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Facebook Marketing 101: An Agency Insiders’ Guide to Facebook Ads

Over the past 16 years, Facebook has seemingly taken over the world. It now has nearly 2.5 billion monthly active users and has become the platform of choice for advertisers of every size, industry, and location. But how do Facebook ads work?

In this guide, you’ll learn the basics of Facebook ads and how to leverage its scale to grow your business.

What are Facebook ads?

You can think of Facebook ads as the digital version of print ads you see in magazines and newspapers. Marketers like us create  these digital advertisements, purchase them through Facebook’s advertiser platform (Ad Manager), and then place them throughout Facebook in various formats to reach target audiences.

These ads and their target audiences are highly customizable, which translates into the opportunity for greater ROI and increased conversions for sophisticated marketers.

Objectives

Each Facebook ad campaign is optimized for a specific objective. The optimization is to ensure your Facebook ads are surfaced to the users who are most likely to take the actions you desire. It’s an extremely important step. For instance, you’d waste your advertising budget if you surfaced ads to people who are brand new to your product or industry if you’re seeking buyers today. Likewise, you wouldn’t want to surface informational Facebook ads designed for brand new audience members to those who have already purchased from you or a competitor before.

Facebook ad campaigns’ objectives can be classified in one of three general buckets:

  • Awareness: increase the number of people who know or think about your brand. These campaigns are aimed at people early in the sales cycle, or “top of funnel.”
  • Consideration: achieve a larger number of people who already know about your brand or type of product and need additional information or engagement to move through the buying journey. These campaigns are aimed at people near the middle of the sales cycle, or “mid funnel.”
  • Conversion: spur purchases, downloads, or other concrete actions from those who are ready to take action. These campaigns are aimed at people near the end of the sales cycle, or “bottom of funnel.”
Objectives at a glance
Goal Classification Description
Brand awareness Awareness Ads served to people most likely to remember the campaign(s)
Reach Awareness Increase the raw number of people who are aware that your brand exists
Traffic Consideration Increase the number of people who visit your website, landing page, or similar asset. Whereas the “reach” objective is simply making your audience aware that you exist, the “traffic” ad type will drive your audience to your brand asset(s).
Engagement Consideration Encourage more people to like or comment on your brand’s Facebook page, like or comment on a specific Facebook post, RSVP to a Facebook event, or claim an offer on your brand’s Facebook page
App installs Consideration Increase the number of people who have downloaded your brand’s app. Use this objective instead of the traffic objective if you seek to drive and track app downloads. 
Video views Consideration Boost the number of people who watch one of your videos
Lead generation Consideration Capture additional leads using data directly from Facebook profiles for users who demonstrate interest in the ad campaign; push data directly from the users’ Facebook profiles to your lead management system
Messages Consideration Begin a conversation directly with your business via Facebook Messenger. 
Conversions Conversion Complete an online purchase, register for an event, or take a similar type of action. 
Catalog sales Conversion Promote purchases of products via a product feed generated directly from your online product catalog.
Store traffic Conversion Drive foot traffic to your physical store location.
Placements

From there, you’ll place Facebook ads in one or more of the following locations:

  • Facebook news feed
  • Instagram feed
  • Facebook Marketplace
  • Video feed
  • Right column
  • Instagram explore
  • Messenger inbox
  • Facebook stories
  • Instagram stories
  • Messenger stories
  • Facebook in-stream videos
  • Facebook search results
  • Messenger sponsored messages
  • Facebook instant articles
  • Audience network (banner, native, and interstitial screens)
  • Audience network (rewarded video)

Facebook ads placements 1

Facebook Ads: Stories PlacementsFacebook Ads: Audience Network Placement

Facebook Ads: Instant Article PlacementFacebook Ads: Messages PlacementFacebook Ads: Search PlacementFacebook Ads: In-stream Video Placement

Source for all ad placement images: https://www.facebook.com/business/help/407108559393196?id=369787570424415

Keep in mind that you may also place Instagram ads through Facebook’s Ad Manager due to Facebook’s Instagram acquisition in 2012. We’ll focus solely on Facebook ads in this guide, but be on the lookout for a guide to Instagram ads soon!

How can I get started with Facebook ads?

To get started with Facebook ads, you’ll first need to be listed as a manager on at least one Facebook page. Need to create a page? Don’t worry – it’s fast and easy. While it’s possible to do this on a mobile device, we recommend using a desktop computer for convenience.

Create a Facebook page

First, open your personal Facebook account. Next, click on the plus sign in the top right hand corner of the page and select “page” from the dropdown menu.

