June 2, 2016
Facebook has undergone a number of changes over a very short timespan—one of the biggest being that organic reach has slowly diminished. If you take a look at this chart that content marketing leaders Convince and Convert put together, you’ll see an interesting relationship between the social media leader’s stock price and organic page reach.
While organic reach has plummeted, the stock price has steadily risen. The reason? Facebook is giving more and more weight to its paid advertising products. This trend should not come as a surprise. After all, Facebook needs to monetize, and traffic is the company’s currency.
So how can a content marketer succeed in Facebook’s advertising ecosystem? Here are five essential tips to help you make the most out of every invested dollar.
Optimize the ‘Amplification’ Effect
When you run campaigns on Facebook, take the time up front to optimize your landing page. In addition to ensuring that your messaging and calls to action (CTAs) are clear, take the time to make sure that social share buttons are front and center. You can even create an incentive (such as access to a free webinar or resource) as a reward for sharing your content. If you’re paying for traffic, one straightforward way to justify your CPCs is to increase the value of your spend. Justify a higher spend by increasing your ROI.
Become Proficient with Audience Insights
As this Entrepreneur article points out, Facebook’s Audience Insights platform is “one of the best tools you have at your disposal.” It allows marketers to narrow their focus to their specific audiences before risking budget targeting them. Think about it: Facebook is a treasure trove of psychographic data. With users sharing so much information about themselves, advertisers can target audiences on virtually any interest-based or demographic dimension.
The key to being proficient with Facebook Audience Insights is to predetermine your highest value customer segments. Put laser-focus on them.
Use Facebook Offers to Promote Long-Form Content
This tip comes from the WordStream blog. If you’re creating a guide, e-book, or infographic but don’t yet have an audience, consider using Facebook to kick-start your funnel. Use Facebook’s extensive reach and targeting features to align your message with your targeting audience.
Before jumping into this step, spend some time using Audience Insights to carefully craft your strategy for reaching this audience.
Split Test Campaigns to Refine Your Messaging
Focus on optimizing your Facebook ad spend from day one.
As one article in Social Media Explorer points out, Facebook’s visual format can make results seem inconsistent. Marketers should focus on learning as much about the platform as possible with every ad campaign.
One way to identify opportunities for split testing is to check your reporting every 24 hours. Which campaigns appear to be high performers? Which have stagnated? What are some of the reasons you suspect behind these trends? It’s these questions that can help you determine the concepts that you need to run an effective split test.
Use the Power Editor
When it comes to success with Facebook advertising, granularity should be your strategy. But content marketers are often at a competitive disadvantage because they don’t have access to bidding tools that are designed for larger brands, agencies, and e-commerce companies.
But this challenge shouldn’t stop you from tapping into Facebook’s full potential – including Facebook’s Power Editor, which allows marketers to manage their campaigns at scale using an API.
To start, create your campaigns and make your optimizations manually. Create detailed audience segments. Run small tests until you start to see which stick. Slowly grow your campaigns and allow them to evolve over time.
Remember that Facebook is only a small part of your distribution puzzle. You’ll want to use multiple channels to build your audience, so you’ll want to be careful not to develop tunnel vision. It’s easy to see commonalities between different channels, but Facebook is distinctly different from any other traffic acquisition network. Ultimately, it may not even work as a channel for growing your audience.
Ritika Puri is a marketer turned entrepreneur and writer. She is the co-founder of Storyhackers, a business storytelling consultancy. After years of creating profitable multi-million dollar growth campaigns, she is passionate about helping her fellow marketers achieve the same.