren’t doing business with you yet.
Use The Facebook Pixel
If you don’t have a Facebook pixel installed on your website, get one. The Facebook pixel tracks all kinds of important actions taken on your website and you can leverage those actions to acquire new customers. Using the Facebook pixel we can run conversion campaigns, product catalog campaigns and see which ads perform the best. Let’s focus on conversion campaigns for this example. Conversion campaigns allow you to serve ads to people Facebook deems likely to take a specific action on your website. These are called “events.” There are nine standard events. For this example, we’ll use “view content,” “add to cart” and “purchase.” These are three important events that everyone who becomes your customer online goes through. First, they look at your products (view content) then they add their desired product to their cart (add to cart), then they check out and purchase the product.
If you could see how many times these actions are taken, it would look like a giant sales funnel. For example, say you have 10,000 website visitors per month, 5,000 of them view products (event No. 1), 1,000 of them add to cart (event No. 2), 150 of them actually purchase (event No. 3). A conversion campaign lets you build out a campaign designed to achieve the desired event. Essentially, the more “view content” actions you can drive, the more products get added to carts and the more purchases are made. Building a campaign that focuses on key events taking place on your website is crucial when designing a Facebook ad campaign.
Get A Product Data Feed
If you don’t have a product data feed, then get one. Most website platforms like Magento, Woocommerce, Shopify etc. have plug-in apps that will create a product data feed. You can use this to run valuable advertising campaigns like Google Shopping campaigns and Facebook Product Catalog campaigns (PCC) etc. We’ll be focusing on the latter. Facebook Catalog Campaigns are a must if you’re displaying inventory online. Simply put, these campaigns are how you can serve dynamic product ads to consumers on Facebook. Campaigns that focus on:
1. Retargeting “add to cart” abandoners with the product they added to cart but failed to purchase.
2. Retargeting website visitors who didn’t add a product to cart but looked at a particular piece of inventory.
3. Upselling products based on what pieces of inventory were viewed within a specific number of days.
4. Cross-selling campaigns to serve ads to people for products regularly purchased together.
These are also campaigns we can run with a product catalog campaign. As you can see, running product catalog campaigns with your product feed is a very powerful way to leverage Facebook advertising.
A/B Test Everything
A/B/C/D/E-Z testing is important. You could have the best targeting set up but no sales because your ad stinks. You could have a killer ad and no sales because your targeting is way off. You’ll never know unless you test it to find winners! The Facebook pixel lets you see which ad sets and ads converted into the desired action. Using this information, you can focus your marketing dollars on winning ads and save yourself from wasting money on losers.
These are just a few best practices we follow when setting up a Facebook ad campaign. There are many other best practices to consider as well when designing a winning campaign that we did not address. Bottom line: Facebook is an incredibly powerful tool for businesses of all sizes and provides a playing field that companies must consider when building a marketing plan for their business.
This article was originally published at Forbes.com, by author Marco Mottola.