Introduction to Facebook Advertising

If you are unfamiliar with Facebook advertising, it may seem like a daunting challenge to tackle. There is certainly a lot of information to understand to be effecting in your efforts. We hope to break down the different parts and make the challenge more manageable. Understanding Facebook advertising will ensure an increase of consumer attention on your company’s brand, service and/or products.

Targeted Ads

Targeting can be extremely effective. According to Facebook statistics, targeted campaigns on the platform are roughly 89% accurate. This greatly succeeds the average online accuracy of 38%.

The key is to know your customers. There are billions of active Facebook users. Not all of them will be interested in what you have to offer. Knowing your customer demographics and their interests will greatly increase the likelihood your ads are placed in front of high intent users looking to buy.

This is how Facebook breaks down how to target customers:

  • Saved Audiences
  • Custom Audiences
  • Lookalike Audiences

Insights and Analytics

Facebook provides powerful analytic tools, and using them effectively will help reach maximum engagement on posts.  The page insights tool shows how well a campaign is performing and effecting the page.

Data Metrics Include but are not limited to:

  • Followers
  • Likes
  • Reach
  • Views
  • Post reach
  • Overall engagement

Create a plan

With no clear-cut strategy, it is difficult to identify segments you want to target. ADFly uses a three-pillar approach to content posting.

  1. Brand 
  2. Community
  3. Promotion 

Using the strategy consistently will lend itself to insights on the consumer and grow your audience through refined targeting.


Social Media Management Tools

Social Media Management Tools

We know that consistent posting is the key to any successful social media campaign. However, a consistent social media posting schedule can get lost in the shuffle with day to day business operations.

Dozens of social media management tools have been created to solve this problem (Hootsuite, Buffer, Sprout Social, and many more). With minimal research, you may notice that each tool offers similar features:

  • Engagement analytics
  • Integration of business accounts across multiple platforms
  • Ability to schedule posts

Pro and Con



The ability to schedule posts days/weeks/months at a time means there is less need to attend to social media each day. All business accounts can be seamlessly connected, which adds convenience and ensures a consistent brand voice across all platforms. With added convenience there is more consistency.


Non-Native Content

Users interact with content in different ways depending on the platform (AKA, one-post-does-not-fit-all). For example, an image posted on Instagram does not appear on a user’s Twitter feed in the same way. If a single post is blasted across all business accounts, important nuances of each platform are lost (often reducing engagement metrics).

Recommended Tools and Word of Advice

Below are some of the most popular tools for social media management:

  1. Hootsuite:
  2. Buffer:
  3. Sprout Social:

ADFly has recently experimented with the tool Ripl, which provides similar features to the social media management tools above.

Word of Advice

If your business social media accounts are suffering do to lack of consistency and attention, social media management tools can be very helpful. The key is developing a posting schedule so the follower base can build strong ties to the company’s brand.

Beware of potential negative effects of “non-native content” on engagement. Basic research on social platforms will ensure that content is aesthetically appealing on as many accounts as possible.

Social Media Marketing: The Ask

Time to Sell Your Stuff

Social media marketers will tell you there is an optimal ratio of value-add posts to promotional posts for your company.

Four-time New York Times best-selling author and CEO of VaynerMedia, Gary Vaynerchuk will swear by the formula, “Jab, jab, jab, right hook.” Vaynerchuk’s boxing analogy goes like this: the right hook is self-promotion or selling, and jabs are aimed at triggering greater emotional connections with your company’s brand. He argues that there are too many companies pushing away potential customers on social networks by throwing too many “right hooks”. They go for the knockout sell, or ask, before first connecting with the consumer.

In previous blog posts we have discussed the importance of forming emotional connections and relationships with consumers on social media. Consumers have the power of attention. If what you produce fails to add to the social experience, they can ignore you. This will lead to fewer relationships and less selling.

Vaynerchuk’s formula emulates ADFly’s Three Pillar Approach to social media posting.

