Whether you’re fan of Facebook or not, you’ll probably agree with one thing: Facebook leads the way when it comes to social media advertising.
With nearly one-fifth of the world’s population active on the site every day (1.325 billion daily users as of June), it’s almost impossible not to find your target audience on Facebook.
Also, Facebook’s native advertising techniques ensure that ads do not disrupt user experience but. Rather. have the same feel as regular posts. This means that ads are much more likely to get clicks or drive engagement.
55 percent of social marketers chose Facebook as their most important marketing platform, and 67 percent plan to increase their Facebook marketing activities. Facebook is a clear winner for social marketers.
But Facebook is only one of the several social networks where your target audience can be found. Other popular networks like Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest also hold big promise for your advertising campaigns. And if you’re serious about social media marketing, then you should definitely pay attention to these platforms.
More important, there is no reason why you shouldn’t copy tried-and-true Facebook ad strategies for your efforts on other channels even if it’s not your favorite social network.
Opporty, a crypto-enabled marketplace for entrepreneurs looking to hire skilled professionals. got more than 1,200 customers from social media ads over a span of two weeks by using Facebook’s ads framework on other social media platforms, resulting in more engagement and boosting public perception.
Here are some of the proven techniques:
Great results start with choosing the right audience.
Picture this: You come up with an ad that is nothing short of genius—eye-catching image, perfect headline, sleek copy, excellent message. You run your ad, and it gets a lot of views but no action—no sign ups, nothing. Why? Because you just showed baby boomers an ad meant for millennials.
The bottom line? You need to prepare your ads for the right audience. No matter how good an ad is, it will perform poorly if placed in front of the wrong pair of eyes.
Get crystal clear about who your target audience is before you even start your campaign. Knowing your audience right off the bat will help you nail all of the other strategies—content, copy and call to action—because you know who your ad is for.
Most of the popular social platforms boast an impressive array of audience targeting options. Twitter, for instance, allows you to target an audience based on demographics or interests. On LinkedIn, you can take it a step further by targeting professionals with specific job titles.
So before you even write that ad, do a little digging and get as specific as you can about your audience. For example, if you sell baking items, you could target people aged 18 through 45 whose interests include baking, who are within a 50-mile radius of your store and who subscribe to content from Food Network.
Opporty’s main audience is a mix of business owners and skilled professionals in need of each other. What it did was advertise to that demographic on Facebook and LinkedIn, using concise copy and images.
Now that you are clear about your target audience, it’s time to dive into creating a campaign that actually grabs their attention.
When it comes to social content, visual is the sauce. There’s a reason why more than 70 percent of social media marketers use visual: It works. Study after study has affirmed the importance of relevant images in advertising.
Eye-tracking studies conducted by the Norman Neilson Group in 2010 revealed that users only pay attention to photos and images when they contain relevant information. The study found that users completely ignored images that were mere “fillers” on a page but spent more time looking at images than reading text when those images were relevant.
For social media ads, using an image relevant to your target audience can immediately increase user engagement. You can’t advertise to professionals using an image of a baby in a diaper.
For instance, if you sell baking supplies, using a high-quality image of a pretty woman smiling directly at the camera may not serve the purpose if your intention is to sell your whole wheat pastry flour. An image, with informative text, of the same woman making pastry is much more likely to draw the attention of your audience.
FitChef Food—Eating Concepts, a South African healthy food company, combined an image of a focused female athlete with relevant text for its 21-day challenge ad on Facebook. So far, the post has received more than 10,000 likes and 834 shares.
Video is also a sweet spot for most social media users. A 2015 study by Animoto found that four times as many consumers would rather watch a video about a product than read about it.
What’s the takeaway? You should always put the needs of your audience first when choosing images or creating content for social media campaigns. Content that fits naturally in your audience’s News Feed will outperform irrelevant content of the highest quality.
This leads to the next point.
Good copy matters. Once a reader’s attention has been drawn to a relevant and appropriate visual, the logical next action is for the reader to read the text. Imagine wasting a golden opportunity because of sloppy copy that leaves the reader confused. That is why it is so important to know your target audience. =
When you know who your ad is for, it is easier to speak their language and pass your message in a way that is non-forceful and natural.
For best results, stick to copywriting best practices.
Grab the reader’s attention with a good headline. You can use proven headline templates to eliminate doubts.
For instance, LinkedIn is one platform where language is so important because LinkedIn users are business professionals who are highly knowledgeable about their respective industries. By using great headlines for its sponsored content on LinkedIn, Aspect, a customer-service software provider, saw a 290 percent increase in referral traffic and a 17 percent increase in company page follows.
When it comes to headlines, always think of this quote by famed copywriter David Oglivy: “On the average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy. When you have written your headline, you have spent 80 cents out of your dollar.”
What about your message? How do you make it more effective?
Include a clear call to action
A good to call to action tells your audience what you want them to do in unambiguous terms.
If you want them to click on a link to your website, then the link should be immediately visible and clickable.
On most social media platforms, you have no control over the color or placement of call-to-action buttons on the ads. But you do have some control over the text. Be clear about the goal that you want your ad to achieve and choose a call to action that aligns with that goal.
Monitor what’s working, and what’s not.
Remember the quote by Ogilvy? Well, here’s what’s worse than not spending enough on your headline: Not checking if the 80 cents bought the audience.
People often make this mistake when it comes to social media campaigns. They either fail to check their campaign progress or they track the wrong metrics.
Usually, the first campaign you create will need several adjustments before it actually hits the mark. That is why you should keep an eye on the metrics that are important to your goal.
This detailed guide from Hootsuite covers the basic metrics you should be tracking, from cost per action to traffic sources. You should also use A/B testing to separate your audience into groups and see which methods work best for you.
Whatever platform you use, the rule remains the same: Keep an eye on your precious cents. Let them work to get the result you want.
You might be thinking: This is hard. How do I cover all these many aspects? Don’t fret. Let’s make it simple.
Facebook ads work well. And you can use Facebook ad strategies to achieve success on other social networks. In a nutshell, here’s how:
Identify your audience, first. Create content that is so natural to this audience that it looks like a friend’s post on their News Feed. Use great visual to stop their scroll. Write good copy. Tell them exactly what you want them to do. And monitor if they do it.
Pius Boachie is a freelance writer and inbound marketing consultant who works closely with business-to-consumer and business-to-business brands on providing content that gains social media attention and increases search-engine visibility. He shares actionable marketing ideas for businesses on his blog, Digimatic.