Getting Started With Facebook Ads
What’s the first thing you’re going to need in order to start being successful with Facebook Ads? A Facebook account?
Nope! What you’ll need to begin with is even more fundamental than that.
Specifically, what you’ll need is:
- a brand
- a website
- and a product to sell
If you’re going to use any type of advertising, then you of course need something that’s worth advertising!
And that thing you’ll be advertising needs to be compelling and exciting enough that you can find a large audience of people who want it.
So let’s take a look at where we’re going to get started: by choosing a niche.
If you already have a niche, blog and product then you may consider skipping this. My advice would be don’t: we’re going to be covering some fairly advanced concepts here and you might decide that you actually want to reconsider your current strategy once you’ve read it through…
Choosing Your Niche
Your niche is of course your subject matter. This is the topic you’re going to be tacking with your blog and therefore, the industry that you’re going to be looking at with your product.
For example, you might decide that your niche is going to be fitness and that your product is going to be a weights bench. The two inform each other because you wouldn’t want to have a website about sewing and sell weight benches from there!
More importantly, this also informs your audience.
That is to say that you’ll now be aiming your website, your brand and your marketing at people who like to work out with weights. That means that you’re going to be targeting more men than women and possibly sporty/athletic types. Alternatively, you might go the opposite way and decide to focus on women, the elderly or even teenagers.
And doing this would be wise.
Ultimately, the whole point of a ‘niche’ is to find a subject matter and a product that will have a relatively niche appeal. In other words: something that isn’t going to be appealing to everyone.
The reason that it makes sense to do that, is that this will allow you to focus on a smaller group and thereby spend less on advertising while also having a clearer value proposition.
Facebook Ads use a PPC format.
That stands for ‘Pay Per Click’ and what this essentially tells us, is that we’re paying each time that someone clicks on the ad. The amount we pay is related to the maximum budget that we set when we created the campaign, as well as the number of other people targeting the same spot with the advert. When two advertisers both have ads that can appear in a given place on Facebook, they will enter a bidding war. The advertiser with the highest maximum spend will win and will pay the smallest amount that was needed to beat the competition.
So if there are two advertisers trying to advertise on the same spot and advertiser A has a 20 cents maximum bid and advertiser B has a 50 cents maximum bid, advertiser B will win and will pay 21 cents for each click.
The more popular a niche, the more you’ll pay to have your advert there.
And the more popular a niche, the more competing products you’ll have to contend with. No doubt your audience has seen thousands of weights benches in their time and know precisely where to buy them. But have they seen one that is aimed specifically at women with a more feminine design? Have they seen one that is aimed specifically at older people with stiffer joints?
By going niche, you can solve a more specific problem and be the best choice for a particular person. This is better than trying to be the generic choice for everyone.
Pick a popular niche and then hone in on the specific demographic within that niche – the niche within the niche.
Of course you also need to think about what topics you know well, what topics you’re willing to write lots about and what topics you’re passionate about. Trust me: if you try and sell a product you have no passion for, you’ll be making things much harder for yourself.
Finding a Product To Sell
There’s nothing wrong with building a blog or a brand with no products to sell. If you do this, then you’ll be establishing yourself as an influencer, building trust and creating a massive audience that you will subsequently be able to sell to. In fact, you’ll build more trust because your visitors will see that you’re not just trying to get them to buy things from you! You can even use some adverts on your site in order to generate a little income without needing a product of your own necessarily.
But once you start paying for Facebook Ads, then you really do need to think about having a product you can sell. Now, you’re paying for each visitor you get to the site and that is going to quickly add up once you get 1,000 clicks.
The only way for Facebook Ads to be viable, is if you’re earning more than you’re paying and that means that the average spend for each customer needs to be more than they’re paying to come to your site. That way, you can invest more and more into the advertising and see your site grow bigger and bigger. Ads just don’t cut it because you’ll earn less per click than you would have to pay per click!
So where do you get products from?
There are a few options. One is to sell your own product from your site. This is the best option and especially if you have the patience and know-how to create a physical product like a gadget, a tool or an item of clothing. You can do this by creating the design and then finding a manufacturer to partner with. You’ll need to order a minimum amount of stock upfront but one way to get around this is by using a crowdfunding site like Kickstarter to get the funds you need.
Alternatively, you can take out a business loan.
