Facebook Ads: The Basics

June 13, 2014 - Posted by LifeLearn

Facebook Advertising Part 2Welcome to the second post in our 5-part series on Facebook advertising. Check out Part 1, Why Advertise on Facebook?

When it comes to Facebook advertising, there are a few different options to choose from, depending on who you want to target and what you’re trying to accomplish.


Boosted Posts

Boosted posts show up in the News Feed. The goal is to get more interaction (Likes, Comments, and Shares) with a particular post by showing it to more people.

  • Pros: Easy to use, quick to set up – just click that “Boost Post” button on your post.
  • Cons: Not the biggest bang-for-your-buck since the targeting options are less sophisticated than for ads created through Ads Manager.


News Feed Stories

News Feed stories are actual ads that you create using Facebook Ads Manager or Power Editor (more on these tools in another post) and display in the News Feed. Most online marketing experts recommend these over Boosted Posts because the pros really outweigh the cons.

  • Pros: Using Ad Manager or Power Editor to create ads allows you to choose what you want to get out of the ad (Page Likes, clicks to your website, etc.), and has many more targeting criteria and more flexible budget options. News Feed placement has proven to be the most effective for engaging people – according to Facebook, News Feed ads get 96% greater return on ad spend compared to right-column ads.
  • Cons: Some people don’t want to put their ads in the News Feed.


Right Column Ads

Right Column ads are the ads that appear down the right-hand side of the page, outside of your News Feed, and may or may not be related to a Promoted Post.

  • Pros: Made for those who feel weird about showing ads in people’s News Feeds. Designed in Ad Manager or Power Editor just like Promoted Posts – so those same objective and targeting benefits apply.
  • Cons: Not available on mobile devices, and some Internet browsers on desktop have plugins that block these sorts of ads. Placement is also less effective for clicks.

(Note: using Ads Manager, you can create a single ad that you can choose to have displayed in both the news feed and in the right column, so if you want to use both, you don’t have to create two different ads.)

Let’s look at some examples:

Facebook Ads

  1. This ad for Capital One looks like any other post, but you know it’s an ad because it says “Suggested Post” and “Sponsored.”
  2. These shiny call-to-action buttons are available on News Feed Stories, and what they say depends on what you want to achieve. In this case, Capital One wants visits to their website.
  3. In this Right Column ad, Swiffer’s goal is to get more Page fans, so the call-to-action is to Like the Page.
  4. Facebook makes use of existing connections because people trust their friends. I can see that my friend Lisa Likes Next Issue, so I might be more likely to find out more.

As you can see, there are a lot of different things you can do with Facebook ads, no matter which type you choose.

Stay tuned for Part 3 in this 5-part series!

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