Setting up your Facebook advertiser account will allow you to bid on and place CPC and CPM ads on Facebook. To get started, go to: http://www.Facebook.com/advertising/
Here’s the step by step instructions on how to sign up for your Facebook account.
Step 1: Go to Facebook Ads and Click Create Ad
First of all, log out of your personal Facebook account. You should never ever run Facebook ads from your personal account.
Why? Simple: Because it’s actually relatively easy to violate Facebook’s Terms of Service unintentionally.
If you get your Facebook Ads account shut down and it’s the same account as your personal account, your personal account will get shut down as well. In other words, all the wall posts, pictures, friend relationships, etc will be potentially endangered if you run Facebook ads out of your personal account.
So first of all, log out of your personal account. Then, type in the Facebook ads URL above. When you land on the ads page, you’ll see the page below. Click on the “Create an Ad” button.
Step 2: Start Creating Your Ad
Once you’ve landed on the ad creation page, you’ll now jump right into creating your first ad.
On your left hand side, you’ve got the four most basic things that go in any Facebook ads: The image, the title, the description and the destination URL.
On the right hand side, you have the preview of how your ad will look like. As you edit your ad on the left, the ad on the right will update in real time to show you how to your ad will look like when you’re finished.
Go ahead and write your first ad, then click Continue.
Step 3: Set Your Ad Targeting
In this interface, you tell Facebook who to show your ads to.
On the left, you’ll select all the targeting options you have access to. As you change your targeting options, the number of total impressions you have access to will change on the right.
The “Location” interface will tell Facebook where to show your ads, geographically. Generally, you’ll stick with the U.S. as that’s where most of the traffic is.
However, if you’re running an offer that’s geographically relevant all over the world, then you might want to expand out your location. It’s generally better to create a separate campaign for each country, as many bids in other countries are lower. Track your conversions separately as well, as the traffic will definitely behave differently.
If you have an offer that’s geographically relevant only in another country, then target just that country.
Finally, if you run a local business (eg. Tanning salon) and only want to target someone in a certain city or zip code, you can do that as well.
The age demographics are extremely critical. Offers that convert for certain ages will often not convert for others. If you don’t know what age range your target audience is, then create several different campaigns with potential age ranges and test what converts and what doesn’t.
The age demographic is 18 to Any Age by default. You do not want to leave it on default, or your ad will surely fail from all the irrelevant impressions it’s generating.
The next demographic is gender. If your ad converts better for men or for women, then start with that demographic first. If you don’t know for a fact which it converts better for, it’s also a good idea to split your campaign into male and female targets to get the different statistics for each groups.
Finally, you can input interest or keyword targeting if you’d like. If you use this feature, you will drastically cut down on your total impressions, however your traffic will convert a lot better. If you’re on a limited budget, keyword targeting may be a very good idea if you can get enough traffic.
Click Continue when you’re finished.
Step 4: Advanced Demographics
The Advanced Demographics box will appear after you click Continue.
Here you can target people on their birthdays as well as specify relationship status. You can target languages other than English if you choose. You can also select an education level and / or workplace settings.
Most of these settings you’ll leave alone unless it’s very conducive to your offer. For example, if you’re running dating offers, you’ll definitely want to target single people only.
Otherwise, just click Continue to move on.
Step 5: Budget & Scheduling
Set your daily budget here. Make absolutely sure you have a budget set before you hit Go. With a broad demographic target in Facebook, you can literally burn through $1,000 in ad spend in about 1 minute if you have no budget set. Even if you think a budget is set, always double check. If there’s a specific time you want your ad to start, set it here. Most people will just leave this out unless you have a reason to change this setting.
Once you’re ready, click Review Ad.
Step 6: Attribute the Ad to an Account
At this point, the ad has been created without being linked to any account at all. Now Facebook wants to know what account to put the newly created ad into.
Input the email address and password you want to use for your Facebook Ads account. Again, it’s highly recommended that you keep your Ads account and personal account separate.
Enter your date of birth and the CAPCHA and click Sign Up Now!
