How to advertise on Facebook

Written by Kalleigh O'Togher

Kalleigh is the founder and CEO of Zealous Social and The Growth Fix. Her expertise in sales and marketing comes from 25 years of working with, and coaching, mid-size businesses in the trades, services and retail industries.

September 21, 2020

Is it worth it to advertise on Facebook? 

This article is for anyone looking to bring in more revenue for their business using Facebook ads. Maybe you’ve just opened an online e-commerce store and are looking for ways to generate your first sales. Or you have a new course, book or service that you want to sell. If so, then this article is perfect for you to get started advertising on Facebook.

Are you thinking about running your first Facebook Ads? After all, Facebook advertising for beginners or even seasoned marketers is an effective way to promote your products to more than 1.5 billion people worldwide. You’ll be able to target specific audiences in any niche with Facebook ads, so you’ll gain a lot of information from this Facebook advertising article.

With more than 728 million daily active users on Facebook, some of your potential customers are definitely using the platform. The only question is how to reach them effectively.  

According to data from Pew Research Center, 70% of U.S. Facebook users access the site daily and 43% log on multiple times per day. 82% of the millennial demographic are among the most engaged Facebook users. (

Facebook advertising (beginner level)

Facebook offers a multitude of advertisement options at your disposal. The majority of modern era businesses rely on Facebook advertising to attract their intended audiences and enhance their brand awareness. 

Facebook advertisement will allow you to gain exposure to a broader pool of audiences all over the world. It will also let you get in touch with potential customers with simple advertisement tools. 

So, if you are wondering “how Facebook ads work?” you’re in the right place.

How to Use Facebook Advertising

You can’t start a Facebook ad campaign without an official business page. You will need to set up an official Facebook business page before beginning the advertisement campaign. If you don’t already have a business page, you can create one now.

Once you have a Facebook business page, you can simply head over to Facebook Business Manager to get started with your Facebook advertisement campaign effectively.

Let’s take a look at how Facebook ads work.

You will need to log into your ads manager. You can access your ads manager through the “More” tab on your Facebook Business Page. There is also a link to “Visit Ad Center” at the bottom of your page sections on the left hand side of your business page.

This page will open to an overview page and you will have the option to “Boost Post” or “Create Ad”. 

Choose “Create Ad” to start a new Facebook advertising campaign.  

Finalize Your Objective

The first thing you need to do before moving forward with your campaign is to finalize your objective and business goals. You can choose 11 options, and these options resonate highly with different business goals for each type of business. 

Therefore, you need to choose from the following 11 options to create a new Facebook ad campaign.

1. Brand Awareness

If you are looking for new ways to raise brand awareness in front of a wider pool of audiences all over the world or in a localized region, you need to choose the brand awareness option for your Facebook advertisements.

2. Reach

Suppose you are happy with your brand awareness ratio, and you want your advertisement to reach as many new customers as possible within a defined region. In that case, you can choose the reach option and move forward with the Facebook ads campaign. 

3. Traffic

If your purpose is to drive more traction towards your web page or business website, you can choose the traffic option to entice more audiences into checking out your business website.

4. Engagement

If you want people to interact with your advertisements and get a higher number of likes on your posts, you can choose the engagement option and encourage more people to interact with your posts.

5. Application Installation

Suppose you already have a business and a mobile application, and you want more people to download your application from the iOS or Android store. In that case, you can choose the app installs option and target people for app installation from the store.

6. Video Views

Suppose you are only looking to generate more traction towards your Facebook videos. In that case, you can use the video views option, and it will target customers interested in watching videos and are interested in your genre. 

7. Lead Generation

Lead generation is one of the most essential and crucial elements behind the success of any business. Therefore, if you are looking to increase the number of new leads, you can simply choose the lead generation option, and Facebook will automatically create a fitting advertisement campaign for your business.

8. Messages

Suppose you already have a Facebook business page, and you want people to interact with the business via the Facebook messenger option. In that case, you can choose this campaign type, and it will encourage more people to get in touch with you via the Facebook messenger option.

9. Conversions

Suppose you are looking to convert more people towards your business by encouraging them to use the action button on your Facebook business page or website. In that case, you can choose this option, and it will bring more people to your website. This Facebook advertising campaign target is to convert more people into potential buyers.

