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Is it worth it to spend money on Facebook ads?

This is a valid question marketers and business owners have been asking since the social media Goliath known as Facebook began to grow to the size and stature that it is today. When you can get your message out simply by creating a post, is it really going to make that much of a difference to throw a couple bucks behind it? Again, a valid question.

Not to take the wind out of my sails or anything, but the short answer is, well, yes! Sorry, the journalist in me hates to bury the lead.

Now, as to what exactly makes paid Facebook advertising so effective and worthwhile is up for debate and many different marketers will point to this or point to that. I’m not necessarily here to do that to you today. What I will do though, is walk you through a couple of the key points and features Facebook advertising has to offer and let you choose for yourself.

> 1 Billion

Yeah, there are like, a lot of people on Facebook now-a-days. Not sure if you’ve noticed or not. Seriously, try to think of someone other than your grandmother or kooky mother-in-law who doesn’t have an account and obsess over it constantly, like a normal person.

As a marketer, all of the greater than one billion of these people are at your fingertips and itching for content that entertains, informs or otherwise distracts them from work. You would be a fool to not take advantage of this opportunity.

Better yet, users break themselves down into categories based on their likes. This makes it that much easier to reach them. Unlike traditional media, the focus is not hitting the largest market, but the right market. Have a flower shop? Use paid ads to advertise directly to people interested in flowers or horticulture. You do not have to wade through the pool of those uninterested in what you have to say or what you’re selling. And, with “Likes” and “Shares” those people can act as secondary messengers within their pool.

Marketing at your own pace

With Facebook ads, the more you spend, the longer your ad campaign can run and the more people will see it. While that seems to be a disadvantage for those with smaller budgets, it may actually work the other way around.

Perhaps the flower shop in our example doesn’t have the biggest budget to dedicate to advertising. That shop would still get more bang for the buck advertising on Facebook over television, websites, in the newspaper or a magazine. On average, a $24 ad can yield about 100 clicks on a website. Not too shabby for those on a budget! And if you have more than $24 a month to spend, perfect!

Facebook marketing is also very flexible and forgiving. You can go in and edit an ad at any time or change the duration. Running an ad with a typo on TV ad or in the paper can be devastating, but could have been easily fixed if it were a Facebook ad.

Analytics… Hooray!

So your campaign has run its course, now what? With Facebook advertising, you are presented with gobs and gobs of analytics and information you can use to actually improve the next campaign. You don’t have to hunt people down in the street and follow up with emails to determine if it was effective or not.

You can track how many people actually saw it, how many people clicked it, when it was most active or effective and even what you paid per click. All this information, when combined and utilized effectively, can serve as your own team of analysts. Didn’t get a lot of clicks? Maybe try broadening or widening your scope. Pay-per-clicks show you exactly where your money went, telling you right then and there if it was a worthwhile investment or not.

Long story short, when you just post something on Facebook, you are hoping people find their way to it. With paid ads, your post will find its way to them. And not just people, but the right people. Ready to take command on Facebook and help your business grow? Let’s talk.

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Roundpeg is an Indianapolis content marketing firm.