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3 Facebook Tips For When You’re Just Starting Out

By Courtney Johnson, Digital Specialist, Metric Digital

Figuring out Paid Facebook from scratch can be tricky, especially if you don’t have a huge following on Facebook and Instagram already. Fortunately, the Facebook Business help center offers a ton of useful information, whether you’re a beginner or advanced Facebook advertiser.

The web offers endless tips and tricks for Facebook advertising, but the truth is that there’s no universal formula for success - a strategy that works for one account may tank on another.

With that said, there are a few strategies that are more likely to show you success. I’ve compiled three strategies that we use often when building out brand new accounts.

1. A/B Test Creative: Test Images, Headlines,Text, Promos, and Landing Pages.

This tip might seem obvious to some, but A/B testing is truly invaluable. If you’re unfamiliar with A/B testing, the idea is to test two variables against each other while holding everything else constant.

For example, you can pair identical copy with two (or more) different images. Do product or lifestyle images perform better for your brand? Don’t know? Find out by A/B testing! Conversely, you can test one image against multiple versions of copy. Maybe one call-to-action will perform better than another.

Landing pages can also have a significant impact on conversion rate. A/B test sending to your home page vs. a specific product page. Your CVR (conversion rate) could increase when you immediately direct a customer to a page further along in the buyer’s journey - or not.

The ultimate goal is to pinpoint which ads drive the greatest # of clicks, highest CVR, CTR (click-through rate), etc. A/B testing is the most efficient way to collect this data.

If you don’t know which images, types of copy, CTA’s (calls-to-action), or landing pages typically work “best” for your business, then it’s time to start A/B testing. There are infinite options for A/B testing, but a great place to start is with imagery and copy. Try testing 3-4 versions of body text against 2-3 different images and see which perform best!

2. Target Relevant Audiences: Use Lookalike Audiences.

Lookalike audiences are one of the most valuable tools that Facebook has to offer for reaching new (potential) customers. You can create a lookalike audience based off a Custom audience source of your choice. Essentially, Facebook will find users fit a profile similar to your source audience (based on consumer demographics, behavior, interests, etc.) and create a new “lookalike” audience that you can use for targeting.

One best practice is to create a customer file of your most valuable customers, import it into Facebook (Facebook recommends a source audience of 1,000-5,000 people) and create a lookalike! We generally start narrow (1% lookalikes) and broaden if necessary.

When it comes to choosing your source audience, you have a few option! You can target the top of the funnel & create lookalikes based on visitors or people who viewed a specific product type.

Or, you can move further down the funnel and create lookalikes based on purchasers, repeat purchasers, or “VIP” purchasers who have spent more than X amount of dollars on your products.

Just don’t forget to exclude your customer list when you’re using a lookalike as an audience ;)

3. Help the Algorithm Help You: Optimize For Commonly-Occurring Conversion Events.

As you probably already know, Facebook uses an algorithm to continually optimize performance based on the data it receives- data that comes from your campaigns and ad sets.

If you’re trying to sell something, your first instinct is probably to optimize for conversions, and set your conversion event to purchases.

However, Facebook insists that an ad set needs to generate 15-25 conversions per week (at MINIMUM) to provide enough data to be successful. This could be difficult to reach if you’ve just started advertising, and your budget is small.

If your ad sets can’t hit 25 purchases per week, you can try setting your conversion event to add-to-carts, or another event closer to the top of the funnel.

The success of your conversion campaign depends on how much data you can provide to the system. Optimizing for a more common event is a great way to achieve this, and allow the algorithm to find your most valuable audience.

Like I said - if you’re just starting out with Facebook advertising, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. I hope these tips can help you build a solid foundation for your paid campaigns.

However, if these tips only confused you more, and you’re feeling like you might need some help managing your account, feel free to reach out!


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Courtney Johnson Senior Digital Specialist, Metric Digital The Metric Digital Blog A Blog on All Things Digital Marketing