From a website designed to connect a few thousand college students with each other, Facebook has grown into a multinational behemoth with nearly 1 billion users worldwide. This popularity may make you wonder if your law firm should put ads on Facebook. You may be asking: “How do Facebook ads work?” Wonder no longer—this guide will lead you through the basic types of ads on Facebook and how to get the most from your budget for Facebook ads.
Types of Ads on Facebook: The Sidebar Ad
One of the easiest ways to start using Facebook ads is to run advertisements on the sidebar. You can go from not knowing how do Facebook ads work to using them consistently in your advertising strategy within days by mastering these tools.
When you post sidebar ads on Facebook, it's a little bit like paying for clicks using a service like Google AdWords. In fact, you'll pay for clicks in much the same way, but you won't pay for exactly the same kind of targeting. Instead of paying for particular search keywords, because Facebook is based on people, not searches, you choose what kind of people you want to advertise to.
This demographic based search can help you to divide your ads on Facebook. You can get a good feel for how do Facebook ads work for targeting on the website itself. You'll see a lot of ways to target your Facebook ads, and can start to think about who's likely to want what kind of message.
The greatest thing about learning how do Facebook ads work is that you'll be able to post so many different ad campaigns to so many different types of people. This kind of segmentation is key to creating great ads on Facebook—don't try to make Facebook ads that appeal to everyone. Make them appeal to one key demographic, and then use them accordingly.
How Do Facebook Ads Work: The Sponsored Story
The answer to “how do Facebook ads work?” has actually changed significantly in recent years. A few years ago, sidebar ads were just about the only kind of ads on Facebook. Today, though, a new kind of advertising, the sponsored story, has begun.
If you're now wondering how do Facebook ads work for this kind of story, you'll probably be pleasantly surprised. Your Facebook ads can now appear directly in someone's news feed as a story. This makes conversions much more likely.
How do Facebook ads work for targeting, when they're sponsored stories? About the same way. This means you can also target your ads on Facebook to show up on the news feeds of your friends, fans, and their friends. This kind of connections-based marketing is a great way to make sure your Facebook ads are seen by as many people as possible.
How Do Facebook Ads Work: Poll Ads
Another kind of interesting Facebook ad is the poll ad. Sponsored polls are a great way to attract attention and clicks with your ads on Facebook—by opening up a question for responses, you're doing what social media does best.
Poll ads are one of the best examples of how do Facebook ads work differently from other social media advertising. Very few other advertising platforms give you the kind of versatility that Facebook offers, and very few give so much opportunity for potential clients to interact with your advertisement.
How Do Facebook Ads Work: Video Advertising
If figuring out “how do Facebook ads work?” is seeming overwhelming, perhaps Youtube's more your style. If you can make a video recording, you can easily post it on Youtube. While Youtube videos aren't technically ads on Facebook, you can use them in much the same way, posting them to your news feed.
You may also want to try recording video responses to questions that you have seen asked in Facebook comments. These video responses are a great way to engage with potential customers without even paying for ads on Facebook. Research has shown over and over again that ads and websites with videos are much more likely to convert new clients than those without video recordings.
Trends in Ads on Facebook
Right now, more and more Facebook ads are going mobile. Mobile optimized ads on Facebook are a great way to appeal to a broad young demographic that increasingly uses mobile phones for multiple hours a day. If you want to learn how do Facebook ads work on the mobile app, try downloading it onto your own smartphone or tablet PC and looking at where the different types of ads appear.
Sponsored story mobile app Facebook ads can have a click rate that's up to to ten times higher than the click rate on the desktop version of Facebook's website. This means that if you have a client base that is at all likely to use smartphones, you need to be taking advantage of mobile ads on Facebook.
One of the other biggest trends in Facebook advertising is hyperlocal advertising. When you're doing ads on Facebook, you will be able to actually target your advertisements on a particular location, or even a certain zip code. When combined with mobile targeting, this becomes even better: you can target people who are driving or walking near your office right now.
Checking the Performance of Your Facebook Ads
It's never a good idea to just trust that your ads on Facebook are working exactly as expected. Instead, you should routinely use some sort of analytics program to help you understand what's working and what needs improvement. Your goal with analytics should be to continuously improve your Facebook ads.
Testing a wide range of audiences for your ads on Facebook can help you identify new target audiences. It's also great for noticing new trends that may have to do with the time of day, the day of the week, or even the changing seasons. A wide variety of free tools can help you interpret the data you get about your Facebook ads.