How to setup up a Facebook advert to reach a wider audience

You’ve made the first step; you’ve got through the setup process for your business page. You’ve also got your cover and profile pictures looking good. You’ve invited all your friends to ‘like’ the page. You’ve invited all your email contacts to ‘like’ it and you’ve even started to post some good content. But what now?

The great thing about social media marketing is that it’s free. You can set up your profile and make new connections every day, which can lead to sales and generate interest. However, the tricky part is keeping momentum and ensuring your content is interesting enough for your target audience. You don’t want to turn them off so much that they click ‘UNLIKE’, so you’ve got to keep it fresh and relevant. It is worth scheduling your posts in to plan ahead and even have a publishing calendar that you can refer to and keep organised.

Often a particular problem may be that it is good content you are posting but not enough people are seeing it. Your connections may be liking, sharing and commenting on the posts and this is great to help get seen by all their friends too (who haven’t yet liked your page). However, many businesses are aware of their target audience but need more of them to ‘like’ the page to hopefully generate more buzz and sales of your products or services.

Facebook advertising is an ideal solution and worth experimenting with. Firstly, try setting up an advert to boost likes. Choose to have the advert placed on the right hand column or in the news feed (which means it will appear on smartphone devices, which is where most of the web traffic for social networks comes from). Your target audience will be reading what their friends are doing and also read your promoted post. This may lead to them liking the page (especially if it enters them into a competition to win a good prize or immediately captures their interest). Even if they don’t initially like the page, it will reside in their mind and possibly come up in conversation with a friend who mentions a service they are looking for.

As part of your business plan, the marketing section should include your target audience based on age, sex, location and interests. Creating a Facebook advert is the same. You can select the specific details and see what the estimated audience is you will reach. As you narrow this down you will see the number revise itself. It’s initially tempting to put an advert out to tens of millions but it’s sensible to focus on your core audience, as it is likely to have more impact.

Set the precise interests accurately based on keywords relating to your business. When you set up a website, you need to put in the keywords so people will find it through SEO. The same works with Facebook. For example, if you are selling mountain bike products, target all those who are interested in mountain biking, outdoors, adventure, camping or who like a mountain bike magazine or a competitor Facebook page.

The important final stage is setting the budget and this could be as low as £1 a day and it’s also advisable to put a start and end date to the campaign with a capped budget, so you don’t overspend. You will need to link a credit/debit card or PayPal to the account. The analytical data at the end of the campaign is useful for planning your next one. For example, if it works well then double your budget next time to hopefully get twice as many likes. The more you dedicate to your budget, the better percentage of your audience will see the advert and hopefully take action.

If you want to test the waters with Facebook advertising and have never created an advert before, I can provide you with a walk-through and a £30 voucher to get you started. This is just £10! Please contact me at
Jon Exton

Twitter: @thesocialant

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