Are Facebook Ads Expensive? [A Case Study]

by | Jan 26, 2020 | Marketing | 0 comments

Are Facebook Ads Expensive? [A Case Study]

I wrote an article recently outlining Four Myths About Facebook That Are Stopping You Selling. It’s a good read that captures the common misconceptions about the platform as an effective marketing tool to help grow business. I’m going to expand on one of the myths that I find commonplace amongst the business community; Facebook Ads are expensive.

In short, no, Facebook Ads are not expensive. They are incredible value, if you have a basic understanding of the customer journey, and indeed, who your intended customer is in the first place.

If this short answer satisfies your enquiry about Facebook Ads and their expense to your business, then please feel free to check out other articles about the platform including Facebook & Your Business Strategy and how Facebook can still be used for free and how we got huge reach and exposure on this article.

Facebook Ads – A week in the life of 0114 Marketing campaigns.

Ok so are Facebook Ads expensive? Well, I see many ‘gurus’ and ‘experts’ in their field claim to spend thousands and thousands of (someone else’s) pounds on Facebook, alluding to if you don’t have the scale to that level, then Facebook Ads aren’t for you. I think this perception of Facebook Ads been only for the big-budget, big business, or agency, is a myth, and I want to share with you a simple yet incredibly effective week building ads and getting results from a small and manageable budget.

Does a small budget work for Facebook Ads?

In the week of 18th January – 24th January, I spent £128.50. That’s it. Not thousands of pounds that are shared across Ad Agencies touting six figure spends that you see littering the newsfeed. £128.50. I’m happy with this because a) I remain in control, b) the risk is low and c) I am laser focused on who I want to see my ad.

For just a small budget, Facebook Ads can be highly targetted and highly effective.

These ads are for my live music and events that form part of my business. If I listened to the ‘gurus’ and ‘scaled’ like they suggest, I would be blowing money away to people whom this ad would be irrelevant.

Facebook Ads for smaller markets.

The events that I promote are predominantly niche markets within a market, or medium-sized markets in a bigger market (a City scope for example). By understanding my customer journey and making it easy for my targetted customer to engage my events, inform their decisions and build trust in the product, my ad spend becomes incredibly efficient.

From the same £128.50 that I spent I reach 28,175 people; unique users who I believed wanted to hear about the product I was offering.

Now of course, it is possible to get this reach organically from a viral post or good content on your social platforms that get shared to active groups and so on, but what you don’t get from this form of marketing is the ability to choose who sees it. A viral post is great, but I wouldn’t just rely on them to build your business. But why?

Well, assuming I created a post in my event that went viral to a point of reaching 30,000 people (not a bad number, right!), how many of those 30,000 could I assume are my ideal target market? At 1% – an optimistic aim – only leaves me with 300 relevant people. If say 3% of those relevant people engage, this leaves me with just nine people.

By pursuing a viral only, or organic only, approach to Facebook, I run the risk of building a great vanity campaign (super high reach but no relevant engagement) but not really getting any results. Which then results in the enhancement of the perception that Facebook just doesn’t work for business!

My allocation of £128 in this week of advertising activity allows me to target the right kind of people at the right time of day.

What results did I get from this small Facebook Ad campaign?

From the 28,000+ people, I chose to see my content, a nice 1,500+ of them engaged – an impressive 5.3% engagement; not bad when you consider the average % engagement of organic content in 2019 was 0.09% (source: digital marketing community). I like this as a good metric for my ad spend as I know I can now retarget my campaign to those who engaged the content, making my ads only more effective for future messaging.

A good metric for me and the events I promote and to help me build effective leads and trust in the product is to direct people to the events themselves within Facebook.

From this campaign, I secured almost 600 hot leads for the events and during this same period, we accrued over £1500 in ticket revenue. With these 600 leads, I can build trust, build virality of content and ultimately create a self-filtering process for my Facebook Ad campaigns.

Other ways to measure Facebook Ad results

Measuring our campaigns is important, especially if you are skeptical about the success Facebook Ads can bring to your business. I like to look at some of the following in terms of results for my campaigns.

  1. Cost per event response
  2. Cost per engagement
  3. Cost per video view
  4. Cost per conversion
  5. Volume of engagements
  6. Volume of responses

Facebook Ads give you control over your marketing.

From these metrics, I can refer to my business plan and profit and loss sheet to adjust and amend my budgets accordingly. I can then asses my scale opportunity in relation to the market size and consider if my ad spend is best invested in filling the engaged pool, or how best to further engage and encourage purchase from those who engaged previously.

Remember, you can take control of your marketing by building simple and robust strategies that work.

Modern Marketing is efficient and effective…but that doesn’t always mean free!

The average daily circulation of The Sheffield Star, according to ABC research, is a little under 12,000. From experience in buying print ads, I would assume a full page print ad would cost approximately £600 and up. This is remaining cautious about the figures.

For £600 I would get one day of advertising to a broad coverage of everyone who reads the paper. But as I reference early on in the post, reaching everyone with a post isn’t really the best way of getting conversions. The traditional approach to advertising is expensive and it is very much a scattergun approach.

The average circulation of Sheffield Star in 2019.

A considered, joined-up approach to Facebook advertising can help you build loyalty, help you spend less, and make more revenue by targetting only those who should see your product in the first place!

Facebook Training and Marketing Training & Further Reading about Facebook Ads.

0114 Marketing is an award-winning marketing company based in Sheffield. We offer expert, modern marketing training including Facebook Ads training and strategy work. For more about the training we provide please do check out the link below.