Are Facebook ads, worth it for an SME/small business?
Yeah, I probably think, for an SME, where you just don’t have enough time to be constantly updating Facebook (and you do have to constantly update Facebook to keep in people’s feeds) then advertising is actually a better way to use your time and use your resources.
Updates or ads – the costs
Work it out. How much do you pay yourself or s staff member an hour, how may hours a week or a month are then tending to Facebook just to keep people seeing you are there.You could have an ad campaign that maybe just cost 40 or 50 euros and you can have that run over a week or two. When you run that campaign, you’re going to (see my other post on Facebook advertising) you want to run a campaign, you can set it to go off and we go back to the main parts of your business, so you don’t have to worry about what content to put up today, or tomorrow, how to create engaging posts, or, or anything like that.
Type of Facebook ads
You choose your audience, put up some content that you think the audience will be interested in, could be sales updates, it could be a video showing off a product could be a discount or anything like that can be just awareness, it could be a new business and a new town and you decide that the best way of getting interest is to run a Facebook ad, you can run that ad, you can run it to a certain age group, you can actually target any neighborhood, say in Cork or suburban Dublin, or just a whole county like Leitrim. You can run that ad, and it just goes out to those people. As the ad is running, you will actually see pretty much live stats on how many people have seen it so far, you can actually see what the device is whether it’s Android, whether it’s apple, whether it’s a desktop or a laptop. All that information is there for you, and you can see how many people clicked on that ad, or if you can send people to the website, or you can have the ad running so that you just get messages on Facebook or Instagram.
Facebook ads might be complicated to start with
The only thing that might actually persuade you not to run ads is the fact that setting up an ad on Facebook is slightly complex. You have to set up a campaign, and you have to put details in that, then you have to create an ad set and in that ad set you have to create an ad. So after the first couple of times you start to get used to Facebook advertising. The system is well designed pretty well. If you run an ad campaign before you can actually go into the ad system, click on that campaign, basically say duplicate that. So run it again but change the dates and change the budget.
Go for it
So for a small business with limited time, a limited amount of staff, you don’t have a full time marketer or you’re the marketer. In an SME you’re the manager you’re the accountant and everything else, then I think Facebook ads might actually work. So I advise a lot of clients to set up a Facebook page, and maybe do a bit on it to keep it ticking over, but actually to run some advertising and time them to go out. You don’t have to worry about that day’s updates and it’s just running there in the background. And hopefully you’ll get a return out of that. And I guess the beauty of all of these digital kind of ads in our systems, is you can measure it, to see, is it working or not and if it doesn’t work, you can just stop it or amended, make some changes and set it off again.
Try, fail, fail better, win!
With a newspaper ad that you commission and it runs once in a newspaper. For some say page ads in traditional Irish media you could be paying €3000 for an ad or €4000 or €10,000 for a full page ad. Once you committed to the ad, you can’t change it, if there’s a mistake or an incorrect website address, tough. With digital, you can change that straightaway. With digital you can make changes, measure what worked, make more changes and keep doing that until you get a very well tested ad.
Ads tested with real people and iterated
From that, then you have a data set, or in a way you have a crib sheet or a document or a template for future ads. So back to the question, I would actually suggest that they spend more time on ads than updates. Then maybe spend time on their website as you can get constant returns from ranking on Google.