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Advertising on Facebook and Instagram: a guide for beginners

Choosing a campaign target in Facebook Ads

Based on your goal, Facebook will choose where and to whom to display your ads and how to optimize your ad campaign. An incorrectly chosen goal will lead to a dead end: the campaign will be optimized according to the selected goal, and not according to what is indicated in the ad text.

App Installs, Conversions, and Catalog Sales goals. They work best for getting macro or micro conversions on your website.

The “Conversion” goal works great even without setting up targeting: it itself selects the target audience that is most likely to make a purchase on your site. But for such an effective work preparation is necessary.

What should be done:

  1. set pixel (for all campaigns);
  2. set up a pixel for conversion events;
  3. Collect enough conversion events (at least 20 per week).

This goal is suitable when you already have the required number of events and statistics on them in a pixel. Only then will Facebook get enough information and be able to figure out who to show your ad to. If the statistics are not enough (less than 20 events per week), it is better to refuse this goal.

The goals are “Lead Generation” and “Messages”. Suitable if you do not yet have data on macro and micro conversions, but you want to collect leads very quickly and you have some kind of special offer. But keep in mind here: if you choose “Lead Generation”, you will begin to receive requests (for example, an appointment for a haircut), which you will have to quickly process.

What do I need to do:

  1. automate lead forms and make instant sending immediately after filling out the lead form, then messages will be sent to you in CRM;
  2. create a chat bot for prompt processing of messages.

You will need developer help for these settings. If you do not have the opportunity to invite a programmer, specify not “Instant forms” as the final stage, but “Calls” to receive calls.

Purpose “Attendance of points”. Suitable for local offline businesses.

What do I need to do:

  1. load point addresses;
  2. upload up-to-date offline conversion data and use it for similar audiences.

The goal is “Engagement”. Suitable if you need to collect likes, reactions to your event and followers on Facebook.

Choose the subtype of the goal “Engagement in publication” – for collecting likes. Subtype “Visits to the event” – to collect the reaction of people to your event. And the subtype “Marks” I like “” – to expand your audience, to promote the community.

What do I need to do:

  1. come up with a useful post for your target audience or use an existing one;
  2. to promote events – create them.

Target “Traffic”. Suitable if you want to collect as many ad clicks as possible. You can also use the goal to collect Instagram followers. Instagram is not optimized specifically for subscribers, but for this purpose it can make the maximum audience reach from your target and show them an ad with useful content. If you add a Subscribe button, you can lead people to your Instagram account.

What do I need to do:

  1. make a link to a specific object;
  2. use UTM tags.

The goal is Brand Awareness. Suitable if you want to carry out Brand Lift. For example, to increase the memorability of your brand name or your logo.

Objective “Coverage”. Suitable if you want to reach your target audience as much as possible and show them ads. When using this goal, you need to know your audience very well and be sure that the offer will definitely work.

The target is recommended for use in rare cases. For example, in the case of retargeting, if you have a large list of customers. Or to notify the audience, to convey some new information about your company. But not to increase sales.

The goal is “Video Views”. Suitable for media advertising, to increase the number of video views. Most often it works only for views.

2. Select a budget

Ideally, your starting budget should be 10 CPA (cost per targeted action). For example, your CPA is 0.6 € per link click. Then the budget will be 6 €.

setting budget in Facebook Ads

This minimum is suitable for the initial stage, and to calculate it, you need statistics on your CPA. It can be roughly calculated using the example of your contextual advertising.

3. Select placements

Here are the placements Facebook offers.

selection of placements in Facebook Ads

You must decide exactly where you want to show your ad at the moment. You can select placements at the ad group level after you’ve chosen your ad target, budget (ad group or ad campaign level), and targeting (see the next section of our article).

By default, Facebook will show ads on all of the placements listed above: in some placements more often, in some less often, depending on how and where your audience reacts to ads. It is worth choosing “Automatic placements” if you are ready to adapt your ads for all placements.

Setting up placements in Facebook Ads

If you want to choose the platform and specific placements yourself, use the “Select placements manually” option. For starters, you can select Facebook and Instagram ads in your feed and Stories.

4. Specify target audience

Targeting is about customizing your target audience. What are the Facebook targeting options?

