What I’ve Learned About Meta Ads

Ads have been one of the biggest mental unlocks for me and my business.

A few years ago, I would have told you that “ads” is a four-letter word; now I see “ads” as a license to print cash.

But arriving at that change of mind wasn’t free.

It came from spending months of time (and a small fortune) figuring out the advertising game.

Here is a collection of the things that I found most useful on that journey.

If you want to go deeper on any of these (or get help with ads), here’s how to get on my calendar.

There are a lot of things that will confused you inside a Facebook ads account. Focus on these five metrics to start:

  • CPC (Cost Per Click) - The average cost for each click

  • CPM (Cost Per Mille) - Your cost per 1,000 impressions

  • Frequency - The average number of times a user saw your ad

  • CTR (Click Through Rate) - The percentage of times people saw your ad and clicked

  • CVR - (Conversion Rate) - What percent of users that click your ad subscribed (aka your landing page or lead form conversion rate, if you’re using instant forms)

Here are the benchmarks you should shoot for for each of those metrics:

  • CVR - >35%

  • CPC - <$1.20

  • CTR - >1.50%

  • CPM - <$20.00

  • Frequency - <1.30

To get to those benchmarks, here are the levers you can pull:

  • Identity (Facebook and Instagram page)

  • Media (image or video)

  • Primary text

  • Headline

  • Description

  • CTA button

If your CVR is under 35% – your landing page or lead form is bad.

If your CTR is below 1.50% – your ad creative is bad.

If your CPM is over $20 – test bigger audiences, make better creative, and check your account quality.

If your frequency is over 1.30 – your targeting is too narrow.

If CPC is over $1.20 – your ad creative is bad + your audiences are too narrow / broad.

You don’t need a fortune to run ads, but you should start testing with at least $25 - $50 / day. Anything less, and you won’t get enough data to see what works.

Facebook is better than you at finding your ICP. Especially when starting out, it’s better to err on the side of broad audiences.

Speaking of audience sizes, if your audience is smaller than 5m people, it’s too small. Broad audiences are better especially when starting out.

If you already have an email list, use it to build a lookalike audience. For a lookalike audience to work, you should aim to have at least ~1,000 names.

As you scale, lookalike audiences will be your best friend. This could be people who are already customers, have visited your website, are on your email list, or any other combination you can think of.

Always use auto bidding instead of guessing for a cost-per-click you are willing to pay.

Test at least three creatives at a time, but don’t test more than six.

Especially when you’re starting out, you’re better off studying creatives from your competitors instead of recreating everything from scratch. Look at their hooks, graphics, CTAs, and emulate them.

Right now, video creatives convert better than images.

UGC video creatives convert better if you have an attractive person speaking to the camera.

Creating videos without a script is a great recipe to burn your budget. The better your instructions, the less back-and-forth you can expect with the people creating the videos for you.

If you are against putting your face on videos, you can hire good UGC content creators for $100 - $200 / video. If you need help finding these people, shoot me a reply, and I’ll send you my favorites.

Making memes is easier (and more effective) than creating static images that mirror every other corporate-style ad. “People don’t mind being interrupted as long as they are being entertained.”

Relevancy and timing matter more when making memes. The Drake Hotline Bling memes have been played out, and your audience has already subconsciously been trained to ignore this type of creative regardless of how good your copy is.

You should be ruthlessly tracking your ROAS. Spending budget for the sake of spending budget is a great way to ensure that budget gets cut off quickly.

Tracking links, pixels, and conversion events aren’t sexy, but you’re flying blind until you get all of these set up on the backend of your ads. If you need help setting this up, shoot me a note.

If you don’t have funnels for your traffic, you put huge amounts of pressure on your front-end offer. The best companies in the world obsess over their funnels; so should you.

The better your funnels, the better your chances at recouping the investment you have made into your ads. The better you are at recouping the advertising investment, the more money you can pour back into your ads. Money printer go brr.

Generally speaking, there are only a small handful of countries where it makes sense to advertise. Avoid the rest.

You can build a profitable business without running ads, but avoiding advertising makes growing your business 10x more difficult. Speaking from experience - take it our leave it.

Ads are a four-letter words to most people. If the goal of your ad is to artificially generate attention, your intended audience will NEVER buy from you.

Getting good at advertising is a license to print money. Get good at running ads, and you’ll never look for money again; it will find you.

Nobody thinks that advertising works on them, yet trillions of dollars are spent on advertising every single year.

If your audience does not live on Facebook / Instagram, you are burning money by using this form of advertising. Just because other people are spending money advertising here doesn’t mean that you have to too.

Landing pages make or break your ads. You can the best ads and funnels in the world, but it won’t matter if your landing page sucks.

Your ad campaign should match the objective of the ad. If you’re warming up a cold audience and want to warm them up by giving away valuable information, you can choose awareness, traffic, or engagement. If you want to collect information or create customers, you need to choose leads or sales as the campaign objective.

Facebook ads, like any other form of advertising, is not truly passive. The minute you stop improving each part of the ad, your performance drops.

Ads, like most things in life, follow the Pareto Principle, and 10-20% of good ads create 80-90% of new business. Keep pumping creatives until you find the one, then dump your entire budget into that one until it’s time to do it again.

Pause ads with zero conversions after 7-14 days.

Pause ads with 1000-2000+ impressions and 0 conversions.

The primary way you’ll lower your CPA is by creating new and better ad creatives.

Make sure your ads are focused on the benefits of your product or service - not on lead magnets, email gates, or curiosity. Advertising that promises no benefit to the consumer does not sell.

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