We do a TON of Facebook advertising for our own projects and for clients alike. The one thing that I can say is that it is certainly a moving target. Even as a professional, seems that everytime I login I can’t find something that I knew right where it was the week before. What’s the point in all this? Well Facebook Advertising is changing constantly and based on what we are seeing there will be some even bigger changes early in the next year.
Why Do People Use Facebook Advertising?
This question probably seems obvious to many reading this. The most obvious answer is to get in front of the massive audience that they have created with sniper like targeting. The secondary answer is because it is fairly cheap advertising and they make it super easy to get started. This is VERY intentional, I have seen stats claiming that 25%+ of the money spent on Facebook ads might as well have been thrown into a fire. It did nothing for the person and there was 0 ROI.
Now that being know, I can assure you that it is a very effective platform for advertising. We have run tons of successful campaigns advertising only on this platform, but it takes a lot of work and this is what they fail to tell you. I always reccomend checking out https://smartmarketer.com/ as Ezra Firestone seems like a geniunly nice guy and knows more about Facebook advertising than I could ever hope to know. If you watch some of his content you will learn quickly that there are many deep deep layers into making a successful campaign and the devil is in the detail for sure.
What changes are coming?
Well first of all, let me tell you that the BIG changes are just conjecture, but the one thing you will learn is that we digital marketers have to work with half information a lot when it comes to the next big change coming down the pipe from Google, Facebook, or any other tech giant.
That being said, we have it on good authority that in early 2017 Facebook will reach its ads limit. What does this mean? In the most basic of terms, Facebook set a hard number so that its platform wouldn’t completely sacrifice the user experience just to run ads. No one would go to a baseball game to look at the billboard in the outfield, and no one would log into Facebook if it were ALL ads.
So the general consensus is that Facebook will hit this hard number in early 2017 and that is going to completely change the game.
How you ask?
- Supply and Demand – Facebook has a massive demand for advertising on it’s platform and once the hard number is reached they will restrict what ads will be served. This is turn is going to drive up the cost of advertising massively, based on the age-old principle of supply and demand. Another great resource on this topic Social Media Examiner – this article by SME outlines research showing that Social Media Advertising spend has now surpassed TV! That's crazy stuff right there!
- Ad Reach – again I must state that this is only a guess, but for those that have advertised on other platforms (e.g. Google), know that there are a multitude of different factors that restrict where and how your ad is served. I am wagering we will see more of this on the Facebook platform. Although a lot of it already exists, it is not yet to the level of Google Adwords, but my feeling is that it will head that way.
So what now?
No need to run for the hills – we are certain that it will be a slow transition, but if you do a lot of Facebook advertising and count on it for business, I would recommend budgeting for an increased spend in 2017. Can’t give a hard number but the CPC (cost per click) could go up 10-20% to get the same reach. Take this into account when budgeting for the new year.
Also, train yourself. There is a lot to take in when it comes to Facebook Advertising or any online advertising and marketing for that matter. If it is something that you have an interest in tackling yourself, do it, but make sure you train yourself. We spend hours each week reading just trying to keep up for our clients and if you are not in this mindset, it is likely you are going to waste a lot of money. There are tons of opinions floating out there, so to make it easy I will list some resources for you here. Good luck and I hope you “like” this article. PUN INTENDED.