Facebook ads optimization is the most important aspect of creating a campaign that works and delivers consistent results. But before we dive into that – do Facebook ads even work?
While it is possible to be running ads and losing money month after month – the answer is a resounding yes! Indeed, even if you haven’t been able to get your campaign profitable yet.
Facebook ads can be a terrific tool to grow your business, and do so quickly. Many people have become millionaires through Facebook ads, and businesses of all sizes use them. From small businesses to fortune 500 corporations. That is to say that it certainly is possible to strike gold, it’s just a matter of taking the right approach and going about the optimization process the right way.
Facebook Ads Optimization: Why Aren’t Your Ads Performing?
When you dig deep, there could be lots of reasons why your ads aren’t working.
However, before you dig deep:
It’s crucial to zoom out first and go back to the basics. Remember that while you are dealing with algorithms, statistics, pixels, and other technology on a day-to-day basis; in actuality, you are dealing with real people. People with real emotions, thoughts, problems, self-interest, and barriers. People who use critical thinking in some cases but also make emotional and irrational decisions in other cases. This has to be at the core of your entire campaign.
Also, remember that people who are browsing on Facebook and get served your ads aren’t generally there to be sold, and they aren’t there looking for a product or service. They are on Facebook most likely because the platform is so addicting, and they just want to look at pictures, talk to their friends, or any other reason people use social media.
That being said, there are 3 main reasons why your Facebook ads are probably not performing well:
- You haven’t completed your client avatar and aren’t clear on your ideal target customer
- The ads aren’t enticing enough and your ideal customer isn’t taking the bait
- You haven’t given Facebook enough time yet to find your ideal customer
So now that we know why your ads aren’t performing, let’s get into the nitty-gritty and get to the bottom of exactly which Facebook ads optimization steps you can take to get them there.
Revisit Your Client Avatar Exercise
Many people think this is just a bs task that won’t accomplish anything. But trust me – put in some effort and do this task well and you won’t regret it. After having completed your client avatar exercise, you will have a much better idea of the type of people you are speaking to. What matters to them, what problems they are trying to solve, what goals they have, and what type of messaging would resonate with them. This step will tell you who you are speaking to and how you should speak with them. For a full guide on completing your client avatar, check out this guide.
Make Sure Your Tracking Is Up To Par
This step is crucial for your campaign to be successful. Ensuring that your tracking is configured right will eliminate any question marks and guesswork. It will also provide Facebook with the valuable information it needs in order to help you with the Facebook ads optimization process. Think about it, when you go to a doctor with an issue, the first step they take to fixing it is the diagnosis. To solve any problem you have to first identify exactly what the problem is and what the cause of the problem is. By configuring your tracking correctly, you and the Facebook algorithm will be able to evaluate each aspect of your Facebook ads campaign. Then, see exactly where the issue is occurring.
Have A Clear Understanding Of Your Campaign Objective
This step is fundamental to Facebook ad optimization. This might seem like a simple and straightforward step, but before you scroll to the next item, give this a little thought. Think about exactly what you consider to be a conversion or the action of value that you and the Facebook algorithm should be optimizing for. Is it a lead, phone call, or traffic? Then, once you come to a clear objective, make sure that the entire campaign is built around this campaign objective. Make sure that you select the proper Facebook Campaign Objective when you create and evaluate your campaign.
Furthermore, make sure that your ad copy and creative (image/video) on your ad clearly encourage the viewer to complete your desired activity. Make sure that the messaging remains consistent on your landing page too, and that you have only 1 CTA (call-to-action) on your landing page which prompts prospects to complete your campaign objective. Your strategy and everything about your ad should be centered around this campaign objective. That way, Facebook users aren’t getting confused or discouraged from completing the desired action.
See What Your Competitors Are Doing
There are times when you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. If you look at your competition’s ads, get inspired, and then add your touch to them and improve upon their work, you can really stand out. This could also give you a better understanding of how your competition views their (and your) ideal customer.
