Facebook Ads: The Ultimate Guide

Facebook advertisements are no longer an insider tip in online marketing; that much is certain. But how do you design Facebook campaigns? We’ll tell you here: In the first part of this guide, you will find the most important basics and, in the second part, a guide for Facebook Ads.

Carousel, Canvas & Co .: Formats on Facebook Ads

The basis of Facebook advertising is the fact that Facebook users want to be entertained. Stubborn product advertising is not well received here; instead, good Facebook ads aim to promote brand awareness and interaction with it. This is made possible by various ad formats: from the good old standard ad to video advertising, everything is included.

What are Facebook Ads?

To put it simply: Facebook Ads are the last link in the chain of Facebook marketing tools. If you had to create a hierarchy, it would look like this:

  • Campaign
  • Ad Group
  • Display / Ad-Set

The ad is the only part that the user gets played. For you, as an advertiser, Facebook Ads are an opportunity for highly personalized, efficient advertising at a low price, at least compared to Google AdWords.

Advertising with Facebook Ads consists of three phases:

  • Awareness

Creating awareness: who is the brand, what does it do, and why is it interesting?

  • Consideration

Finally, attract attention by doing retargeting and playing out an attractive offer to already interested users

Leads become active customers.

Facebook Pixel is important in this context. It is integrated into the source code of a page and tracks the actions of page visitors. This allows you to track exactly who has already used the page and in what way.

facebook ads dashboard

Regardless of whether it is retargeting or initially just the awareness phase, the Facebook ad must be perfect. That means it contains:

  • High-quality images with an immediately understandable, clear reference to the content of the advertisement
  • Relevant, precise text that precisely addresses the interests of the target group
  • A clearly recognizable added value that shows why it is worth clicking on the ad
  • An unmistakable call to action

What sounds so simple requires some practice in the implementation. Facebook’s overlay tool, for example, is helpful here, as it shows whether the ad contains more than the appropriate 20 percent text. But put an end to the theory: Which ad formats are particularly interesting?

Overlay Tool

Facebook lead ads

A lead ad contains a contact form that can be filled in directly on Facebook. In practice, this means that a user who wants to register for the newsletter, for example, does not have to go to an external page and fill out the form there. Instead, he can easily register on Facebook.

Lead Ads are perfect for ads that should be played primarily on mobile devices. Honestly, would you, as a user, like to be redirected from the Facebook app to a landing page and all of this “only” for a newsletter/offer? Just.

Facebook Carousel Ads

With this ad format, up to 10 images or videos can be posted. Each element is linked with its link. The user can swipe back and forth between the individual images, which makes the ad format very interactive.

An exemplary illustration of a Carousel Ad and a Lead Ad form

Facebook Carousel Ads

Carousel Ads are made for detailed storytelling. You can either literally tell a mini-story in your ad. Or you show several bestsellers from your online shop. Or the large view of a single product, divided into several pictures. Or, or, or – with a little creativity, you can get a lot out of the carousel format.

Facebook canvas ads

A canvas ad is nothing more than a full-screen ad that can consist of different elements. Canvas Ads are like landing pages in the middle of the news feed, on which, for example, videos, photos, carousel elements, or text blocks are shown. An ad can contain up to 1000 characters of text.

Canvas Ads are optimized for mobile devices and are therefore especially designed for fast loading times. So if you mainly want to contact mobile users, this format is worth considering.

Facebook video ads

Images always work, moving images even better – according to this motto, Facebook also offers the option to advertise with video ads. There are four types of video ads to choose from :

  • In-stream: The ad is played in another video.
  • 360 ° -Video
  • Storytelling video
  • Video Link Ad: The video contains the link to a landing page.

It is very important in this format to provide the advertising video with subtitles. Because Facebook, videos are played automatically without sound.

The Facebook Ads Manager

If there is a place that Facebook advertising cannot do without, it is the Facebook Ads Manager. It is a free tool that can be used to manage, tailor, and analyze campaigns and individual ads. From the planning and implementation of the ads to analysis statistics, everything is gathered in the Ads Manager.

In Facebook Ads Manager, it is possible to carry out highly precise targeting by refining the target group down to the smallest detail. You can also use the manager’s mockup option to test how a campaign would theoretically run.

The login to the Facebook Ads Manager is either via the Facebook page or a private Facebook account. By the way: If you stumble across the term Power Editor somewhere, this is no longer up to date because the original Ads Manager and the Power Editor have now been combined in one tool.

Place Facebook advertising: a guide

Since Facebook is continuously working on the individual functions of the Ad Manager, it is almost impossible to go into all the details clearly in a single post. Conveniently, the ad manager is straight forward to understand so that even beginners can find their way around with a little practice.

In this article, we mainly focus on the basic procedure for creating Facebook Ads. So what do you need for this? First of all, a corresponding Facebook page and the Ads Manager. As soon as you have logged in there, you can select the “Create campaign” option – and you are ready for your first ad group!

Step 1: Goal Setting

The first decision you have to make is the goal of the advertising campaign, i.e., the campaign type. Increase traffic, increase sales, more likes, better visibility – you have the choice on which criteria your ad should be optimized.