Facebook ads: create a Facebook page

Facebook ads: create a Facebook page part 2

After that, your page should now show editable fields on the left and a blank sample Facebook page on the right. Enter your page’s title (your company’s name), your company’s industry category or best approximation, and a brief, sub-300 character description on the left. If you can’t find the right category, try to change your phrasing to find up to three category tags that work. If possible, use up all three – it will just make your page easier to discover!

Facebook ads: create a Facebook page 3

Next, the page will refresh and you’ll be able to add a cover photo and a profile image to your page. Make sure your photos are high resolution and the proper size!

  • Cover photo: 820 pixels x 462 pixels
  • Profile image: 180 pixels x 180 pixels
Create a Business Manager account

Once your photos are saved, you’re ready to get started with a Business Manager account.

  1. Navigate to www.business.facebook.com/overview and log in with your Facebook login and password if prompted. 
  2. Next, click “Create Account.” 
  3. Enter and submit the necessary details to complete your Business Manager account creation.
Add a Facebook page to Business Manager

Next, link your Facebook page to the Business Manager account. To do this, simply:

  1. Navigate to “Business Settings” within your Business Manager account
  2. Select “Accounts” 
  3. Click “Pages,” “+ Add,” “Add a Page,” and then enter your Facebook page’s name.

Need more help with this step? Check out Facebook’s help page here.

Create an ad account

Finally, your page is linked to your Business Manager. Next, it’s time to create your ad account. Follow these steps:

  1. Navigate to “Business Settings” from your Business Manager
  2. Click “Accounts” and then “Ad Accounts”
  3. Click “+Add”
  4. Select “Create new ad account”
  5. Follow the steps surfaced to enter your business’ name, address, phone number, website URL, tax ID (if applicable), and credit card or Paypal information
Billing and payment methods

Please note, your payment method must be valid with sufficient spending capability to match your ad budget(s). If your payment method is declined while a campaign is running, your campaign will be automatically shut off; as a result, it will then need to be manually reactivated after your payment method has been updated. Consequently, this means you’ll lose precious advertising momentum during the time your campaign is turned off.

Additionally, you’ll want to be sure you understand how billing works within ad campaigns. You’ll be able to set a budget for each campaign, and Facebook will automatically attempt to surface your ad in such a way that your budget is utilized at a consistent rate until the set end date of the campaign.

Automatic payments

The main way in which Facebook ads are charged to your payment method is via automatic payments from your payment method. When you initially create an ad account, you’ll be assigned a billing threshold. When your ad campaign hits your billing threshold, Facebook will automatically charge your payment method for the amount due. As you continue to use your Facebook ads account, your billing threshold will increase and you will see fewer (but larger) charges to the payment method on file. You will also have a set monthly bill date. If you haven’t reached your billing threshold by the monthly bill date, the amount due will be automatically charged to the payment method on file at this time. 

Manual payments

Alternatively, you have the option to pre-fund your ad account so that charges are simply deducted from the pre-funded amount as the charges are incurred as frequently as daily. This option is available for advertisers who use a “local manual payment method” on their account, and is typically used outside the United States. Please note, you won’t be able to switch to automatic payments if you choose manual payments. As a result, we strongly recommend using automatic payments if possible.

Creating your first ad

Now that your setup is complete, you’re on your way to creating your first Facebook ad! Before we get into the mechanics of creating the ad campaign, let’s talk through some high-level advertising strategy.

Overall strategy

Remember our email marketing guide for beginners? In it, we briefly discussed how email marketing relates to an overall marketing and content strategy. Similarly, your advertising campaigns should support your broader marketing strategy’s goals. 

Facebook advertisements are just one part of a broader marketing strategy. To understand how they fit into the bigger picture, let’s start from the top with a review from our email marketing guide:

Quick review

“Typically, marketers start with their overall strategy to determine how email marketing supports their organizations’ goals. They’ll need to answer questions like the below:

  • Who is my typical customer? What is their role? What do they care about, like, and dislike? 
  • How does my audience prefer to receive information, and what goes into their decision making process?
  • What am I trying to achieve – a specific revenue goal, outcome, or action?
  • Where can I communicate with my audience? 
  • When is my audience most likely to buy, and how long is the typical sales cycle?
  • Why is what my company offers unique and superior?

