In order to run a successful Facebook advertising campaign, you need to throw out all the assumptions you use for all your other types of advertising.

Facebook Is Not a Google Ad or Commercial

Facebook is not a billboard, it’s not a TV commercial and it’s certainly not a Google search ad. You wouldn’t use spaghetti to hammer a nail, so why would you use Facebook ads the same way you’d use PPC?

The first thing you need to accept before you become a champion of Facebook’s advertising is that you are in a whole new world.

In order to conquer this new territory, you have to understand why your target market is there in the first place.

USER INTENT

Think about the reasons why people are watching TV, driving or searching on Google. Their mindset varies drastically depending on the platform they’re engaging in.

So why are people on Facebook? The funny thing is, this answer is totally organic. It evolves all the time.

10 years ago, the answer would be to share all your party photos and for parents to “stay cool” and keep in touch (or keep an eye on) their kids. Now, the answer has much more to it. While people still use it to share photos and keep in touch, it’s grown many other uses.

62% of Adults Get News from Social Media

One of which is content consumption: 62 percent of U.S. adults get their news from social media.

Think about what you look for when you’re on Facebook. At what point(s) do you stop scrolling and start engaging? This will help you understand the mindset of what you’re looking for, which will be similar to what others are looking for.

The following is a list of some of the reasons why you are navigating the world’s largest social network:

  • To get the news

  • To find articles that re-affirm your values

  • To find content that is entertaining or truly helpful

  • To share content that will make you look good

  • To see what your friends and family are up to

  • To let people know what you’re up to

  • To share your opinion

More importantly, here’s a list of reasons that people are NOT on Facebook for:

  • To find a good deal on products/services

  • To follow new companies

  • To buy stuff

  • To spend money

  • (Insert another phrase similar to “to buy your product” here)

People are not on this platform to make a purchase. It's called social network, not buying network. Think of Facebook more like a barbecue or social gathering rather than a Target or Walmart.

WHAT TO ADVERTISE

Too many businesses go straight to what they know how to do when they decide to advertise on Facebook: selling.

And while this might be appropriate for commercials, billboards and PPC, it’s definitely not effective on Facebook. At least not right off the bat. Why?

Facebook Followers

Facebook is a top-of-funnel-first platform. That means that you need to be promoting content that will help users become aware of your brand. If you skip straight to trying to close them, you will get a big thumbs down.

First and foremost, one of the pillars of top-of-funnel content is that it needs to be user-focused. Your ads need to be catering to those previously-mentioned reasons of why people are on Facebook.

Give them content that’ll make their lives better in some way. Be unforgettable by providing helpful tips or providing them information that re-affirms their opinion and matches their story.

Of course, the world is not black and white. There is definitely a right time and place to promote sales on Facebook. But in order to do that, you need to get in front of the people who would benefit most from what you offer. That’s where targeting comes in.

GETTING IN FRONT OF THE RIGHT PEOPLE

Once you’ve developed the right content, you need to utilize Facebooks massive targeting capabilities to find your ideal customers. Unlike any other advertising platform, Facebook helps you find and show your ads to the most relevant groups of people possible.

While PPC might have a more bottom-of-funnel group of people seeing it, they have to hope that the user will come to them. With Facebook, you get to put yourself in front of the user. With precision.

Facebook doesn’t just track what you are doing on their social network, they track what you’re doing on all of your devices and browsers.

It uses this information to help advertisers make sure that you will actually be interested in what they have to promote. Facebook is hands down the ultimate place to get in front of the right audience.

Not only can you target people based off their interests and behavior, you can re-target them if they have visited your site using the Facebook Pixel.

Facebook pixel

While PPC may have this similar function, it doesn’t give you the same detailed capabilities of what you can do with it. With Facebook’s pixel, you can target people who have only visited specific pages and not others. For example: If someone visits your blog but doesn’t make a purchase and visit the “thank-you” page, you can re-target them with more ads. If someone has made a purchase and visited your “thank-you” page, you can choose to stop targeting them as you’ve already converted them.

You can also create a “lookalike audience” within Facebook. This is exactly what it sounds like. You can take all your website visitors and create an audience that has similar behaviors and qualities. You can even take all of your converted customers and create a lookalike audience based off of them.

You can’t do that with a billboard.

Competing with Facebook

You can use the Facebook pixel to nurture people down your funnel using Facebook ads and the inbound marketing methodology. Learn more about Facebound now to see how.

SUMMING IT ALL UP

There are a lot of differences to pay attention to when you’re advertising on Facebook vs. any other ad platform.

The first is to understand why people are on this platform. And guess what? It’s not to buy things. Different personas might use Facebook for different reasons, but it’s generally the same. To consume content.

Cater your ads to this behavior. Once you understand your audience’s intent, you can optimize your content to fit their needs. Once you have the right content, then you have to find the right people. You can use interests, behaviors and all types of demographical data to find your ideal customer.

You can also take advantage of the Facebook Pixel for re-targeting and creating new, relevant groups to target with lookalike audiences.

Your mindset needs to be user-focused and have the desire to provide content that actually solves a problem or satisfies a need. Once you commit yourself to that thought process, the rest will take care of itself.

Hearing about growth-driven design for the first time? Learn more about the three pillars of GDD and how this methodology can help you solve your greatest marketing challenges.

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Author

Tim Mehta

The man who’s always got a strategic game plan, Tim serves as Designzillas’ Senior Digital Strategist, always finding the best ways to make content shine online.

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