Another option is to create a digital product. This will be something like an eBook, an online course or something else that requires you to send a file digitally rather than manufacture anything. Digital products have lots of benefits – including the fact that they don’t require any upfront expense and also have no overheads. You can sell as many as you like and make 100% profit on each sale. The downside is that digital products don’t have as much broad appeal as something like an item of clothing. eBooks are hard to explain to your gran and you can’t make the argument that anyone ‘needs’ an eBook.
There are ‘in-between’ options too. For example, you can sell a book using POD publishing. This stands for ‘Print On Demand’ and essentially means that the book is printed only when someone orders it. That means there’s no need for you to buy anything up-front; the books are printed only when they’re needed and thus there’s no risk and no upfront investment.
Another great option is to use dropshipping.
Dropshipping means that you are selling something that a company owns and simply forwarding the orders on to the wholesaler. They then handle fulfillment but they do so in a silent manner, so that the customers feel as though they’re buying directly from you. Better yet, some dropshippers will even offer a truly white-label service and actually allow you to put your logo on the products. For instance, they would let you sell their supplements range while using your own logo on the label. They might even allow you to choose ingredients for your own formula.
Otherwise, you can go the more traditional route and try reselling. This means buying a product in bulk from a wholesaler and then finding customers to sell it on to at a profit.
Finally, you might consider becoming an affiliate. Affiliate marketers promote products made by creators in exchange for commission on each sale. Sometimes this might mean that you’re selling digital products with commission up to 75%! In other cases, you might sell physical products for considerably less.
Amazon Associates for example offers its partners around 4-8% on sales. But this does come with the distinct advantage of selling through a very big and very well-known brand that people trust and likely already have an account with even.
You need this product, the right niche and a website to sell it from.
Whatever way you eventually decide to go about finding your product, make sure that it is also something you really believe in and something that people will want to buy. Research your market and your audience and look at what’s currently selling well in other stores and through other channels.
Creating Your Brand and Facebook Page
But for now, you need to consider one more aspect before you can go about beginning your advertising: that’s your Facebook Page. And in order to create a great Facebook Page, you’re going to need to think carefully about your brand.
That’s because your brand is going to be what helps you to communicate what your business is all about, to build trust and to make people want to follow you.
Remember: we’re targeting a specific audience. We want the right kind of person to know instantly that ours is a brand they should be interested in, that our products are things they might want to buy. And we do that with a strong brand.
This needs a strong logo. Your logo needs to communicate what your brand is all about in a way that is subtle and simplistic.
That means you need to come up with your ‘why’ (check out Simon Sinek’s excellent video on The Golden Circle) and it means you need to think about what your company’s mission statement is and what you want to accomplish.
Let’s say you’re selling that weights bench to women. What is your mission statement? What is the ethos that you want all your products to conform to?
Perhaps it is power and beauty? In which case, you need a logo that evokes a sense of power and beauty. And if you get this right, then your blog post or advert, combined with your logo, should instantly appeal in a very visceral way to certain members of your audience.
Or if you’re making products that are all about green living and natural foods, then perhaps your logo might be something involving the color green, perhaps a tree, maybe a sunrise.
Meanwhile, your name should also use words that hint at what you’re all about.
Spend some time creating a logo that really looks good.
This is going to go on your website but it’s also going to be used on your Facebook Page as a way to welcome people to your site. It needs to look professional if you’re going to have any chance of building trust with your audience and if you’re going to make people want to buy from you and assume that your products will be equally high quality.
Make your logo as a vector (not raster) file using software like Adobe Illustrator. Make sure that you hire a designer if you don’t have those skills yourself and avoid clichés that might make your logo appear derivative.
Once you have a log you’re pleased with, this can inform your color scheme and that will bead into your web design.
All these elements should now translate across your social media.
You need to make sure that every social media account has the same brand name, the same logo, the same color palette and the same type of content. This brand consistency will help your audience to better understand what you’re all about and whether they should be interested in what you have to offer. It will also enhance your professionalism and ensure that you have a clear and polished image that people will respond to.
To make your Facebook page, just log in and look for the ‘Pages’ heading on the left-hand menu of the home feed. Here will be the option to ‘Create Page’. You can also find this by clicking on the small downward arrow in the top right of any page.
Click this and you’ll be walked through the simple steps to create your Facebook page.
Choose the heading that best describes you:
- Local business or place
- Company organization or institution
- Brand or product
- Artist, band or public figure
- Cause or community
Then choose the category and your company name and start creating your page. You’ll need to fill out some information and other elements, just as you would do when creating a page.
Having identified your mission statement and chosen a good niche to enter into though, this should be simple and straightforward.