I get lots of questions about Facebook ads.
There are some Facebook ads questions you can easily Google (try it!), some that are better explained in the context of your unique situation (try a consultation), and others that I get asked several times a week that I finally typed out answers to. This FAQ covers that last batch.
Scroll through this page or jump to your question by clicking one of the links below:
- How much should I spend on Facebook ads?
- What’s the difference between Google AdWords and Facebook Ads?
- What is the Facebook Pixel?
- Can I use Facebook advertising for direct response?
- Why do I need advertising? Why can’t I just post to my Facebook Page?
- What’s the difference between a Facebook ad and a Boosted Post?
- What are the targeting options for Facebook ads?
- Why should I use Facebook ads?
How much should I spend on Facebook ads?
$13,798. Just kidding.
The real answer is that it depends on how much money you want to make. I always encourage my clients to think backwards—start with the results you’d like to achieve, start advertising to create enough data to find your average cost per sale/lead, and then optimize and scale your campaigns.
For instance, say you want to use Facebook ads for lead generation, targeting $10,000 monthly revenue. If the margin on a new client is $1,000, you need 10 sales per month derived from Facebook ads to reach your goal. If you know that it takes an average of 10 leads to create one sale, you’ll need 100 leads from Facebook to hit your revenue goal. If each lead from Facebook costs you $10 to acquire, you need to spend $1,000 on Facebook ads* to hit your revenue goal.
- Revenue Goal = $10,000/month
- Margin = $1,000/client
- Need 10 clients to hit revenue goal
- Lead Conversion Rate = 10%
- Need 100 leads to produce 10 clients
- Cost Per Lead = $10
- Need $1,000 to produce 100 leads
Makes sense? So you tell me—how much should you spend on Facebook ads? See my detailed answer on Social Media Examiner.
*This assumes a mature campaign.
What’s the difference between Google AdWords and Facebook Ads?
AdWords operates on the concept of pull marketing—people have already established what they want through their search, so advertisers respond by giving them relevant links. AdWords works great, which is why it’s so expensive—a keyword like “emergency plumbing service” might cost $50 per click. If you’re targeting researching words instead of buying words, you can blow your budget on just a few clicks.
Facebook is push marketing (also know as interruption marketing)—people aren’t on Facebook searching for products or services, they’re looking at pictures of other people’s’ kids, Liking cat videos, etc. Push marketing must be executed with extreme care—you need specific targeting, clever ad creative, and a relevant offer. But when you have all those things, you can grab clicks for less than 10¢ in some cases. It’s what you do after the click that matters…
What is the Facebook Pixel?
Installing the Facebook Pixel is the first thing you should do—before you do your audience research, before you write you ads, even before your product is developed. Seriously—if you don’t have it installed on your site, do it now. I’ll wait here.
Can I use Facebook advertising for direct response?
Yes! I don’t think enough people realize this—Facebook ads aren’t about Likes or engagement or going viral—it’s about spending money to make money. When you have the Facebook Pixel installed, you can measure your conversions against how much you spent and calculate a crystal clear ROI. My clients typically see returns of 5x and up.
Why do I need advertising? Why can’t I just post to my Facebook Page?
From a scientific perspective, you need ads because the odds are against organic posts. Organic reach on Facebook is about 1%, maybe less. That means that if you have 100 Page Likes, only one of them will see your post.
From a business perspective, you can’t expect stellar results if you’re cheaping out on advertising. Additionally, ads let you reach people who don’t Like your Page or know who you are, but are interested in the types of things you offer.
What’s the difference between a Facebook ad and a Boosted Post?
Facebook offers several different ad units. A “Boosted Post” is actually called a Page Post Engagement ad, and it’s designed to “engage” users by getting them to click, click to expand a photo, Like, Comment, or Share—its ultimate measure of success is if somebody takes one of those actions. Other ad units have different objectives. The ultimate measure of success for the Website Conversion ad unit is if somebody buys or becomes a lead.
There’s nothing wrong with Boosted Posts, but there is something wrong with the majority of people who use it. This is because they skip the strategy portion and go straight to advertising without working through targeting, business objective, and conversion tracking.
Perhaps an analogy will help. If you wanted to go to Alaska during the winter, which option would you choose to plan your trip?
- Buy a motorcycle, hop on, point it North and open the throttle.
- Google “how to plan for a trip to Alaska,” map out your route, arrange an AirBnB, pack some warm clothes, rent a 4×4 vehicle, say goodbye to your family and friends, and set out on your journey.
The difference in the end result of that trip is akin to clicking “Boost Post” without a Facebook ads strategy.
What are the targeting options for Facebook ads?
Well, how much time do you have? I’ll be brief—Facebook ads have two general types of targeting:
Cold audiences—These are people you target by Interest (like “NASCAR”), Demographic (like “Parents of teenage children”), and Behavior (like “higher than average credit card spender”). If you’re good, you’ll use combinations of those. And you won’t believe how many options there are within those. I found 10 different types of Moms the other day, from “Corporate Mom” to “Green Mom” and several in between.
Warm audiences—These are people who interacted with your ads, Facebook Page, or website (or app) in some way. They’re tracked with the Facebook Pixel. So if you post an ad that goes to your umbrella ecommerce store and somebody clicks, then navigates to the red umbrellas (but not the black umbrellas), and then leaves your site—you can retarget that person with an ad for red umbrellas by using her behavior on your website. Neat, huh?
Upwards of 75% of the directly attributable results I get for my clients comes from some sort of warm audience. Don’t sleep on retargeting.
Why should I use Facebook ads?
If you’re already advertising, you should diversify your platforms to compete against each other.
Organic reach on Facebook is dead, so if you have social media in your marketing strategy, you need ads to see results. Facebook advertising is now one of the most sophisticated ad platforms with an unfathomable amount of consumer data. Lucky for you, it sells this data to advertisers who are getting ROI in a massive range of industries and verticals.
Facebook advertising is now one of the most sophisticated ad platforms with an unfathomable amount of consumer data. Lucky for you, it sells this data to advertisers who are getting ROI in a massive range of industries and verticals. Coke, Ford, and all the other big brands spent huge amounts of money with Facebook ads when it first launched. They treated it like traditional media, however, didn’t get the results they wanted and left. They will be back, and when they return, they’ll drive the price up for all of us. Get in now.
Coca-Cola, Ford, and all the other big brands spent huge amounts of money with Facebook ads when it first launched. They treated it like traditional media, however, didn’t get the results they wanted and left. They will be back, and when they return, they’ll drive the price up for all of us. Get in now.