Idea Sprouts Online Marketing Blog

Making Sense of Facebook Advertising Options

Posted by Allison Semancik

Facebook Advertising Options resized 600If you are new to advertising on Facebook, the advertising options can be a little overwhelming. Facebook has taken steps to make it easier, but I wanted to create a handy guide that explains your options and when you might use them.

Facebook Advertising Options

Facebook Ads

Facebook Ads are the more traditional type of advertising on Facebook. You can have an ad direct people to your Facebook Page or to a destination outside of Facebook. You can also upload an image that will appear next to the ad. You choose to pay per click (how many times the ad is clicked on) or pay for impressions (how many times the ad is seen).

Facebook Ads are great if you want to grab people’s attention with your own compelling ad copy or image or if you want to send people to a specific tab on your Facebook Page. For example, if you have a giveaway on your Facebook Page, you could advertise it to your target audience with an ad and have the ad send them directly to the giveaway tab on your Facebook Page.

Ads are also a good option if you want to get people back to your website. I suggest using this for a very specific purpose, not just to get people to your home page.  Take a look at my advice for pay per click campaigns.

Facebook Ads can target users based on location, sex, age, likes and interests, broad categories, relationship status, workplace, or education.

Sponsored Stories

When you choose Sponsored Stories as an ad option on Facebook, you can have your fans’ interactions with your Page show up on their friends’ news feeds.  Interactions include liking your Page or liking or commenting on content on your Page.

For example, if my friend likes Target, I may see a Sponsored Story in my news feed that shows my friend’s name and that she likes Target. The idea is that if I see my friend or multiple friends liking a certain page, I will be more likely to Like the page as well, sort of like a word of mouth recommendation.

Just as with Facebook Ads, you can target your audience based on location, sex, age, likes and interests, broad categories, relationship status, workplace, or education. You also pay per click or by impressions.

These Ads are simple to set up since you don’t need to write ad copy or upload an image – it’s all taken care of for you by Facebook.

Promoted Posts

A promoted post is a simple way to get your Facebook post seen by more of your fans. They are, by far, the easiest Facebook advertising option to create.

On each post, you’ll see an option in the lower right hand corner, “Promote”. When you click on it, you can choose how much to spend to have your posts appear on your fans’ news feed for a longer period of time.

It will give you an estimate as to how many people will see the post for each dollar amount. For example, if you want to spend $10, your post may be seen by anywhere between 1000-1500 people.

This is a great option if you have a sale, an event or a new ebook that you want to quickly get out to your fans.

Note: promoted posts are only available on Facebook Pages that have over 400 likes. If you feel that using Promoted Posts would be helpful for your Page and you don’t have enough likes yet, you should consider doing a Facebook Ad campaign to increase to 400 likes.

Which to choose?

It really depends on what your Facebook marketing goals are and you should try two or three options to see which gets the best results for you.

Start with an ad budget and then do a test for a few days or a week. You’ll quickly see what’s working and what isn’t. Stick to what works and ditch what doesn’t work!

If you are new to Facebook Advertising, they have a handy glossary of terms to help you understand what all of the metrics mean.

Facebook Marketing Ideas

Topics: Facebook for Business, Facebook Advertising