We talked to leading experts about how to run Facebook Ads. Here are their top tips, plus examples to show you how to build campaigns like a pro.

Here, you’ll find:

Running Facebook Ads can be tricky for beginners. You want to see a good Return on Ad Spend (ROAS), but doing so without breaking the bank and actually getting results…a whole ‘nother story.

Then wading through hundreds of tips and guides for Facebook ads can be confusing and make you overthink every step.

A waste of time and effort.

So scratch all that and go straight to the experts. In this post, we’ll run you through the steps we use to help our clients reach their target audience.

Plus, we gathered insights from PPC experts who shared their strategies and exclusive tips for creating scroll-stopping ads.

How to run Facebook ads (in 10 easy steps)

Here are the steps to run Facebook ads:

  1. Create an ad account for business
  2. Setup your business page
  3. Install the Meta-pixel
  4. Go to Facebook Ads Manager
  5. Select your objective
  6. Select your audience
  7. Set your Facebook ads budget
  8. Create a compelling Facebook ad
  9. Track and optimize your results
  10. Build a report to share with the team

1. Create a business account

Begin by creating your business account to use Meta Business Manager. Here are the following steps to take:

  • Go to the Meta Business Manager homepage.
  • Click on ‘Create Account.’ If you already have a Facebook account, you can log in using those credentials. If not, you’ll need to sign up.
  • Once logged in, follow the on-screen instructions to set up your business account. This includes providing business and contact information.

Once you create a business account a meta business account is automatically created. You can get access to Meta Business Suite from here.

Meta Business Suite is the place where you can handle all your Meta-related business items. It’s like a main hub where you can oversee things like Facebook pages, Instagram profiles, WhatsApp accounts, and more.

Create a business

(Image: Meta)

Think of it as a one-stop spot to manage all these business assets.

2. Setup your business page

Now, you need a Facebook Business Page to start advertising on Facebook. If you’ve previously set up a Facebook page, then skip it. But if you don’t have an account, navigate back to “Ad assets”, and select “Facebook page.”

Here you’ll have options to either create a new Page, claim an existing Page, or request to share a Page (in case you’re running ads for another business). This is useful if you prefer not to integrate the Facebook page into a business or personal account.

business page

(Image: Meta)

Now, Facebook will give you an option to add more specific information about your business. This can include contact details, your physical business location, and operating hours. To make the most of your online presence, fully fill out your page before starting any advertising campaigns.

Potential customers may visit your page directly from your ads when it appears on their newsfeed, so you provide all the information possible about your business to build trust.

3. Install the Meta-pixel

The Facebook pixel is a small piece of code that lets you see what actions people take on your website after viewing your new ad. This information can help you make your ads better and set up retargeting ads, which often give good results.

Note: With changes in iOS privacy and the phasing out of third-party cookies, it’s a smart move to also set up the Facebook Conversions API. This ensures you get a full view of your data.

Here are the steps to get started with Meta Pixel:

Head over to ‘Business Settings,’ click on ‘Data Sources.’ Then choose Pixels.

Data Sources

(Image: Meta)

Find and click ‘Add’ near the top search box.


(Image: Meta)

Enter a name and your website address (optional). Then, click ‘Continue’.


(Image: Meta)

Facebook will give you two options for installing the pixel: doing it yourself manually or using a partner’s tool.

If you’re not tech-savvy, using a partner tool can make the installation easier. Some of Facebook’s partners include:

  1. WordPress
  2. WooCommerce
  3. Shopify
  4. Google Tag Manager
  5. Zapier
  6. Segment

Note: During the pixel setup, you must confirm your website’s domain and set up your web events (also known as Aggregated Event Measurement). Web events help your Facebook ads work better by reaching the right people, showing them ads they’ll like, and getting better results for your business.

For web event setup, go to the Events Manager.

web event setup

(Image: Meta)

4. Go to Facebook Ads Manager

Facebook Ads Manager is where marketers create, manage, track, and analyze the performance of their Facebook Ads.

To navigate to Ads Manager, click the hamburger menu icon located at the top left corner of the screen (labeled as ‘All tools’).


(Image: Meta)

To start creating campaigns, select ‘Create.’


(Image: Meta)

5. Select your objective

After that, pick a campaign objective that aligns with what you hope to achieve with your ad.

Remember, if you aim to get specific results (like drive traffic, increase engagement, make sales), you’ll be charged per action taken. But if you just want to boost visibility (like getting more website visits), you’ll pay based on the number of times your ad appears

For our guide, let’s go with the “Leads” objective. Next, we have to detail the type of engagement we’re aiming for.


(Image: Meta)

6. Select your audience

Audience targeting on Facebook Ads Manager can boost your returns. You can pick or exclude people based on things like their interests, age, or where they live. For example, you could focus on those who love traveling and hiking, but exclude those into backpacking.

