Facebook ads are a great way to get your business in front of your target audience, but they can be expensive and time-consuming if you don’t have the right foundation in place.
You don’t want to launch your first Facebook ads campaign and realise a month down the line you’ve wasted your ad budget by setting up the wrong ad objective or messing up your ad copy.
This simple checklist will help you get started on the right foot with Facebook ads.
Product market fit
Product-market fit, is the degree to which a product or service satisfies a strong market demand.
Simply put, it means that you are a business that has had customers choosing to buy your product or service consistently in some format. So if you are an e-commerce store for example, maybe selling your products on a market stand was your starting point.
You’re selling out every day at the market, and people are loving your products! That’s product-market fit 0 there’s a demand for your products. It sounds simple, but if you’re planning on running ads on Facebook, you need more than just your family and friends telling you they love your products.
Sometimes people use Facebook advertising as a way to test the water and gather some data on what people think of your product or your website, and if you’ve got the budget to use to learn that then great.
But if like most people starting out you have a limited budget, then you want your main focus to be the return on ad spend, which you won’t get without sufficient demand for what you’re offering.
The right online presence
The next thing on your Facebook ads checklist is ensuring you have a functional and effective online presence! Basically, this means having a working, professional, and trustworthy looking website.
You can have the highest CTR (Click-through-rate) in the world from a Facebook ad, but if it’s sending your customers to a slow, poorly designed site, you’re not going to see a return from your ad campaign.
This issue can be circumnavigated by using things like Facebook ad forms within the Facebook platform itself in your Facebook ad campaigns, instead of directing them to an external website.
But while an In-Facebook enquiry form versus an external form can be an interesting A/B test down the line, you’re far better off at the start ensuring you at least have an above-average landing page.
Even if you don’t link to your site in your marketing campaign, customers will often still search your brand name on Google to see if you’re trustworthy (especially for expensive high-ticket items).
That being said, don’t spend weeks and months trying to create perfect landing pages! At the start when you’re launching Facebook ads, as long as you have a page that can convert for you, that’s all you need to get started.
Some of the basics you want to include on your landing page include:
- A clear explanation and description of your product or service, and its USPs.
- Customer reviews, testimonials, or trust-building certifications you have.
- A clear CTA (Call-to-action).
Conversion tracking for your Facebook Ads
We never launch an ad campaign for any of our clients until they have proper conversion tracking set up!
If you’re trying to guess where you’re sales have come from in 2022 then you’re wasting your ad spend! Using Facebook Pixel, as well as using Google Analytics linked in, we can now track a customer’s journey in a VERY detailed manner!
These days you can literally track almost everything! There are the basics like which ad did this customer see, which landing page they were directed to, how many times they saw your ad before purchasing or even simple things like creating an audience from store traffic data.
But as an agency, we go far deeper with it! You can track phone numbers and email buttons on your landing page, or even how long they spend on a page or watching your video.
You NEED conversion tracking set up before you launch so that you know if your Facebook ads are working! It’s also essential to have in place to be able to consistently optimise your ads and grow your return on investment.
The learnings you can take from conversion tracking can help you with decisions around creating a custom audience or lookalike audience, your daily or lifetime budget for each ad set, or your campaign objective.
Creating the right content
Facebook and Instagram in particular are very visual platforms, that lend themselves to products or services that rely on a visual element to sell.
You need content that will stop people from scrolling, and make them want to click to find out more.
If you’re selling a beautiful homeware product, your target customers need to be inspired to make an impulse/inspiration purchase. If you’re trying to sell a complicated piece of software, then you need a simple video explaining how to use it.
Facebook is a display network, so realistically if you’re doing text-only ads you’re missing out on a huge part of the value of Facebook ads.
If you don’t have the resources yet to create some beautiful new content for the Facebook audience, you can actually make use of stock images. It’s something we’ve used a few times with some B2B clients that didn’t quite have the right content finished yet but wanted to run ads.
You can edit stock images and add text on top of them with a customer review quote for example.
You can do some basic editing over stock images with software like Canva. It’s an amazing tool for people that don’t know how to use Premiere Pro or Photoshop, basically.
You need to explain your story behind that particular brand or the service that you’re offering or the product that you’re selling. What are the key benefits? What are the reasons someone would buy your product over your competitors?
Do you have enough budget for Facebook ads?
Next on our pre-launch Facebook ads checklist, is ad budget. To put it simply, to run a ‘paid’ ad, you need a budget to pay Facebook. You’re paying for your ads to be pushed by Facebook to thousands of people each day.
When starting out Facebook ads from scratch, we recommend a minimum monthly ad budget of £1000.
We’ve run campaigns before with a much lower budget around the £500 a month mark, but it ultimately is so much harder to get to a point where you’re making a profit if you’re investing such a small amount.
As difficult of a pill as it is to swallow, paid ads are a money game! The more you can commit to spending, the more data flows through your ad, and the quicker you can learn what works a what doesn’t. We like to describe Facebook ads as a huge A/B testing machine!
Let’s look at an example. If you’ve got a cost per click of £1, and you’re spending £500 each month. That’s only 500 clicks split across multiple ad sets to learn which is the correct audience, which are the good ads, what is the best ad copy…
We always recommend starting paid ads with a budget for at least 3 months running, and the expectation that it might take that long to see success.
The knowledge to succeed
The last thing on our pre-launch Facebook ads checklist is probably the hardest one, and one you’re going to have to continue to work at…
You need the knowledge to actually know what you’re doing, how to use all the various settings on the Facebook Ad platform, and avoid all the common pitfalls!
There are some simple things you need to learn how to do like set up the Facebook Pixel connection, how to create a custom audience, how to create different ad sets, or how to adjust your ad frequency.
How can you learn without making mistakes on your own account? There are tons of free resources online. Our personal favourite is YouTube where you can find countless free courses with the answer to every Facebook ads questions you can think of.
You can check out our Founder Max’s free video guides on all things paid ads here.
It definitely does realistically take at least a year to get versed in the Facebook paid world, and honestly much longer to truly master Facebook ads. So if you want to exponentially grow your Instagram account, or you want to become the master of creating ad sets, then you may want to look into getting some professional help.
So what are your options for getting started?
So you could go all in, and commit a year or so of your spare time to learning the ins and outs of creating and running a Facebook ads campaign.
Or, you can instead outsource to an agency like ours who have already made those mistakes for you and can take learnings from 100s of other accounts and Facebook business pages in your niche! You can read all about our unique ‘snowball effect’ model with Facebook advertising here.
I hope you found this Facebook ads checklist useful, and feel free to reach out if you have any questions about any of those steps.