In 2022, Facebook has served a dual purpose for most online marketers. The social network has been both a marketing tool and a sales channel, and we expect this trend to continue in 2023 and beyond.
Besides simple brand-customer interactions, the OG social media platform is excellent for reaching and selling to your target audience.
As privacy policies and regulations change, Facebook advertising may suffer from targeting challenges, diminishing returns, and skyrocketing costs, but it remains a valuable marketing and sales tool. After all, it is still the most popular social platform with nearly 3 billion active users and offers advertisers some of the best targeting options.
Even though your website and brick-and-mortar location are your business’s command centers, you still need third-party distribution platforms to meet buyers “on their turf.” The Facebook ad platform is a highly effective tool for accomplishing precisely that.
Why Advertise on Facebook?
Facebook ads may be less effective than in the platform’s golden era, but this social network still has the most active users, and its ads also cover Instagram. Therefore, you should use well-thought-out and intentional Facebook advertising strategies to avoid wasting your budget on ads that don’t contribute to your bottom line.
Facebook advertising offers a few key benefits:
- Range of options to suit every budget
- Full access to the Facebook Ad Library
- The largest social-network user base in the world
- In-depth data analytics
- Seamless integration with e-commerce platforms like Shopify
- Advanced options for targeted ads
Both customer acquisition and customer retention can be accomplished with Facebook ads. In addition to building brand awareness and advertising to new potential buyers, it nurtures relationships with existing customers.
Each ad on Facebook can be customized based on three key objectives:
- Building awareness — This is your primary objective if you’re just beginning your Facebook advertising journey. Prioritize building awareness whenever you’re looking to promote a new product line or company-related event.
- Driving engagement — You’ll want to hit your audience with ads that provide more information about your offering once they’ve become familiar with your brand. In this step, your ads should focus on generating leads and increasing engagement.
- Getting conversions — The final step is all about conversions; it’s as simple as that. However, a conversion could mean various things depending on your goals. You might just want the user to give you their email address, get directions to your brick-and-mortar location, or visit your website. On the other hand, perhaps nothing less than a purchase will count as a conversion in your book.
When you should start adding Facebook ads to your marketing playbook isn’t set in stone. A wide range of businesses and budgets can take advantage of the platform, so you’ll have to consider your specific circumstances to determine the potential value of Facebook advertising.
Creating a High-Quality Facebook Ad Strategy in 2023
Whether you’re interested in taking on the challenge of Facebook advertising in-house or you plan to enlist the help of a social media agency for branding in San Francisco, you’ll need an effective Facebook ad strategy in 2023 and beyond. Let’s look at a few steps you can take to make this a reality.
1. Target Specific Audiences Through Personalization
The Facebook ad targeting options are some of the best around, allowing you to be super specific about your audience, promotions, and ad creative choices. This is particularly useful if you don’t have much customer data.
Using Facebook’s Core Audience feature, you can identify your target market according to five criteria:
- Demographics — A range of targeting options are available in this category, including age, gender, education, occupation, language, political affiliation, income, and relationship status.
- Location — Focus on a specific country, state, province, community, ZIP code, etc. Alternatively, you can restrict the search to users within a particular radius from a central point, such as a city or ZIP code.
- Behavior — In this section, Facebook considers its users’ digital footprint, including their network speed, devices, and previous purchases.
- Interests — These include your audience’s hobbies and other interest areas.
- Connections — Using this targeting parameter, you can specify whether you want to target people who have already connected with your Facebook page and therefore know your brand well or build awareness by focusing strictly on new potential leads.
Facebook’s Audience Insights tool can help you find ideas for building your Core Audience. You can apply the information you receive from Audience Insights to your Core Audiences as you see fit based on the criteria outlined above.
The following are practical tips on leveraging the Core Audience targeting options in your Facebook ads.
