One of the benefits of getting involved with a trade association is having access to volunteer opportunities that is related to what you eventually would like to do. In my short involvement with IABC/BC so far, I’ve already had the privilege of volunteering for some projects. Managing a Facebook ad campaign was one of them.
Some background: The association was looking for ways to promote an event titled IABC/BC 101. The target audience of the free event was non-members who may be interested in joining the association. The association was interested in using Facebook ads as a way of promoting the event.
After getting some advice from a more senior IABC/BC member, I decided to run two campaigns. Call it A/B testing if you’d like. One of them had images of people (see pic above); one used the association’s logo. Also, one ran as a CPM campaign and the other ran as a CPC.
The ads actually ran comparatively well, so I can’t comment on the CPC vs CPM debate. I offer these five lessons instead:
Lesson 1: Need to say more? Add text to the image!
The biggest challenge I’ve noticed right away was the lack of space for characters. Facebook only allows 25 characters for the headline. For the copy, you only have 135 characters. That’s not really a lot, especially if you want a long word like “communication” in it. An idea I got again from another IABC/BC member is to put some of the text in the image itself. I was concerned that Facebook might not approve such image, but I was able to get through just fine.
Lesson 2: Include a call to action.
Ultimately, you want to get your audience to do something. Including a call to active invites clicks which may then lead to sales (or to whatever you want them to do).
Call to action doesn’t need to be complicated. “Register today” or “Click here to register” would do.
Lesson 3: Regularly monitor the campaign.
I really thought that once I set up the ads, I just had to lean back, relax, and watch the numbers go up. I was mistaken. The CTR on Facebook is relative low to begin with (not really surprising if you consider the fact that users go to Facebook to socialize without the purpose of necessarily buying or searching for something). Not monitoring your campaigns won’t help.
Checking your campaign(s) everyday is imperative. The range of recommended bids change every day, and so you might need to change your bid.
Lesson 4: Bid slightly above the range.
Related to lesson 3, I noticed that bidding slightly above the recommended bid range usually results to more impressions and more clicks. This makes sense because you’re basically bidding against other advertisers for ad space.
Lesson 5: Avoid major edits.
When you revise your ad, Facebook reviews it again and you may need to wait several hours before it goes back live. Not really a good idea for time-sensitive campaigns. Revise if you need to, but definitely try to avoid it if possible.
By the way, changing your bid itself will not place the ad back to the review process. It’s when you change the image, the keywords, title, etc. that this happens.
I’ll have to sum this up by saying that everything I offer here pretty much comes with a caveat. The main lesson, I suppose, is that you’ll have to experiment yourself and see what works for you. If there’s one thing I hope you get from this post, it’s that A/B testing will help you determine best practices that work for YOU.
Do you have any experience with Facebook ads so far? Leave a comment and offer your thoughts on what works and what doesn’t!
About the IABC/BC: The BC Chapter of IABC is one of 105 chapters worldwide and is the third largest chapter in Canada. The chapter has an international reputation for progressive, professional communication. Visit the chapter’s website for more information.