Facebook is a great place to advertise your goods and services. The size of the platform speaks for itself, and there are plenty of targeting tools available with Facebook Ads to help you find the right people at the right time.
But that doesn’t mean that it’s easy to have success with Facebook Ads. In fact, it is certainly possible to waste a lot of money running inefficient ads that won’t lead to enough sales to justify the money you spend on this marketing channel. To make sure your ad campaigns come out ahead time after time, intelligent management is required.
And that is what we are here to discuss. Let’s take some time to dive into the details of how to manage a Facebook Ads campaign properly so you can avoid spending more than is needed to find the people who can push your business forward.
Sometimes, Less Is More
It is tempting to micromanage every last little piece of your Facebook ad campaigns. After all, you are spending valuable dollars on these ads, so you need to get the best possible return on that investment. Many marketers fall into the trap of constantly making adjustments, changing one thing after the next, in the eternal pursuit of ideal results. Being active within your account makes it feel like you are being productive, even if the changes didn’t really need to be made.
Unfortunately, this can be a recipe for disaster. Make no mistake – it’s important to actively manage your campaigns. But going too far and making an endless string of changes is likely to do more harm than good. At some point, you’ll need to embrace the productivity that you are getting from your campaign or campaigns and just let them run for a while. You’ll always be monitoring how they are performing so you can jump in and make key changes when they become necessary, but too many changes will just leave you confused and in constant search of a new solution.
The topic of resisting the urge to make constant changes brings the conversation around to the importance of having a well-designed, properly structured ad account. We’ll talk more later about organizing your campaigns in such a way that makes it easy for you to determine what is going on with each of your ads without having to sort through messy data. The better you can organize your account from the start, the easier it will be to keep an eye on everything and make limited, strategic changes aimed at only affecting the ads that are truly underperforming.
Controlling your ad spend is one of the primary tasks you have as a marketer. With an unlimited budget, it would be pretty easy to blast ads all over the web and get the leads you need. You don’t have an unlimited budget, however, so you need to be strategic and make sure that every dollar spent has a good chance to return value to the business. You can easily set budget limits on your Facebook ad campaigns, but how you set those limits will impact what results you are able to achieve. Let’s walk through an example to highlight how this works in the real world.
Imagine for a moment that you are running a Facebook ad campaign to promote a line of products that you sell on your website. Within that campaign, you have five different sets of ads that are being used to drive traffic from Facebook to your landing pages. Once a user lands on your site, they are presented with a sales page that will hopefully convert them into a customer. Of course, you are tracking conversion rates and other metrics to determine how well these ads are performing over time.
For this kind of setup, how would you go about setting your daily ad spend budget? Many people – perhaps even most – would set the budget at the campaign level, deciding they were going to spend $100 per day (as an example) on the entire campaign. Once that $100 has been used up, the campaign will be paused until the next day.
This technique could be fine in some situations, but it also can lead to trouble. Here’s the potential problem – what if one of those five ad groups within the campaign is using up a majority of the ad spend without leading to a lot of conversions? In other words, it might be that one of your ad sets draws a lot of attention, but that might not be your best-converting offer. So, you’ll be going through most of the $100 on ads that aren’t optimal, and you’ll be missing a big opportunity as a result.
The solution to this error is simply to control your budget for each ad set, rather than for the campaign as a whole. So, in this case, you might decide to set the budget limit at $20 per ad set, which would add up to the same $100 for the total campaign. However, you can now be sure that each ad set is going to get a chance to perform, and you’ll get a better sample of results day after day. Now, you can see which ads and offers are converting best, and you can work on improving the others (or putting them on the bench and focusing more of your spend on the winners).
You’ll likely need to adapt this line of thinking slightly to suit your needs, but the idea should be clear. Make sure the way your budgeting is set up provides you with the opportunity to properly evaluate all of the various ads and offers at play. This spreads out your spend more effectively and will lead to better data that can drive appropriate decisions down the line.
Organize Campaigns Correctly
It’s always important to be well organized when running any kind of ad campaign. As you continue to write more and more ads to reach a bigger and bigger audience, the whole thing can get out of control. With a clean and clear structure in place, you can maintain an accurate overview of the campaigns you are running.
One good rule of thumb to keep in mind is that each of your campaigns should have a specific goal that is driving all decisions within that campaign. That’s what makes one campaign different from the next – it’s all about what you want to accomplish. So, if you have some ads you are running for the purpose of converting sales, while another set of ads is more about brand recognition and web traffic, those ad groups should be in different campaigns.
The concept here is to keep your campaigns “clean” so you can make choices within those campaigns that are appropriate for your ultimate goal. If things get messy and you have ads within the same campaign that are trying to do different things, it will be tough to make good decisions and you may struggle to properly evaluate your results, as well.
Be Strict About Your Audience
Every marketer knows that targeting is a key skill that needs to be both mastered and managed over time to get good results. Simply put, not everyone out there in the Facebook world is a good candidate to become a customer for your business. If you aren’t doing a good enough job managing your audience and controlling who sees your ads, you are sure to be wasting money in the end.
That’s not exactly breaking news, but there are still plenty of mistakes that happen in this area every single day. One common mistake is to willingly create a larger audience than you would have otherwise, just to show more ads and get results faster. If you find that filtering down the audience in an ideal manner doesn’t leave you with a very big pool, you might compromise on some of those filters just to get the numbers back up.
Don’t fall into that trap. Sticking strictly to the audience demographic that you want to target is important, and if it takes you a little longer to go through your budget and get some results, then so be it. The only thing you’ll accomplish by cutting corners and going with a bigger audience is spending money attracting people that are never going to convert at a high rate anyway.
Clean Conversion Goals
What are you trying to accomplish with each of your ads? If you don’t know the answer to that question, or if it’s hard to tell if your goals are being met when you look at the data, there are some improvements that need to be made. The only way to manage your ad spend properly and ensure that your campaigns are profitable is if you know what all of the ads are trying to do, and you have a way of tracking whether or not they do it. Spend time thinking about what you want your ad groups to accomplish and then figure out how to evaluate their performance accurately.
One common way of doing this is to create custom URLs for various ads or ad sets, and then monitor conversions on those URLs as the traffic starts to roll in. Whether it is making a sale or just getting someone to opt in to your mailing list, you’ll have a simple way to know where your conversions are coming from – and which ads are performing better than others. If you just point all of your ads to the same URL, and you have no way of telling which people came from which ad, you’ll be a bit lost in terms of assigning credit accurately and deciding where to spend most of your money moving forward.
One of the key takeaways we’d like you to leave this article with is that managing Facebook Ads correctly doesn’t need to be complicated. In fact, it can be quite simple. If you stick to the basics, make sure you aren’t making any obvious mistakes, and continue to refine your campaigns over time, you should have increasing success with these ads as the weeks and months pass. Thanks for stopping by and good luck!
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