If you are a small business, you are already at at least two disadvantages to the bigger, corporate stores that also sell your product, or something similar to your product.
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The first disadvantage that you have is that you simply do not have the finances to compete with a bigger business in terms of spending on things to attract business to you.
It is simply impossible to spend that kind of money when you don’t have the money flowing into your store or business.
The second disadvantage you have is that no one but your town and maybe your adjacent town know who you are.
And if people don’t know who you are, they will not buy from you, simple as that. With this conundrum, small businesses need help and they need it fast.
How To Promote Your Business on Facebook
Luckily for them, small businesses today are operating simultaneously with the Internet, which gives them an advantage that small businesses did not have back in the eighties.
If you’ve ever used a search engine or a social media platform, you have probably noticed that there are advertisements littering the screen and sometimes in the middle of your friends’ and family’s posts.
This is due to a special coding system that the likes of Google and Facebook have started using to make money. They provide the space for advertisements and then businesses can pay to utilize this space to reach customers.
The fancy name for this whole “thing” is RTB advertising or programmatic ad buying but more on that in a different article (here).
Don’t fear the cost of Facebook Marketing
Of course, I just said the word pay and we are talking about a serious problem that small businesses have which is extraneous income to spend on things like advertising and not materials.
Have no fear, Facebook advertising can cost as little as one dollar per day that you want your ads running.
Hopefully, your business is lucrative enough that you can spend somewhere between one and five dollars a day to help get the word out about your company.
And here is the kicker about your one dollar investment; it is going to reach the demographic that YOU want it to, and not Facebook’s entire masses, unless you ave a universally desired product.
Is your product best for young women ages 18-26?
Guess what, Facebook Advertising will allow you to set up your ads to only reach those girls!
Pretty amazing, right?
The internet is a wonderful place that makes advertising easy.
Now, let’s drill down further. Let’s say you are targeting not only young women 18-26, but you only want to focus on those who play a sport because you sell amazing new workout clothing.
Facebook Advertising will give you the option to specify that and then they will only push it out to those individuals.
How does Facebook connect me with specific people?
You may be wondering how that happens exactly.
It is known as data mining and monitoring who does what in their pictures, posts, and their interests (that most haven’t updated since the dawn of time).
Nonetheless, Facebook registers all of that on its servers and then matches your ad request to those people. The posts then show up in between posts on the Facebook home page.
So your workout clothing line may pop up between someone’s picture of their vacation and someone’s spoiler post that makes no one happy.
Your ads will also show up on the right hand column, giving you a more limited space to advertise your product.
This style of advertising provides you with two key advantages, other than it being ridiculously affordable.
The first main advantage you are going to gain using this style of advertising is that you have all of the control to introduce yourself to the demographic that you want to sell to.
Meaning, for five dollars a day, or one dollar a day, you are immediately reaching people who are going to be seriously interested in buying your product.
If you didn’t have this, your ads might reach guys who have no need for that sports bra that you are selling.
This connection gives you the ability to immediately connect yourself with your consumer and begin building the brand with your new, loyal consumers.
The second big advantage is simply the location of the ads.
If someone is reading their wall and they just finished up reading about their friend’s vacation to Mexico, they will connect that to what they read next, which as it turns out is this advertisement for cute new sportswear to help them get their beach body ready.
And of course that connects with them psychologically so they end up investigating and you have them hooked.
What Types Of Ads Can I Use?
Your interest has clearly been piqued at this point, and who could blame you?
Well, in that case, you should know that there are actually ten different variations to the ad that you can utilize on Facebook Advertising.
Each has their own unique advantages and disadvantages, as well as the simple fact that some may just not be useful if your business does not have the necessary requirements to make the advertisement.
Facebook will allow you to use any of the ten ad types to your advantage.
News Feed Ads
The first style is to boost your company’s posts.
This allows you to keep promoting the same post over and over again to get it more exposure. This example obviously has its own strengths and weaknesses.
The strength being that you only have to type one post, which your company is doing naturally already if you have a Facebook page. Maybe you want to advertise a sale or promotion.
This style ad gives you the ability to do that with the click of a button every hour or so to replace your post back into people’s feeds.
Facebook page Likes
In a similar fashion, the second option is to promote your company Facebook page and get “likes” which will make your page more visible.