Here are the steps to select your target audience:

  1. Select the place, age range, gender, and language you’re aiming for. You can also pick or skip certain cities based on how big they are. If someone recently showed interest in what you’re selling, you can prioritize them.
  2. As you adjust your settings, look at the custom and lookalike audience size guide on the right. It shows how many people your ad might reach.
  3. The system will also estimate daily interactions and potential Page likes. If you’ve run ads before, these numbers might be more spot-on because Facebook knows your audience better. But remember, these numbers are just rough guesses, not promises.

(Image: Meta)

7. Set your Facebook ads budget

Now it’s time to allocate your budget without overspending on ads. So decide if you want a daily budget or a budget for the whole campaign.

The daily budget means your ad runs all day, and Facebook ensures you don’t spend more than you set. But you have to spend at least $1 a day. If you pick a lifetime budget, your ad will run for a certain time, and Facebook will spread out how much you spend over that period.

There are more ways to control how you spend your money. Check out what other businesses are doing to get an idea of how to approach your strategy.

If you’re not ready to show your ad right away, that’s okay. You can choose when to start and stop your ad and even pick the times it appears. This way, you can show your ad when your new customers are usually online, helping you make the most of your money.

8. Create a compelling Facebook ad

Your ad creative is a critical part of your ads. How you write it will determine whether your ad will convert.

First, pick the type of ad you want to run. Then, add your ad’s text and visuals. The types of ads available depend on the goal you set at the start. And ad placement is also important here.

If you’re using a single image, pick it from your Facebook photos and adjust it so it fits perfectly. You can also go for videos and carousel ads.

Campaign Budget

(Image: Meta)

Look at the preview on the right to see how your ad will appear in different places on Facebook. If everything looks right, hit the “Publish” button to get your ad live.

Autumn Sullivan from Big Sea suggests deconstructing a Facebook ad into its individual parts: text, headline, description, picture, and call-to-action (CTA). You should then clarify the role of each part.

“The main content should pinpoint what the customers are struggling with and present solutions,” says Sullivan. “Your headline’s job is to capture and retain their interest. The description is there to give more information and foster trust.”

She also adds that even though Facebook doesn’t give too many CTA choices, always pick the one that best aligns with the desired action you want your viewer to take.

9. Track and optimize your results

After launching your ads, monitor how they’re doing. To do this, look at two main places: Facebook Ads Manager and your ad software.

Facebook provides several important metrics to watch, and you can see them in the Ads Manager:

  1. Performance Metrics: Captures results, reach, frequency, and impressions.
    Pro tip: High frequency might indicate you’re targeting a too-narrow audience; broaden to avoid ad fatigue.
  2. Engagement Metrics: Revolves around likes, overall page engagement, and interactions with individual posts.
    Pro tip: Low engagement could signify irrelevant copy; refresh and realign with your audience’s interests.
  3. Video Metrics: Shows key indicators like total video views and the average portion of videos watched by viewers.
    Pro tip: If viewers drop off early, reconsider the video’s opening seconds to be more captivating.
  4. Website Metrics: Measures actions on your website, such as checkouts, purchases, and items added to the cart.
    Pro tip: High cart additions but low purchases? Check for bottlenecks or technical issues in the checkout process.
  5. App Metrics: Includes data like app installs, how people engage with your app, and the cost per engagement.
    Pro tip: Low app engagement post-install? Offer onboarding tutorials or incentives to keep users active.
  6. Event Metrics: Focuses on responses to your events and the associated cost for each response.
    Pro tip: Low event responses could indicate either a weak promotional strategy or the event’s relevance to the target audience. Analyze and adjust accordingly.
  7. Click Metrics: Shows total clicks, unique clicks, and the cost for each click.
    Pro tip: If you have high clicks but low conversions, reassess the alignment between your ad and your landing page.
  8. Settings Metrics: Delves into specifics such as the ad’s start and end dates, the name of the ad set, and its delivery and objective.
    Pro tip: Regularly revisit these settings to ensure they remain aligned with campaign goals and optimize as needed.

Tracking can be challenging, especially when you’re looking for data to increase sales. When building Facebook Ad campaigns for our clients, we use our proprietary software, ConversionIQ, to identify search terms high-converting audiences use so we can optimize ads to boost conversion potential

Our tool measures conversions, such as average order value (AOV) and ROAS, which allows data-driven decision-making for your Paid Search program. Then as a cherry on top, you can get Landing page design and conversion optimization to turn those clicks into leads and sales.

10. Build a report to share with the team

Finally, after selecting an objective and running your ad for at least two months, it’s time to build reports to show campaign performance.

Here are the steps to create a report

  1. Click on “Analyze and Report” from the main menu
  2. Go to “Ads Reporting.”
  3. Click on “Create Custom Report.”
  4. Open a saved report.
  5. Choose “Save As” beside the save icon. Name your report and select “Schedule Email.”