Socio-demographic characteristics (region, age, gender)

setting up targeting in Facebook Ads

The location can be specified both for those users who live in the area you need, and for those who have recently visited there. However, you need to remember that if you advertise an offline business and lead users, for example, to the site of a beauty salon, only the place of residence is useful to you.

Detailed targeting (interests, position, behavior)

setting up targeting in Facebook Ads

Enter keywords that relate to your business and product into the search box. The system will offer recommendations: by interests, by positions, by behavior, by field of study – follow this tab. Also, make sure that your interests are not very broad, since Facebook sometimes picks up users with “unnecessary” interests. Take a look at the list of your interests – and you will surely be surprised.

Because of this feature, targeting is recommended by behavior and job title.

Facebook Ads Behavior Targeting

That being said, keep in mind that if you search for “Travel”, you may find users who simply like to view photographs from other countries. If you select “Frequent travelers” or “Regularly travel abroad” marked “Behavior” – you will find people who often move from city to city and use some kind of Facebook products in each.

Browser language

Targeting by Browser Language on Facebook Ads

By default, it is recommended either not to specify it at all, or to put Russian and English.


Link targeting on Facebook Ads

Links provide something like retargeting: for example, you can show ads to anyone who has noted that they like your page.

Your audiences (loaded audiences for Look-alike retargeting)

Facebook Ads targeting

You can upload or create custom audiences. For example, you have a list of 1000 real customers. You can either simply show your ad to this audience, or upload the list to Facebook and use it to select an audience that is similar in a number of ways. You can also use this new audience for advertising.

Where do you start with targeting?

Ideally, start by retargeting site visitors. For example, you can see that you have quite a lot of traffic, but there is not enough sales yet. For those who have been to the site but have not made a purchase, you can start serving ads on social media (it looks more native).

If you have a large community and a lot of subscribers, do subscriber retargeting.

Customer lists are fine if you have a wide list of real customers. This will create three ad groups that you can test.

If you don’t already have a large customer base, you can either create a similar audience or piece the first three groups together.

If you have never done advertising or used any channels before, then you should start with detailed targeting.

Facebook Ads targeting

In addition, if you have enough events on the site and the pixel has been installed for a long time, you can set up ads without targeting. But it’s important to choose the right target.

Setting up Facebook Ads

5. Customize your ads

If you want to know which copy and which images are more effective in your ads, use A / B testing.

This will give you the opportunity to use some of the best ads.

If not tested, Facebook will serve the ad that gets the most events. It automatically selects the best of all ads, after which it starts showing only that one option.

Adapt images for different formats. Depending on the placements, your pictures will change: cut, distorted, since each site has its own formats. Therefore, it is better to specifically indicate the placement for each picture individually.

Setting up Facebook Ads

Add different formats:

  1. one image and video;
  2. ring gallery;
  3. selection.

Choosing an ad format in Facebook Ads

This will give you a choice. Within each format, you can use different images and texts, and then conduct A / B testing and identify the best options.

Try to fill in all the fields:

  1. main text;
  2. title;
  3. description;
  4. relevant call to action (Buy, Subscribe, etc.).

Setting up Facebook Ads

A large amount of text is not required. A study of the audience in social networks showed that users practically stopped reading long reads (especially if the material is advertising).

Watch the preview. For example, you have 4 placements: in the feed and in Search.

Facebook Ads Preview

Go to each and evaluate how it looks, whether it can hook your audience.

If you are leading to a site, add UTM tags.

Add automatic parameters.

UTM tags in an ad

Or write your own. This can be done using the service from Tilda.

Adding UTM tags to your ad

The most important thing when setting up is to make sure that in web analytics systems you can use the tag to determine which ad users came from and made conversions.

Moris Akline
About author

Speculative operations in the foreign exchange and stock market. Work with futures and indices on CME. Work on FORTS and RTS. Development of portfolios and investment strategies for clients. Knowledge of technical (price charts of various types, indicators and oscillators, trends, channels, support / resistance levels) and fundamental analysis, take note of news. I work according to my trading strategy in compliance with the rules of capital management and risk management. Development of trust management strategies. Technique of order execution, placing and changing protective stop-losses, hedging.
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