If you’ve ever tried to throw darts blindfolded, congratulations – you’ve discovered the process most people use when launching a Facebook ad campaign!
You’ve probably seen many folks simply say “Facebook ads just doesn’t work,” after they spontaneously decided to boost a post and didn’t see results. It’s true – it’s far too easy to lose money running campaigns on Facebook, but they wouldn’t have brought in nearly $40 billion last year in ad revenue if advertisers weren’t making money.
Like most important processes, spending a little more time and going through better preparation makes a significant difference. The good news is, proper planning is actually a very simple process.
The 3-Step Process for Proper Facebook Ad Campaign Planning
- Define what “success” will look like in your campaign
- Work backwards to define the path to that success
- Have contingency plans in case the path you expect doesn’t pan out
How does this help?
Well imagine you obtained a treasure map, but it doesn’t have an X anywhere. It also doesn’t show the terrain. It’s just a piece of paper with a dot saying “You are here.” You don’t know where to look or what to expect while trying to find it.
Gee, that’s not really useful is it?
Now imagine you obtained a different treasure map, one that has the X where the treasure is hidden, shows all the terrain, and even has the ideal path drawn on it. Just a tad better, isn’t it? Now you might actually be able to get it.
That’s what this process helps you do – draw that map that will take you to success with your campaign.
Let’s take a closer look at each of these steps:
1. Define what “success” will look like in your campaign
This may seem like a no-brainer, but few advertisers actually do this. They instead opt for a general goal, sort of like the investor’s mantra of “buy low, sell high.” That would be like drawing an X on your treasure map with a huge paint brush whereby the “X” covers half the map. What does does that do?
You need to be precise with the goal. What would a “successful” campaign mean to you?
Getting a certain amount of sales?
Getting a certain amount of revenue?
Making a particular ROI?
Building your list up to a certain size?
It also needs to be attainable. 100,000% ROI would be an example of a completely unattainable goal, even for retargeting ads. It’s perhaps been done once or twice in the history of Facebook ads. That’s no more a realistic goal than running the 100 meters under 9.6 seconds unless you’re Usain Bolt.
Lastly, make sure it’s meaningful. Make it a part of the bigger picture of what you’re trying to accomplish in your business. That way it can act as filling in the missing part of the path to your overall business goals.
2. Work backwards to define the path to that success
Now that X marks the spot, how are you going to get there? Here again is a step many advertisers fail to do, and it leads to having no idea if they’re on the right track other than one measurement.
You should be able to track back to at least what the average cost per click should be on your ads to reach your goal.
For instance, if your goal is 50 sales for the month, and you know/estimate that 2% of visitors to the sales page buy, that 20% of leads will reach the sales page, that 50% of visitors to your opt-in page will become leads, and that your overall budget for the campaign is $10,000, you will need 25,000 clicks and should spend no more than $0.40 per click.
You will have to estimate the conversion rates if you’ve not run traffic to the sales page or opt-in page yet, but even with doing that, you’ll gain massive clarity from this process.
Most advertisers put ads in, hope for the best and really don’t know how well it’s doing. But imagine if you go into it knowing that $0.40 per click or less is what you should be seeing, won’t that help you make decisions on whether certain ads and targeting are passing muster?
Keep in mind too that this process also helps you confirm whether your goal is attainable. If you go through this and find your cost per click needs to be $0.01 to succeed, your goal needs tinkering!
3. Have contingency plans in case the path you expect doesn’t pan out
Sometimes, what you expect to happen just doesn’t happen. It’s hard to avoid this. Perhaps your opt-in page doesn’t convert at the rate you were expecting, or your sales page isn’t converting at what you estimated for your plan.
Does that necessarily mean you’ve failed? Not if you’ve got contingency plans. When Plan A doesn’t work out, you can look at Plan B or Plan C and see what you can address to stay on track.
For example, let’s say you expected the conversion rate on your opt-in page to be 50% and instead it’s 30%, and no matter what you try, it’s simply not going up. If you had a Plan B that accounted for a lower opt-in conversion rate, you could see that you would simply need to reduce your cost per click on the ads in order to get the opt-in numbers you need, or increase your sales conversion through improvements of the sales page or more qualifying of leads up front, and so on.
The main thing is, a roadblock doesn’t mean the path to a successful campaign is over – with contingency plans, you see the ways around potential roadblocks so that you still know what to do to reach your goals.
Do these 3 steps absolutely guarantee you a winning campaign? No. But getting on the right track from the start is half the battle and helps you see the way to a better campaign. Implement these steps into your process and you’ll stand a far better chance to succeed!
Proper planning involved many different calculations, and doing this from scratch can be tedious. If number-crunching isn’t your thing, we have an exclusive powerful spreadsheet that will help you calculate everything you need when planning your campaign based on a few goal inputs from you. We’re giving it away for free for a limited time – click here to download it now and get access to our free training.