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Getting Started With Facebook Advertising

The Best Way To Get Started With Facebook Advertising

New to Facebook advertising? Put aside the credit card and read this before you make the same mistakes as most brands starting out on their Facebook advertising journey.

During my years working at Facebook, I analyzed thousands of brands each quarter before selecting a handful to support in their efforts to scale rapidly. After leaving Facebook to start ROAS Media in 2017, our team has since helped to grow some of Facebook’s largest eCom brands in their respective niches but before achieving these heights, these are some of the fundamentals that these brands had to grasp before Facebook advertising started to work for them.

The Biggest Pitfall Of Facebook Advertising For Most Brands Is This

It’s too easy to get started.

Most brands start out their Facebook journey with some basic images and a bunch of Facebook interest audiences or lookalike audiences for their targeting and that’s it. If this sounds like your current game plan, then keep reading.

The Reality of Facebook Advertising?

While it is easy to get results, they aren’t necessarily the results you really want.

After all, you can’t take page likes and comments to the bank and those of you running website click campaigns, well, these aren’t going to be as helpful to you as you think.

Facebook buckets its audiences into the actions these people typically perform on the platform. This is one of the first things you learn in Facebook’s internal training in your first month. So if all you’re looking for is cheap traffic from people that click a lot but don’t often purchase then by all means, run those website click campaign objectives but if you’re looking for people that convert online, then you want to be running conversion objective campaigns and catalog sales objective campaigns.

The only time we start exploring these other campaign objectives for our eCommerce clients is when we start to saturate a particular market but we’re talking about spends in the $1M per month range in a given country so it’s not something you will need to be concerned about when starting your own ad journey.

Get Back To The Basics

One of the reasons this has become unnecessarily complicated is because the entire social media marketing industry bamboozles everyone with acronyms like CPC, CPM, CTR, AOV, CVR, LTV – the list goes on.

While these are useful metrics, most advertisers place too much emphasis on these metrics and not enough focus on the desired end results, ie. purchases or leads.

Focussing on What Matters

The best approach is to think about your Facebook advertising just as you would your offline advertising.

Let’s say your aim is to sell high-end jewelry to people in New York and for a few days you can test the effectiveness of selling with a fancy pop-up store located either next to Tiffany & Co or in a laneway near the docks.

Would you be willing to pay a bit more for premium real estate?

You should be.

Because that’s how you get in front of the people most likely to become your customers.

Now apply the same thinking to Facebook advertising.

Most people get freaked out by high cost per clicks (CPC), cost per impressions (CPM) for example but it’s all relative to the audience you’re reaching.

The Litmus Test Should Be This

1. Are you actually selling?
2. When all costs are factored in, are you profitable?
3. Are your ads generating a profitable return on ad spend (ROAS)?

The First Steps With Facebook advertising

Now that we’ve got you thinking about this properly, let’s talk about the first steps.

Before you even spend a dollar, the very first thing you want to do is make sure that you have installed the Facebook pixel on your website. This is going to allow you to measure the effectiveness of your campaigns and optimize for the results you want to achieve such as purchases.

You should also check out this free resource from Facebook www.facebook.com/ads/library. This allows you to search for all the current active ads that competitors or similar brands are running.

Pay close attention to the brands that are constantly testing new ads, the quality of these ads and the ones that are similar variations to other active ads as it could be a good indication that this brand is converting well with their Facebook ads and that these creatives they’re making similar variations of have been performing particularly well for them. This could give you some great insights into how you need to direct your own creative team to come up with something unique to your brand that should hopefully also perform well when you’re ready to start advertising.

Getting Started With Your Advertising

The best way to do this is by building your marketing funnel in reverse. This is where most advertisers make mistakes as everyone jumps straight into creating interest and lookalike audiences and many forget or don’t know about building their bottom of funnel campaigns.

Your bottom of funnel traffic is your warmest audience, they’re always your best-converting leads. If you’re not converting well here, then you’ve got no hope of converting people who don’t know about you.

Need a refresher on the bottom of the funnel campaigns?

Remember the last time you visited a website, perhaps you added a few things to your cart and then you left the site but soon after you’re seeing either those items you added to cart featured on Facebook in a carousel ad or you’re seeing additional ads from that brand encouraging you to come back and make a purchase? These are examples of the bottom of funnel campaigns and they’re incredibly effective.

Your bottom of the funnel campaigns is always going to be your most profitable. They’re your warmest audience who is most likely to make a purchase.

So why is it best to start with the bottom of funnel campaigns?

The logic here is simple, if you’re not converting profitably on these campaigns, it’s a good time to evaluate your creative, product/pricing and offers as it’s very unlikely that you will fare better with cold traffic.

For those of you starting out new brands, you may still need to run some top of funnel campaigns (interest/Lookalike targeting – optimise for purchase) and some middle of funnel campaigns (targeting people that have engaged with you on Facebook/Instagram – again, optimise for purchase here) to fill up your marketing funnel so to speak but the theory is still the same. During post analysis of the campaigns, if you’re not converting well overall, and your bottom of funnel (retargeting website visitors – optimised for purchase) isn’t returning profitable results, it could be time to go back to the drawing board.

Key Insights to Consider

Website conversion rates:

Almost all of the successful advertisers are working with at least a 2% website conversion rate or higher. If you’re way off the mark here after following the steps above, it would be best to consider some website development before continuing your advertising. Your setup, your ads, your offer could be right on the mark but there’s a chance that your site design/flow is the only thing preventing you from converting profitably.

Return on Ad Spend Targets:

The vast majority of brands out there or their marketers posting trophy screenshots to demonstrate huge scale/success from Facebook ads are working with a return on ad spend (roas) target of 1.5x-3x. The more you scale your spend, the harder it becomes to achieve these results but you should first ask yourself, is this something you can work with on your existing profit margins. Keep in mind that this is on a 28 day attribution window so you should also assess the additional revenues derived over the lifetime of these customers you’re converting to get a true reflection of your return on ad spend.

Creative That Converts:

When you use the Facebook Ad Library tool and look up any brand you know or assume to be successful on Facebook ads, you’ll see that most are running video ads. For our own client portfolio, video ads make up over 70% of the ads we’re putting out for our clients focussing on performance.
Any Questions?

Want to find out how we can help your business get started with Facebook advertising? Let’s chat.


If you are ready to grow your business then let’s chat. We do a deep audit of your website and performance marketing. We will present a strategy and show you the ROAS media difference that can get you more return on your ad spend.


For more articles on Facebook Advertising, read the following articles:

Race to Success with Facebook Ads

Have You Heard Of The Facebook Advertising Bubble?

The Potential of Facebook Ads

Starting A Social Media Agency

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