Digital marketing has transformed a brand's ability to target specific audience segments and engage prospects before and after purchasing. As the online advertising world becomes more competitive, companies want to optimize ad results and maximize their digital marketing ROI.
Facebook and YouTube are the two most-populated social media platforms. Worldwide, Facebook commands about 2.7 billion users, while YouTube has approximately 2 billion viewers. Digital marketing for each of these major players is optimized differently. Here are seven ways to improve your company's Facebook ad results and five ways to optimize your YouTube advertising.
7 Ways to Improve Your Facebook Ad Results
Even once your Facebook ads are up and running, they may not deliver the click-through-rates (CTR) and conversions you wanted. Don’t worry! There are basic and advanced ways to troubleshoot ad performance. We recommend a systematic approach because there may be more than one way to improve, and a small change can produce dramatically different results.
First, the basics:
1. Refine Your Campaign Conversion Event and Content
Have you chosen the right conversion event? People should quickly grasp the offer and easily see how to participate. Facebook allows you to set up the following types of conversion events. From your ad, consumers can:
- View Content
- Add to Wishlist
- Initiate the Checkout Process
- Make a Purchase
- Do a customized conversion event you created
You may want to A/B-test elements of the ad, including the headline, call-to-action (CTA), image, and written content. The online analytics provided by both Facebook and YouTube give advertisers rich and ongoing feedback about ad performance and customer characteristics to improve that performance and steadily drive marketing ROI.
2. Improve Audience Targeting
Have you targeted the right audience? Is this ad campaign well-matched to the target demographic? Tweaks to the target audience can optimize ad results.
In addition to entering characteristics of people you want to reach, Facebook allows you to create exclusions, which is a handy tool to refine your target audience and improve your CTR.
3. How Strong is Your Landing Page?
Does a shopper experience seamless continuity between your ad and the landing page, or does the ad promise something the landing page doesn’t deliver? Continuity between your ads and the buyer's online destination increases conversions. Aim for consistency in the offer, design, and language.
As mobile shopping continues to rise, every landing page must be optimized for mobile to achieve the conversions you want.
4. Try Other Ad Formats, or Mix it Up
Facebook offers a variety of ad formats and options. Here are nine of the formats commonly used for e-commerce advertising:
- Facebook dynamic ads
- Carousel ads
- Video ads
- Offer ads
- Facebook collection ads
- Domain ads
- Lead ads
- Messenger ads
- Instant experience ads
When people repeatedly see the same ad in the same place, they tend to tune it out, and your ad becomes invisible. Changing ad formats can keep your audience's attention fresh and your brand and product on their mind.
Once you've walked through these four basics, it may be time to dive into advanced troubleshooting for Facebook ads.
5. Develop Your Facebook Ad Funnel
For most consumers, buying is a process that starts with awareness and ends with a purchase. In between, they may see several ads, research online, and talk to friends and family. It takes most people some time and repeated exposure to buy. An effective Facebook funnel accounts for the buying process by engaging consumers through three stages: awareness, engagement, and remarketing.
Educational and entertaining content builds brand awareness. Your audience gets to know your company as an authority in the field or begins to associate a personality with the business. Promotions and special offers drive sales and target prospects who are ready to engage. Finally, customers who get to the landing page but don't purchase later receive remarketing in the form of deals, more urgent calls to action, and social proof such as testimonials.
6. Avoid Exhausting Your Audience
As with all things in life, an effective ad campaign requires balance. Inundating your audience produces diminishing returns.
Design your ad schedule to deliver when your target audience is most likely to engage. Don't drown prospects with ads, but keep communications fresh, relevant, and timely.
You may need to grow your audience and reach more people. Facebook has a “lookalike” audience feature. You can expand your ad's audience based on the characteristic of your best customers or other specific criteria.
7. Use Lowest-Cost Cap Bidding
You want to control costs, but bidding low doesn't always yield results. One way to improve performance is to automate your auction bidding using the lowest cost with a cap.
Your ads will be set to the lowest cost by default, but the cap empowers Facebook to bid automatically in the auction for you, which increases bidding efficiency and gets your ads seen by more people. Simultaneously, the cap limits what Facebook can bid and creates a ceiling to your cost liability.
Now you have a few ways to improve your Facebook ad results. What about YouTube?
5 Ways to Optimize Your YouTube Advertising
As the second-largest social media platform, YouTube combines an enormous reach with powerful targeting capabilities. Audiences love video, and YouTube presents cost-effective opportunities for marketers willing to put in the time and effort to optimize their ad strategy.
There is no simple step-by-step formula for YouTube ad success, but there are ways to optimize ad results.
1. Choose the Right Ad Format for Your Budget and Goals
Less intuitive than Facebook, YouTube offers four main types of ads:
- Skippable in-stream ads (TrueView)
- Non-skippable in-stream ads
- Video discovery ads (formerly in-display ads, also TrueView)
- Display and in-video overlay ads
YouTube advertisers only pay for TrueView ads, like skippable in-stream and discovery ads, when the viewer completes an action such as watching for 30 seconds or clicking on the thumbnail. Since viewers cannot skip a video until after five seconds of play, TrueView ads can increase exposure at a relatively low price.
Non-skippable in-stream ads play all the way through, but advertisers pay each time they run.
Advertisers can experiment with a few ad formats and compare performance. You can also use different ad placements for separate campaigns. For example, run one campaign as a skippable in-stream ad, while a second campaign is only available through discovery video ads.
It's essential to follow the specs outlined by Google to ensure quality. Viewers don't always expect video perfection, but low-resolution images do not improve conversions.
2. Make Sure Your Video Ad Starts with a Hook
Catching a buyer's attention is always important, but video takes the hook to a new level. Your video ad intro has about three seconds to capture the audience’s attention.
What makes a great hook? A celebrity face, a powerful mood, humor, an image that creates tension or starts a story, or a catchy song can all make an attention-grabbing introduction.
Since most viewers will only see the first five seconds of your skippable in-stream video, introduce your brand early and in a relevant way.
3. Add Interactive Elements to Drive Actions
To engage viewers and drive them toward specific actions, you can add interactive elements to your video advertisements.
YouTube allows skippable in-stream or discovery video ads to link a shopping cart. You can also add interactive elements to your video ads, including calls-to-action, a card to display products, or auto-end screens encouraging the viewer to visit your website, subscribe to your channel, or take another action.
4. Avoid Creative Fatigue
If ads perform well for a while, and then response drops off, you may be encountering creative fatigue. After repeated exposure, the audience will tire of seeing that “same old video.”
A simple way to avoid this response is to launch two to three videos at the same time in a rotation. That way, the audience becomes familiar with your brand and message in a way that stays entertaining.
5. Add Stories and a Human Touch
Video ads are part of marketing, but they follow the same rules as any great film. People want compelling and human content that connects them to the larger world and confirms their values and beliefs.
YouTube viewers can skip ads with a quick click, so to engage them requires high-quality video content.
In addition to paid advertising, your YouTube channel creates an experience of your brand. The content in your YouTube channel can support engagement and build loyalty through product demonstrations and reviews, FAQs, peeks behind-the-scenes, meet-the-staff videos, or heartwarming stories of your company with clients or in the community. Use your channel to create the best impression of your business by offering genuinely useful information and attractive imagery.
Target Carefully and Refine Consistently
With vast worldwide audiences, Facebook and YouTube provide advertisers with diverse ad formats and outstanding customer targeting.
However, in order to optimize ad results on both platforms takes time and experience. If you’d like some expert help shifting your Facebook and YouTube marketing into overdrive, check us out at J&L Marketing today.