Almost a year ago, Bold Xchange had a problem: our newsletter didn’t have many subscribers. Aside from spamming our family and friends for signups, we needed a solution that would help us find more loyal readers. Facebook and Instagram advertising became that solution.
Today, we have around 1,000 subscribers. We may not know the vast majority of them personally, but they’ve each opted to receive our content — and we hope they like it enough to stick around!
Almost obsessively, I researched advertising on Facebook and Instagram to learn the ins and outs. Maybe this isn’t a surprise to you, but I found advertising agency websites, case studies, interviews, etc. to be basically useless. They didn’t help me understand what advertising on either platform actually entailed.
Though Bold Xchange now aids other companies with their Facebook and Instagram advertising strategies in an agency-like fashion, consulting is not all that we do. Our unique perspective on agencies motivates us to share the three secrets below. When we make business decisions, we want as much information as possible at our disposal. Our team imagines that other organizations feel the same.
The Basic Facebook and Instagram Advertising Tools Are Free
Never — I truly mean never — boost any of your Facebook or Instagram posts. It’s basically a scam.
If you want to learn how to advertise properly, start by typing any of the following phrases into Google:
- How to use Facebook Ads Manager
- How to use Facebook Audience Insights
- How to navigate the Facebook Business Manager
All of these search phrases begin with Facebook because it owns Instagram; you advertise on both platforms using the same tools. And oh yeah, all of these tools are 100 percent FREE! You can get fancy and pay for gadgets that might make the advertising process easier, but add-ons aren’t essential.
Why would Facebook make their advertising tools free? Well, they don’t need to monetize the tools themselves because the information they collect on all of their users is so valuable. Both platforms are free to users because businesses spend inordinate amounts of money to get a message in front of your eyeballs that’s so compelling it gets your thumb to stop scrolling.
You’re here because you’re probably a business owner. Take advantage of the unbelievable consumer data Facebook has amassed.
The Work Is Not Rocket Science
There are many so-called social media marketing gurus out there. Many of them might have skill, but I can tell you that their skill isn’t based on some exclusive knowledge that you don’t have access to as well.
If you do one of the quick Google searches I suggested above, you’ll find that you can see stats on all the consumer data Facebook has collected. Explore the data based on your industry, your city, your typical customer demographics — there are countless ways to slice up the data.
The real test is asking yourself and Facebook’s system the right questions to find the information that you’re looking for. And then the scientific part gives way to art: can you make a memorable impression on the Facebook and Instagram users who need your products or services?
You Could Do All of the Work On Your Own
I guess agencies don’t want you to know the truth: you don’t absolutely need them. What I’ve tried to make clear is that the foundation of advertising on Facebook and Instagram is fairly straightforward.
In reading about agency offerings and being slightly confused by their lingo, I thought that many agencies had come up with patented ad technology. It’s smoke and mirrors. Sure, each might have a preferred style, but that’s not enough for superior differentiation from competitors.
However, before you dismiss agencies consider these four questions:
- Do you have the time, energy, or interest in learning how to run Facebook and Instagram ads?
- Is your brand messaging clear and compelling?
- Do you use high quality photos and product images?
- Do you have the budget to run advertising campaigns?
Regardless of your stance on advertising, you must be able to answer these foundational questions truthfully. Maybe you need to improve in certain areas. If so, improve ASAP. Whether you ultimately decide to request the assistance of an agency or not, you should start advertising on Facebook and Instagram before it’s too late.
If you want to learn more about how Bold Xchange creates ad strategies for our brand partners, explore this site or email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.