What is Facebook advertising and Facebook ads?

Facebook website on a computer screen

The advertising industry has been revolutionised by the internet and social media platforms. It's now cheaper and quicker for advertising companies to reach their target audience, not to mention considerably more effective.

Naturally, big tech companies have made this a key part of their business, effectively monetising users. It's the main revenue for social network giant Facebook, which, with its billions of users, is an advertiser's dream.

Facebook Advertising has seen rapid growth over the years, ranking above Google ads and traditional web advertising. There are more than two billion active Facebook accounts around the world, making a company's odds of reaching and connecting with its clients' ideal audience quite high. Whether that's a CEO, CFO, or a certain demographic of the public, you're very likely to find them on Facebook.

The popularity of the social network is the biggest incentive for using its advertising platform. But, AI plays a big role, with algorithms controlling what users see - the idea being that their news feed is tailored to them. A recent update to these algorithms made it harder for companies to find target audiences as Facebook has moved to favour "personal connections" over business posts. So, using the advertising platform is more effective than posting your own organic adverts.

As more businesses catch on to the benefits, these ads get more and more expensive. So, if you haven't already started using Facebook ads, perhaps now is the time to do so. Read on to discover strategies and tips to increase your digital reach through Facebook advertising.

Why should a business use Facebook advertising?

Although you may be thinking along the same lines as many other B2B businesses - that Facebook isn't worth spending money on to reach your target clients - your mindset needs to change if you want to jump onboard one of the most effective digital marketing platforms in existence.

In fact, 80% of all internet users have some kind of presence on Facebook and through spending as little as 1 a day, you will be able to much better reach those responsible for making buying decisions in a business, without needing to go for the hard sell.

But that's exactly when you should be targeting them. Not only is it used by such a huge variety of people, but it's also probably the most targeted and cheapest forms of advertising available.

If a customer is browsing their Facebook feed during downtime rather than work time, your business may not be at the front of their mind. However, if they see a well-targeted ad from your company even when they don't have their business hat on, your brand will still in their mind when they perhaps are looking to make a purchasing decision later down the line.

Facebook advertising is easily measurable. With Facebook Pixels, you can see exactly what traffic you're driving through to your website and those visitors' behaviour when they hit your site. Did they buy anything? Which pages did they visit? Did they add anything to their cart? Send a query to your customer service department?

With these insights, you can continue to market to them via other sales channels, making it more likely they'll convert into customers.

The key to success with Facebook adverts

To experience a decent ROI on Facebook advertising, it's hugely important to make sure you're focusing on the right group of people. Put simply, the more niche and narrow your audience, the better returns you'll get.

Because after all, if your audience is too broad, you'll be trying to attract even those unlikely to make a purchasing decision and paying for the privilege every time someone clicks on your ad to find it's not what they're looking for is a costly way of running advertising.

You also need to make sure your ad copy is well-targeted to your audience too. It's a good idea to create a range of ads to target each particular challenge your potential client has. These should be determined as part of your wider marketing strategy. You can then analyse which proved more successful and use this to define your ongoing Facebook advertising strategy.

Bobby Hellard

Bobby Hellard is ITPro's Reviews Editor and has worked on CloudPro and ChannelPro since 2018. In his time at ITPro, Bobby has covered stories for all the major technology companies, such as Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook, and regularly attends industry-leading events such as AWS Re:Invent and Google Cloud Next.

Bobby mainly covers hardware reviews, but you will also recognize him as the face of many of our video reviews of laptops and smartphones.