A while ago I shared with you some tips and ideas for growing your Facebook audience, if you missed that post you can read it here.
One of the strategies I shared with you in that post was something that a lot of bloggers are doing more of now, and that’s paying for likes, or running Facebook ad campaigns to increase their number of targeted fans.
From my own experience, this is one of the most effective ways to grow your Facebook page audience. I’ve tried many other tactics, and Facebook ads can be very effective when done correctly.
Since starting to run a few small ad campaigns to grow my blog’s Facebook audience, I’ve also seen a notable increase in engagement, comments, likes and shares, which is all good news right?
Anyways in this post I want to share with you what I’ve been doing to optimize my Facebook ad campaigns to achieve lower CPC (Cost Per Click, or Cost Per Page Like). In addition I’ve also been able to achieve higher CTR (Click Through Rate). Hopefully you’ll be able to take something away from my efforts and results here, so let’s get to it!
Just a quick note before we get started: Achieving low CPC depends on several factors, some of these factors may include the niche you’re in or the type of audience you’re trying to target with your ads, and how targeted your ads actually are, which I’ll cover in more detail later on in the post. Hey we’d all love to achieve 1 penny CPC, but whether that’s possible or not, I’m pretty positive that a lot of ground work, testing and experimenting is required beforehand. Regardless, with a little optimization, testing and tweaking here and there, I’m positive that you’ll be able to lower your CPC a little bit when running your Facebook ad campaigns.
When I started using Facebook ads last year (2014) to increase likes, my CPC was around 18p to 20p per click, I didn’t really know any better to be honest. Today I’m able to achieve around 0.02 to 0.05 pence per click, so here’s how I’m doing this.
3 Ways To Optimize Your Facebook Ad Campaigns For Optimum Results
#1. Targeting audience
Let’s start with targeting and demographics.
In the very beginning when I started using Facebook ads, I’d target a broad audience without question, however after experimenting with different demographics and interests, and really learning where my audience were on Facebook, I found that the perfect audience for my ads lay directly in between broad and specific. Here’s the audience definition that I use for my Facebook ads today:
Demographics: For my ads I’ve selected English speaking language (UK and US), people living in the UK, US and India and ages of 16 to 40.
Interests: I’ve selected just a few terms related to blogging which are: – blog, blogging, online business, WordPress, search engine optimization or social media marketing. I could easily add a lot more terms to be even more specific, however I’m continuing to test with other relevant terms using different ad creatives, to see how much more targeted I can make my ads.
Take away tip: Take the time to refine your targeting audience the best you can, think about your readership and the level of engagement received, both on your blog and your Facebook page. Select as many terms related to your niche or business as you possibly can to target a specific audience for your fan page.
Also don’t just create one campaign and be done with it, but create several, each focusing on different demographics and interests to find which works best for you. It’s not an overnight process I know, but a little ground work now will go a long way for future ads.
Let’s move on…
#2. The photo almighty…
The most important element of any successful Facebook ad campaign is the ‘clickable photo’. For my ads, I knew this needed to be a quality photo, and one that would send out the right message to my targeting audience, so I did some serious thinking and testing before finalising on the photo I was going to use in my ad campaign(s).
Earlier this year I experimented with three photos for one particular ad campaign:
The first photo was of the homepage of my blog displayed on an iPad in closeup, with a notepad in the foreground. Your typical corporate setup.
The second photo was of me on my laptop working from a coffee shop, and the final was a photo of my laptop, notepad and a glass of beverage (mint tea) placed neatly on a picnic table.
Just to quickly mention that I took these photos and edited them myself (trying to be creative). Each of these photos worked really well in sending the right message, and two of them performed even better than expected with good clicks. But only one received the best CTR (Click Through Rate), I’ll leave you to figure out which photo that was, see below.
Take away tip: Like I said, the photo you end up using to help you send the right message across to your targeting audience, whether it’s about your Facebook page or your product, regardless, it needs to be a quality image and relevant, don’t forget relevancy!
Once again, experiment with different themed images in each of your campaigns, and analyse which photo gives you the best CTR. Finally ensure you’re using the recommended image size, which is 1200 x 444 for wide format desktop newsfeed, it’s so easy to overlook this.
#3. Budgeting and finding the best days to run ads
My budget is currently around $5 – $10 per week. I don’t run my ads continuously any more, though I did do in the very beginning when I was experimenting to find which days, time of day etc was best to run my campaigns.
During my early experiments I found that my ads performed better on Wednesdays and Thursdays, where I was able to achieve 0.02 -0.05 pence per page like and around 18% CTR, whilst on the weekends they didn’t perform so well with 0.09 – 0.12 pence per page like and just 7% CTR, this is still the case today.
Take away tip: My suggestion for you is; don’t place a massive budget on your ads to begin with. When experimenting or doing A/B testing, start small and increase your budget over time as you begin to perfect your ads. I started off with just a few dollars per week, when I figured out which days was best for my ads, I increased my budget to $5 and then $10.
I also keep a calendar handy above my desk specifically for scheduling my Facebook ad campaigns and keeping track of my budget, I’d highly recommend you do the same too.
OK so here’s a quick recap and points to keep in mind:
- Select demographics to target.
- Select specific interests.
- Use relevant, quality photo.
- Use recommended photo size.
- Create a budget for your ad campaigns.
- Run campaign, test, analyse and tweak…
- Keep track of campaigns and costs.
- Repeat all of the above until you have found the best ad with the best CPC and CTR.
Facebook Advertising Tools
I use Facebook Insights to help me create targeted ads, click here to read how, however there are a number of other advertising tools you can use. Instead of me just listing them here, check out the following useful post by Amanda Webb on RazorSocial: http://www.razorsocial.com/facebook-advertising/. Amanda highlights three great tools that are certainly worth a look in.
One other positive thing I’ve noticed with using Facebook Ads more frequently, is that it promotes growth organically. When I stop my ads for a few days, I notice that the number of fans to my pages still continues to increase and then gradually slows down.
You don’t need to be a social media expert to run successful, low CPC, high-converting ad campaigns on Facebook to increase likes! You don’t need to throw your entire life’s savings to fund your campaigns either. All you need to do is learn, experiment and analyse to see what works best for you and your campaigns.
Take your time refining your campaigns as well, I can’t stress enough on this importance, and when you achieve a satisfactory CPC and are getting more targeted likes to your Facebook page, and you’re starting to see increased activity on your Facebook page, the rest will be plain sailing… Well almost… The best of luck.
Have your say!
So, what are you doing these days to optimize your Facebook ad campaigns? Got any tips you want to share? What’s been working for your? I’m still learning so would love to hear your thoughts. Leave me a comment below!