Social media are the small business owner’s best friends at least in theory. The number of very small businesses and online shops that depend entirely on social media for their marketing is much higher than you would imagine. Of course, with each of us spending an average of 2.5 hours on various platforms, social media does seem like an ideal place to promote your business.

There are different ways you can go about establishing your social media presence and start marketing your business. The one you’ll be more likely to hear about is the organic method, which is all about taking the time to post, reply, and generally engage with one or many platforms. This is excellent advice, but only if you have the time to do all that yourself or the budget to hire someone to do it for you. The other way is to invest in ads. Paid ads are great ways to raise your sales and conversions quickly or raise awareness about your brand. Of all the ads you can decide on, social media ads are probably the best suited to small businesses. We have already covered advertising on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest, so in this article, I’ll be focusing on the steps you have to take to start your ads on Facebook’s powerful Ads Manager.

 

Sign-up with Facebook Ads Manager

Facebook offers a user-friendly dashboard through which you can oversee all your advertising campaigns called “Facebook Ads Manager.” It lets you control all aspects of Facebook ads. Here you can see each campaign’s frequency, reach, and cost. However, you need to have a Facebook Business Page to be able to use Facebook Ads Manager. To get it running is g, all you need is to point your browser to Facebook Ads Manager and choose a payment method.

 

Make your first ad

To create your first ad simply log into your Ads Manager account and choose one of the tabs for campaign, ad set, or ad, depending on which one you intend to create. Next, click on the green “Create” button at the top left of your screen.

 

Select your campaign objective

It is crucial to have a clear idea about the main objective of your campaign. During the starting process, the Ads Manager will ask you to pick an objective among a list of 11 choices. This will help Facebook provide you with the most relevant advertising options for your campaign. There are about a dozen objectives, and for a small business, some are more vital than others. Some of the ones you probably need to consider carefully are:

Brand awareness

Website traffic

Engagement

Lead generation

Conversions

Store traffic

 

Choose your target audience

We all know about Facebook’s data and privacy problems. Considering how much data they’ve gathered, it’s no surprise they have a powerful target segmentation. There are so many different segments and choosing the right one can be a bit of a hassle. The best thing to do is to focus on your buyer persona first — what do you know about the type of buyer you want to target? Of course, there are some other, less-obvious segmentations here too. So, other than the usual groups like age, gender, and location, you have things like life events, connections, and behaviors. If you have never tried paid advertising on Facebook before, it might take some trial and error with different target audience options before you can get a desirable result.

 

Choose a budget option

In this step, you have two options to choose from.  In the “daily budget” option, you specify the amount of money you like to spend on each ad set. If you choose “lifetime budget,” you will have to specify the overall amount of budget and the time you wish for the advertising to end. To fully customize, select the advanced options.

 

Choose your ad type

Facebook will offer you different ad types to suit your objective. So, the campaign objective you chose in step 3 will now decide what kinds of ads you can create and how they look like. For example, if you wanted to increase website traffic, Facebook can offer you a Clicks to Website option, which takes viewers to your website and increases your traffic. This option comes in two forms; “links” will display your link with a single image, and “carousel” will do so with multiple images.

 

Keep an eye on your ad’s performance

After your ad is up and running, you need to observe its performance closely. The most obvious way to do that is to use Facebook’s tools. Of course, most busineeses prefer to use an independent marketing tool to track progress. I’ll talk about that in the next step.

There are different metrics you can choose to see how effective it’s been but the more critical ones need to watch include:

Performance: Check your ads’ reach, frequency, and impressions regularly.

Engagement: Pay close attention to the number of likes and comments.

Websites: This is about everything involving sales, including purchases, carts, and payment gateways.

Videos: How many views did you get? How long into the videos did people watch?

A useful feature of the Facebook Ads Manager is that it lets you choose which level you want to monitor. Remember how we talked about ads and ad sets? Here, you can choose whether you want an overview of all the campaigns you’ve ever run, all the ad sets in a specific campaign, and so on.

You can see your overall performance across all ad levels. Comparing results on the ad level could give you ideas on which strategies work better.

 

Streamline your analytics

While Facebook’s performance measurements are practical and more or less accurate, most businesses, big or small, prefer to use their own marketing software in addition to that. With the right marketing tools, you can get a more helpful, more detailed analytics. Using a CRM and marketing tool like RunSensible, you can integrate the results right into your overall marketing campaigns. This will give you a much better image of the total impact of your ads than Facebook’s metrics alone. Using RunSensible for your social media ads can help you create a full-funnel experience that manages and tracks your prospects from the very first to their conversion and beyond.

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