First things first – what are Facebook Ads?
There are two ways to get your message across on Facebook:
- Organic content
- Paid content
Organic content on Facebook is the content you can post without having to pay to post it. You can post photographs, text, video, stories – you name it! All for free. Posting good quality, organic content on social media is a great way to build your brand and get your business name out there in front of prospective customers.
However – did you know that only a small percent of your follows actually sees your organic content on Facebook?
Social platforms in recent years have shifted from a chronological newsfeed – meaning that your follows would scroll through their newsfeed and see all their posts, in the order they were posted, i.e., by date and time. Now, your follower’s newsfeed is organised by an algorithm, meaning that Facebook determines what posts they will see, according to the wealth of data on what that individual has interacted with before. Your follower’s newsfeed is now a mix of content that Facebook thinks they will engage with – and ads.
This means that there is no guarantee that your organic posts will be seen by your followers. It is now estimated that organic posts on Facebook are only viewed by 5% or less of your followers.
Why is this?? – you may ask. Well, the simple answer is – organic content does not pay Facebook’s bills. Ads do. Hence why Facebook would much rather you “pay-to-play”.
Besides reach, Facebook ads have many other benefits…
The Benefits of Facebook Ads…
Your organic content is generally not served to specific target audiences. Anyone can view it, interact with it, share it, etc. However, with ads you can be much more targeted. With the Facebook pixel on your website, you can create specific audiences who have visited your website before; you can create ads to target those who have interacted with your Facebook page; you can create audiences of your previous customers – you name it. Ads are much more targeted – meaning you can tailor your message to resonate with each audience.
With Facebook ads, you can utilise full-funnel targeting, with multiple forms of engagement for different audience segments. For example – perhaps you’re trying to reach new audiences, or increase your Facebook page following; a page likes campaign or a brand awareness campaign is perfect for that. Or maybe you’re trying to engage with people who have interacted with your brand before, and now you’re trying to nurture them through the sales cycle – a lead gen campaign would be perfect for this, to gather email address and nurture them via other channels (e.g., email). Or maybe you’re trying to increase your sales from people who have previously purchased – a conversions campaign is ideal here, targeting a list of previous customers.
The Best Time to Launch a Facebook Ad
Now going back to our original question – what is the best time to launch a Facebook ad?
The truthful answer is – there is no best time. What works for one business does not necessarily mean it will work for you. Because of Facebook’s clever algorithm, your ads will target individuals based on their behaviour and interests – at a time when they are most likely to interact.
However – this does not mean you should simply launch a campaign and hope for the best. You can utilise the data already in Facebook to help make a decision regarding who you’re targeting and more. Simply navigate to your Facebook business page, and click on Insights.
There are a couple of helpful graphs in your Insights that can align your thinking regarding your target audience and the times they are most active, so you can be sure you’re ads are running at the right time, to the right people.
The Posts tab is helpful for showing you the times and days of the time when your fans are online.
The People tab shows you the gender, age range and location of your followers – which is helpful data for targeting new audiences, as you can already see the demographics of who is currently most engaged.
There are other analytic sources you’ll want to utilise as well, to ensure your ads are targeting the right people at the right time.
The Facebook pixel is a powerful piece of code that you must ensure is on your website. It allows you to track the events that are taking place on your website, such as purchases, etc. With the introduction of ios14, the Facebook pixel is being replaced with the Conversions API – which is an even more powerful connection between your website and your Facebook ads.
Google Analytics is another powerful source of data. With Google Analytics installed on your website, you can understand the sources that are driving the most traffic to your site – and you can also measure which sources are best in terms of driving sales.
There are many ways you can use social media to generate brand awareness, drive traffic and increase sales. Organic content should absolutely be a part of your strategy – however Facebook ads one of the best ways you can target the right people, at the right time of their buying journey.
It is important to check your analytics as a part of your ad build – the data is there, so use it to make your ads better.