What to expect from Facebook ads? Anything except magic.
Is FB ads right for you? Maybe, maybe not.
Will you see results with Facebook ads? Not if you sit there thinking you know everything (coz no one really does).
Since Facebook has more than 2.32 billion users, it’s easy for us to think that the moment we launch Facebook campaigns, we’d get results before you shut your laptop down and move out of the building.
In a few years since we’ve started providing Facebook ads management services, there isn’t a day when we don’t hear small business owners and also agencies (surprise, Surprise) who want to launch Facebook ad campaigns and get results yesterday.
That, right there, is crazy stupid expectations from Facebook ad campaigns. This is really where there’s a huge dis
You need to have the right expectations from Facebook Advertising.
Here’s what you should expect:
Facebook Won’t Work If You Have Crappy Products (or Lower Margins)
In this day and age, it just takes a WordPress website or a Shopify site for an entrepreneur to be born (it’s not like the good old days when being an entrepreneur would have meant years of research, huge capital outlay, factories set up, products manufactured, and huge teams of people working day in and out.
The problem now is that anyone with an idea will have a WordPress website or a Shopify store (drop shipping is more common). Next thing you know is that they’d line up on the hamster wheel and setup Facebook Campaigns for e-commerce.
Get this: If your profit margins are low, don’t bother with Facebook ads or Google ads. Just find something else: Pop traffic, mobile advertising, blogging, social media or anything else that’s possible for you.
If you have a drop shipping business built on top of Shopify, think long and hard (use Excel or Google Sheets please) about your margins. If you have low margins, you shouldn’t depend on Facebook ads or Google Ads. Period.
Basics, Mindset, and The State of Flow with Facebook Ads
Facebook ads “demands” that you accomplish a few things before you even get there. For one, you need to have a budget that can last for a while (a few months at least). Second, your products or services should have a healthy profit margin. Third, you’d need patience and time.
That commitment and state of flow is absolutely necessary for your Facebook ad campaigns to succeed. Mindset apart, there’s the question of digital marketing setup “before” getting to launch Facebook ad campaigns.
- Without the basics in place such as a healthy inflow of traffic to your website with the Facebook pixel firing (even if you are not running campaigns) and with a healthy Facebook audience building up (people watching your videos, people checking out your high-value pages, and a healthy — while growing — customer list (or a list of email subscribers), you should expect longer time frames for your Facebook advertising to work for your business.
- If you are a new e-commerce store (and you don’t think the usual rules of Inbound marketing don’t apply to you) or if you just find yourself unable to do long-term blogging, launch campaigns that are optimized for traffic first. It’s only after you get enough traffic that you’d launch other campaigns such as those that are “optimized for sales”.
- If your idea was never validated (which is a fancy way of saying you really don’t know if the market wants it or not), forget about getting results anytime soon (you just have to make sure you validate your idea first).
Facebook has options (you got to know about them first)
The advertising side of Facebook is a true behemoth. As a business, you can launch Facebook campaigns designed to drive traffic to your website. Or you can expand your reach and put your brand in the radar of your perfect target audience.
Want results? You can launch Lead generation ads on Facebook and start generating leads immediately. If you are a little patient, you can create campaigns that drive traffic to your sales funnels or landing pages. Then, use your landing pages ( Hint: Don’t waste time with designers or developers. Just use Unbounce or Leadpages — pick your poison) to grow your email list and then use email marketing to do the actual selling.
Impatient? Circumstances demand results immediately? Launch “conversions” optimized Facebook ad campaigns that directly get you results (Read: sales). This strategy works even better for e-commerce stores (such as Shopify stores) than for regular business though.
Facebook Ads Take Time to Perform
Let no one (including your cousin) tell you that Facebook is a magic wand. It’s not like you’d launch a campaign today and expect any kind of results in 24 hours flat.
Our clients (especially the inexperienced ones, often new to the platform) always wonder when they’ll see results in the wee 6 hours after a campaign goes live.
Here are just a few instances to prove why it takes time for Facebook campaigns to work:
- Facebook campaigns — optimized for any end goals such as “landing page views“, “clicks”, “view content”, “leads”, or “purchases” — need around 50 events (pixel fires) just for Facebook to truly understand who you are trying to target (even if you’ve spent days trying to build out a detailed audience list within Facebook). Without those 50 events or pixel fires in place, Facebook is walking blind. It doesn’t know what you are trying to do. As such, it places your campaigns in “learning” mode. If you want results from Facebook, you’ll have to let Facebook go through its own course of learning (which uses advanced artificial intelligence and machine learning by assimilating and processing millions of data points).
- Facebook takes around 500 impressions to assign a “relevance score” — an arbitrary number in a scale of 1-10 which signifies just how relevant your ad is to the target you are trying to target — for the first time. Then, your relevance score is not cast in stone. It changes depending on what your market is telling Facebook as they interact with it (liking, sharing, commenting, clicking through, signing up, etc.).
- Just because a campaign seems to go off on a flying start doesn’t make it a “winning campaign”. In the same light, just because a campaign seems to have gone off really slow doesn’t make it a “losing campaign”. The only campaign that’s a “winning campaign” is when the campaign actually gets you what you wanted it to do.
- Launching Facebook campaigns (depending on the campaign type) might often involve setting up ads (in pairs, for testing), landing pages (each with two variants A and B, for testing), and a series of email marketing messages. You wouldn’t know if the individual elements within your campaign workflow (such as ads or landing pages) actually work until you launch it. Even after launch, you’d have to test things out and tweak your offers, messages, copy, images, the actual bids placed, audiences, and more.
I don’t care what the agencies tell you or what you think you know. Facebook ad campaigns take time to work.
If you don’t have the time, budget, patience, and the willingness to work on your Facebook ads management, you shouldn’t even be trying.