Before I get into the nuts and bolts of my experiment with creating Facebook ads in this epic post, I want to talk about blogging a little bit. It took me 5+ years or so of painful experiments and knowledge seeking with Food Revolt before I figured out how to be a “strategic blogger.” That strategic blogging is now reaping some benefits, but I’m still on a journey.
I think four of the most important things I’ve learned about blogging and building a passive income are:
- Never stop learning
- Always be intentional with every action you take on your blog
- Start your blog now, you’re already behind.
- And don’t be afraid to experiment
Let me explain how I’m being intentional with this blog post while sharing crucial information with you at the same time.
First, I was intentional about the title of this blog post and the keywords I chose to target when creating it.
Before I sit down to write any blog, whether it be on Food Revolt, Sparkle Grin or for my Amazon software company AccelerList, I always think about the subject matter first, and then the keywords second.
That’s because if you don’t write your articles so that they are optimized for Google ranking keywords then you’re wasting your time because no one is going to find you. No matter how beautifully you write or how interesting your subject is.
Create Facebook is the winner
So for this article I was looking for some keywords that met the following criteria:
- Low in competition (CPC; cost per click)
- Relevant to the subject matter
- Could be worked into the title and body of text
So thinking about that criteria, I chose CREATE FACEBOOK as my keywords and you can see that in the title of this article.
I found this keyword by using the best online SEO tool in the business, SEMrush. Try to search for some keywords for free below:
It’s fun to play around with but you also have to know what you’re looking for too. So let’s take a look at the search I did for the term “facebook ads”. I knew that actual term would be insane high in the Google rankings along with having some stiff competition so I dug deep and looked for some keywords that were strategic.
The stats behind “create Facebook”
It’s a little hard to tell by this picture (maybe I’ll have my VA fix it later) but the keyword create facebook gets around 3,600 searches a month on Google and has a CPC (cost per click) of only $0.41 cents per click. That’s really low as I’ve seen CPC as high as $55 per click!
So with this keyword the upside search results upside is huge at 3,600 and the probability that I can’t rank for it is really good at $0.41 cents. I’ve found my winner.
On to the Facebook ad strategy
So I’ve having my Virtual Assistant design, create and upload mugs for me each day into inventory for an insane low hourly wage and she’s been able to knock out around 20-30 mugs per day. I’m using the drop shipping system from Gear Bubble so I don’t have to buy inventory at all. In order to scale, I just need to get in as many mug designs as possible to Amazon so I can scale quickly.
My goal is to have 1000 mugs in by the end of January, 2016.
Still with me?
But I don’t want to just wait around for organic sales on Amazon and since I don’t have the buy box on my own mugs (Amazon doesn’t consider mugs unique enough products to award Buy Boxes on) then I need to push traffic to my listings in addition to juicing the keywords for Amazon.
The Actual Facebook Set Up
So my first idea (since I’m experimenting) was to select three entirely different mug styles and run ads on all three of them together to see if one particular style “took off” more than another. So I quickly made some killer Facebook Ads in my go-to program, YouZign and then loaded them on the Facebook advertising platform.
Here are the three very different mugs and very different ad designs I came up with. Which one do you like the most? (sound off in the comment section)
Optimizing the Amazon listing with a Super URL
Before I inserted the link to my Amazon mugs in the Facebook ad manager I wanted to be sure I was leveraging the link 100% and getting the most value out of it as possible. So I headed over to AMZtracker and loaded up some keywords for each mug design and started creating my Super URLs.
So basically what AMZtracker does is allow you to assign relevant keywords (you pick them based on your keyword research over at SEMrush) to your product URL and add them to your Super URL link so that when someone (a potential buyer) clicks on your listing…the link “mimics” the search function at Amazon so that their algorithm “thinks” that the customer searched the keywords you pre-selected and found your product.
Did I lose you yet?
In the example above, I selected 8 keywords for that mug. AMZtracker will randomly assign my keywords each time someone clicks on my product link. Amazon thinks people are using those keywords to find my product thus I begin to “rank” in Amazon’s algorithm for that mug design.