Once the overall strategy and message have been determined, marketers should create campaigns to support the strategy and message. Campaigns may be one of the following:

  • Evergreen: This type of campaign lives on in perpetuity, like a new customer welcome flow. 
  • Timely: This type of campaign requires execution at a specific point in time and may be related to current events internally or externally to the company. Examples include the kickoff to a sports season or a new product release. 

Each campaign will then require a messaging plan that may include (but is definitely not limited to!) social media, paid search ads, landing pages, web updates, blogs, out of home marketing, image or collateral design, media outreach, and our favorite — emails. Each of the campaign components work together to deliver and reinforce messaging to maximize results.”

Then what?

Next, marketers map out the types of advertisements that support their campaigns or organizational goals. You’ll typically run multiple ad campaigns simultaneously to acquire a larger audience, increase engagement from your existing audience, and A/B test to increase effectiveness along the way. 

Targeting

Whereas other forms of marketing may be somewhat limited in terms of targeting granularity, one of Facebook’s most beloved capabilities is its ability to create extremely targeted ad audiences. Pay special attention to this feature and use the below related tips to maximize its potential ROI!

Advertising psychology

It goes without saying that your ads should be free of typos, grammatically correct, and laid out in a way that will make sense to your audience. But to really connect with your audience, you’ll need to go beyond the basics. 

There are two main purchasing decision models used in advertising and marketing communications. You may choose to appeal to one or both in your advertisements. That is to say, the choices aren’t necessarily binary but can be thought of as existing on a scale. Your knowledge of your target audience will determine which method is the best to appeal to. They are:

  1. Consumer Processing Model
  2. Hedonic Experiential Model
Consumer Processing Model

The Consumer Processing Model (CPM) refers to a more logical approach to purchases. The model consists of 8 steps:

  1. Exposure to information
  2. Selective attention
  3. Comprehension
  4. Agreement
  5. Retention in memory
  6. Retrieval
  7. Consumer decision-making
  8. Action

Your advertisements may be the first time your audience is exposed to your information. Afterward, there are three types of selective attention that may take place. The first is involuntary and is caused by a sudden movement, loud sound, bright color or pattern, or similar ad components. The second is non-voluntary, and it occurs when someone’s interest is piqued after involuntary attention. The third is voluntary, which means a person has chosen to pay attention to the ad. 

The next step occurs when the ad recipient absorbs the ad’s message. It is what they perceive the message to actually be. Then, they’ll agree with the ad if it aligns with their motivations or values, appears credible to them, or seems to solve a pain point specific to the individual. 

Later, the customer may recall all or part of the messaging later on. This may be due to something memorable or resonating within the advertisement, the frequency of exposure to the advertisement, or both. As they get closer to a purchasing decision, they will compare your product with other relevant products to determine which best aligns with their motivations and values or solves their pain points. Finally, the consumer will make a purchase. 

Hedonic Experiential Model

On the other hand, the Hedonic Experiential Model (HEM) refers to purchasing behavior that is driven mainly by the pursuit of products or experiences that will be fun, exciting, entertaining, or otherwise stimulating. This model is much less structured than CPM and is much more based on eliciting an emotional response from the consumer.

First, the consumer becomes aware of the product or company via the advertisement. Next, their interest will be piqued if they perceive the ad’s messaging to provide them with fun, excitement, or even the fear of missing out if they don’t make a purchase. Consequently, they want to purchase the item to “lock in” these feelings and may complete the purchase. 

When choosing your messaging and imagery, consider your audience, brand, and product. Is this a status symbol product? Does your product invoke a sense of fun and entertainment? Is your audience likely to purchase this item because of how it makes them feel or because it meets their rational needs? 

In addition to these consumer behavior models, there are additional psychological components to consider in your advertising campaigns like color (did you know red can evoke feelings of anger or pain?) and imagery (a person gazing toward the call to action button can push your audience to gaze and click as well).

Setting up your first ad

Now that you’ve had a bit of a background on advertising psychology, let’s get down to the nuts and bolts of setting up your first ad campaign. 

When you open your Business Manager, click on the hamburger icon (three stacked lines) in the top left corner and click on “Ads Manager.” This will take you to your campaigns section. Next, click on the green “Create Campaign” button to get started.

