The Basics of Facebook Advertising

by Meisha Bochicchio

Now that you have mastered the basics of organic Facebook marketing, it’s time to take your social media campaigns to the next level with Facebook ads.
Facebook ads come in many shapes and sizes and are designed to achieve different goals, many of which align nicely with a hotel marketing campaign.
Before you get started, it’s important to have a solid grasp of the fundamentals of Facebook advertising.

Facebook Budget Requirements

Before you start shaking your head and insisting that paid advertising isn’t in your budget, consider the fact that Facebook only requires a very minimum spend to run ads through the platform.
The only minimums that are in place include:
• Minimum daily budget of $1.00 / day for any ad set 
• Minimum daily budget must be at least 2 times your CPC
This simply means that your campaign daily budget must be at least twice your average cost-per-click with a minimum of $1.00 required daily.
You can also set an Account Spending Limit which puts a cap on how much your account can spend overall and can be adjusted at any time.
So, if you can spare just a few bucks a month you can set up a paid Facebook campaign!

Facebook Ad Terminology

Facebook ad jargon is fairly similar to what you would see with traditional pay-per-click ads, if you happened to be familiar with those. Here is a brief rundown of common terms:
• PPC – pay per click; describes the pricing model for the ads
• CPC – cost per click; what you pay each time someone clicks on your ad. This can be easily calculated by dividing the spend (cost) by the number of clicks the ad receives. You can calculate the cost of anything by dividing the spend by the metric you wish to track (ex: cost per website click).
• Impressions – The number of times your ad is served; this number is not “unique”, meaning your ad could serve more than once to the same person
• Reach – The number of people who see your ads; this can also be thought of as unique impressions
• Potential Reach – The estimated amount of people that your ads could reach given the current targeting options and budget that you have selected
• Frequency – How many times, on average, a unique individual receives an ad impression; can easily be calculated by dividing impressions by reach
If you are pretty new to PPC advertising, be sure to check out Facebook’s full rundown of Facebook ad terminology. You will definitely want to be familiar with these in order to understand and optimize your ad campaigns.

Facebook Ad Campaign Structure

The campaign structure for Facebook ads is as follows:
Campaign > Ad Set > Ads
• Campaign – Each campaign will be centered around one central goal (page likes, website clicks, etc.) and will consist of one or more ad sets.
• Ad Sets – Each ad set will contain one or more ads. Budget, schedule, targeting, placement, and bidding are controlled at the ad set level, making it easy to differentiate audiences, control spend on each audience, and measure/compare results.
• Ads – Ads live within an ad set. Each ad set can contain multiple ads, allowing for easy comparison and optimization.

Facebook Targeting

The targeting options for Facebook ads allow hoteliers to easily access just about any demographic.
Facebook targeting options include:
• Location – reach people in different countries, states, or cities; this allows hotels to target both globally and locally
• Demographics – reach guests based on different demographic information including age, gender, income, education level, etc.
• Interests – reach people based on their interests based on what Facebook pages they “like”; this includes categories like “vacations”, “travel”, and “beaches” – to name a few
• Behaviors – reach people based on their behaviors like device usage and purchase history; this includes useful categories like “travel intender” and “mobile device user”
• Connections – reach people who are connected to your page as well as friends of connections
• Custom Audiences – a more advanced feature, custom audiences allow an advertiser to upload a customer list (ex: email list) and market to those specific people. You can also use these lists to remarket to people who take a certain action on your website or mobile app. This feature is best for advertisers with very large customer databases and advertisers who want to reach people who have used their website or app.
• Lookalike Audiences – Lookalike audiences allow Facebook to help you find similar audiences that “look like” your current fan base. This is a great follow-up step for advertisers who have already set up custom audiences.
It’s important to note that you can use multiple targeting options at once. For example, a family-friendly beach hotel could easily target moms between the ages 25-45 who live along the east coast and who have an interest in traveling, beaches, and vacations. The ease and flexibility of the targeting options make it incredibly easy to reach an audience as broad or as precise as you wish.
Also keep in mind that targeting is set at the ad set level, meaning you can have multiple ad sets with different targeting within a single campaign but you cannot have multiple ads in an ad set with different targeting.

Setting Up Facebook Ads

You can easily access the Facebook Ad Center by clicking on the down arrow at the top right-hand corner of any Facebook account. Once selected, a drop-down menu will appear and you can select “create ads” from here.
You might want to carefully consider what account you use to run these ads and might even want to set up a separate “dummy” Facebook account to run these. Once the ads are set up, they can only be managed under that person’s account and all historical data will be stored there. This is a good option for very small hotel operations.
For a more robust experience, check out Facebook’s business center. Facebook actually prefers that advertisers use this platform, which makes it easier to add and manage different users and to track both organic and paid campaigns.
Setting up ads is fairly step-by-step and Facebook does a great job of leading you through the basic process. Be sure to use great photos and proper spelling and grammar throughout your ads and use a tone that speaks directly to your target audience.
Now that you’ve got the basics down, check out our post on The Best Facebook Ad Types for Hotels.

Need Help? That’s ok – TravelBoom to the rescue! Contact us today to see how TravelBoom can help you with Facebook advertising.

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