When you’re running a small business, you need to punch above your weight to compete with your much larger rivals, and that’s especially true if you’re only fielding a small marketing department.
One of the most important marketing channels, and one that you can’t afford to overlook, is social media. It’s estimated that by 2023, the number of social network users in the United States will increase to 257 million. 62.6% of marketers say that their social media advertising is somewhat or very effective.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the different platforms and can’t decide which one to focus on, Facebook is the place to start. It boasts over 2.6 billion monthly active users, and it also heads the pack when it comes to social media marketing, with 93.7% of brands using it for marketing,
Promoting a Small Business with Facebook Ads
Although the impact of COVID-19 has led every brand to count their pennies and tighten their budgets, Facebook advertising isn’t the right place to make cuts. And that’s even more true during the coronavirus, when everyone is spending even more time online. One survey found a rise of 11.9% in the time that people spent on Facebook brand pages in March as compared with February.
There are many ways to promote your brand on Facebook, including posting engaging video and text content and encouraging consumers to post photos of themselves with your products. But alongside organic content, you also need paid Facebook ads.
Paid ads are how people discover your business in the first place, and the best way to keep your brand top of mind, so that when they are ready to make a purchase, your business is their obvious choice. It’s time for a short refresher course on making the most of Facebook ads.
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1. Create Remarketing Campaigns
Remarketing is a classic marketing tactic for catching people who already interacted with your business, but haven’t converted to paying customers. It’s also relevant when you want previous customers to return for repeat purchases. To succeed, you need to use data to track people who visit your site, and monitor which actions they carry out. Then you’ll apply that data to refine your Facebook ad targeting.
For example, someone might add products to their cart, but then leave the site without checking out. Remarketing campaigns plug that data into Facebook to show a specific ad only to people who have abandoned a cart, reminding them to complete their purchase. Or you might have a product, like in B2B, that requires a longer sales cycle, so leads investigated your product, and then went on to compare other potential vendors before coming to a decision. If they regularly see your ad, they’re more likely to choose your business when they finally make a purchase.
However, remarketing campaigns can be complicated to set up. After installing the Facebook pixel on your site, you’ll need to implement a code snippet to capture custom events, like if someone has watched a video in full, subscribed to your email newsletter, or added a product to their cart. If you feel a bit insecure about editing your site’s code, you can use a web analytics tool like Oribi which simplifies the entire process. It lets you define which events you’d like to track and then export them directly to your Facebook ad account, without needing any code or techie knowledge.
2. Customize Your Ads
When it comes to marketing, personalization is vital. It’s tempting to think that the more people who see your ad, the more leads you’ll acquire and the more conversions you’ll see, but marketing data shows that this isn’t the case. Pushing your brand to thousands of people who have no interest at all in your product is a waste of your advertising budget (e.g. marketing artisanal sourdough bread to people who are gluten-free). Instead, your ad will convert better the more targeted you can make it.
Facebook helps you out to some extent, because you can refine your ad audience by gender, age, or interests such as punk rock music, skateboarding, or Caribbean cuisine. But the more data you can plug in, the more you can segment your audience for more personalized, and thus more relevant, ads.
Gather data about your website visitors on a granular level, and use a tool like Hootsuite to track anyone who interacts with your brand on any social channel. Then you can use it to show specific ads to specific leads. For example, you may wish to show a different ad to someone who explored the “watches” section of your jewelry site to those who browsed diamond rings.
3. Tell Compelling Stories
It’s vital to make your ads as engaging as possible. That means that you need to stop thinking as though flyers or billboards have been transferred to the computer screen, and start thinking about drawing leads into your storytelling.
Facebook and Instagram story ads bring this to its peak. You can use either video or a carousel of images to tell an appealing narrative that sparks the interest and imagination of your audience, and then invite the viewer to swipe up on a call-to-action to reach your landing page.. Although these are only short snippets of ads, given that photos show for 6 seconds and videos play for up to 15 seconds, you can pack a lot into them. 57% of brands agree that story ads have been either “somewhat” or “very” effective as part of their marketing campaigns.
If you’re just getting started, Crello helps you make appealing Facebook story ads quickly and easily. You can use the rich array of templates and combine them with animation, stock video clips, stickers, and more to customize them into effective video ads.
4. Build Lookalike Audiences
It can be tough to grow brand awareness. You need to gain visibility among precisely the right audience, but how are you going to find them when there are millions of people on Facebook? As mentioned above, you don’t want to randomly scatter your ad to every Tom, Dick, and Harriet with a Facebook account, but you do want to find more people who might be interested in your business so that you can push more leads through to your website.
That’s the beauty of the Lookalike Audiences tool. It’s built into your Facebook ad manager and helps you to create audiences of potential customers who match your ideal customer persona. It’s like a shortcut to finding more people who are just like your existing leads.
You can upload a list of emails of leads and request a lookalike audience built on those individuals, or you could take an audience set from a previous ad campaign and use that to create a lookalike audience, and then target your ads at these profiles.
Facebook Ads Can Supercharge Your Brand
Facebook ads have enormous potential to raise brand awareness, drive sales, and boost revenue — when you use them correctly, that is. By using tools to apply retargeting tactics, build lookalike audiences, tell engaging stories, and segment your audience for personalized ads, you too can grow your small business on Facebook.
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