How to build successful Facebook advertising campaigns

Steve Weiss was a struggling stand-up comedian in New York when he first started using advertising on Facebook in 2006. Now he is the director of MuteSix, a Facebook advertising agency managing over $100m in billings. Mumbrella's Paul Wallbank shares what Weiss has learnt along the way.

“I wanted to figure out how get people to come along to my stand up comedy shows,” says Weiss of why he first spent money with the social media giant.

Steve Weiss presenting at Mumbrella360 earlier this month

At Mumbrella360 earlier this month, Weiss shared what he’s learned about building successful Facebook and Instagram campaigns. His main tips are strategic targeting, varied creative content and staying on top of the platforms’ rapidly changing systems.

Weiss believes Facebook’s targeting options levels the playing field between large and small brands and his advice is to be strategic in placing advertising.

“Segment your campaigns. Facebook is less a marketing platform and more a life-cycle marketing tool. Facebook shows your ads to the people most likely to take a specific action. So if you’re not segmenting you ads, the same people will keep seeing your ads.”

Developing a steady stream of new material is critical for advertising on the social media platform, Weiss believes. He recommends having three to five different creative units for each campaign.

“It’s always important to do creative testing on Facebook. If you don’t do creative testing then Facebook is going to drive all the traffic to one creative and what’s going happen is all your audience will be overwhelmed by one crazy creative.”

Testing that content on fresh audiences is also important, Weiss says. “Always test out new creatives in an ad targeting at new audiences. You always want to test new creatives on new audience,” he says.

Instagram presents a different set of opportunities for marketers, observes Weiss. “People on Instagram are younger and they really don’t like ads.” He believes engaging influencers is critical to be successful on the platform.

“Find the best influencer, they are always better at creating content than the brand,” he says. “The reality is you can never create as good content as the influencers because it’s pure and it’s real. They create the best ad content out there.

“Create video specifically for Instagram. The IG user is very different to the Facebook user, the FB user is a lot older, the IG user is quick to get the video and you need to make it more about the experience than the selling.”

“Short-form, simple calls to action and don’t overcomplicate it. Video should describe the product, should be disruptive then – boom – action!”

Despite the differences, bringing together both platforms delivers results for marketers, he observes. “Optimise placement between Facebook and Instagram, it works really well.”

The new range of Facebook advertising units presents a world of opportunities for marketers, Weiss believes, citing collection adverts, dynamic advertising and direct message communications as being marketing tools worth exploring.

“Stay on top by staying current, Facebook is continuously iterating their platform whether it’s collection ads or dynamic product ads for prospecting.”

Weiss advises: “Every single day they are iterating so I highly recommend everyone stays active, when they announce a new feature launch something immediately.

“Facebook ad buying can be one of the most fun activities of the day or the worst.”


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