Recently, this ad appeared in my Facebook feed.
Jack’s Meat Market and Deli is about five minutes from my little in-town office. I have been there on occasion.
Now they have a new addition – breakfast. And they are letting me know about it on my feed. This is an example of Facebook’s ad targeting feature, which many small businesses are not yet using. But they should be.
I may just stop by Jack’s for breakfast one of these mornings.
The idea of targeted Facebook ads is to reach very specific groups of people who are more likely to become customers of your business.
For local businesses, this is especially important, because their target markets are local as well. If for example a new deli opens, how does that owner use social media to get business that will clearly be local rather than spending money to blanket national audiences that will never become customers?
What that deli owner can do is take a look at business locations that surround them and target those businesses with a less expensive, localized Facebook campaign.
They can use the “ad create tool” to post specific messages to specific people – by location, by demographics, by interests, and by behaviors.
There is also an advanced targeting feature. Your interest, however, is targeting business locations that surround you, so that employees there will know who you are, what you offer, and where you are.
Before you begin
Start by creating posts that are relevant to your local community.
To do this, take the following steps:
- Use a tool to access content that other local businesses are creating. (Buzzsumo is one possible tool)
- Use local news and events for content ideas
- Begin to follow other local businesses on Facebook – like and share their posts and add a comment or two so you gain the attention of their followers
- Create blogs and Facebook posts on topics that are of interest to locals
You should begin to get “on the radar” of locals and local businesses. At least then they will know you exist.
Getting started with Facebook ads
Access the Ad Create feature and begin to work through the steps.
As you can see, you will be defining your campaign objective first, using one of three criteria. A local business owner would probably choose “Reach people near your business” or “Get people to visit your stores”.
Once you have designated your objective, you will be prompted to set up your location. If you click on the “Learn More” link, you will receive complete and easy instructions for setting your location.
Creating your account
You will then be asked to create your account. Follow the prompts.
Note: On all screens, there will be help and more information that will be invaluable, along the right-hand rail. There are “how to” articles that will walk you through every step. Use them.
You can also find a video on the Facebook Business Target Ad Site. This will walk you through your ad creation set-up.
Creating your campaign
Once you have set up your basic ad creation account, you are ready to create an ad (post) and use Facebook’s Ad Manager tool.
1. Create Your Post
You will want to craft a post that introduces your business and what value you provide to potential customers. You will certainly want to use visuals, and you may want to offer a special discount to run for a short period of time.
If you do not believe that you can create this post, then hire someone or use some tools that make it easier.
- With a tool like Heyo, you will be able to create and organize the text and visuals with simple drag and drop features
- Canva is a great tool for creating such things as flyers and ads. It is super simple to use
- You’ll want to create text that is going to get a response. If, for example, you have observed that most people who work in surrounding business locations are millennials, then what promotional content will engage millennials?
- PicMonkey is a great photo editing tool. You can add text, frames, etc. to your photos.
When you are satisfied with your post, publish it.
2. Access your Ads Manager account
Once inside your Ads Manager account, click the button to “Create a Campaign”. You will be asked to identify an objective and then will be prompted to choose the post you want to “promote.”
Image Source: Social Media Examiner
3. Choose Locations for your Ad
Facebook provides a lot of options for locations. For example you can choose a geographical radius.
However, what you want to do is go far deeper than that. To do this, you will want to use the “Audience” link and the drop-down menu which will take you to “Work” and then “Employers.”
Image Source: Social Media Examiner
Now you can enter the name of a specific business. Make sure that you check the business for multiple locations. You want to specify the location nearest to you.
Now, here is one small snag. You have to enter each company individually – Facebook does not have a method for multiple entries at a time.
4. Choose Your Budget
This is the easy part. You only have to state how much you want to spend a day (maybe begin with $2.00) and how long you want the ad to run. If you are offering a special promotion, you will want that ad to run throughout that promotion. You set the start and end date, and Facebook does the rest.
Tip: If you plan on running multiple campaigns, you may want to name them. When you receive the automated reports from Facebook about likes and shares, you will want to know which ad campaign is performing best, so you can replicate it with different pictures, a bit different text, and the same promotion that seemed to work for you.
Jasper’s Market can advertise within a certain radius of businesses and neighborhoods. Or, because each of its three locations in California are within business districts, it would make sense for ads to be targeted to surrounding businesses of all three locations.
This ad is great, because it has great visuals and it offers a promotion with an expiration date. And in California, there is a large population interested in eating healthy.
Easy and cheap – What could be better?
So much advertising is a matter of throwing a lot of content out there and hoping that it will reach enough of a target audience to make it worth the cost.
The unique initiative of being proactive and targeting people who spend their days in your surroundings is a great concept. And, as inexpensive as this advertising is, there is no reason not to go for it.
Guest Author: Rick Riddle is a career advisor, marketing consultant and an up-and-coming blogger. As a part of OKdissertations team, he writes mostly about e-learning, digital marketing, entrepreneurship, and blogging. Follow Rick on twitter and reach him out on LinkedIn to keep up with his latest publications.