Step 7: Confirm Your Email
Facebook will send you an email with a confirmation link in it. Open your email and click the confirmation link.
Step 8: Review Your Ad and Confirm the Order
If your ad is the way you want it, click Place Order.
Step 9: Input Payment Information
Once your ad is completed and you hit Place Order, you’ll be asked for your credit card or PayPal information. You won’t be billed anything right away, you’re just setting up an agreement to pay for when you start running traffic.
Once your payment information is setup, you’re done! Your account is now setup and your first ad is on its way to the approval team. Once the ad is approved, your ads will start running.
Setting Up the Rest of Your Campaign
Once you have your account and your first ad setup, the next step is to setup the rest of your campaign.
You should always be testing many different ads and demographics for any given campaign. Never lump everything into one ad and call that a test.
In general, if you have anything less than 5 ads running for a Facebook test, you’re probably not testing enough. You want to have 2 images running at any given time, but you also want to have several demographic groups testing at the same time to see what converts.
Here’s how to set up the rest of your campaign.
Step 1: Decide What to Test and Choose a Naming Convention
How many variables you want to test depends on many factors, including:
- Your budget for the test.
- How sure or unsure you are of what your target demographic is.
- How much traffic your target demographic gets.
- How many variables you think would make an impact on the bottom line.
If you have a small budget, you know your market already and your market doesn’t get all that much traffic, then you might only split test an ad or two.
If you have a large budget, your target market is an unknown and gets huge traffic volume, you might start by testing 10-20 different ads at once.
Most people fall somewhere in the middle of the spectrum.
Before you start running any traffic, you should come up with a naming convention. A naming convention allows you to see with one glance what ad you’re looking at. For example, a test involving 2 images and 4 different age groups might look something like this:
X, IMG 1 AGE 2025
X, IMG 1 AGE 2630
X, IMG 1 AGE 3135
X, IMG 1 AGE 3640
X, IMG 2 AGE 2025
X, IMG 2 AGE 2630
X, IMG 2 AGE 3135
X, IMG 2 AGE 3640
Once you have a solid naming convention, you’ll be able to know exactly what demographic and what image ad you’re looking at from your Manage Ads panel in one glance.
Step 2: Replicate Your First Ad
The shortest way to create a bunch of ads for split testing is to replicate your first ad.
Start by clicking on your first campaign (#1 below)
Once you’re in your first campaign, click on your first ad.
Step 3: Create a Similar Ad
On the right hand side of the ad page, click “Create Similar Ad.”
Step 4: Create Your New Ad
When you click the Create a Similar Ad button, you’ll be taken back to the ad creation page.
Go through the ad creation process again. This time however, most of the data will be pre-populated with the data from your old ad.
The only things you need to change are the factors that are different from the first ad; in other words the factors that you’re testing.
If creating your first ad took 5 minutes, creating your copied ads for split testing should only take 30 seconds a piece.
Step 5: Using Unique Tracking URLs
Once you’ve completed everything in your ad, you’ll need to create a unique tracking URL so that you have data not only on who’s clicking, but on who’s converting. It’s entirely possible that an ad which gets high CTRs doesn’t actually make you money, while a lower CTR ad actually pulls more sales.
Again, this comes back to naming conventions. Most tracking systems only allow you to have tracking IDs of a certain length (8 characters or so) with no special characters. So you can attribute every sale back to a demographic, your tracking IDs need to fit in that format and make sense to you.
Here’s an example of tracking conventions for Clickbank and 1ShoppingCart.
Ad #1 is an ad for a dating campaign, image 1, targeting 20-25, United States
Ad #2 is the same campaign, image 2, 26 to 30, United Kingdom
This way, any time a sale comes in you’ll be able to immediate attribute it back to where it came from.
This is just one way of doing this. If you want to setup a separate affiliate link for every campaign, you can do that as well, but generally that takes a lot longer than just changing the names on a tracking ID.
In short, come up with a short naming convention to use in tracking IDs that allows you to track every conversion back to its source. Then put that in the destination URL box of the Facebook ad.
Once you’ve filled out everything, place your order and you’ve created your second ad!