Facebook ads: Campaign manager

After clicking the button, a new screen will appear that asks you to choose your campaign’s objective. Scroll up and reference the objectives above to choose the one that is most suitable for your campaign’s goals

Name your campaign

Near the bottom of this screen is an optional field to name your campaign. It’s best practice to always give your campaigns, ad sets, and ads unique names that follow a set naming convention so you can keep track of them. The naming convention you choose is up to you, for instance:

Level Template Example
Campaign YYYYMMDD-YYYYMMDD | Messaging Subject | Objective 20200630-20200704 | Independence Day Sale | Catalog Sales
Ad Set Generic Customer Profile Name Suburban Millennials
Ad Version: Creative Asset Batch Name Version 1: Funny/Patriotic

Facebook ads: ad set

 

Set campaign details

After you submit the initial information, you’ll then be taken to a screen where you can:

  • Set a campaign spending limit (across all ad sets within the campaign)
  • Set up an A/B test for the campaign
  • Turn on budget optimization so your campaign budget is automatically allocated more toward the ad set(s) that perform the best

If you have a specific budget for your entire campaign, we recommend entering that limit on this screen. As an aside, it’s also a great idea to turn on budget optimization at this stage. After all, you wouldn’t want to continue pushing money toward an ad set that isn’t achieving your goals! This setting reduces the burden required to constantly monitor and adjust the budget manually. 

If you choose to enable A/B testing in your initial ad campaign, the ad set you are creating will be automatically designated as the control version. More on the details of setting up a solid A/B test in a later section!

Design your ad set

Once you click “Next,” it’s time to design your ad set. In this section, you’ll have the ability to:

  • Enable dynamic content: this option mixes and matches copy and imagery inputs from you to optimize your ad
  • Enable an offer: this creates a discount offered to and claimable through Facebook
  • Set the start and end date/time
  • Set the budget limit for the individual ad set
  • Create a target audience
  • Select automatic or manual ad placements
  • Choose your ad set’s ad delivery optimization and cost control (for some objectives only)
Set your target audience

Now let’s focus on how to create your target audience. You have the option to create a new audience or a previously saved audience. If you create a new audience, you can choose from the following:

  • Custom audience: people who have already interacted with your brand
  • Lookalike audience: people who are similar to people who have interacted with your brand
  • Core audience: people who match location, age, gender, interest, or other parameters you choose. You can also exclude people from targeting based on these parameters.
Creating a core audience

Let’s take a look at the types of parameters you can set for your inclusion or exclusion audience.

Audience options at-a-glance
Type Description
Location By country, with the option to include all areas, only specific cities, or to exclude specific cities

You can choose people who live in (or whose most recent location was in) the area, people who live in the area, people whose most recent location was in the area, or people traveling in the area (those whose most recent location was the area but whose home is at least 125 miles or 200 km away)

Age Both minimum and maximum ages, from 13 years old to 65+ years old
Gender You may select men, women, or all
Demographics Includes education, financial, life events, parents, relationship status, and work inputs. Each demographic selection has many subtypes that allow great levels of specificity.
Interests Includes business and industry, entertainment, family and relationships, fitness and wellness, food and drink, hobbies and activities, shopping and fashion, sports and outdoors, and technology. Each interest selection has many subtypes that allow great levels of specificity.
Behaviors Includes anniversary, consumer classification (select non-US cities only), digital activities, expats, mobile device user, mobile device user/device use time, more categories, multicultural affinity, politics (US only), purchase behavior, Ramadan, soccer, or travel. Each behavior selection has many subtypes that allow great levels of specificity. 
Broad vs specific audiences

You may ask yourself, is it better to have a broader or specific Facebook ad campaign? If you don’t already know enough details about your audience to set target parameters, it’s best to make informed estimates while staying broad. Then narrow down as you begin to collect data about people who have interacted with your ads. That is to say, the specificity of your audience should also depend on the objective for your ad campaign with awareness campaigns acting as the broadest possible audience, consideration campaigns with more specificity, and conversion campaigns with the most specificity. 

For example, if you’re selling beach umbrellas, you wouldn’t want to sell them to people in cold climates as they are naturally much less likely to make a purchase than those in warm climates with beaches. Instead, you can start your core audience with parameters such as:

  • Location: include people who live in warm-weather cities with beaches
  • Age: include people who are 18+ years old
  • Interests: you may target people who are interested in sports and outdoors and/or travel with the subtype beaches
Creating a custom audience

Alternatively, custom audiences can be a very powerful advertising tool. There are a multitude of options to create audiences based on users’ own behaviors. Take a look at the table below for details on each selection.