10. Catalogue Sales

Suppose you decide to go with this option. In that case, it will connect all your Facebook advertisements with your product catalogues and place these advertisements in front of people who are more likely to purchase something from your website or page. This will increase your business’s sales by connecting your catalogues to your advertisements.

11. Store Traffic

If you are looking to drive more people towards your website in real life rather than the digital world, this is the best option for you. Store traffic will encourage nearby local residents and customers towards your physical stores.

Before thinking, “do Facebook ads work?” you need to give it your best shot and then decide based upon your Facebook campaign’s outcome. Let your campaign run for at least two to three days, then tweak it based on the results you’ve had so far. You may need to tweak the copy or increase your budget for better results.  

Choose A Name for Your Facebook Campaign

The second step in setting up your Facebook campaign is to develop a fitting name for your campaign. 

Once you have selected the category for your Facebook advertisement campaign, you can head to the bottom of the page and name your campaign while choosing other options, such as budget optimization, etc. 

As a manager, you can also choose from various options for engagement objectives at the end of this page. These options will include:

  • Engagement Ratio 
  • Page likes
  • Event responses

These objectives are separate from the overall goal that we have just selected in the step before this one. Choosing an engagement objective will not impact the general aim of the Facebook ad campaign, and it will only focus on the posts of your page.

Setting Up the Advertisement Account

The next step in setting up your Facebook campaign is to set up an ad account. So, if you have already connected an ad account to your Facebook campaigns in the past, you will get the option to simply skip the step and continue with setting up your campaign.

However, if this is your first time setting up a Facebook advertisement campaign, you will have a button at the end of this page to “set up an ad account.” Once you click on that button, you will be taken to a new page to enter crucial information regarding the ad account.

You will see the option to choose the following elements for the account:

  • Country name
  • Preferred currency
  • Time zone
  • Budget details

Once you get done filling out this form, you will continue to the next step. You need to make sure that you think twice before filling out this form as you will not get the option to modify the details later on during the campaign process. If there is a need to alter these details in the future, you will have to set up a new ad account and attach that one to your Facebook advertisement campaign.

Understanding and Choosing the Audience

You need to choose an audience for your campaign. This is the next step for your Facebook advertisement campaign. It allows you to understand your targeted audience and focus on a specific type of audience for your advertisements.

If you have more than one page, you will get the option to select the page that you want to promote using this campaign. Once you have chosen the correct Facebook page, you can then scroll down and start finalizing the audience for the advertisement campaign.

The first option you will see on this page is adding a set of custom audiences. You can select whether or not to target those customers who have previously gotten in touch with your Facebook page. This interaction may mean anything from liking your posts regularly to interacting with your page at least once a month.

The next option will allow you to choose the following elements for your targeted audience:

  • Age
  • Location
  • Gender
  • Language
  • Other demographics

Once you start finalizing these options for your Facebook advertisement campaign, an audience size indicator will begin showing an estimated audience reach.

This meter has two options; specific and broad. In general, you have to keep it between the specific and broad and make sure that your audience is neither too narrow nor too broad. This meter will also show you estimated daily results for your advertisement reach. 

Once you have determined the targeted audience’s demographics, you will then move forward towards detailed targeting for your Facebook advertisement campaign. If you want to maximize your return on investment, you need to make sure that you fill out as much detail about the target audience as possible.

Effective targeting will serve as a stepping stone towards maximizing your user engagement with the Facebook advertising campaigns. Therefore, you need to use these options to jot down as many details as possible for a specific set of potential audiences.

You should have done a targeted buyer persona for your business before this step to help you narrow down your target audience data. This will allow you to choose the right options for your advertising campaign effectively. 

Read: How to Create Your Buyer Persona

Businesses with a broader selection for target audiences rarely see a significant improvement or user interaction with these campaigns. A needle-like precision is a critical factor behind the success of any Facebook ad campaign. For your first campaign, it’s best to keep your targeted audience small rather than large. Try to keep it under 5,000,000 people. If it’s more extensive than that, you’ve done too broad an audience, and your ads won’t perform. 

After finalizing the target audience’s demographics, you will have two options to fine-tune your audience further.

Detailed Targeting

This option allows you to make use of customer behaviour or demographics to finalize your audience. You can treat different audiences based on their demographics, actions, or interests from their past history.

