Advertising on Instagram and Facebook can be really successful for small creative businesses. With the rapid decline in the organic reach of posts on Facebook in recent years, it’s the only reliable way to reach your target audience. And with the recent algorithm changes, you can expect Instagram to start going the same way.
The good news for small businesses is that advertising through Facebook is still an affordable and effective way to reach thousands of your target audience in a few easy steps. But before you dive in, there are some important things you need to consider.
Facebook Ads Manager is the place you want to be to create ads for both your Facebook and Instagram accounts. The great thing about Ads Manager is that it will walk you step by step through each stage of building a successful campaign.
Here’s a checklist of the things you need to consider before you go ahead and spend money on advertising:
Have something worth promoting A new product launch, a sale, a promotion, a business milestone – all these are perfect opportunities to promote your business to a wider audience. You need to be offering your audience something really tempting that they will want to click on and find out more about.
Target your audience Within Facebook Ads Manager you can create custom audiences that drill down to specifics including gender, location, job, family, interests and much more. And here’s the really clever bit: you can even import your existing mailing list database from third-party sites such as Mailchimp. Facebook will then find everyone on your mailing list who is also on Facebook AND create a lookalike audience from this data. Talk about targeted advertising! How cool is that?
Set yourself a goal It’s important to know what you are trying to achieve with your ad or how will you be able to measure its success? Once you hit the ‘create ad’ button, Ads Manager will help you define your goal within the campaign. Do you want to drive traffic to your website, get them to complete a certain action (like signing up to a mailing list) or increase engagement? If you're just starting to experiment with advertising and have a limited budget, I'd suggest the "Engagement" goal is probably the most successful and cost-effective.
Choose your image(s) carefully Use ones that have been successful in the past. These images should not look out of place on your Facebook or Instagram feeds. The most successful sponsored posts appear in people’s feed as if they were ordinary Instagram or Facebook posts – only the little “Sponsored Post” title gives it away.
Include a clear call to action This should be in the form of a clickable link that says Shop Now, or Sign Up Today, or Find Out More.
So now you've understood the basics, you should be ready to get going on Facebook Ads Manager. Let me know how you get on!