Using Facebook and specific goals to drive traffic to my website
Facebook, as of 2017, has 2 Billion active users. That’s one heck of a market place. If I’m looking for visitors to my web pages based on relevance then surely I can achieve something by advertising within that market place.
Here’s a few thoughts and a quick glance at how Facebook handles creating such a campaign. This isn’t a step-by-step tutorial but I will detail the early stages of setting up an advert.
So before I even think about using Facebook as a vehicle for enticing visitors to my website there’s a bunch of things I need to consider. Well, two things really:
It’s clear to me that Facebook stores enormous amounts of data based on each of us that will then form a profile. Of course I’m talking profiles of Facebook users here. If you don’t have a Facebook account then there won’t be any Facebook based profile for you. But for the rest of us, well, you can be sure that accessing a rudimentary profile for you based on activity, likes, follows and shares is quite possible.
To that end we can search for people with particular likes and dislikes. We can search for them based upon their location, their age, their gender, their beliefs. Facebook stores a wealth of demographic data. Obscene amounts.
If you want to market to people then why not turn to the number 1 people directory?
Once I have the profile of my intended audience in mind I can think about what I want to achieve. I can think about why I want to reach out to them.
Possibly this is the wrong way around? Possibly I should consider this bit first as it will inform the demographics and profile of my intended audience. Each brief is different.
When I consider who it is I want to speak to and what I want to achieve I naturally consider what it is I have to offer.
If my website is all about ice cream then I most likely want people to visit my ice cream shop.
You wouldn’t necessarily want anyone to order ice cream from your website!
The chances are my website supports my business which in this case is ice cream. If somebody comes to my website what do I really want them to do?
See my pretty pictures?
Leave a nice comment?
Marvel at my prices?
No, what I want them to do is come to the store with their family and spend money on our fabulous ice creams and then go tell everyone on Facebook just how fabulous it is.
So this is my why?
Why do I want to advertise? To attract the customers to my shop who will then go and tell their friends to do the same.
Facebook advertising is angled from the point of view of a goal. You define the goal, or objective, first up.
At this point in time (August 2017), Facebook’s campaign configuration looks like this.
An interesting title but it essentially means ‘who do I want to advertise to?’
With Brand Awareness I can target people. With the Reach option I simply reach out to as many people as possible.
Brand Awareness is a great way to advertise to people based purely on demographics. In other words, I simply want to present something to people who I feel I may be relevant to.
Here we are considering what we want our target audience to do in the first instance. In other words, how will they engage with the advert.
For my example, the ice cream shop, I might simply want to drive traffic away from Facebook to my website.
I may have another objective such as encouraging my target audience to download my new Ice Cream Shop app or view a video that champions my shop.
With the consideration options I’m not just targeting people I’m asking them to do something.
The conversion options are, in most cases, key to the entire advert experience. What is my goal? What is it that I ultimately want to achieve with the advertising campaign.
Using my example I may well opt for Store Visits. As it says in the information that flashes up, I want to get more people to my physical store. This option will help me to measure the effectiveness of my campaign in that it assigns a specific goal for conversion.
With the conversion options I’m not just thinking about who my audience is or what I want them to do in the first instance, I’m thinking about a specific action that I want them to take that equates to something that can be evaluated.
With conversions I will likely assign a monetary value that will enable me to evaluate a financial value to the campaign.
As the title of this post suggests my goal is to drive traffic to a website.
Let’s have a think about that website for a moment. It’s a website that supports a ‘bricks and mortar’ business; ice cream sales. The business has ample parking, gardens for children to play in and a store that specialises in ice creams with a wide variety of flavours.
Everybody enjoys ice cream, especially children. But there’s little point in advertising my local business to somebody who lives beyond a certain distance. There’s really no point in trying to entice people from overseas to my shop.
So at this point I want to think about my target audience.
The campaign manager lets me do this quite simply.
What’s clear from this screen is that I can pretty much go with a few default options.
The location is UK, which is fine. The age range is an adult age range. I want to target Men and Women and I’m really not too concerned about specifying a language.
But what I would like to do is target anybody who may have some interest in my Facebook page. To achieve this I can add a connection type.
I can drop the selection to Facebook Pages and then select an audience. In this case I’ve opted for Friends of people who like your page. The reason for this is that I want to try and achieve a couple of things: increase awareness of my Facebook page and also drive relevant traffic to my website. If somebody likes my Facebook page the chances are people in their network may also like it.
My Facebook page may well be called Cheshire Ice Cream Shop. So I type exactly that into the Add a Page input and select it from the list.
The Potential Audience information automatically updates:
Potential AudiencePotential reach: 120,000 people
- United Kingdom
Friends of connections:
- Friends of people who are connected to Cheshire Ice Cream Shop
Facebook now begins to tell me about the potential for daily activity.
So there you have it. In just a few steps you’ve effectively segmented Facebook’s huge database and derived your target audience based on that key word relevance. You don’t know who they are but you have a reasonable idea of their profile based upon a few key details.
If I look at the Link Clicks values above and work with an average figure of 60 clicks per day, then I can get a feel for the number of visitors to my website.
60 visitors a day might not seem like a lot but over time 60 daily visits becomes around 2,000 visits per month.
What I’m then concerned with is just how effective is my website at converting visitors into customers?
If I can successfully convert just 1% of that audience then I have 20 ‘sales’. 20 groups of visitors who might come to the shop, spend money and report back to Facebook on their experience. This engagement may cost me between £100 and £200 for the entire campaign. I may make twice that in sales but more importantly I’m concerned with who will my new customers then go and share their experience with?
In terms of the advert configuration, what remains is assigning a budget and draughting up the advert itself. I’ll outline these features in a future post but for now I wanted to illustrate how simple it is to target a sizeable and relevant audience from the enormous marketplace that Facebook presents.
Crafting an advert is an art form in itself. You want to be careful and concise with your images and your wording. To say precisely the right thing to your audience is vital. To convey the right emotion, the most satisfying and engaging message is key to the success of your advert. Short and snappy headlines work great accompanied by an enticing image. To say everything in such a small window is quite a skill and we can look into the science of crafting adverts at a later date.