Welcome to Part 2 in the San Diego Start Up Week Series. In Part One, we covered Web Design and SEO. The focus of the series is on simple, actionable steps you can start using today to improve your online presence and provide solutions for your customers when they are searching for them.
Let's start with an example: I'm in the market for a new snowboarding jacket for powder days. Here's what my typical research might look like:
- I see what brands the influencers in my life are wearing.
- I search the hashtag #snowboarding on Instagram to see what comes up.
- I search websites like Arc'teryx and The North Face to find something that will hold up in severe weather.
- Lastly, I'd check Backcountry or Amazon to see if there are any discounts on women's outerwear.
Each time I go through this process, I am providing tons of information to Facebook, which uses this data to send me very targeted ads. Be honest. It's a bit creepy when outdoor gear you've been drooling over pops up on sale in your Facebook feed. Pretty sneaky sis.
Why Facebook Ads?
A common theme across all digital marketing solutions presented at San Diego StartUp Week was to start using Facebook Ads. Now I know what you're thinking. I already advertise on Facebook, I boost my posts all the time. Just a few clicks, set your budget, add your credit card, and bam, post boosted!
Why does everyone make such a big deal about it?
If simply boosting our posts was all we needed to convert those likes into purchases, navigating the digital marketing terrain would be much easier.
HOw to set up your facebook ads to Create higher Conversion Rates
One of the best sessions at San Diego Startup Week was with Brandon Fishman. Brandon has been using Facebook Ads to advertise his latest company VitaCup, which sells Keurig-compatible coffee and tea cups that are infused with vitamins.
Brandon has seen huge gains using Facebook Ads, and was awesome enough to share what he's learned so far. Here's my top 15 takeaways from his talk on how you can create higher conversion rates using Facebook Ads:
- Brand awareness campaigns (to generate website clicks or likes) will not be as effective as Lead Generation or Conversions campaigns. Know your marketing objective.
- Best day for ads: Sundays
- Best weekday times: 5-10am, 4-10pm
- Use Short Videos. Make sure to include captions, as most people watch in silent mode.
- Create Facebook Lookalike Audiences. Start by adding a Facebook Pixel to your website. Easily use the data collected to create new audiences.
- Consider your demographic. If you were targeting me, a 35-59 year old woman, then Facebook will work exceptionally well as that's where Brandon had the highest conversion rates. If your target audience is 13-18 year olds, then I would recommend Instagram or Snapchat for better results.
- Use Emojis in Ad Copy. Use those snow-covered mountains, the cyclist, surfer, and hopefully later in the fall (finger's crossed), Sasha Digiulian's climbing emoji to connect with your audience.
- Use Promo Codes in Ad Copy. What about a special discount code for everyone that's attending Interbike or the Outdoor Retailer Winter show?
- Adjust your conversion window based on the price of your product. 1 day for impulse buys, 7 days if its over $100, 28 days for $1,000 or more.
- Use 'Finish your Order' in Retargeting Ad Copy.
- Be ready to respond to Facebook comments on your ad in 8 minutes or less to decrease your CPM (cost per thousand impressions).
- Upload new creative pieces every 3-5 days to keep a high relevancy score.
- Start with 6 ads and reduce to 3-4. Turn off ads that are not performing well, and increase the budget for those that are.
- You can lower both your CPM and CPC (cost-per-click) by getting a higher CTR (click through rate) if you use the Facebook Audience Network.
- To reach potential customers with an offer, try Facebook Live as it notifies all of your followers for FREE. Facebook Messenger also works well for this, and at no cost.
Amazon Prime Beats Your Website Every Time
Now this was a bit off-topic from Brandon's Facebook Ads talk, however, he did mention that Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA Prime) will beat your website every time. Meaning, if your outdoor enthusiast sees the same North Face jacket for a similar price on Amazon Prime, they'll buy there.
Think about it. There's no need to enter in any additional information, you add to cart, or click buy now, and it arrives before the weekend is here. As someone who is a HUGE fan of Amazon Prime, with little brown boxes arriving on my doorstep daily, I whole-heartedly agree.
Amazon Ads are also incredibly successful and are worth setting up once you begin selling on Amazon.
No Time to Set Up Your Own Facebook Ads?
If Facebook Advertising is something you want to get started with, but you're having too much fun snowboarding in New Zealand like Sarka Pancochova, or training for the Mammoth Gran Fondo like Neil Shirley and the Outdoor Office crew, I'd be happy to help you set up your first ad sets and get rolling!
Stay tuned for Part 3 in our Series, where we'll be giving you the inside scoop on Google Ad Words and Google Analytics. Happy adventuring!