Marketing on Facebook has become one of the most powerful small business tools that have ever existed in the history of ever.
And we’re totally not prone to exaggeration.
Seriously, though, Facebook ads are everything a DIY marketer could possibly want:
Like every other type of marketing in existence, to get the best results, you’ll need at least some basic education and a degree of marketing skill.
However, unlike traditional marketing, it’s possible – and even advisable – for solo entrepreneurs, small businesses, and business owners taking the DIY approach to jump in, learn along the way, and get some positive results without spending huge amounts of money.
That’s what people like us mean when we say that Facebook marketing is revolutionary.
It’s practically the definition of low-risk, high-reward.
You could go set up a business page right now, start fiddling with boosted posts, and hope you get some results.
You could even start with Facebook’s business center. (For the record, we think you should do this, too.)
Or, if you’re smart…
You’ll read this guide to Facebook ads first, and once you have a sense of direction, your efforts will be better spent.
The DIY Marketer’s Guide to Facebook Ads
Before you spend so much as a dollar on advertising, answer this question:
Why are you advertising, and what do you want to get from this ad?
Marketing for conversions (you want the person who sees that ad to buy a product or service) is completely different than marketing for brand awareness (you want the person who sees the ad to feel good about your company.)
You might be promoting an event in hopes of boosting attendance, advertising a special deal to sell more of a slow-moving product, or trying to get more foot traffic to your physical store.
Never put money into marketing without a clear, focused understanding of why.
Once you figure that out, answer this:
Who needs to see this ad in order to accomplish that goal?
It’s a common mistake, but a costly one.
Read this next statement twice:
Your audience is not “everybody.”
Seriously, read it again.
It doesn’t matter how universal you think your product or service is – there really are some people who will never buy toilet paper, don’t go grocery shopping, hate the taste of water, or refuse to wear shoes.
Also, remember this:
Just because somebody needs your product doesn’t mean they’ll want to buy it.
People don’t buy things because it will benefit them in some tangible way. They buy things they want.
With that in mind, determine what kind of people want what you’re offering.
This isn’t always easy, but one of the coolest things about Facebook’s ad tool is their targeting features.
You can make some educated guesses, test your assumptions with a small budget, make adjustments, and test again.
For people who have been in marketing for a while, this is one of the greatest inventions ever to come from the internet. Testing marketing ideas used to be tedious and expensive, so this is basically a marketing miracle.
Sorry, we’re nerds.
And we’re not really sorry.
With your end goal and your market in mind, all that’s left is crafting your ad content and setting a budget.
In just a few steps, pretty much anyone with an internet connection can start marketing on Facebook.
With in-depth tracking, an intuitive user interface, and complete control over almost every aspect of your ad, it’s a marketing channel your business can’t afford to ignore.
About Those Facebook Ad Skeptics
There are some Facebook ad skeptics out there.
They say things like:
I tried Facebook and it didn’t work.
Facebook won’t even let your followers see your posts unless you pay them. It’s a rip off!
Sure, you might see some traffic from Facebook, but social media is just a fad. Why waste time with it?
Time concerns are a real issue, and Facebook does limit business page reach, but those aren’t necessarily bad things.
Let’s clear some things up.
Lots of people have “tried” marketing their businesses without success.
Mediocre marketing isn’t unique to Facebook. Running a successful business is competitive, challenging, and occasionally frustrating, and the average entrepreneur doesn’t have much marketing skill.
You might luck out and stumble on a good Facebook ad strategy based on guesswork alone, but odds are, you have some things to learn before you make a significant profit from any marketing channel.
As far as organic reach is concerned:
Facebook limits how much businessy, spammy content gets pushed out to users’ feeds.
That’s a good thing.
The reason there’s a pay-to-play element is that Facebook doesn’t want their platform to become a collection of junk mail with the occasional cat photo and meme.
So, no, you can’t spam people for free.
If that’s a problem for you, then perhaps you need to reevaluate your business strategy.
We could also get into all the statistics that show how prevalent social media is in the world, but we think you already know that Facebook isn’t a fad or you wouldn’t be here.
You should absolutely spend your time wisely, and social media can be a massive time-waster.
With a little bit of marketing skill and a good strategy, though, it’s one heck of a powerful marketing tool for your business.
Headline: Guide to Facebook Ads