By now, you’ve probably already had the joy of a retargeted ad stalking you all over Facebook and Instagram for weeks after browsing an online shop. There’s a reason why they’re so popular – they work.
If you don’t already, you should be running Facebook ads for your sample library or plugin. They’re simple, effective and if setup correctly can generate a steady income stream for your products. This guide will tell you everything you need to know to get started.
Now we’re not going to beat around the bush, navigating your way around Facebook Ads Manager takes some getting used to. But with practice, it will become second nature!
We’re going to give you a good grounding in the basics of setting up a campaign in this ultimate guide to running Facebook Ads – just keep on reading!
The first step is to create your Facebook ad account. To do this, you can head to this url:
Then click on the button that says ‘go to Ads Manager’. This will bring you to the page with step-by-step instructions to create your account, which is simply a case of filling in:
When you’re in the Ads Manager dashboard, there will be tabs labeled as:
Navigate to the ‘campaigns’ tab and you’ll find a big green button that says ‘create’. This will take you to your first step in creating your campaign which is to select an objective.
Now, the objectives are often confusing for beginners, and rightly so. There’s so many options and it’s difficult to know what to choose.
Whichever objective you choose will tell Facebook the results you want from your campaign, whether that’s more clicks to the website, more awareness, more purchases, and so on.
In our experience, the Facebook Ads that get the best results are typically ‘traffic’, ‘lead generation’, and ‘conversion’ ads.
It’s easier to measure the real-life results from these objectives, as you can see exactly how many clicks you’re getting through to the site, how many conversions the ad achieved, and at what cost.
Objectives such as ‘brand awareness’ and ‘reach’ aren’t a great option for a small budget, because they rarely produce tangible results. The campaign will be optimised to get more views on the ad, but won’t show it to the people most likely to click through to the website.
Click here to learn more about Facebook Ad Objectives and choosing the right one for your business.
Pro tip for beginners: Almost every button, and every step in Facebook Ads Manager is accented with a little ‘i’ button that will give you more information on each tool/ action when you hover over it.
Think of it like Facebook holding your hand as you take each step towards publishing your campaign. It’s a great way to learn as you go!
Now that you’ve decided on your objective, it’s time to get to the juicy part; choosing who you’re going to target with Facebook’s highly sophisticated targeting system.
Important note: With Facebook Ads Manager, the best way to test multiple audiences is to do an A/B split test, where you can show the same ad to two different audiences, and see which one performs better.
This helps to increase your ROI and make sure you’re spending money on the right people. (The A/B test will show up as an option at the audience creation stage.)
You can create an audience based on their age, gender, demographics, behaviours, career, life events, interests, and much more.
Once you get the basics filled in like their age, gender, and location, experiment with detailed targeting by typing in interests or behaviours related to your business. If you’re stuck for inspiration, try clicking the browse button to look at their targeting options.
There’s an audience size dial on the left-hand side of your screen which will show you whether your audience is becoming too big or too small for your budget, and will also give you estimated clicks/impressions, etc.
Facebook will give you the option of choosing ‘manual’ or ‘automatic’ placements, we’d advise going for ‘manual’. This way you can click the placements that get the most engagement which are the Instagram/Facebook newsfeeds, and Instagram stories.
This will ensure that you get the best bang for your buck, and don’t waste money on placements people don’t click on as often.
This tells Facebook what you would like the audience to do with the ad, whether that’s click on it, view the landing page, or make a conversion.
We would recommend always choosing ‘landing page views’ over ‘link clicks’, because with landing page views, you’ll only pay when someone waits to load up your page.
Under ‘audience’, you’ll see an option to ‘create a custom audience.’ This is a place where you can create audiences based on users that have taken action with your website, your previous ads, or your Facebook/Instagram pages in the past.
Pro tip: Click ‘create’ and set up these audiences at the beginning, so that it can start collecting data for a few weeks.
This is essential if you want to retarget customers down the line who have already shown interest in your business a.k.a high-value audiences.
But you need to have what’s called a ‘Facebook Pixel’ installed if you want to collect this data and track conversions on your site. You might need a developer’s help with this, or you can install it yourself using one of their integration options.
Alternatively, if you have a mailing list, you can upload your list of customer emails to Facebook and they will match the emails to Facebook accounts so you can retarget those customers with ads on Facebook / Instagram.
Learn more here about installing a Facebook pixel.
Now that you’ve decided on your audience, budget, and date, it’s time for the fun bit: creating your ad!
This is where you can get really creative with your ad copy, and imagery or video. In the ad creation section, you’ll see boxes for:
Pro tip: Videos tend to get much higher engagement with social media ads, and there are plenty of platforms where even beginners can create engaging videos like Promo.com.
If you choose to go with an image, make sure it doesn’t have too much text on it. Websites like Canva.com have great templates for free to help you create enticing Facebook banners.
Finally, add in your landing page URL, and make sure you edit the display URL so you can control how it will appear to the ad viewer. Your real URL won’t be affected.
Before publishing, ensure your ad adheres to Facebook’s advertising policies. If it doesn’t it will get rejected, so be careful here!
Congratulations, you’ve just created your first Facebook ad! Now it’s time to click publish. Next, your ad will go through the review process which takes a few hours and you’ll be notified when it’s live.
You can view the results of your campaign in your Facebook Ads Manager dashboard. You’ll be able to see how many clicks it’s getting, how many people have seen it, how many times it was seen, and more.
Learn more here about analyzing Facebook metrics.
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