As you’ve probably heard already, earlier this year Facebook updated their news post algorithm to downplay posts by publishers and brands in a push to prioritise content by friends and family.

If you still want the same level of reach on your posts, you will have to start paying for ads. In this post, I’ve summarised some of the basics of Facebook advertising that will be helpful for your business.

Campaign Objectives

Not all Facebook advertisements are created equal. Some of them are great for getting people to “like” your Page, some are great for getting your fans to engage with you on a more personal level, and some are great for prompting your audience to click a post that will send them to your website. Here’s a full list of the different campaign objectives Facebook gives you to choose from.

Page Post Engagement: Promote your Page posts
Page Likes: Get Page likes to grow your audience and build your brand
Clicks to Websites: Get people to visit your website
Website Conversions: Get people to perform certain actions on your site (requires adding a Facebook pixel to your site)
App Installs: Get people to install your mobile or desktop app
App Engagement: Get people to use your desktop app
Event Responses: Increase attendance at your event
Offer Claims: Create offers for people to redeem in your store

Budgeting for your ads

Once you’ve set up your Facebook campaign, you need to set up an “Ad Set.” The Ad Set lives directly underneath the campaign and is the place where you set the budget of how much you want to spend. Facebook recently changed it to where budgeting is done on the Ad Set level so that users can allocate certain amounts of spend to specific markets or objectives. A budget can be set on a daily or lifetime basis, and advertisers can also choose to pick their own advertisement start and end dates.

Who will see your ads?

You can spend a ton of time and money creating an amazing advertisement with a beautifully designed image and great copy, but if you aren’t showing it to a relevant audience, then what’s the point? For this reason, Facebook is one of the best platforms out there for advertisers. It has a fantastic ability to segment an audience. The ability to target is done on the individual advertisement level, which is housed under the ad sets, which are housed under campaigns. Here are just a few of the ways you can segment an audience on Facebook.

– Location
– Age
– Interests
– Gender
– Languages
– Education Level
– Relationship Status
– Political Views
– Whether or not they are connected to your page

Where will your ad be placed?

Now that you’ve decided which users you want to target and what you want them to do, it’s best to think of where to place your advertisement. There are three main locations on the site that you can choose to display your ad, each with their own pros and cons.

1. Facebook Newsfeed Advertisement

The News Feed post is the most prominent of the Facebook advertising placements. These ads show up seamlessly in a user’s feed along with the content that they see from their friends and the people that they follow. Though users are told it’s a sponsored update with a disclaimer saying “Sponsored,” the posts still seem genuine since they can be liked and commented on like any other post.

2. Facebook Mobile News Feed Advertisement

As most people know, a good amount of the world’s Internet traffic is shifting towards mobile devices. In fact, Facebook has stated that there were 1.01 billion mobile monthly active users on the social network as of March 31, 2014. With such a large user base, it would seem like advertising to users on mobile devices would be a given, right? The answer to that depends on whether or not your company has a mobile-friendly site. You wouldn’t want to pay to drive traffic to your site if they’re going to have a poor user experience, which is something all advertisers should bear in mind.

3. Facebook Right-Hand Column Advertisements

The advertisements on the right-hand side of the screen sit directly beneath the “Trending” topics section. These ads are actually currently in a state of change as Facebook is moving away from an advertising format with several ads per page to one with fewer ads of fairly larger sizes. Currently, there are six advertisements per page, but this new update would decrease that to two, giving advertisers more of a share of their users’ browsers.

What are the different type of ads?

Now that we’ve got the finer details out of the way, let’s get to the heart of this post and talk about all of the different types of posts that are available to you as an advertiser. Below is a brief description of each type, as well as some suggestions from Facebook.

Page Post Engagement

This type of ad can boost a status, photo, video, website link or offer that you’ve already posted to a much larger audience to increase engagement (likes, shares and comments). These are the best types of ads to drive engagement on your posts.

Page Likes

Getting “Likes” on your Facebook Page can be a great thing for a few reasons. One, you establish a strong credibility on the social site, so when someone researching your company finds your page they see that you have a good amount of happy customers. The second great thing is that as soon as someone follows you, your company posts will sometimes show up in their News Feed free of charge.

Clicks to Website

These are similar to page post engagement ads, but their main focus is to drive traffic to your website. These ads also have the functionality to click through right to your website and have an optional “call to action” button.

Website Conversions

In order to take full advantage of these particular ads, you need to add the Facebook Conversion Pixel (can be created in Power Editor) on your website. Once it’s there, you can tell Facebook what specifically you want to optimize your ads for, whether it be checkouts, leads or registrations.

Offer Claims

Who doesn’t like free stuff? If you’ve created an offer on Facebook, you can continue to promote that out to other Facebook users. This could be useful for finding new customers and driving them back to your site.

Have a look at creating an Facebook advertisement for your business and experiment. If you get stuck, just get in touch: [email protected]