New research has revealed that a majority of event marketers don't bother using Facebook ads in their promotion. Whatever your feelings on Facebook may be, however, there are several reasons why advertising via the social media platform can be a huge asset in making your event a success.
Guest post by Katie Sawyer of Eventbrite
74% of event marketers use Facebook Ads to promote their events, according to Eventbrite research.
If you aren’t using Facebook Ads, you could be missing out on traffic to your ticketing or registration page, and worse, ticket sales.
The most obvious reason to use Facebook ads is to build awareness of your event. But beyond awareness, here are three more compelling reasons why you need to be using Facebook Advertising.
1. You’ll save time on marketing
In a survey of 1,000 event creators, 45% of respondents said their teams consist of two to five people. Nearly a third (28%) said they’re flying solo. With such little manpower, your marketing will fall behind without ruthless prioritization.
If time is your most valuable asset, activities like manually importing audiences or designing brand new ads will quickly put your event at risk. To put your energy where it matters — without the extra workload — use Facebook Ads to automate previously manual and repetitive tasks.
Put it in action:
- Create awareness without additional work: Instead of blasting ads to anyone, save time and increase your ticket sales by targeting those that are most likely interested in your event. Drive targeted traffic to your site using Lookalike Audiences. Check out this tipsheet about how to reach your ideal audience using Facebook targeting.
- Add a pixel to your site to save time on marketing later: Use the Facebook pixel to add everyone who visits your site to a Custom Audience. The pixel is a little bit of code that can help you optimize your ads for ticket sales.
- Resurface your event without creating new ads: Retarget using this Custom Audience and convert them, which will use your spend more effectively since you’re targeting an interested audience.
Facebook lets you test ads, which will save you money by only spending on the ads that are most effective. Start spending smartly by testing (and optimizing) your ads.
Put it in action:
If you’re not using A/B testing to continually optimize your campaign, you’re not only wasting a golden opportunity to engage more people — you’re wasting money. Here are some best practices for A/B testing your Facebook ads:
- Choose one variable. Test one thing at a time to make sure you know exactly what is driving your winning campaign. For example, you might choose to test the text, the image, or the subject line. Only do one at a time to get clean data.
- Set your time frame. Facebook suggests a four-day test period. At a minimum, keep your test open for three days, and no more than 14 days.
3. You’ll get better results
Your ad strategy should be all about getting into the feeds of your ideal audience — and getting them to purchase tickets. Many event promoters and marketers pay for multiple ads — but don’t focus on what those ads are communicating. Design eye-catching ads to convert viewers into ticket buyers.
Put it in action:
Here’s how you can make your ads stand out:
- Invest in high quality (ideally non-stock) photos: Put yourself in the attendee’s shoes. For example, if you’re hosting a cooking class, use pictures that show bowls of ingredients from a top-down, first-person perspective, rather than just wide shots of people enjoying class. If you don’t want to pay for a professional photographer, offer your attendees free event tickets or other perks for rights to use their images from your events.
- Choose colors that stand out: Pick colors that will pop against Facebook’s background. A vibrant and bold color palette will help your ad stand out.
- Keep copy short: Check the mobile preview that Facebook offers to make sure none of your copy is getting cut off on mobile.
- Induce FOMO: Create urgency with your ads. Are your prices about to change? Do you only have a limited number of tickets left? Make sure to spell it out for your audience.
Sell more with your Facebook Ads
Two billion people use Facebook every month — and you’re one of them. But even if you’re familiar with the platform, creating ads for your event is complex. Learn how you can increase your ROI and ticket sales in this tipsheet to How to Create Your Event’s Facebook Advertising Strategy.
Katie Sawyer is a writer at Eventbrite, where she helps event organizers throw awesome festivals, food and drink bonanzas, and cultural events. You can find her sampling beer, stuffing her face with cookies, and checking out local comedy shows.