Facebook advertising in Q4 brings a whole new set of challenges.
(NB: This covers Instagram advertising also).
There is increased competition meaning the price of ads can go sky high. When this happens, even an account that usually performs well can struggle to achieve sales and a profitable Return on Ad Spend (ROAS).
There is no 100% guaranteed strategy, or secret sauce (all Facebook Ads Managers take a deep breath going into the season). But there are some things you can do to help.
Read on for my Top 5 things to prepare for Q4…
1) Check and optimise your website!
Before you even think about ads, whether you are selling products or services, give your website an MOT.
Look at speed load times. 47% of customers expect a webpage to load in 2 seconds or less!
Google Analytics will show you where most users are going on your website. You can then check the load times of all your individual Pages so you can see which you might need to work on. Just head to the ‘site behavior’ tab in the main section of G.A.
You can also use an amazing tool called Hotjar to monitor how far down each page your customers are scrolling.
This can help you make decisions about what content you might want to remove (if people aren’t reaching, might as well get rid) – which will improve your Page Speed Load time.
Generally, make sure all images are sized correctly for optimum loading, make sure all your copy (& pricing) is up to date, and check your SEO scores too (now could be the time to be researching new longtail keywords ie: ‘Christmas gifts for her’ instead of ‘gifts for her’).
2) Start to build bigger warm audiences.
You will want to try and grow these audiences now in order to have bigger warm audiences to advertise through October & November.
Warm audiences are more likely to buy from you. Growing them now saves you having to compete with other businesses (who might have bigger budgets) for ‘cold traffic’ – people who have never heard of you.
If you are running Conversion campaigns, you could consider switching to a ‘View Content’ instead of ‘Purchase’ optimisation. Or if you need to continue to bring in sales right now to, divert some budget into a separate View Content campaign (this is what I’m doing for my clients this year).
Optimising for ‘View Content’ will bring a higher volume of website visitors (& social engagers via the interaction with the ad) – creating a bigger pool of ‘warm’ customers to retarget.
3. Don’t forget people who have already bought from you.
When you advertise to people (warm audiences or new customers) you usually exclude people who have recently bought from you (a product or a service).
But advertisers are usually so keen to reach new people they can forget to go back.
In Audiences, you can create a custom audience of people who bought from you in the last 180 days. Build another that is ‘purchased 30 days’ and exclude this audience from the first. You now have a super hot audience to advertise new products, offers or services to.
4) Think about different angles to sell.
I see a lot of ads that just list the product features. This is important, but FIRST think about who you are talking to and what their problems/needs might be. How will your product or service solve that problem? Map out your potential audiences and think about their individual needs, and then craft copy and visual content that taps into these.
The beauty of Facebook ads and Instagram ads is the ability to test. And yet often I see businesses run ads that only has one copy, one format, the same visuals.
For Q4 you would want to have a clear idea of your audiences, but you can still run multiple ads that test different copy (trying different angles as above), imagery and video.
Test one thing at a time (I tend to test images first, then copy, then see if a video performs better)
Once you have a winning copy, and visuals – try them in a different ad format, or placement. Try a Collection ad if you haven’t already, or an Instagram Story only placement?
It’s all about seeing what your audience responds best to, not what you THINK should work.
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I hope this piece has been helpful to if you are running ads in the lead up to Christmas. The above all applies if you have a January sale or new program launch too!
If you are thinking about hiring an agency or freelance to run ads for you, you might be interested in my piece about what to expect from your Facebook Ads Agency.
Here’s wishing you a successful and stress-free Q4!
& if you get stuck or just need to troubleshoot why not book in for one my ‘Eco-Power Hours’. I offer 1 a month, and they are free in return for a ‘what you can afford’ donation to Friends of the Earth