Facebook Ads versus Google AdWords
We run campaigns on both systems, often copying from one to the other. There’s no simple import utility that will copy campaigns between systems, like you can from Google to Yahoo. There likely never will be– since the traffic is so different. Some key differences:
- Google has keywords– millions of them. Facebook has profile variables– perhaps a few thousand, if you look at DK’s list of top Facebook keywords. PPC keywords provide intent– what the user is looking for now, while profile variables tell you what the user likes– typically music and TV shows– but not what they want right now. The timing of when they want something is what makes AdWords convert well, while the demographic capabilities of social ads lets you target WHO they are.
- Use the indirect method on Facebook. While you’d perhaps buy “weight loss” on AdWords or YSM, on Facebook you would instead buy the TV shows that middle aged females would most likely watch– The Biggest Loser, even. Speaking of weight loss, the user might be a Denver liposuction doctor, but you wouldn’t know that on Google when they’re searching. If you’re buying a professional service term to target funeral directors, you can’t even do that on Google– you can’t tell who is looking for a funeral director versus who actually is one.
- Facebook ads are WAY cheaper. It’s a new system, they don’t have a public API, the user base is still mostly kids. But if you hit the right niches, you can get traffic for a fraction of PPC pricing. For example, SpyFu says garage sales costs 26 to 55 cents a click, but you know that you can get 5-10 cent clicks on Facebook for folks who have garage sales as one of their interests.
- But volume varies: If you are targeting by interest, you won’t get many clicks. If you are an affiliate marketing network running acai berry– and you can get the ad approved– at 10 cents a click and a $40 payout, you can’t lose. You’d need one click in 400 to convert, but your volume would be low. The bid strategy we use on Facebook is somewhat similar to Google– bid high and then gradually lower bids by a couple pennies at a time. If you drop it too fast, your traffic will dry up.
- Make LOTS of ads: Facebook doesn’t take into account the number of ads in a campaign when testing the eCPM of new ads. In other words, as new ads come into the system, they have to allocate a certain number of impressions to determine whether that ad will earn them money– based on the CTR and average CPC (which is eCPM). So set up dozens of ads– both to get more impressions, plus to test combinations of image, headline, targeting variable, and landing page. If you have 2 of each, that’s 2 to the 4th power, which is 16 variations. The great news here is that once you find a combination that works, your earnings can be sustainable. Other affiliates can copy your ads, but what’s the chance they have the same combination of variables?
- Make lots of money: There’s plenty of money out there for folks who work hard and systematically test. Questions? Read my affiliate marketing blog.
This article was written by Harrison Gevirtz.
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