What are Facebook Ads and Why Invest in them for your Small Business

Peter A. Liefer II | Posted: October 16th, 2017 | Updated: March 2nd, 2020

Facebook Ads for Small Business

A Facebook ad is an advertisement that is created by a business owner on Facebook. It is served to Facebook users based on their user activity, demographic information, device use information, advertising and marketing partner supplied information, and off-Facebook activity. Most of the parameters listed are set by the advertiser in the creation of the ad.

Types of Facebook Ads

If you are a small business owner looking to increase your reach, get more exposure, and be more specific with audience targeting, Facebook ads are a good investment. Ads are purchased on an auction basis, where you are charged on either clicks, impressions, or actions. You can create and publish all types of ads yourself, either through Facebook’s self-service interface or through certified ads API developers that provide you with more comprehensive tools to manage your advertising efforts. Essentially, the ads are available in two options – ads, or sponsored stories.

A. Ads

Ads are considered the voice of the business, where advertisers have full control of all creative elements of the ad. Businesses get to control the title of the ad, as well as the imagery and additional text that goes with it. Different ad types fall under this category, which includes:

  • App ads, which are for applications on Facebook and take people to the app itself when clicked
  • Domain ads, which are the classic ads that you see on the right-hand side of Facebook and redirects to a third party site when clicked. These are used for direct-response campaigns where the conversion takes place outside of Facebook.
  • Event ads are for promoting events and allow the audience to join the event directly from the ad.
  • Mobile app ads show only in the news feed on mobile, and clicking on them takes you directly either to the Apple App Store or Google Play, depending on the mobile operating system the app is for.
  • Page-like ads are for promoting Facebook pages, prompting the targeting audience to “like” the page, and can be done directly on the ad.
  • Page post ads are page posts that are promoted to increase their reach. They can either be published or unpublished. These posts start out as normal posts, and then “boosted” so that it reaches a specific audience and targets a certain number of users. Interaction with these posts is the same as for posts that are not boosted.
  • Offer ads promote a deal that is redeemable either online or in a brick and mortar store.

B. Sponsored stories

Sponsored stories differ from ads in that you as an advertiser do not create the content of the ad. They share similarities with page post ads in that they are based on organic Facebook content, but the content is created by Facebook users, which is why these stories are often referred to as the “voice of a friend.” Every time a user interacts with one of your Facebook entities, a story is created. Maximizing distribution of these stories among the friends of the person who generated it requires turning them into sponsored stories so that they appear in the news feed on both desktop and mobile, and in all other Facebook ad placements.

Usually the most interactive form of ads on Facebook, sponsored stories are essentially endorsements by people’s friends. They tend to receive high click-through and engagement rates because a person’s action becomes a recommendation, rather than an ad. This is key in getting a wider reach because recommendations from friends are considered more credible compared to messages coming directly from businesses. These stories always include the profile picture of the person who made the action, as well as the names of the people in the friend list of the viewer who has liked, commented, checked in, or performed the action the story is based on. This feature itself gives you an idea of the tremendous reach of sponsored stories.

Why you should invest in Facebook ads

If you are a small business looking for an economical but effective way to advertise your business, you should strongly consider doing Facebook ads. Here are some of the benefits of advertising on Facebook:

  • You get results without having to spend too much

The minimum spend on Facebook advertising can go as low as $1 a day, but despite this really small budget, you can reach thousands of people that meet your specific targeting criteria. Facebook also offers multiple bid types that allow you to choose the most appropriate bidding structure for the objectives of your campaign. These bid types include cost per mile (CPM), cost per click (CPC), optimized cost per mile (oCPM), and cost per action (CPA). Choosing the most appropriate options for your goals is the secret to getting the most out of your campaign and your budget.

  • Facebook ads offer excellent targeting options

Facebook ads are targeted to the users’ demographics and interests, so the refinement available to you when you set up the audience targeting for your ads is impressive. Not only do you get to choose the gender, ages, and location range of your audience, you also get to specify who to target based on their interests, job titles, and relationship status, to name a few. To make the most out of this feature, you have to be very careful that the audience you are targeting are those who can understand your message and, more importantly, those who need the products and services you have to offer.

  • Facebook has a massive audience

Facebook’s main selling point to businesses is that it has over a billion users, with more than 800 million active users every day. This means that there is a really good chance that whatever your business is, a certain percentage of your target audience will be on Facebook.

  • Facebook makes it easy to track ad performance

As with any advertising effort, it is essential that you know exactly if you are meeting your goals and what you are getting out of it. Measuring ROI for social media efforts can be tricky, but Facebook offers a comprehensive suite of tools that allow you to see how much you have spent and what results it has provided. This is very important in mapping out your total strategy and in determining your next steps.

Overall, Facebook ads offer numerous benefits to small businesses looking to create maximum impact on a limited budget.

Maximize the Power of Facebook Ads Today

We don’t just live in a time consumed by the internet; we are consumed by social media. These days, it’s almost impossible to make your business known without establishing an online presence made easier by social media sites like Facebook. If you need assistance managing your Facebook ads or help to implement social media marketing techniques, PrimeView can help you strategize and maximize your social media visibility. Call us today at 480-970-4688 and get a free quote.