It’s something that hangs heavy over your head.
You’ve got a great reach on Facebook. You’ve done well to build an audience and get them to engage with your content. It is so satisfying to see this happening, so what could possibly be bothering you?
Conversions, of course.
Advertisers and marketers are beginning to realize that a higher engagement rate and reach doesn’t always translate to the kind of ROI that a brand or business looks for in their advertising/marketing campaigns. Many companies have even pulled out of Facebook due to poor sales and conversions.
Your business goal that drives your Facebook marketing strategy should be to increase conversions. However, this goal has become difficult to achieve with increasing consumer expectations and rising competition for News Feed real estate.
That said, you’ve also been blessed with options such as Facebook video ads. These ads, when executed correctly, can lead to a significant increase in conversions.
With video ads estimated to occupy 15 percent of digital advertising market by 2017, Facebook was well aware how lucrative it can be to make the option available to Facebook marketers and to edge out competitors such as YouTube. The company has also incorporated the following features with video ads:
- Auto Play
Videos play in News Feeds automatically, and are counted as a view after 3 seconds (the industry standard). People seeing the video can click a button to unmute a sound, and see the video in full screen by expanding the player. This feature is applicable to Premium Video Ads only (videos that are 15 seconds long).
- Video view counts
All videos show how many views they have received, which can be used to calculate the conversion rate and aid content discovery.
- Audience retention graph
This graph in Page Insights will show the level of user interest in different parts of a video. A spike in the views at certain points will indicate interest at particular moments, whereas a decline will showcase the part of the video where people stopped watching.
How to use Facebook video ads to increase conversions
While video ads don’t guarantee an increase in conversions, using them in the following ways will increase your chances of improving your ROI:
1. Create educational and inspirational videos
Don’t just run Facebook video ads for the sake of pushing video content out there. Create inspirational and informative content to influence the decision making process of the audience and get them to take action.
Such videos communicate your brand or product’s story in a better way than a sales video would. The script should distinguish the benefits of doing business with you and how your company is better than your competitors. It’s important to stay tasteful and not get salesly from start till finish (let the call to action do the sales part).
Target did a great job by sharing this inspirational DIY video on Valentine’s Day, which also helped in increasing the retailer’s own sales.
A study by Anagard informed that when it comes to attention on the web, it’s a case of blink and miss. So people normally see a certain content on Facebook for 6 seconds or less (just somewhat longer than the average link). So if people don’t notice, your content can’t convert, so whatever makes them look longer will help with conversions. That’s what educational and inspirational videos do. Use quality best practices while creating such videos.
2. Integrate call-to-action
Facebook video ads will lead to more conversions when they include a call-to-action (CTA). The CTA will tell people what to do, such as ‘watch future videos to learn more’ or ‘stop by our store to buy these items’. The CTA can also direct viewers to discounts or coupons. Advertisers also have the option to redirect users to a dedicated landing page for relevant actions in the video (this works well for eCommerce stores).
Here’s a call to action button at the end of the video for Felicia Mupo. It redirects to the official website.
Don’t take a vague approach and hope you’ll be able to convince people to take certain action. That won’t happen if you overwhelm them, even if the video itself is creative. Make a shortlist of what you aim to accomplish, then cut it down to a narrowed list. Then use that list to select what you want the audience to do and use it as a CTA.
3. Use optimized CPM (oCPM) to pay for video ads
Don’t link CPC ads to external videos as there will be no auto-play in this case. Use oCPM bidding for video ads as it will optimize the video ad towards people who are more likely to take the desired action (such as go to the website at the end of the video) rather than just engaging with the post. This will reduce your cost per video view and show better insights for the ad.
You pay per view with oCPM, while enabling Facebook to search for viewers within your specified price point. While the price is going to be higher than normal CPM bidding, the cost per view will turn out to be lower at the end. You can learn more about these bid types in our Facebook ad bidding guide for beginners.
4. Choose the right target audience
Standard video ads on Facebook can be created for specific people, such as those who have already viewed your content. For example, you can come up with a follow up video for already captured leads to help them transition from awareness to consideration and affinity. Most of the targeting options can be found under the ‘behavior heading’ for video ads.
There is also the option of using the Custom Audience feature while creating Facebook ads. This will target the videos to your existing audiences, after you upload their user IDs, mobile IDs, numbers, and/or email addresses.
This will enable you to reach audiences who already know about you and inspire them to take action through the video. The feature will be quite useful to recover lost customers or encourage those customers who don’t open your emails.
And for reaching new customers, you can ‘exclude’ the entire custom audience set while setting the target for a video ad.
5. Remember to test
Test different video ads to determine what converts best. To optimize the video ad campaign, test more than two ad sets; because the first video ad outperforms the second doesn’t mean it will do better than the third video ad too.
A/B test everything from the content in your video to the videos’ headline and call-to-action. Determine what works best. You can also use the audience retention graph in this case to see where the interest was lost, and then A/B test 2-3 videos to see what works best to recapture interest.
Lastly, A/B test your target audience to determine the best viewers who’re likely to convert.
Videos are likely to get greater engagement on Facebook because of their visual power. And by following the above-mentioned strategies, you can ensure that you get conversions from that engagement.
Do you use Facebook video ads? What do you think of the results? Feel free to share your thoughts and suggestions in comments.