This again would work great for promoting a sale or a new item.
Provide incentives for people who like your page that may be exclusive to your Facebook page followers (those who “like” your page).
Both of these are great for quick promotions, but lack some of the substance that you could be getting.
The next two options are about sending people to the “horse’s mouth” so to speak.
These advertisements will send viewers directly to your website, giving them the easiest access to all of your information without you having to spend an unnecessary amount of time transposing it to Facebook.
This will let Facebook users connect with you, while also letting them browse your website without them thinking that was what they wanted to spend the next twenty minutes doing.
The extra option to this link is that Facebook will add a tracker to your link and your website.
What this tracker will do is tell you who is making a purchase after clicking on your ad.
So you have tangible data to take back to business meetings to show how your business is growing, while also having the same data to see if Facebook marketing is actually providing a service that you need to keep using to promote your business.
Your next two options have to do with apps (applications), so if you have an app for your business, great!
And if you don’t, maybe these options will make you seriously consider developing one if it is conducive to your business.
The first option will be an ad much like your website link, except instead of sending the clicker to the website, it will send them to their respective app stores to download your app and begin using it.
But don’t worry, that won’t be the end of the line for those who download it.
Instead, your next ad type will kick in where there are promotions or catchy ads that will get your app users to click and enter the app again to look around and get reacquainted with your company and your app.
Your seventh and eighth options are the most practical for converting Facebook users into people who show up at your store.
The seventh option allows your business to geolocate people and push the ad to people who are in the same city and surrounding cities and locations of your physical store.
Throw a coupon on the ad that can only be used in stores and track who you are converting from Facebook to customer that way.
This style of advertising is sure to keep people coming into your business for months at a time.
The eighth option will allow you to promote an event and bring people into your store or onto your website that way.
This is useful for holidays, your business’ anniversary, Black Friday and Cyber Monday, or that random third Tuesday of the month that you felt like having a sale on.
Whatever the cause for the sale, promote the event through Facebook and you will be sure to spike your consumer traffic for that event.
The ninth option can be woven into most of these others, or it can be a separate post, but it is giving people coupons or deals that they can use online or bring into the store.
Incentivize people to come in and save money, a pastime that most anyone will want to take part in. You can also give them an offer to claim such as a free, limited time option or a buy one get one free style offer.
Finally, you can post a video.
These video ads could be utilized in so many ways, from simply posting your business’ latest commercial to making a video that will allow you to connect with your potential customers by showing them who you are and what your company is about.
Take them on a walk around your store to show them what is in your store.
Tell them your company’s mission and what they can do to help out. Anything you think will work to increase traffic in your store(s) will benefit you.
Getting your campaign to the people:
The first ad
So how is this campaign going to work once you get started?
Well, the first thing you are going to do is you are going to create your first ad.
Get it out there in circulation and track how many people are clicking on it as well as tracking your website’s traffic to see if it is getting any spikes.
Don’t lose hope if the spikes are minimum at best for right now, that is normal.
From there, you are going to create a new ad, this time more directly related to your product while offering an incentive to click on the link to your website or to use your app.
This is when you should really start seeing higher spikes in traffic on your website and the ad clicks because people have built a connection with you.
They feel comfortable with your business strategy and your company.
They want to support it.
You have them hooked now.
And, the cost of producing multiple ads instead of one big ad is still cheaper than that option.
Now that you have decided that Facebook advertising is a viable option for your company, you are wondering how to get started and be on your way to having more traffic for your business.
On your first ad, you are going to click the “Who do you want your ads to reach?” option.
Then you are going to create a new audience and select one of the options under website traffic.
The people at Facebook advertising suggest leaving the “anyone who visits your website” option so that it can reach the most people possible.
Facebook will generate some code for you to paste into your website somewhere.
Again, they suggest your header, that way no matter what page of your website people end up on, they will get counted in your traffic report when you pull that information for the day, week, or month.
The next options that you are going to choose for your campaign is going to allow you to broaden or narrow your audience that is going to see the ad.
Here, you have an almost unlimited number of options to limit the viewership of your ad.