Step 6: Repeat
Go back through your ads and keep creating copies while changing one variable at a time until you have a completed campaign, with different images and/or demographic targeting.
Once you’ve constructed all your ads in the campaign, set your campaign status to Active and let it run!
Reading Your Statistics & Tweaking Your Campaigns
Once your ads have been running for a period of time, it’s time to start playing with and tweaking your ads for the best results.
The time before you should start tweaking can vary anywhere from a couple hours to a few days, depending on how much traffic you’re getting. If you’re targeting a wide demographic with a large budget, you could very need to be tweaking your ads every 10 minutes.
Most people will need to tweak their ads every 1-4 days.
Walkthrough of the Statistics Interface
When you first land on the statistics panel, it’ll look something like this:
Here’s what everything in this panel means:
Status – Your ads can either be Active, Paused or Deleted. The Status column shows you the status in an easy visual manner using symbols.
Type – Are you bidding by CPC or CPM?
Impressions – How many impressions this ad has gotten over the course of the reporting period.
Social % – What percentage of people who saw your ad also saw that at least one of their friends liked your ad.
Clicks – How many clicks your ad got.
CTR – Out of every 100 impressions, how many clicked on an ad.
Avg. CPC – On average, how much you’re paying per click.
Avg. CPM – How much you’re paying per thousand impressions, on average. You’ll see this number whether you’re bidding CPC or CPM.
Spent – How much money you’ve spent.
Totals – Your statistics with all your ads combined.
Accessing Time-Specific Stats
Want to see your statistics for today, last week or any specific date range? Click on “Lifetime Stats” to change the dates that you’re seeing stats for.
Pause Ads That Aren’t Clicking Through
If you have ads that are getting a lot of impressions but not a lot of click throughs, pause or delete those ads.
Remember – Although you’re not paying for impressions, Facebook is. If you keep racking up impressions that don’t click through, you’ll gradually start getting less and less impressions.
It’s true that it doesn’t cost you anything in the short term to keep running low CTR ads, but generally if it’s not clicking through it’s a bad idea to let them keep running.
A 0.01% CTR is the right about the minimum acceptable CTR. If it’s 0.01%, you’ll get some traffic but not much. You can keep running it at 0.01% without damaging your account. The higher you can get it, the lower your bids will be.
Here’s how to pause non-performing ads.
Navigate to the ad you want to pause and click on the play button symbol under Status. A drop down box will popup. Select “Paused” to change the status from active to paused. You will now stop getting impressions on this ad. If you want to rotate another ad in, simply create a new ad and set it to active, or unpause an old ad by clicking on the pause symbol and clicking Active.
Increase Your Campaign Budgets
Typically you don’t want to spend more than $10 to $100 a day on a test. But once you have a campaign that’s converting, you’ll want to up that campaign’s budget. Here’s how to do that.
First, select the campaign whose budget you want to increase. The campaign list is on the left sidebar. Then, at the top choose Edit under Budget.
Enter your new budget in the box that appears. Hit save and your new campaign budget is activated.
Note: If you have a campaign with one working ad and several in testing, do not take the working ad out of the campaign and put it into its own campaign. Instead, take the testing ads out and put those in a separate campaign. Why? Because if you delete an ad and then restart it, you lose all its ad history. If it’s getting a good CTR, you want to have as much history as possible so Facebook knows to keep sending you traffic even when you lower your bids.
With an ad in testing, losing the history is not a big deal. But you should never delete a working ad for any reason, or you’ll have to start the history all over again. So if you have a few ads in a campaign and you want to increase the budget for just one ad, move all the other ads out and keep the old ad in the old campaign.
The most important things when it comes to reporting and tweaking are:
- Understanding what you’re seeing stats wise and knowing when you’re doing well and when you’re not.
- Knowing how to switch out ads when their CTRs start to drop. Know how to pause ads and resume ads.
- Have your conversion tracking in place so you know what’s converting and what’s not.
- Have your naming conventions in place so you can in a glance tell what’s clicking through and what’s not.
If you keep an eye on your stats and tweak things to keep making them work better, you’ll soon have your first profitable campaign.