A short while ago Facebook announced the release of their advertising platform. Given that I had written about that previously, and was in need of some fresh ideas for advertising the Thursday Club (side-project), I decided to give it a go.
Setting up a campaign is a pretty straightforward process. You select the criteria for your audience segmentation, starting with the geography (I’d love to have the option to select ‘World’, but you have to start at a particular country – although you can run multiple campaigns simultaneously in different countries). You can also select gender, age ranges and target keywords to further define your audience. I do like the fact that as you select each keyword you are shown a tally of the number of people that match your criteria. I’m sure someone could reverse engineer some interesting statistics out of that.
It doesn’t appear that the keywords currently include group membership, or much other than a persons direct interests.
You can then create some simple text copy (think basic Google adword style) and optionally upload a picture. If you have a company page, you can also choose to include related information from that. Finally, select how much you’d like to pay per click or per view (I chose ‘per-click’) and that’s pretty much it. You can set timeframes for your campaign and maximum spends per day.
I would recommend experimenting with the CPC rate you bid as you can go from zero impressions to many thousands through some very small adjustments. You can see the effects almost straight away. Current click-through rates are pretty low, but that may be a function of my test ad-copy too :-)
Overall though I like it. The operation is pretty much identical to how I perceived it might work, bar some limitations on granularity. It would also be nice to get some clarity on exactly where these ads show up.
I’ll let you know what affect this has on traffic to my site, but as of now (24 hours after starting) there have been 5000+ ad impressions which I don’t think is too shabby.
I’ll also be experimenting with some much more targeted ads with a small number of potential viewers.