Facebook marketing really took hold in the first year of Facebook’s existence, as the majority of the site’s revenue in 2004 came from Flyers, which were advertisements that were (and still are for the most part) featured along side of your Newsfeed (formerly, your homepage) and were generally $10-$40 and used to promote events around college campuses. Evolving from those more humble beginnings to exclusive deals with Apple, who, provided FB with hundreds of thousands of dollars of revenue for al of the users they were garnering, and Microsoft, who became a shareholder in the company and the exclusive provider of banner ads and sponsored links on the site, helped to support and cement Facebook’s status as a premier advertising platform of the future.
There a number of new, dedicated marketing tools that Facebook has developed and introduced over the years. First, as a brand, the best place to start is to create your own page. On Facebook, your business page is used as a place for fans and users of your products can congregate online and share stories and user-generated content. By selecting your business and industry specific categories and utilizing Facebook Business page resources like Your Facebook Page, you can optimize your FB page for maximum exposure. As a general rule of thumb for your FB page, and for your FB ads and marketing theory as a whole, you want to be sure that you are aware of your target demographic and specifically strengthening your marketing approach for where they live. You have the ability to set country filters for your FB ads and its best not to waste resources on regions where you know you are not effectively reaching customers, especially since you heighten the risk of fake accounts liking your Page and FB subsequently targeting your account.
In addition to a guide for building and optimizing your brand page, Facebook’s business resource (https://www.facebook.com/business/) has a wealth of guides and tutorials designed to help strengthen your understanding of marketing on the premier social network. The business page host a comprehensive Facebook business marketing source, complete with a Learn How page that features “Your Facebook Page”, “How Facebook Ads Work”, “Measuring Results”, Creating an Ad”, “Business Manager” and a page dedicated to an Advertising guide.
Among the various new elements that Facebook has added over the past few years to bolster its advertising power are:
- Sophisticated targeting options – Target your ad to people based on location and demographics like age, gender and interests. You can even target your ad to people based on what they do off of Facebook.
- Canvas – new immersive mobile experience, featuring full-screen ads that enhances creative advertising, at a loading time which is 10 times faster than the standard mobile website.
- Lead ads – Advertisements that make the mobile sign up process easier for anyone interested in learning more about its products. Whether it’s a newsletter, an event, or an offer, it reduces the number of steps needed for a sign up.
- Carousel ads – ideal for a business that wants to showcase several images, videos, or links of its products in just one ad. Carousel ads drive 30-50% lower cost-per-conversion and 20-30% lower cost-per-click than a single-image ad.
Facebook has a notorious history of combating their very real problems with fake accounts and spamming on the platform. In a space where people are prone to multi-level marketing schemes, Facebook has used the CAN-SPAM Act to sue violators to the tune of $2 Billion. Still, Facebook is not without its cracks for those to slip through. In February of 2015, Facebook reported that, of its 1.23 billion monthly active users, 11.2% of those users were fake. 43% of these fake profiles never even update their status. Facebook has developed a practice shutting down pages with a low amount of true engagement, a high number of spam-like posts, deceiving information and/or too many requests to engage.
For the best health of your Facebook marketing plan, it will benefit you develop the habit of identifying fake users and removing them as best you can. You’ll want to be on the lookout for accounts that only interact with contests and give-aways, NSFW female profile pictures (97% of fake user profiles are “female”). Excluding unnecessary countries from your marketing targets and checking on Google for multiple uses of the profile pic across multiple social account are also effective ways of singling out fake accounts that adversely affect your brand’s positive relevance.