This allows you to merge different options and then finalize on the audience. For example, you can target those who show an interest in physical fitness and meditation but are not interested in gym supplements. This way, you can add as many options as possible to fine-tune the audience based on their previous behaviour.


This option will allow you to interact with customers who have already interacted with your page, your business, or some other application that you have previously promoted with Facebook campaigns. 

You will get an option to exclude the current people who have already interacted with your page and reach a new pool of audiences. This way, you will raise brand awareness in front of potential customers rather than existing ones.

However, suppose you are currently promoting something that you wish to be shown in front of your existing customers. In that case, you can simply select the option to broadcast and showcase your Facebook advertisements in front of existing customers and followers for your page. You can target your existing customers’ friends, which constitute “lookalike audiences in Facebook ads.”

Finalize Facebook Ad Placement

Now that you have selected everything from the campaign category to the target audience, you will move forward to choosing where your Facebook advertisements will appear in front of the targeted audience or lookalike audiences in Facebook ads.

If you are a beginner, and you have never previously used any Facebook advertisement campaigns, you can simply choose the default option that is the “automatic placements.” This will allow Facebook to select the best place to showcase your advertisements and control everything by itself. Facebook may choose to place your advertisements on Messenger, Instagram, and other networks for optimum outcomes.

However, if you want to take control of the Facebook ad placements by yourself, you can choose from several options for excellent results for your campaign. 

Device Type

If you choose this advertisement placement option, you will be able to choose which platform or device type you want to target for your audiences. This means that you will select from mobiles, desktops, laptops, tablets, and more for your device type.


This option will allow you to adjust the right platform for Facebook ad placement. This means that you will be able to choose the platform to showcase your advertisements in front of audiences. These options include Facebook, Instagram, or Messenger, among other options. 


This option will allow you to choose where to showcase your advertisement in terms of virtual location from the social platform. It will enable you to show your advertisements on user feeds, stories, messages, sites, stream videos, and other applications.

Specific Operating Systems

If you only want to show your campaign to an audience with a specific operating system, you can adjust this option and choose from a wide array of operating systems, such as Android or iOS. It will also allow you to select a specific mobile device to place your advertisement in front of people who have that particular model of your choice, such as iPhone, Nexus, Samsung, etc.

Decide on A Budget and Timeline

This is one of the essential steps in setting up a Facebook advertisement campaign. You have to decide on a budget that you can afford to spend and how this money will be divided among the different options of advertisement types. You can also set a budget for retargeting with Facebook ads.

Moreover, you will also have to decide whether to spend this money in a single day or spread the budgeted amount over a week or two. Facebook will automatically divide the money and show the right amount of advertisements based on the daily amount of a budget.

Once you have decided on a budget, you can choose to make your Facebook ad campaign live right away or schedule it for the future. According to professionals, running a scheduled Facebook ad campaign is the most appropriate strategy and yields the best results. 

Rather than choosing to spend all the money in one day, you need to spread out your budget over the course of a week or two and make sure you get the best possible exposure in front of the target audience. Once you are satisfied with the decided budget and schedule, you can click continue and get to your Facebook advertising campaign’s last step.

Create and Finalize Your Facebook Ad

In this last step, you will select a format from different advertisement format options such as:

  • Image
  • Video
  • Collection
  • Carrousel

You will only see a handful of advertisement formats depending upon the overall objective chosen for your Facebook campaign. You can also set an advertisement format for retargeting with Facebook ads.

Once you have selected the right advertisement format, you can choose to preview your advertisement before publishing it for the audiences. You can continue to tweak your advertising and preview it before finalizing a format. 

Once you are satisfied with the selected advertisement format, you will see a “confirm button” option at the bottom of this page. Click this button, and your Facebook advertisement campaign will be set up and ready for action.

What Is the Bottom Line Here?

Facebook advertising campaigns can help you get the right exposure for your business objectives. Facebook is the most widely used social media platform, with over 2 billion users. This is why understanding the art of using Facebook advertising campaigns can bring in more traction and audiences for your business. You will be able to interact with new customers, encourage them to use your business, and maximize your revenue.

We provide Facebook advertising services to select clients that are serious about growing and getting results from their advertising dollars. Contact us today to see if you qualify.

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