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Meta ads strategy. Ideas to use in your 2023 campaigns.

Takeaways

  • Idea 1: Use “voice of customer” research to target the right audience.
  • Idea 2: Install Meta Pixel and warm up your audience before trying to sell to them.
  • Idea 3: Merge content marketing with Meta ads to learn what your audience wants to see and hear from your brand.
  • Idea 4: Add video to your ads to help boost engagement and conversions.
  • Idea 5: Go bigger with Lookalike Audiences.

Do you have a Facebook ads strategy?

It’s a question that strikes fear in most business owners.

Donald Glover shocked face
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But why?

What about Facebook ads make them so daunting?

Probably the horror stories we’ve all heard about the ever-changing algorithms that keep our content from the right people.

But it doesn’t have to be this way!

With the right strategies in place, you’re setting yourself up to get conversions on the ads you run.

Even with all the changes that seem to be happening within the platform…

And even though you might think the market is oversaturated…

There’s still a massive audience for you to run targeted, cost-effective ads to.

We’re talking 2.91 billion active users massive.

With that many people using Facebook, you’re bound to find the right audience for your business.

Now,

Let’s talk strategy.

Idea 1: Know your audiences before planning your Facebook ads strategy.

Conversion copywriters know this: It goes List –> Offer –> Copy, in that order. You ALWAYS start with the list.

For Meta / Facebook ads, “list” means “audiences.”

Which is why zeroing in on your audiences is Strategy #1 in running successful Facebooks ads – though, to be fair, it’s not so much a strategy as it is a you-must-have-this-or-your-ads-will-be-pointless type of step.

I’m sure Joanna Wiebe has covered this at least a bazillion times:

Do the research first. Don’t leave your ad copy up to guesswork. Or your Meta ad strategy. “Spending money to acquire leads” and “guessing” do not a good couple make.

Before you spend any money on Facebook ads, you need to figure out who your ideal customers are.

Figuring this out first will save you from sending the wrong ads to an audience that isn’t interested. Like this ad I got recently from The Paperless Agent:

Facebook ad from The Paperless Agent. An example of an ad being shown to an uninterested audience.
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Maybe I saw this because I’ve looked at houses for sale? But I’m not a Real Estate Agent (their ideal client). And I don’t want to know how to stand out on Instagram.

Compare that ad to the following ad, which I got from Old Navy:

Old Navy has an effective Facebook ads strategy because this ad is very relevant to my needs.
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This one I wanted to see.

I was just asking about Halloween clothes for my kids yesterday…

And now here’s a perfectly timed ad! I went to the Old Navy site instantly.

Side note: Yes, our phones are listening to us.

To get the same instant results, take a look at who you want to target and what they want. For copywriters, that looks like this:

What are the pains, desires and hesitations these customers have about the problem they’re facing?

(You know… the one you’re going to help them solve?)

As Jo says, “You’re selling them a better version of themselves.”

This concept is true even in the short copy on your Facebook ads. As HubSpot says, they need to be visual, valuable, relevant and offer a clear CTA.

Lean into the way they think to add a whole dimension to writing ad copy that converts. Then, and only then, when you’ve got the specifics down, can you start thinking about running some ads on Facebook to these targeted people.

And when you do start running those ads, make sure you follow some of these tips from Wordstream and include a great headline and emotional benefits, not just product features.

Idea 2: Warm up your Meta Pixel

This is a ridiculously savvy step in your Facebook ads strategy that most people skip.

Truth be told – I never thought about it before watching a free Tutorial Tuesday video.

Warming up your Meta Pixel is basically the same thing as warming up your sales leads. First things first, the Meta Pixel is a code you install on your website that tracks your ad conversions. It lets you see how people interact with your ad and what actions they take once they get to your website.

The cool thing is that it gets smarter each time you feed it data.

The more data you feed it, the more it’s going to learn about the best audience for your ads.

This creates a warm, custom audience to show your ads to. And you’ve now got a bunch of people ready to engage with your ad and (hopefully) ready to click that ‘Buy’ button.

Watch this Tutorial Tuesday, featuring Angela Stojanov and Erin Steele from the Copyhackers’ team. They explain how Meta Pixel works and how you can train it to show your ads to the best-fit audiences.