Now there is some debate going on whether this violates Amazon’s TOS or if these Super URLs even work anymore but AMZtracker has thousands of customers and they wouldn’t in business still if thousands of customers were getting their accounts suspended.
Either way, it was worth the risk for me to at least try.
First 12 hour results (1st update)
So it’s been 12 hours now since I posted the three ads and here are the results thus far. I honestly am doing to this to keep myself accountable but I also want to share this knowledge with you guys.
Out of the three ads, I am paying $.39, $.65 and $.43 cents per click right now. The goal is to get to $.10 per click.
That’s right. I want to only pay a DIME for every click I get.
I’m pointing out the $.65 click ad in this picture because it’s the one I just deleted. I could have tweaked the settings a little bit and did some more experimenting but I pulled the plug for these reasons.
- This ad is the “Hello My Name is Success” mug and it’s too broad of an idea to narrow down the targeting approach
- My other two designs are specific enough that I can target better and get my CPC (cost-per-click) down further I think
I’m not going to edit the other two right now because I’m actually ok with $.39 and $.43 cents per click right now. In another 12 or 24 hours I will edit the ad some more. Besides, this whole experiment is only set to run a week so the costs are low relative to the upside potential of sales.
I’ve gotten a total of 34 clicks in the first 12 hours with a “reach” of 1809 eyeballs. That works out to a 0.018 conversion rate for clicks which sucks but I imagine it could get better as Facebook learns who is clicking on my ads and then re-adjusts where they show the ad to help optimize for more clicks.
OH – and there hasn’t been any sales yet. 🙁
5 Day Update (and end of campaign)
So even though this was only a week or less long ad campaign before it ended (did that on purpose) I managed to learn a lot. The biggest thing I learned is that people will click on your “mug” ad on Facebook. If the design is catchy enough, they will click on it.
So it’s not like you’re selling worm bait and nobody is going to click on it. People will click on your mug ad if they are semi interested and that in-of-itself is very encouraging if you’re trying to sell mugs.
But there was three (and a fourth) other things I learned as well during the brief campaign which I have laid out in this graphic.
2 % Click Thru Rate
Even on a very broad targeting campaign (this is why it failed most likely) you can achieve a 2% click thru rate which is not too far off the average Facebook CTR of 12%. This too is very encouraging because this campaign wasn’t targeted at all. I learned through this process that in order to get great CTR or CPC, you need to be very targeted with your demographics and interest.
Cost Per Click
Again, not bad at all. I had a CPC of $0.44 cents and the average is $0.50. So I’m about optimized on my CPC and I know now for the future that I’ll need to spend $50 cents for every click whenever I do any advertising on Facebook.
I didn’t break the bank
I only spent $30 dollars on this experiment and I probably learned the same thing I would have learned if I bought some $20-$30 ebook from some Facebook Ads guru. I’m a lot smarter and only a little lighter in the pockets. And YOU get this lesson for free. 🙂
Men clicked on more mugs
I thought this might only be true for the Moscow Mule mug because it’s a popular mug with men and the NYC mug was more trendy and fashionable which I thought might appeal to women more but in both ads, men out-clicked women by almost a 20% spread consistently. Because of the additional clicks by men, the cost of the clicks naturally went down.
So why didn’t they buy?
That’s a damn good question. I’m not entirely sure. I am about 90% sure it’s because of the limited targeting. My target was too high, anyone that lived in New York for example was my target for the NYC mug. Probably not the best tactic.
So what’s next?
Like Mike Ditka (Chicago Bears 1985 Super Bowl coach) said, “You’re never a quitter until you stop trying.” For my next experiment, I’ll be doing the following:
- Pick two mug designs that are very, very niche specific
- Pick one design for women and one for men and run them both at the same time to compare
Stay tuned for another post like this where I share my next results. Until then, try out some experiments with Facebook ads yourself and go ahead and leave a comment below on your thoughts about my experiment.
*This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commision if you make a purchase using this link. The links contained within this post do not cost you additional monies.