Follow the steps to set and confirm your report settings.

When running and tracking FB ads properly, you are able to extract info from ad campaigns that you can use to enhance other channels such as Paid Search, SEO, and other social platforms.

With ConversionIQ, we can identify this data to increase ROAS in other channels.

Remember, while tracking all these metrics is vital, never lose focus on your main advertising goals. Evaluating Facebook’s clicks and conversions will always remain a top priority.

Facebook advertising checklist for beginners

Start by Creating Your Business Account

Setup your Meta Business Suite and Ads Manager

Install Meta Pixel to Track Interactions on Your Website

Select Your Objective and Audience

Set your Facebook Ads Budget to Measure ROI

Create an Ad that Resonates with Your Audience

Monitor Your Performance and Optimize the Results

Consolidate the Data, Build a Report, and Share it with the Team

Expert strategies for creating well-performing ads

You know how to build a Facebook Ad campaign. Now, it’s time for some expert-vetted strategies to create compelling ads.

1. Use proven frameworks to write ads

Nick Shackleford, a paid social expert, shares his proven framework for writing ads. “Whether you’re going to make videos or images, there’s going to be a mixture of seven variables. If you follow those variables and advertising rules, this will become your tried and true strategy”

“First off, you need to have a hook. Find out what the hook is going to be, then present the problem and provide a solution,” continues Shackleford. “Next, answer these questions: what are the key features of that product or the solution you’re trying to sell? What are the hurdles that you need to overcome? Lastly, what is your Call-to-Action (CTA)?” continued Nick.

According to Nick, you need to follow a mixture of these seven variables to create compelling ads.

  1. Angle/Idea
  2. Hook
  3. Problem setup
  4. Solution
  5. Benefits (the big promise)
  6. Response to objections
  7. CTA

In short, remember: Be it Facebook or Instagram ads, it should be eye-catching and resonate with your target audience.

2. Speak in the audience’s language

The rule of thumb for building connections with your audience: “Speak the audience’s language,” says Bryan Clayton, CEO at GreenPal, a resource that helps connect landscapers with property owners“It’s not just about what you want to say; it’s about what they want to hear.”

Effective ad copy feels like you’re speaking directly to the consumer. By grasping who the readers are, you can tailor the message, tone, and wording to truly connect with them.

“Using tailored messaging, we were able to drop our CPA by 25% in a month,” shares Clayton. “That was a game-changer for us, as it allowed us to scale our ad spend while maintaining profitability.”

3. Avoid being pushy or aggressive

“When it comes to advertising on Facebook, it’s important to strike the right balance. People don’t appreciate a pushy or aggressive approach,” advises Sayem Ibn Kashem, a content strategist and Ad specialist.

“It’s crucial to create ads that feel like a friendly conversation rather than a sales pitch. Be authentic, share your story, and showcase how your product or service can genuinely improve people’s lives.”

Kashem also suggests using captivating visuals that tell a story and catch people’s attention.

“Think of it as inviting them to a casual chat over coffee, rather than forcing a sales agenda on them,” notes Kashem. “By creating ads that connect with and resonate with your audience, you’re not just selling products; you’re building relationships that can do lead generation and create conversions. It’s like finding common interests with a friend at a party – it just feels right.”

4. Ensure your ad visuals and copy are in sync

Based on Wyzowl’s findings, 81% of marketers noticed a surge in sales with video ads. Furthermore, video ads were more successful in persuading 88% of consumers to purchase a product.

This shows people love videos.

Kashem believes the visual elements should work in harmony with the copy. “Say I’m advertising a cloud storage service. Instead of using stock photos of clouds, I’d create a visual showing a stressed-out person turning relieved and happy after using our service,” explains Kashem.

“The visual echoes the ad copy, which might say something like “Never Worry About Losing Your Files Again.”

Pro tip: Meta Pixel reports track how many people watched your whole video ad and the average time they spent watching. Analyze the watch time, to make new videos the right length to get more results.

5. Avoid setting and forgetting

Alexander Zuidam, the head of Sales and Marketing at upMention shared that “An FB ad campaign strategy is never a set-it-and-forget-it game plan. Facebook’s advertising features and algorithms are constantly evolving. So it’s vital to adjust your messaging and how you target your audience quarterly.”

Zudaim advises that you experiment with different types of content, ad formats, and targeting options.

“For example, we’ll leverage influencer marketing for three months,” explains Zudaim. “Then, for the next three, we’ll prioritize paid ad campaigns. This keeps our social media presence and messaging fresh and relevant for our customers.”

Clayton also echoed the same sentiment.. “You don’t just launch a campaign and walk away, expecting results to roll in,” shares Clayton. “You have to monitor those metrics, I believe. Make adjustments based on what the data is telling you. It works. every time.”