You can specify based on the typical limitations:
- age range
- relationship status
But then you can get into even more specifics:
- education level and education program of study
- if the people are newlyweds
- and even what political affiliation they have
…if that is something that is important to the product that you are selling.
The third step to starting your quest to gain more traffic is to set your budget for the two ads that you are going to be starting off with.
With a budget of ten dollars for your ad, the range of people you are going to reach is anywhere from 770 people to 2000 people.
What this does is show you the number of people you are going to be able to reach at minimal cost and minimal effort on your end.
Then, from the number you have that are simply going to see your ad, Facebook has an ad conversion rate of 1.8% which means that nearly 2 out of every one hundred people will click the ad and become viable customers.
While this doesn’t sound like much, with an expanded budget, you can reach more people and more people will click. Your business will also grow through natural word of mouth spread.
This next step is when you create the ad. In a similar fashion to traditional advertising, you want to make sure that your ad is effective in drawing in business.
For the first ad that is going to draw people into your website, a simple yet effective blog title that connects to a blog post about why people need your business’ services.
Be sure to give a little description with your ad title to entice the reader even more.
Creating the Second ad:
The “Sales Pitch”
Your second ad, the one that will ultimately make you money, needs to be a little more personable in terms of your business.
Of course, you don’t want to be abrasive, so think about staying away from jokes that could be taken the wrong way.
Be fun without trying to convey sarcasm and irony, because it is well documented that those get lost in translation when it is just text on a page.
When you go to make your ad, the first thing you are going to want to do is called your proposition, or the phrase that promotes your value as a business.
Then, you want to give them a reason to click on the ad.
Are you having a holiday sale?
Is it a new customer promotion?
Or perhaps it is a referral promotion for a member of your “club” already? Whatever the case may be, make sure that is appealing enough for the person on Facebook to want to click it and investigate.
From there, you want to target your audience in a couple of ways.
The first way is by giving them something.
It can be a small coupon or something bigger to truly draw them in.
Maybe start with a nice 10-20 percent off coupon.
This will pique their interest and allow them to buy more while feeling like they are getting it for less. Secondly, find an eye-catching picture to draw their attention as well.
There is nothing worse than a great ad with an unappealing picture attached to it.
The next thing you get to do is choose where your ads are going to appear on Facebook itself.
Your options are on the mobile news feed and then the right column and the news feed on the desktop version of Facebook.
It seems most intelligent to always leave all three clicked for every ad you choose to put out there, but if you want to run the analytics and limit your ad to a certain place, that is your prerogative.
Just remember, you are only limiting visibility by not having all three selected.
You can now launch your first ad, though it will take 5-20 minutes to be approved by the Facebook staff before it is seen by the Facebook world.
While you are waiting for that ad to get approved, go ahead and create your second ad.
Make sure to add in your custom audience that you want the “sales pitch” ad to be geared to, that way you can ensure that your “closer” is picking off the right people as it is out in the Facebook world.
Facebook does have a requirement that at least 20 people be included as users in a custom audience, so you may have to wait a day or so to generate that number of people.
Finish creating your ad and send it out to create even more traffic on your website.
Tracking your effectiveness
The only other thing to worry about now is how well your ad is doing at generating traffic.
You are going to look at the analytics of your web page through whatever website creation company you used.
Along with that, Facebook has a code that can be implemented on the check out page that customers arrive at after making their purchases that can show whether or not they were part of the ad campaign.
This will let you see how effective the Facebook ad actually was for your product and your business.
Just remember that your ad is just the beginning. As you go back to recreate the process, you should continue drawing them to your website for a little free information through an engaging blog post or through some other tidbit.
Then, move on to the next sales pitch ad that you have.
This technique allows you to establish a relationship with your customers as you show them what your business is about.
Vary the offers you give them on the sales pitch ad, as they may grow accustomed to receiving a large cut off of their total price every time, which is not always good for business.
If you follow all of these steps and really commit to making excellent ads that are engaging and eye-catching, your business is sure to prosper more than it ever has before.
So if you are wondering why small businesses should use Facebook Advertising to further their customer base, look no further than the potential to reach customers who may not have known your store existed.
Look no further than those people who maybe would have bought something at a bigger store, but because you gave them an incentive, came into your store and supported small business instead.
That is why small businesses should use Facebook Advertising.