Facebook offers a very powerful tool to “spy” or get a preview of your competitors’ strategies, called the Facebook Ad Library. Check it out!
Create Winning Ads
A huge part of Facebook ad optimization is making sure that the ads you are running are winning ads. What are the characteristics of a winner ad?
- Your ad should capture the readers’ attention. You can accomplish this in many ways. We have found that humor works very well for this purpose. If you can make your readers smile, snicker, or laugh in the first couple seconds of seeing your ad- that’s a great sign. You could also use a popping video or GIF, or somewhat of a cliff-hanger that uses curiosity to capture attention. Of course you should know exactly what type of post would capture the attention of your specific client avatar, and center it around this persona. If you manage to nail this step, you should see engagement go up such as likes, comments, reactions, video views, and click-through-rates.
- Your ad should keep the readers’ attention. Ok – you’ve grabbed the readers’ attention, now what? Keep in mind that attention spans are in short supply nowadays. So, capturing someone’s attention means you’ve got them for at most a few seconds. That means you have a few seconds time to keep their attention and prevent them from continuing to scroll. You can do this with amazing creative content and copy. Tell an interesting story. Be concise and interesting, and don’t use fluff! You could try short or long ads, just make sure you are direct, focused, and interesting.
- The ad should be appealing to the readers. You are creating your ad for your readers, and so they should be the focus of the ad. Make sure to address their pain points and show them that you understand their problem. Convince them of how they can get value from clicking onto your page. How will you solve their problem? Address any objections your ideal customers (client avatar) have.
Target By Location If Appropriate
This suggestion applies only to businesses with physical, brick-and-mortar locations. If your campaign objective is getting people into your physical store or business, then you should definitely take advantage of Facebook’s sophisticated geographical targeting capabilities. This way you’re not wasting money on people who live on the other side of the country.
Facebook provides a terrific target-by-radius feature, which allows you to target all people within a specified number of miles of your store. Make sure to balance the radius, so as not to choose too small of a radius that doesn’t have a large enough audience, without going for too big of a radius. Long drives will prevent people from visiting your store. You will be able to configure the geographic location when you are creating a saved audience in the “audiences” section.
Target Better Audiences With Custom Audiences
A custom audience lets you find and target people on Facebook who are already familiar with your business. They could be current clients/customers, newsletter subscribers, people who use your app or have engaged with your Facebook content, or who have visited your website. Such an audience is already warm to your brand and you will find that custom audiences will perform much better than saved audiences. You’ll only be able to create a custom audience if you have a list or a source for the audience. It’s always a great option to consider when engaging in Facebook ad optimization.
Learn all about Facebook ad audiences here.
Test And Evaluate
I added this section at risk of sounding redundant and cliche, however, make sure you are testing everything! We all have theories about what will and won’t work – but there’s only one way to find out. On the Facebook side of things, you should test audiences, ad copy, and creatives. Also, you will want to a/b test your landing page. Use the performance data provided on Facebook to evaluate and identify your worst and best performers. If you have a low CPM (cost per 1,000 impressions), you might want to consider changing up your bidding strategy, broadening or improving your audience, and working on your ads’ relevance score.
A low CTR (click-through rate) usually has a lot to do with your audience, ad creative, and ad copy. However if you see that all metrics are good until users click through, you may want to change up your landing page.
But remember, it’s okay if one or two of the metrics aren’t performing too well if the overall cost per conversion or result is still good. That’s what matters most! At the end of the day, the priority is to optimize for your end result, and if you are satisfied with your cost per conversion, then it’s best not to fix something that is broken. That is not to say that you shouldn’t test other versions alongside your high-performing ad to see if you can find an even bigger cash cow.
A Recap Of Facebook Ads Optimization
There you have it! Now make sure to be systematic and analytical about your approach. If you can, it could benefit you to try to remove any biases you may have and just follow the data; because the numbers don’t lie. Good luck and I hope you can turn your Facebook ads campaign into a cash cow!
Want to learn more about Facebook audiences? Check out our full guide here.