This Facebook ad targeting strategy is especially effective when using Audience Insights. Your target audience might have shared hobbies that don’t necessarily relate to your niche, and if you can spot these, you can create ads that connect your product to these specific hobbies.
You can use location tracking to target prospects in a few ways. Country- or region-specific ad copy is one obvious example. However, weather-based targeting is one particularly interesting way to leverage a user’s location to deliver more relevant ads.
There are tools for automatically adjusting ad creatives and activating/deactivating ads based on local weather. This may not apply to every niche, but many products out there might sell better in adverse weather conditions, such as in extreme summer heat or on cold winter nights.
Life Event-Based Targeting
A variety of life-event targeting options are available, including new jobs, babies, engagements, marriages, anniversaries, graduations, recent moves, retirement, loss of a loved one, and more. You should consider the contexts in which your products may be used and how various life events might relate to them.
2. Use Custom Audiences to Cater to Return Customers
The Facebook Custom Audiences feature identifies groups of Facebook users who are somewhat familiar with your brand. These are people who have engaged with your Facebook page or posts, visited your website, subscribed to your email list, made a purchase, or engaged with your brand in another way.
You can divide these users into four groups before targeting them using various ad campaigns. These groups include the following:
- Facebook Engagement Group — This Custom Audience includes people who have previously engaged with your Facebook ads or content, including viewing your page, submitting lead forms, watching videos, commenting on posts, etc. We will talk more about how you can leverage this group in the next step, so stick around.
- Customer Group — To build this audience group, import a spreadsheet containing your customer list, and Facebook will match the data to its users.
- Mobile Activity Group — This segment consists of people who have engaged with your mobile app or taken specific actions within it.
- Website Group — This Custom Audience comprises people who have browsed your website or visited specific pages on it.
3. Use “Lookalike” Targeting to Extend Your Reach
Custom Audiences enable you to create new segments with similar characteristics over time. In this case, we are talking about Lookalike Audiences. You already know what your existing audiences like and which ads perform well, so Lookalike Audiences make sense as they share a great deal in common with them.
Lookalike Audiences can often be served the same ads you’ve been running for other targets, which makes for a highly efficient way to reach new potential customers. Knowing these groups’ preferences enables you to introduce them to your brand via proven, effective ad creative.
The similarity of your Lookalike Audience with your source audience can be scaled. You’ll target a smaller, more specific group by keeping it very similar. Conversely, you’ll be able to reach a larger yet broader audience if you allow for a great deal of variance between the two.
It is possible to create up to 500 Lookalike Audiences on Facebook, so there is plenty of room for experimentation.
4. Retarget Page Visitors
You can display Facebook retargeting ads to users who have visited your e-commerce website or contacted you on Facebook or Instagram. This Facebook ad strategy is excellent for nurturing relationships you’ve already built.
Targeting users based on specific actions they’ve taken, such as liking on Facebook, adding products to their cart, or even visiting particular pages, is possible. With Facebook ads, you can retarget people who have done one or more of the following:
- Started the checkout process
- Added a product to their cart
- Viewed a product or a specific piece of content on your site
- Spent a particular amount of time on your page or website
- Used your app
- Visited your site
- Engaged with you on Instagram or FB
Retargeting users who have shown interest in your brand in the past is a fantastic way to get conversions, so we highly recommend adding this step to your Facebook ad strategy in 2023.
5. Keep Testing and Tweaking Your Approach
It’s certainly possible to “set and forget” your Facebook ad strategy, but you should optimize it constantly for the best results. So, our final tip stresses how crucial it is to test your Facebook ads to determine what works and what doesn’t and then adjust accordingly.
If you want to determine which content type performs better on Facebook, you might, for example, test video ads compared to photo ads. Cost optimization is another way to improve your Facebook advertising strategy.
Whatever you choose to do, keeping in touch with upcoming trends is crucial, so stay on your toes and be ready to make adjustments as you go along. This, above all else, is what will determine the success of your Facebook advertising strategy.