6. Embracing an ROI and performance mindset

By focusing on ROI, you can prevent unnecessary ad spend and ensure the budget is spent in the right strategies that bring tangible returns.

“We take an ROI and performance approach when it comes to FB ads. Not only do we identify your target, and demographics, but we also look at important factors such as desired ROAS, cost per acquisition, scalability, and lifetime value of a customer,” notes Rambod Yadegar, President of HawkSEM.

“Further, we track all steps of the customer journey with ConversionIQ to really understand what is working and how to optimize towards results,” adds Yadegar.

Pro tip: A/B test Facebook ads to improve your ad performance. For instance, you can run ads on Facebook, Messenger and Audience Network to experiment with different ad formats and styles. This will help you pinpoint what improves engagement with the target audience.

Why advertise on Facebook?

After iOS 14 went into effect in 2021, its privacy policy changes limited the ability to send personalized ads on Facebook. It shook the paid media realm (and rightfully so — nothing gets clicks like a good ol’ personalized ad. Even Facebook saw the disruption, predicting that small businesses could see a dip of 50% in website sales from ads.

The result? People assumed Facebook ads would die.

Despite the roadblocks, among 3 billion active users, a staggering 83.3% of medium-sized businesses continue to advertise on Facebook, making it the leading paid social platform in the United States.

“FB ads are growing in popularity year over year and are a great platform for advertising to a specific target audience,” says Rambod Yadegar, President of HawkSEM. “We’ve learned that FB ads are most effective when utilized in a comprehensive digital marketing strategy/campaign including, paid search, SEO, remarketing, and video, to name a few.”

That proves, no matter who your specific audience is — age, gender, occupation — you’re likely to find them on Facebook. With the right social media marketing strategy, you can build a social media advertising campaign that reaches them.

advertise on Facebook

(Image: Statista)

According to Databox, over 90% of the marketers surveyed believe Facebook ads are at least somewhat effective at generating sales.

The goal of advertising is to help potential customers discover your brand and offerings fast. Facebook also helps create brand awareness.

Take, Wind River, for instance. We helped them create targeted and fresh campaigns to grow its users by over 39%.

Similarly, we worked with Apotheke, which needed help with its paid search efforts and to drive their social strategy. As a luxury brand in a competitive space, it needed to position its products effectively to its target audience, acquire new customers while retaining brand loyalists.

Our solution expanded Apotheke’s efforts in several ways:

  • Implementing social shopping through Meta Shops (Facebook and Instagram’s parent company), which resulted in hundreds of purchases
  • Humanizing the brand by working with influencers who unboxed products, described fragrances, and showcased them in a home and lifestyle setting
  • Shifting away from always-on sales and offer codes to attract high-intent audiences in the luxury goods market

The results we achieved were impressive:

  • Conversion rates increased by 25%
  • Year-over-year return on ad spend (ROAS) grew by over 62%
  • Total ad spend decreased by nearly 30%

Next, let’s review how Facebook’s features can power your business’s advertising campaigns:

1. Precise micro-targeting

Facebook’s powerful micro-targeting feature segments custom audiences and shows your ad to people most likely to be interested in your offer.

Micro-targeting gives the right people a nudge to look at your stuff. For example or it does this by…

You can even make your ad targeting super precise by choosing the right Facebook audience, their interest, demographics, gender, age, and so on.

Micro-targeting serves relevant ads to potential customers, making your paid ads work harder for you.

2. Lower CPC cost

One benefit of building Facebook ads is you can have a lower advertising budget compared to LinkedIn, Instagram, or YouTube, where the average price you pay per click is $0.94. The Facebook ads cost varies, but can be as low as $0.79 per click.

3. In-built ads analytics

Facebook’s built-in ads analytics gives advertisers and marketers a comprehensive view of the vitality and success of their advertising campaigns.

This tool provides critical metrics, including impressions, reach, clicks, click-through rate (CTR), cost per click (CPC), conversion rate, and return on ad spend (ROAS), to show the campaign’s health and overall effectiveness.

By continually analyzing this data, you can fine-tune your approaches and optimize Facebook ad campaigns, ensuring every dollar spent contributes to your desired outcomes.

The takeaway

Facebook ads can be a game-changer for businesses looking to effectively engage their target audience. By following expert-vetted strategies and tips, you can ensure your campaigns are set up for success.

However, keep in mind that while Facebook advertising offers a broad framework, the specifics will depend on your business’s unique requirements and goals. To truly harness the power of Facebook ads, adopt a mindset of continuous experimentation, testing, and refinement.

This way, you can tailor your strategy to best serve your business’s needs and capitalize on the vast opportunities Facebook advertising presents.

Contact HawkSEM for Free Consultation