Promoting an event on Facebook is not only a smart, effective way to reach your target audience, it’s also relatively easy. By using the right tools, you can target people who are most likely to be interested in what you’re doing, keeping your budget low and your engagement high.
How to Use Facebook Ads to Promote Your Event
Choosing the Right Ad
Let’s use an example to show how this works. A rehab facility in Florida, 12 Keys Recovery, is considering hosting an event focused on how to stage an alcohol intervention. 12 Keys has an active Facebook presence and an audience who would be receptive to this type of event.
The facility’s first step would be to create an event page and then make a listing for the event itself. Next decide what type of Facebook ad to use. The one that fits best for promoting an event is sponsored story or promoted post. A sponsored story will let people see who is already going to your event, a strong motivator; a promoted post will lay out the parameters of the event and explain what it’s about. Both can be effective.
Next 12 Keys must decide how to target the ads. Demographics will vary depending on what your event is, but for 12 Keys it might want to target people who have interacted with the page before, who have done searches on addiction, or who live close by to where the event is being held.
Setting It Up Correctly
There are also a number of more technical questions you’ll need to ask:
• When to run the ads?
The best time to start running the ads is at least three weeks in advance. You want to give people time to plan but not so much time that they procrastinate or forget about the event.
• How much to budget per day?
This obviously depends on your event marketing budget, but you can probably get away with allocating fewer dollars to Facebook than you would to traditional media like TV or radio to promote the event, and get better engagement.
• Should you create the ad from your personal page or the business page?
It’s best to do it through the business. That means 12 Keys would set up the event through its own page, in part because the people who have liked the page are also the ones you’ll want to be promoting to. But if you’d like to also post about the event on your personal page, go for it.
• Do you target your fans or new people?
Ideally you’ll do both. For 12 Keys, it already knows that the people who have “liked” its page have an interest in alcohol rehab, so reaching out to them makes sense. But there are always others who could benefit from an event like this, and it doesn’t make sense to limit the potential audience. Ideally you will create a campaign for each situation and target them differently.
• When to stop running the ad?
If 12 Keys’ event is scheduled for the last day of the month, it would want to run the ads until midnight on the day of the event. That way it still catches people on the day of, but it’s not sticking around any longer, which can make your brand look out of touch or forgetful.
The Right Bang for Your Buck
By the end of the campaign, 12 Keys should have reached just the right balance of interested and local parties to ensure strong attendance at its event. Follow those same steps for whatever you’re promoting, and you’ll be glad you ordered that extra flat of champagne when everyone shows up.