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Are Facebook Ads Worth the Cost?

Updated on September 4, 2011

When it comes to advertising, there are a lot of places that are competing for your advertising dollars. One place that you might be considering spending your money is on Facebook ads, due to the popularity of the site and how often people log in to see what is going on. But are these types of ads all they are cracked up to be? Let’s look at the costs and results and see how it works out.

When it comes to creating an ad on Facebook, the question of how much does it cost for a facebook ad does not have a definitive answer. Rates for the ads vary depending on popularity and specifics of the particular campaign being set up. It is up to the advertiser to determine how much they are willing to pay. You set up a budget which can be set for daily spending or a spending limit over the life of the ad. When you go through the steps of setting up an ad, you will get a “Suggested Bid” which will show you a range of prices. These prices are the range of other bides which are currently receiving the ad space for advertisements which are similar to yours. From this information, you can determine how much you want to spend either by the click or by 1000 impressions and the time frame you want to advertise. Multiply this by how many you wish to spend each day, and you will have a daily budget. Facebook only charges you for the clicks or impressions that you actually receive daily which will help to keep you to stay on budget. When you reach your daily budget, the ad will quit showing so you do not exceed your budget. If you prefer, you can set a budget for the lifetime of an ad instead of daily.

Ad Tips

  • Ads need to be interesting and relevant
  • These ads work better for selling a product than for getting new friends on your page
  • You need to be creative and give potential buyers something
  • Target the right users – use appropriate keywords and tags

To give you an idea, when I go through the steps of setting up a Facebook advertisement for my business fanpage to anyone in Canada who is not currently a fan and is over 18, it tells me there are approximately 15 million matches. When I tell it that I want to pay per impression, it suggests a bid of 86 cents to 1.35 Canadian for 1000 impressions. If i switch to pay per click, it suggests that I should bid $2.01 to 3.14 per click.

One advantage to this type of advertising is that you are able to control how many times your ad is seen and, as a result, you are able to control your spending. With other methods, you pay a straight fee for your advertisement whether it is seen by one person or by a thousand. You are able to target these ads by age, relationship status, location or any other information that people are able to input into their profile.

When you are purchasing this type of advertising, keep in mind that the more you bid per keyword, the more your ad will be shown and the better position it will receive on the page. This is simply because when you pay more, they want you to get results so that you will continue the ad at that rate. If you are not paying as much, they will leave your ads to show later, when the expensive ones are gone. Just like many other things, it comes down to where the most profit is.

Not only is cost a factor when it comes to placing an ad, but how likely you are to get the results you want is another factor. Determine what you hope to achieve with your advertisement. Do you want to receive sales, do you want new friends to like your page, do you want new newsletter subscribers or do you have something else you are trying to achieve? This plays a huge role in how you want to use these advertisements and how successful you will be. When your campaign is over, you can look at the statistics that Facebook provides to determine if you achieved what you set out to.

A key thing to keep in mind is that users log in to Facebook to interact with others, not to browse ads. For this reason, it is important that you know what you want to accomplish with your ad in order to target the right people and get the results you desire. To increase the amount of people who like your page, you want your advertising to be broad and to reach many people. But if you want to get people out to an event you are hosting, your ad needs to be narrow and appeal to the people who are local and would potentially attend the event.

If you are still unsure, think about how you likely you are to click on an ad that you see on Facebook. They are placed at the side, so they are not directly in someone’s face, but still where they will be noticed. Do you typically look there, notice the ad and think about clicking or do you see it and continue with what you were doing? How about your friends? Ask them how often they click on an ad. This will help you figure out what the chances are of people actually choosing to view your ad.

Just like any other type of advertising, Facebook ads can be hit or miss. Set your goals before putting out the ad so you know what you are trying to achieve and so you know if you made it. Try a few different ads at a budget that will not break you, pay attention to the results and what you achieve and then determine how successful you were.


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    • Megan Coogle profile image

      Megan Coogle 6 years ago from Alabama

      Great hub and really useful. I've been wondering if taking an ad out for my content business was worth it on Facebook. You helped me out with the choice!

    • asmaiftikhar profile image

      asmaiftikhar 6 years ago from Pakistan

      a well written and useful hub.keep it up

    • mommytalks profile image

      mommytalks 6 years ago from Phoenix, AZ

      Great Hub - good info : )