Every day, about 200 million people log onto Facebook, spending an average of 14 minutes on the site—adding up to about seven hours per month!

This high number of engaged users represents a huge potential advertising audience for your business. If you choose to tap into this audience, consider following these 10 tips for advertising on Facebook:

  1. Familiarize yourself with Facebook’s advertising guidelines. Facebook has very strict requirements for the types of ads you can place on its site. For example, ads can’t contain audio that plays automatically; they can’t contain excessive repetition; and they can’t promote “get rich quick” opportunities. Make sure you adhere to these rules or your ad will be rejected.
  2. Make sure your ad text isn’t annoying. Facebook has a feature that neither Google nor Bing has: You can close ads you don’t like. Just click on the gray box at the top right corner of the ad. Facebook will ask you why didn’t like the ad, and you can offer your feedback. If enough people close the ad it won’t be shown anymore. So if you actually want your ad to last beyond a few days or even a few hours, make sure it’s not too pushy.
  3. Find a relevant and attractive image for your ad. While ads on the major search engines can’t contain images, Facebook ads allow for one image. When I signed into my Facebook account today, for example, I came across an ad for Caribbean real estate containing a beautiful image of an island surrounded by clear, turquoise water.  Be sure to pick an enticing image that highly relates to your product or service. Then you’ll get more qualified clicks.
  4. Familiarize yourself with the different ways you can target users. With Facebook, you can target people based on many different factors. You can show your ads to people of a certain age, people in a certain city or country, or people who had a certain college major. You can target single people, Republicans, or employees of a specific company. You can also target people based upon their interests, whether it be snake charming, fly fishing, or cross stitching. Determine your target audience, and then advertise to these people alone.
  5. Determine the main purpose of your advertising campaign. Decide whether your main aim is to have users become familiar with your brand, or to generate leads or sales. If it’s the former, then cost per impression advertising is probably the better option. If it’s the latter, then cost per click advertising is likely your better option.
  6. If you don’t have a lot of money, don’t spend a lot. You can be a thrifty advertiser with Facebook. According to Facebook’s Help Center, the minimum required daily budget is $1 for both cost per click and cost per impression advertising. The minimum cost per click is 1 cent and the minimum cost per impression is 2 cents. Just keep in mind that if you have a lower budget your ad will be shown less frequently.
  7. Use Facebook’s bid estimator to help you set your bid. If you really have no idea what bid amount will get your ad a good amount of exposure, take advantage of this tool. While creating your ad, enter your targeting criteria, and then go through to step 4. The bid estimator will show you the range of bids that are winning auctions among ads like yours.
  8. Make the most of the advertising space you’re allotted. Facebook allows 25 characters for the ad’s title, and 135 characters for the ad’s body. While Google also allows 25 characters for its ads’ titles, it only allows 105 characters for the ad’s body (70 for the ad’s text and 35 for the display URL). So take advantage of Facebook’s extra space by including all the information you think will prompt qualified clicks.
  9. Monitor your ads’ performance with Facebook’s Ads Manager and Facebook reports. These resources will tell you how many people saw your ads, how many people clicked on them, and your click-through rates. They will also tell you how much you’ve spent, the types of users who have seen your ads, and the types of users who have clicked on your ads. This information shows you which of your ads are successful, and which need improvement. Modify your ad campaign based on this information.
  10. Check out this Facebook advertising blog for more tips on good Facebook advertising techniques. It contains common Facebook advertising mistakes, information about new Facebook advertising features, and detailed tutorials for advertising on Facebook. This video, for example, takes you through the steps for building a Facebook ad.

About the Author

Christine Laubenstein is a Marketing Associate at WordStream, a provider of an advanced pay-per-click tool suite, designed to improve the performance of pay-per-click keywords in your AdWords campaign.