Audience options at-a-glance
Type Description
Website If you integrate a Facebook pixel with your website, you can track and ultimately target Facebook ads at users who have visited and taken certain types of actions on your company’s website. 
App activity Target users who have downloaded or taken actions in your app
Customer list Upload your own list of customers for Facebook ad targeting
Offline activity Target users who have interacted with your brand offline, such as in your physical retail location. This requires a special setup, which you can learn more about here
Video Target users who watched one of your videos on Facebook or Instagram
Lead form Target users who completed a lead generation form from one of your previous ad campaigns on Facebook or Instagram
Instant experience Target users who opened an instant experience from one of your previous ad campaigns on Facebook of Instagram
Marketplace listings Target users who interacted with one of your previous listings on Facebook Marketplace
Instagram business profile Target users who have visited or interacted with your brand’s Instagram page
Events Target users who have interacted with one of your previous Facebook events
Facebook page Target users who follow or have previously interacted with your Facebook page

 

As you can see, many types of custom audiences are geared toward brands with existing audiences, previous ad campaigns, or active social media presences. If you do not have these yet, don’t worry – you can use a core audience for now to generate enough people who have interacted with your ad campaigns, events, videos, Facebook page, and other mediums.

Creating a lookalike audience

If you have an existing audience who has interacted with your brand, you also have the option to create a lookalike audience for your ad campaigns. This type of audience selector seeks to surface your ads to people with similar attributes to your existing customers or leads to maximize the likelihood of high ad campaign performance. To do so, simply select the custom audience you’d like your lookalike audience to resemble; select the desired audience location. Next, select the audience size on a scale from 1-10%. If you choose 1%, you are selecting those who are the most alike compared to your chosen custom audience. In other words, the higher the percentage, the broader and less similar to your custom audience.

Set copy and design

Once you’ve set up audience targeting, you’ll then be ready to set up the ad copy, design, and placements (if you’ve chosen manual placements). 

First, you can set up ads using a single image or video, a carousel of images or videos, or a collection of items that will open a full screen “instant experience” on mobile devices. Second, you may add up to 5 options for the ad’s primary text, headline, and description respectively. Third, you should also have the option to enter a destination link, call to action, and the link you’d like to have displayed. Lastly, you’ll also have the option to translate your ad into various languages either manually or automatically and set up tracking via a Facebook pixel, an app event, an offline event, or a URL parameter. 

Each type of ad placement will display the text and imagery slightly differently. Be sure to review each ad’s placements and make edits as necessary to ensure they render correctly!

Ad review guidelines

Once you publish your ad, it will go to Facebook’s ad review team to ensure your ads comply with community guidelines. You can read more about them in depth here. There few key basics to remember are:

  • Landing page is functional and accurately represented in the advertisement (if applicable)
  • No illegal substances or activities
  • Don’t discriminate
  • Don’t advertise tobacco and tobacco paraphernalia
  • No: drugs (illegal, recreational, or prescription), unsafe supplements, weapons or explosives, adult services (excluding contraception and family planning services, adult content or nudity, third party infringement, or sensationalism or excessive violence
  • Do not assert or imply anything about personal attributes (like race, ethnicity, religion, beliefs, sexual orientation, etc), spread misinformation or exploit controversy, or encourage cheating or lying
  • Adhere to proper grammar rules and do not use vulgar language

Next, your review should be completed within roughly 24 hours. If your ad is approved, it will go live at the specified start date and time (or as soon as it’s approved if that occurs after the desired start date and time). If your ad is rejected, you’ll be notified and can resubmit the advertisement after making the proper adjustments.

What is the secret to a successful Facebook campaign?

While anyone can set up a Facebook campaign, there are two key secrets to running successful Facebook ads: rapid A/B testing and progressive targeting. 

Why A/B test?

It’s considered a best practice to set up an A/B test for marketing campaigns to get more data around what causes desired reactions from your target audience. A/B tests determine this by using a control and one or more additional versions with a change to one variable element. The control is the baseline against which you measure each variable version’s performance. Most importantly, remember to test only one variable at a time (and for a sufficient amount of time to collect data) so that you can be sure what change spurs more of the desired action from your target audience. 

For instance, you may want to test what call to action language performs best. Your control should have a standard call to action; it may be “Learn More.” Next, for each variable ad, all elements of the ad should remain the same as the control ad other than the call to action language. If you want to test 2 additional calls to action, version A may use a call to action like “Buy Now,” and version B may use a call to action like “Claim Yours.” 