Facebook ads guide
Select Your Ads Goal

At this point, you also enter the link to be promoted. This can be a Facebook post or an event, but also an external landing page, etc. Ultimately, every advertisement is about bringing the user to a specific location.

Step 2: Select the target group

With a precisely selected target group, every Facebook ad stands and falls. In this step, you choose either a custom audience or a lookalike audience and specify in minute detail who should see the ad.

Here is an example of a campaign with Lookalike and exclusion of converted users

Facebook ads guide
Select Your Targeted Location

If you are a newcomer to Facebook Ad, this limitation is done in addition to demographic information, especially according to areas of interest. This is only logical – which the user is paying attention to an advertisement that does not serve his interests at all?

For you, as an advertiser, the exact definition of the target group is also important because of the relevance rating by Facebook. The more relevant the ad appears to the user, the better the rating and the better your position compared to the competition.

If in doubt, start with a small target group, i.e., 5,000-10,000 users. This gives you a feeling of what works and what doesn’t. You can expand and optimize the target group at any time.

Step 3: Set the budget and schedule

At this point, you can decide whether you want to use a daily budget or a term budget. You also specify here which model should be used to calculate the costs:

  • CPM ( cost per mile ): You pay per 1000 impressions.
  • CPC ( cost per click ): You pay per click.

The schedule is also created here. So you specify whether the ad should be played according to a certain rhythm or continuously.

A tip at this point: If you have little experience with Facebook Ads, it is best to choose “automatic” instead of “manual” for the bids for an advertisement. It is not easy to estimate the budget correctly at the beginning – the automatic values ​​provide a good starting point.

Step 4: Designing the ad(s)

Once the cornerstone of your campaign is in place, the really fun part comes the design of the actual ad! Now is the time to decide on placement, ad type, text, illustration, and CTA. The latter, in particular, is an indispensable part of Facebook Ads; after all, the user should be able to immediately recognize the added value that he can draw from the interaction with the ad.

Step 5: Check and activate the display

Once you’re happy with your ad, review it one last time and then commission it. Before your Facebook ad goes online and is played to users, Facebook checks the ad again. It takes a few hours or even a few minutes. Your first campaign is on!

Step 6: Analysis and optimization

Of course, planning and publishing an ad campaign is not enough. Because now, the real work is just starting: Be sure to keep an eye on the statistics that the ad manager provides.

Is an ad going well? Perfect, but you shouldn’t rest on that. Because if you don’t change anything at all, it won’t even take a week before “advertising” probably occurs: Then all users of the target group have already seen the ad several times. This is boring and is counterproductive.

So keep changing individual elements on display. Swap the header image, choose a newly formulated CTA, etc. and observe which variant performs best. This comparison is also a good guide for future campaigns.

Optimizing Facebook Ads also means optimizing the corresponding landing pages. For example, if the user is forwarded to an external page by clicking on it, it must be immediately clear why he ended up there.

Imagine you click on an ad and land on a homepage that, in the worst case, is still confusing – would you independently search for the path to the promised free video, checklist, e-book? Hardly likely. And if you, as a visitor, immediately leave the page again, the ad has failed. Bad luck for the competitor – you will do better!

The cost of Facebook Ads

It’s the tiresome question with all types of advertising: what does it cost? In the case of Facebook Ads, this question cannot be answered broadly, even if it is quickly claimed. We have summarized the most important factors regarding the cost of Facebook advertising.

How much does Facebook advertising cost?

How expensive Facebook Ads are depended entirely on what you want to invest. You set your own budget – as described above – and also determine an overall budget for the campaign. The bid per result can also be set manually. Alternatively, it is set automatically. Here are the options:

  • CPM: self-selected price per 1000 ad impressions
  • CPC: self-selected price per click, regardless of the number of impressions

The CPC model is often more useful for beginners. Because the mere display of the ad does not mean that a user pays attention to it. And so at a cost per mile, you can quickly waste money.

The price system for Facebook Ads can be thought of as an auction. You place your bid for the ad, and the competition does the same. Facebook then decides which ad is played and how often. Ads with higher bids and good relevance ratings have much better chances.

Last but not least, the cost of Facebook advertising depends on how much competition there is and how precisely the target group is narrowed down. In other words: Anyone who wants to tell you about flat-rate costs doesn’t have too much idea what they’re talking about.

The bill on Facebook advertising

Facebook Ads can either be paid by credit card (American Express, Visa, MasterCard) or PayPal. But be careful: you can only choose one payment method for all campaigns. A division is not possible.

It is best for all beginners to set an upper limit for expenditure under the “Invoices” or “Payment settings” tab. So you always keep an eye on your expenses. If you want to print out invoices, you can do that in Ads Manager.

And is this expenditure worth it? Well: Facebook Ads require a lot of know-how and experience. Because only with precisely defined target groups, a reasonable budget, and perfectly designed ads do it make sense to invest money in this form of online marketing. But if you act strategically and continuously optimize your ads, Facebook Ads are worth it – try it!

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