  1. Tell an Authentic Story
  2. Build Intentional Relationships with Customers
  3. Ask Customers to Buy In

The exact ratio may not be important, the key is to form relationships before asking.

The Ask

The leg work is done.

You have diligently followed the (not-so-scientific, but effective) formula to a successful social campaign. You have told a story that connects the consumer’s emotions with your brand. The online community is familiar with your social media identity and is growing fond of what your company stands for. Now it’s time to sell stuff.

Here’s how we recommend doing so:

Get creative

  • Interactive promotional deals
    • 100th like or subscriber gets a free…
    • “Tour our brewery and try our new stuff”
    • Visually appealing and engaging content-
      • Simple, Informative, and engaging piece of content by Backpocket Brewing in Coralville, Iowa:
      • The Weather forecast is getting Hazy!! Stop by 30hop in Coralville on Friday September 22 for your chance to enjoy a pint of our Hazy Forecast New England-style IPA before bottles hit the market on the 29th. Beer will be flowing from 5-7! See you there

        Posted by Backpocket Brewing on Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Make sure it works

  • When you expect more people to check out your page, make sure it works flawlessly, and people can convert when they are ready to do so.
  • “Reduce Friction”
    • Make sure there is as little resistance as possible
      1. Gimmicks make your promo look
      2. Don’t let customers second guess their decision

Be Firm with no hesitation

  • Honesty is crucial
    • It’s why they already love your story and brand- you’re straightforward.
    • By now it should be an “Of Course” buy-in from loyal followers.
  • Don’t be cute
    • If you’ve done the work to create the relationship, the customer will be ready for your “ask”.
    • You won’t need hedge statements or feel the need to hide what your true desires are.
  • Make it clear
    • Customers should know exactly what you’re asking them to do.

Social Media Marketing: Storytelling and Brand

 Pillar II: Branding Through Storytelling on Social Media

Now is the time to let consumers know what your company is all about.

Authentic Storytelling 

  • Origin Story- why did your company come to be?
    • Great example from High Brew Coffee:

Most company’s do not have a “sailing through the Caribbean Ocean” origin story.

There is value in the most basic story. It’s about communicating yourself in a way that connects with consumers. Authenticity always wins. Telling an authentic story enables consumers to relate their personal experiences with your brand.

The ability to unite an emotion with an idea is what makes a brand memorable. 

P&G connects one of the earliest human relationships with their brand in a big way. Brands that can unite an emotion with an idea will sell. 

The Story of Why You are in Business

Author and motivational speaker, Simon Sinek has the third highest viewed Ted Talk (over 29 million views at the time of writing this article) on, “How Great Leaders Inspire Action”. His great claim, “People do not buy what you do, they buy why you do it.”

Everybody is in business to make money, Sinek says, “this is a result”. Why you are in this business and not another is more important. Your choice to start a business or join a company was likely not a “light” decision. Communicate what you believe, and why it inspired a choice to be in the business.

Authentically communicating your “WHY”  builds trust, and trust sells.

Respect the Platforms

These storytelling tips permeate all platforms of social media. However, remember to always respect the unique aspects of each platform; from Twitter to Facebook, or Facebook to Instagram, etc., there a subtle differences.

For now, here are some resources to familiarize yourself with the social networks and their differences.

“People don’t buy products, but rather the stories that these products represent. Nor do they buy brands, but rather the myths and archetypes these brands represent.”


Social Media Marketing: Community Engagement

ADFly’s “Three Pillar Approach” is a foundation for business social media campaigns.

By now you have probably recognized the significant attention on social media. If not, here is a figure for perspective: roughly 70% of United States Citizens use at least one form of social media per day.

What does this mean for your business? An opportunity to develop a social identity and interact with the online community at scale (~225,000,000 users/day).

Pillar I: Community Engagement

Participate in the community that you service.