Testing multiple variables

If you wish to test both call to action language and imagery within an ad campaign, you’ll need to create additional ad sets to test every combination of call to action language and imagery. For instance, let’s say you have the control image and call to action, 3 variable images, and 2 variable calls to action. You would then need to create the following 12 total ads:

  • Control image
    • Control CTA
    • Variable CTA 1
    • Variable CTA 2
  • A: Variable image 1
    • Control CTA
    • Variable CTA 1
    • Variable CTA 2
  • B: Variable image 2
    • Control CTA
    • Variable CTA 1
    • Variable CTA 2
  • C: Variable image 3
    • Control CTA
    • Variable CTA 1
    • Variable CTA 2

If you plan to test more than 2-3 versions of 2-3 ad components, we recommend splitting the test into multiple separate tests to save time and budget. 

The ad sets will be surfaced to people with the same attributes over the same time period. You can then measure which version “won” the A/B test according to cost per click or conversion. This type of testing allows for rapid learnings so that your ad campaigns become more and more effective over time. 

Progressive targeting

Similarly, correct targeting can make a large difference in both conversion rates and your cost per click or conversion. In our earlier example, we discussed beach accessories. Let’s say your budget for this campaign is $10,000, and your goal is to sell beach umbrellas. Your advertisement would be surfaced to many people if you were to skip any type of targeting and go for pure, broad ad delivery.

Let’s estimate it would be seen by 150,000 people 1-2 times total within a month’s time frame. Approximately 40% of Americans live near a coast, so let’s say you reach 60,000 people approximately 1.5 times in that month. A subset of these people may click through to your website, and a smaller subset would make a purchase. 

However, if you were to target people who are more likely to need or want a beach umbrella, let’s say your ad reaches 150,000 people who live near the coast approximately 1.5 times in that month. Because your entire audience is more likely to desire a beach umbrella, probability is in your favor that the subset of people who click through to your website will be larger than the previous group, as well as the subset of people who actually make a purchase. Therefore, you are much more likely to significantly increase the ROI of your $10,000 ad spend with just a few minutes spent on targeting.

Additionally, your targeting shouldn’t remain static. Facebook provides a tool called Audience Insights, which provides you with aggregated demographic and other information about people who are connected to your Facebook page or who are using Facebook in general. As you gain additional followers and interactions, use Audience Insights to evolve the way you target future ad campaigns for best results.

How can I create Facebook ads that convert well?
Tangential targeting

Did you know that Facebook targeting goes beyond just the interests, behavior, and demographic information listed in the tool’s dropdown box? Surprise!

You can hone in even more on people who are most likely to convert by targeting those who are interested in competitors’ products, related activities or products, and other tangential interest indicators. Using our previous example of beach umbrellas, you may decide to target people who:

  • Are interested in surfing, swimming, sunscreen, beaches, and/or sunbathing
  • Like sunscreen brands like Coppertone
  • Are interested in surf culture and swimsuits

These types of interest targeting can enhance your overall core audience significantly to make sure you’re in front of the right people at the right time. Certainly, make sure that you aren’t just adding interests to broaden the audience — use the “narrow audience” and “exclude” options to laser focus on just the right people. 

Align with your audience

Crafting your copy in a way that is specific to your audience’s desired style is also key in maximizing conversion rates. For example, if you’re speaking to Gen Z, you won’t want to make references to pop culture from the 70’s or speak in an overly formal tone. They’ll miss the reference and be turned off by the formality. Likewise, don’t speak in an overly casual tone if you’re selling large pieces of real estate to Baby Boomers. 

Also remember to research things like color psychology, local colloquialisms, and related aspects if you’re selling into an unfamiliar or international market. It’s easy to make a mistake that may result in your Facebook ads being ignored at best or offensive at worst if you simply apply the same standards as you would in your home market. For instance, did you know that green is symbolic of infidelity in China but is seen as indicative of harmony in the United States? Do your research!

Test your landing pages

Ultimately, your ad strategy isn’t just about the ad itself. If you’re driving traffic to a landing page, you must put the same amount of care into building the page and then A/B testing various components of the landing page to increase your conversion rate. We suggest testing imagery, headlines, body copy, form length (if you’re collecting leads or info prior to a download), and call to action button language. 

It’s best practice in landing page creation to first match the copy from your advertisement. For example, if your ad is pushing a humorous message around downloading a marketing ebook, your landing page should reflect the same humorous tone and clearly be centered around downloading the same marketing ebook. That is to say, don’t put the effort into setting up and testing creative Facebook ads while pushing them all to the same exact landing page! In addition, make sure you don’t make the landing page difficult to navigate with competing calls to action, busy imagery, or too much text on the page.

There are multiple tools available to make A/B testing your landing pages simple and straightforward. We recommend Optimizely, which includes a free version along with their premium offerings and has many powerful features.

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