So, you’ve got yourself a Facebook page for your business, or maybe for yourself as an author, but the number of likes you have, or the amount of shares, is still low. You sit there wondering why the awesome content you are putting out on the page isn’t bringing people in, and start to pull your hair out. Sound familiar? It happens to the best of us!

The reason why your content isn’t exploding the way you want it to is because of the way Facebook uses its algorithms to choose what to show in people’s feeds. Basically, the most times someone likes and/or shares your post, the most times they see the rest of your posts. It’s almost like a ranking algorithm for Facebook. The issue is, how do you get them to start seeing and engaging your content to begin with, right?

The answer, although it’s not what most want to hear, is paid Advertising. And I don’t just mean “boosting” a post, although this can help. What I mean is actually advertising your page. That should be the first step in any campaign; the post boosts come later.

The following diagram will help to explain why.

Basically, the first port of call is to build an initial audience. This group of people can then interact with your page and post, allowing Facebook to value you higher. This, in turn, will help your boosted posts perform better for a lower cost!

So let’s get this started!

Facebook Ad Imagery

To begin with, you’ll need a really cool image to go into your advert, because let’s face it, no one is going to take interest if there isn’t an awesome looking visual involved. However, you need to make sure that the image is on brand, and really sells you or your business. So, no motivational memes or anything!

Also, it’s important that you follow Facebook’s rule of only 20% of the image having text on it! This is a very small amount of the image, but within it you need to have your logo/brand name and a call to action. With that in mind, the image needs to do the talking, describing why someone should like you. You can’t actually tell them with text.

Finally, for the best results, the image needs to be created at a size of 1200×628 pixels, so that Facebook can show it at the best quality across all devices.

Here’s an example of a Facebook advert that has performed very well:

Facebook Ad Targeting

Now that you’ve got the advert sorted, you need to sort out the targeting! So go ahead and click on the “Promote” button on your Facebook page to get the advert creation process started.

Facebook lets you target based on various different aspects, including location, interests and demographic. The first target method you’ll be shown is location.

Here you can select countries, regions or even towns. From there, you can add a radius setting, as we have done in the image above. In that example, the advert would target people within a 50 mile radius of Peterborough, Cambridgeshire.

The next type of targeting is demographic, which is pretty simple. You can choose gender, age group and language, as shown in the picture above.

The final targeting option is based upon interests. This method uses the “interests” section of a person’s profile, as well as their “like” history, to determine whether or not your advert is right for them. It can be really power, and you should try and think outside the box when entering these.

For example, if your page is about alloy wheels like the example advert image mentioned earlier, then people interested in the movie Gone In 60 Seconds might like the page as they are probably interested in high end sports cars. By doing this, you can target people who might not be thinking about you or your business, but might be intrigued by the advert!

Look out for a future post on here discussing Facebook targeting in more detail.

Once you’ve done this, all that is left on that page is to set your budget and click continue. On the next page, upload and select the image you made, before clicking “Place Order”. Congratulations, you’ve just launched your first Facebook advert! And now you are building your audience, ready to push out your content and grow your engagement levels either organically or by boosting posts!

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