Facebook advertising has been shown to have made significant improvements this year in increased impressions, clicks and views, spelling good news for brands thinking about or already using Facebook ads.
A recent report by Kenshoo Social reveals major improvements in the performance of Facebook advertising in the third quarter of 2013, compared with the second quarter. The data is based on over 85 billion ad impressions across a range of advertisers and agencies, including brands in the travel, retail and financial services sectors.
The key findings include:
- Ad impressions rose 13%.
- Click volume was up 14.4%.
- Cost per click fell 9%.
- Conversion rate was up by 2.36 times (ie. more than doubled)
- Return on investment was increased 3.04 times.
A driving factor in the improvement of the performance of ads on the social networking site was users’ increased willingness to engage with brand advertising. Facebook’s recently improved audience targeting capabilities for ads has also been a helpful in improving rates of response.
If you’ve been on Facebook for a while, you’ll have noticed how the algorithm which sorts the News Feed works, by filtering messages and showing users the most interesting content. It’s estimated that on average Facebook users only see 20% of a potential 1,500 updates per day. As a result, brands can find it hard to have their content seen in the News Feed and thus could be missing out on valuable brand exposure and opportunities for fan engagement.
Facebook advertising is an ideal way to boost brand exposure on the social network, providing a cost-effective and highly targeted way to reach users where they interact with friends based on shared interests. As Facebook provides deep audience targeting capabilities, it enables marketers and brands to create highly customised, relevant ads that are more effectively able to reach new and existing customers.
How can I advertise on Facebook?
Facebook ads fall into three main categories: Ads, Promoted Posts and Sponsored Stories. Here’s a run-down of what each ad type involves:
Sponsored Stories – the voice of friends
Stories are actions taken by users which can appear in the news feed, such as “Lauren likes a link…” Sponsored stories are a message about a friend engaging with a page which can appear in the News Feed or on the right-hand side. Sponsored stories are a form of advertising which seems more like a recommendation from a friend rather than an Ad. As people trust recommendations and referrals from friends and those they have a connection with, Sponsored Stores are a great way to let your fans do the talking.
Sponsoring a story won’t change the content of the update, but it will increase its distribution. They are usually the most interactive form of advertising on Facebook due to being a ‘recommendation’ from a friend, and tend to receive higher click-through and engagement rates.
Sponsored stories are best used when you want another user to take the same action as a friend, such as liking you page. This way the user can see that a friend has taken interest in the page or post, which gives your content social context, making it more likely that the new user will complete the same action.
Sponsored stories can be created from a large variety of Facebook features and content, including:
- Page post: like, comment, share, offer claim
- Page/Place: like, check-in
- App: use, share
- Event RSVP
- Game played
- Domain: like, share
Promoted Posts – conquer the News Feed
Promoted posts enable you to have your posts appear higher in the News Feed, so there’s a better chance your audience will see them. You can choose to “boost” a recent post by going to your page and selecting the post you wish to receive more views. You then set a budget based on how many people you want to reach. Promoted posts are ideal for getting greater reach for important posts, such as news or special offers.
Promoted post will appear in the news feed and not in the side bar. The difference between a Promoted Post and a Page Post Ad is Promoted Posts will reach existing fans and friends of fans, where Page Post Ads can reach non-fans (or friends of fans).
Ads – the voice of business
Creating Facebook ads gives you full creative control in producing ad copy and adding an image. Currently, you have ten different types of ad formats to choose from, which are:
- Page post: status, link, offer, photo, video
- Page like
- Mobile app install
- Domain ad
Unlike Sponsored Stories, which appear in the News Feed, Ads will only appear on the right-hand sidebar. Mobile app ads are only eligible to be shown in the mobile News Feed and, when clicked, will take users to the Apple App Store or Google Play (depending on their operating system).
The most effective ads are those that are a) relevant to your audience, and b) contain a call to action or reason for clicking on the Ad. Whether you’re advertising your page, website or event, tell people why they should be interested with catchy headlines and interesting photos (avoid stock photos which can lack personality).
The broad range of ad options budget-friendly nature of Facebook advertising makes it an ideal choice for all types of businesses to get the most out of Facebook and the thousands of users online.
This month we have a special offer for businesses looking to advertise on Facebook. Chat to us about receiving a $100 voucher with every Facebook Advertising packaged purchased in October.