(Note that this tool used to be called the Facebook Pixel)

Idea 3: Don’t go for the ‘W’ in your Facebook ads.

One of the mistakes businesses often make is showing up once and asking for the sale.

Without giving the customer a real reason to buy and be loyal to that brand.

An effective strategy for 2022 that most marketers are finally buying into is using their ads not only for sales promos, but for content marketing as well.

This strategy can fall under the category of warming up your Meta Pixel, then continue once you’ve found your custom audience.

Nurturing your audience is a big part of maintaining customer loyalty and keeping your brand top of mind.

It involves providing your audience with value and not asking for the sale.

Shock! Horror!

Golden girls - looking shocked and shaking her head
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Stick with me – you can still ask for something in return:

Their email address.

Using your ad space as a form of lead generation is a smart way to reach more ideal customers who might not find your site organically.

One of the problems businesses face when running Facebook ads is that all their ideal customers are on that platform.

And whenever Facebook decides to take a little time off again, your audience will go with it.

Collecting emails allows you to own your audience.

For this to work, create a lead magnet that will be highly valuable for your audience. Then have an instant form field on your ad or direct them to a landing page where they can enter their info to get it. Take this example from Copyhackers.

They know their ideal customers are struggling with writing attention-grabbing headlines.

So they show up to solve the problem (and collect an email address).

INSIDER SCOOP: Copyhackers tested Meta email collection vs on-page email collection… and Meta won by a landslide. So don’t underestimate using the built-in email collection tools in Meta Business Manager. Just be sure to send those Meta leads somewhere, using a Zap in almost every case.

Copyhackers Facebook ads strategy involves creating valuable free content to warm their audience.
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Another way you can use content marketing is by creating free content to educate your audience.

  • Create a blog, podcast, Youtube video, etc.
  • Write a post about this content on your Facebook page
  • Have your team members and friends like and share the post
  • Use the Boost feature to turn your more popular posts into ads

This can warm up your audience and tell you what they like to see from your brand.

Then, when you’ve got good trends or data, boost your top-performing posts so you can reach more people.

Idea 4: Stop thumbs from scrolling by with eye-catching videos as a huge part of your Facebook ads strategy.

Personally, video ads are not for me. I lose a bit of my life each time a video autoplays with the sound on. (because it’s never quiet)

Barney from How I Met Your Mother. Faking a heart attack.
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But they are effective.

According to Wyzowl, 81% of marketers have seen an increase in sales with a video ad.

And 88% of consumers have been convinced to buy a product after watching a brand’s video.

Hootsuite predicts that creating Reels is the next big thing in video. It’s available in 150 countries and you can even monetize your Reel by including an overlay ad to make money as people watch it.

My feelings aside, people love videos! The video you include in your ad doesn’t even have to be long, some are as short as a few seconds. This video for Ottawa Tourism runs less than a minute and includes highlights of places to visit in Canada’s capital.

Ottawa Tourism uses video as part of its Facebook ads strategy.
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On your Meta Pixel reports, you’ll be able to see how many people watched the entire video and what the average watch time was.

Knowing how long people view your videos allows you to create future videos that are the perfect length to generate conversions.

Idea 5: Expand your Facebook ad’s reach by using lookalike audiences.

Lookalike Audiences are exactly as they sound: An audience you can reach who are similar to, or look like, the warm audience you’ve been nurturing with your posts and ads.

Once you’ve created a custom audience using the filters within your Facebook ads account, there is an option to create a Lookalike Audience.

This allows you to essentially mirror the same audience profile but use it to target a larger base of people.

Danny Devito and Arnold Schwarzenegger in Twins
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You can optimize this by choosing to show your ads to new people who are filtered by Similarity or Reach.

Similarity will target people who behave like your current custom audience.

Whereas Reach will target people on a broader scale who match most of your current audience’s traits.

Facebook is there to help

It might seem daunting to plan your Facebook ads strategy, but just remember that Facebook actually wants to help you be successful.

(I mean, they’re running a business too right?)

There are plenty of helpful guides, FAQs and case studies in Meta Business.

Check out these resources when you’re planning your ads:



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