  • Like, share, comment on local businesses and individual’s posts
  • Post valuable information for consumer benefit
  • Provide knowledge of the local community

“Why would I spend my busy work hours posting about things that are seemingly unrelated to my businesses offering?”

When you like, share, or comment on other’s posts, you do several things. First, it lets people know your business has a presence on social media, and that the account is active and engaging. Second, it portrays an interest in more than self-interest.

In a sense, you are creating an attractive brand personality that people in the local or online community want to associate with and engage in. More engagement leads to stronger brand relationships and greater sales opportunity.

Human Accounts>Robotic Accounts

The success of your social media campaign relies on perceived value.

Not every post has to have a call to action (BUY MY STUFF). In fact, you will surely lose the crucial relationships you have started building.

Take the perspective of the consumer. What do you want to see from your favorite brands on social media?

Adidas does a remarkable job in this Twitter post:

Why this is a great piece of social media content:

  • Timely (published only an hour after the conclusion of the match)
  • Features one of their premier athletes winning at the highest level
  • Shares in the excitement of the event with the brand’s large tennis community 
  • Subtle product placement
  • There are no “asks” or “calls to action”, but creates a desire to be a part of the winning brand

The company took advantage of the event and an endorsed athlete’s success to be human.

A professional athlete isn’t necessary for creating quality content. Value can be as simple as making sure the local community remembers tomorrow is garbage day (families everywhere will thank you).

Small business example: Katalyst Systems Impact

Happy 4th of July from KSI! #freedom

Posted by Katalyst Systems Impact on Tuesday, July 4, 2017

  • Emphasize relationships- the more people interact with your brand, the greater the opportunity for sales.
  • Get creative with posting- people are more willing to engage with accounts that both promote their brand and add to the social experience.
  • Make your account worth the follow, like or share by adding value (you don’t need a professional athlete).


Social Media Marketing: Getting Started

The prominence of social media across the world has made it easier than ever to like, share, and promote an organizational brand. Unfortunately, many companies struggle to create and maintain strong social campaigns. If you have ever attempted to develop a company brand socially, you have probably run into some common problems

  • How do the various platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.) differ?
  • How do I properly represent my brand socially?
  • What do loyal and/or potential customers want to see from my company on their social feed?

Create an Experience

Traditional advertising outlets (television, radio, banner ads on websites) are often in-your-face and disruptive. If you’ve ever been stuck watching an infomercial during a favorite TV show break, you understand the problem!

People use social media for a host of reasons, but the average consumer is looking to engage with friends, family, and items of interest. Social media provides an opportunity for businesses to add to the consumer experience. Instead of disrupting your audience with in-your-face advertisements, provide content worth engaging in.

Increase Engagement

Your campaign will grow based on the current state of your company and brand (Johnson and Johnson vs. Joe’s Detailing). ADFly’s social media marketing strategy starts with a “Three Pillar Approach” to create a baseline foundation for consistent posting.  The Three Pillars broadly focus on increasing engagement by providing information the consumer finds valuable and entertaining.

The Three Pillars

  • Brand – What does your product, service, or company stand for?
    • Tell your story
    • Tell why you do what you do (People buy into an authentic why)
    • Tell how you do it best
  • Community – increase personal and organizational relationships
    • Promote other local business
    • Provide information on local events
    • Engage in the online community (e.g. sharing a post about a charity event taking place)
  • Promotion – The ask. Calls to action.
    • Sell potential customers on your product or service
    • Highlight promotional offers, discounts, limited time offers, etc.
    • Ask for a like/share/subscription

The key to the Three Pillar Approach is consistency. Consistent posting will lend itself to insights and lead to growth opportunities through precisely targeted promoted posts.

Implementing the Three Pillar Approach should not be restrictive. There are many ways to interact with consumers in a social campaign. The Three Pillar Approach could grow to a five pillar approach depending on your business’s mission. The Pillars are simply meant to be structural guidelines to start creating content consumers value.