“Advertisers want eyeballs and Facebook is where they are” says Melissa Parrish of Forrester Research.
I’m sure you’ve noticed more and more video ads coming across your newsfeed. Some of them are hilarious, some grab your attention in an interesting way and some are downright boring. I had one come across my newsfeed that looked a bit interesting and I started to watch it. Then I noticed it was 2 hours long. Seriously, I’m not on Facebook to watch video ads, I’m there to hang with my friends. That’s what most Facebook users are there to do.
Yet Facebook marketing is successful and advertisers know it. As of December 31, 2016, Facebook had 1.86 billion monthly active users. Yes, I said BILLION. That’s a lot of eyeballs—3.72 billion to be exact. With this many users each month you can see why advertisers are pouring their money into Facebook ads. It is the most popular social networking site in the world. Do you want a share of those eyeballs on your product or service?
Video ads are becoming more popular but is video the way to go? Absolutely. Done right, video ads can bring you more customers. According to Adobe, users that view videos are 1.81x more likely to purchase than non-video viewers.
Additionally, nearly 1.5 million small and medium-sized businesses shared videos on Facebook in September of 2015. That’s one month. “…considering the average ad revenue per user in the US shot up 50% this year (2015), the video ad strategy is working,” says TechCrunch.
So let’s do it but let’s be smart about it.
What does that mean?
It means you need to focus. What are you selling and who are you selling it to? Do you have an eCommerce store offering a new virtual reality gadget? Are you selling a webinar for SEO training? You need to know your product and define your target audience before you even start on your video ad. Who is your audience and how should you appeal to them. Put yourself in their shoes and start narrowing your audience.
Creating the Video
With your product and audience in mind, you can bring in a professional videographer for a super professional video or have a little fun and record something casual on your iPhone. The idea is to get people engaged from the get-go. Actually, the immediate goal is to get them to click through to your website or landing page. From there you are to collect their email and send them something: a free offer, a discount coupon, a report with great information such as this…You can’t expect them to buy right away. You are collecting leads.
Make it real. Your video, whether professionally acquired or casually made, needs to have real people saying real things. You are engaging potential clients and customers and you are earning their trust. In other words, content is king. Larger businesses can afford to hire a firm that can create a beautiful and engaging video. They can help you frame the idea and create the look-and-feel that you want to portray as your business earning you potential clients. Smaller businesses can be equally effective with a casual but well-thought-out video. Notice the video ads coming across your news feed. Which are the ones that you want to watch?
Keep it short. Remember, people are on Facebook because it is a social environment. They are there for their families, friends and interests. Most are probably annoyed by the ads coming through their newsfeed and can easily scroll past your ad. Make their time worthwhile. Wistia found that video length matters. The graph below shows that the longer the video, the less people watch of it. If you can grab their attention in less than a minute and get your audience to click through to your website to collect an email or phone number then your video is successful. The relationship can begin.
Auto-play. Taking from SnapChat’s success, Facebook will introduce auto-play with sound as a default in 2018. We may as well take that information and apply it now. What is auto-play? You’ll notice some videos will automatically start to play as they enter your newsfeed. This is an option that can be selected in your ad setup. Yet some users find this incredibly annoying and will keep their sound off. A silent video is…well…silent. To get around this, you can set the ad to show captions instead and you can edit the automatically created captions before the ad is viewed as these voice-to-text translators are imperfect. “Internal tests show that captioned video ads increase video view time by an average of 12%,” Facebook reports. You will need to utilize cost-per-impression (CPM) bidding rather than cost-per-click (CPC) to ensure ads are on autoplay.
Video metrics—use them. Video metrics are available for all paid and organic videos uploaded to Facebook. You can view a breakdown of who has viewed your video to know it’s impact on various members of your audience:
and even how much of the video they’ve watched:
This information is valuable to be able to tweak your audience to ensure maximum performance of your video. Is it really surprising that a video with an attractive female will elicit the most response from men? Although seemingly obvious, people sometimes forget about human nature.
Stacking up: the new data. Facebook data from as recently as March 2017 show click through rates by industry. Wordstream has put this in a nice graphic so that you can compare how your ads are doing to the standard for your particular industry:
Follow-up emails. 2016 showed a great surge in follow-up and automated emails. Abandoned shopping carts on eCommerce sites can trigger an email from you to remind your customer of their interest in particular items. At King Kong, we utilize this method to establish a relationship with our potential client. By offering a free report, followed by a free consultation with a real person, we can humanize the whole experience from the get-go. It is, after all, about establishing trust and a real relationship.
Mobile-friendly or else. As of 2016, 80% of users will see your video on an mobile device. Is your website ready for this? If users are clicking through to your website you need to ensure that you have implemented a mobile-friendly version. WordPress and other websites templates offer mobile-friendly options that you should definitely take advantage of. This is a requirement, plain and simple.
Setting up your video ad. If you have set up any type of Facebook ad campaign before, then setting up a video ad should be straightforward.
Leads are people too. So you’ve been able to engage your audience and have successfully managed to have them click through to your website, you will want to offer them something in a clean, streamlined way while at the same time collecting their contact information. You’ve narrowed your audience already so be generous–you are earning their trust.
Bottom Line. You should not expect a Facebook user to immediately buy a service or product on the first contact. That’s not how it works. A relationship has to be developed and relationships are based on trust. Who you are and how you handle the next step in this process is key. Think about how you would like to be approached and what it would take for you to become a customer. Trust, right? Apply these basic human nature concepts to attracting your audience.
Let’s Get Started: Creating Your Video Ad
Watch this 90-second tutorial from Facebook.
Before you begin, be sure that your video has the minimum requirements to ensure a good user experience:
Step 1. Select Your Objective. From your drop down menu on Facebook select Create Ad. The following menu will appear:
Under Campaign Objective select Get Video Views.
Step 2. Select Your Audience. This is an incredibly important feature of Facebook. No other platform has the level of detail of an audience right at your fingertips. You can choose age, location, interests, events (birthdays, weddings, etc.), generation, gender, income level, and more! Utilize this power to target your video ad to the most appropriate audience.
Step 3. Decide where to run your ad. Yes, you can target your video ad to more than Facebook from within Facebook! Under Placement you can choose to reach people on Facebook, Instagram and Audience Network (targeting specific Apps). You can also choose devices for ad placement such as mobile or desktop. No resizing or reformatting required.
Step 4. Set Your Budget. Enter a daily or lifetime budget for your video ad. This is where you can select cost per impression (CPM) to auto-play your video as it comes across a newsfeed.
Step 5. Upload your video and add text. Finally upload your video directly to Facebook. According to AdParlor, directly uploaded videos perform 30% better than videos from other websites.
Select News Feed (as opposed to Right Column ads) for the display option add appealing text above and below the video. A great formula to use called AIDA uses this technique for developing your text:
Follow the 25 character headline and 90 character body text limits, we can still use the famous copywriting formula AIDA.
(A)ttention: Draw users into the ad with an attention-grabbing headline.
(I)nterest: Get the user interested in your product by briefly describing the most important benefit of using it.
(D)esire: Create immediate desire for your product with a discount, free trial, or limited time offer.
(A)ction: End the ad with a call to action.
AIDA is a lot to fit into 115 characters. Write 5-10 ads until you’re able to fit a succinct sales pitch into the ad.
Step 6. Submit! Facebook will review your video ad and begin displaying it to your audience.
Be sure to monitor how well your video ad is performing, tweak when necessary, and begin the relationship with your audience.
Actually it’s not about luck, it’s about being smart. Know your product, know your audience, know that you are earning trust and implement the techniques that I have suggested in this article that are based on sound data.