Create your First Facebook Ad in 15 minutes

I’m a big fan of the outdoors and a few years ago, I wanted to take my hiking to the next level. So, I decided to try a super challenging winter hike up Mt. Washington in New Hampshire.

However, winter hiking is MUCH different than hiking during the other three seasons. I had to learn a lot of information in a short of time. I had to have the right gear. I had to be in good enough shape to hike quickly before freezing to death (just kidding, kind of).

I found tons of information online but really, I just needed someone to show me how the entire thing worked: what advice, tips, and gear was actually required to accomplish my goal.

Recently a friend reached out to me because she wanted to take her business to the next level. Since she was already familiar with boosting posts on Facebook, she wanted to promote her website with Facebook Ads.

Here’s the deal:

Facebook Ads can be daunting at first, just like a climb up 6,000 feet during the freezing cold. Fortunately, you can follow the step-by-step instructions below to create your first Facebook Ad in about 15 minutes. Once you learn the basics, you’ll be able to customize as needed.

What you will learn in this guide

  1. Mistakes to avoid before creating your first Facebook Ad Campaign
  2. How Facebook makes it easy for you to save time with optimized defaults
  3. How to create an ad that gets attention (bonus material download)

The great thing about Facebook Ads is that you are reaching people where they are already hanging out. People spend tons of time on Facebook these days and Facebook makes it pretty easy to get started and get decent results for relatively low cost. Imagine how much it would cost to reach a bazillion people with traditional hometown newspaper advertising?

Before you get started

  1. Disable any AdBlocking software of plugins that you have running in your browser. They can interfere with how your ads look while you are setting them up. Be sure to enable the AdBlocking software after you are finished.
  2. Write down some **desired results** that you are hoping to achieve with this first campaign. For example, increasing web traffic or boosting sales.
  3. Have your target customer in mind. If you have two types of customers, pick only one for now.
  4. Make sure you have a PayPal or Credit Card account attached to your Business Profile. I don’t cover instructions for setting up your Business page in this guide.

Step 1: Log into Facebook and click the Create Ad Button (1 minute)

Note: be sure you are logged into your business account, not your personal account

Get Started with Facebook Ads
Get Started with Facebook Ads

Step 2: Find people that would likely be interested in your business (2 minutes)

First, select the location, language, age, and other demographic information.

Next, select Interests and Behaviors. Think about the people that buy from you already. Do they like to cook or play video games? Are they interested in real estate? You can also pick a few other interests that are related to the main selection. This is a great way to capture a wider audience that still is still in your target.

You can also define custom audiences and other options, but you don’t need those to get started.

Facebook makes it really easy to review your options and see how many people might end up seeing your ad campaign.

Facebook Ads Target Audience Options
Facebook Ads Target Audience Options

Step 3: Decide how much you want to spend (1 minute)

Next, you’re going to figure out your budget and scheduling options. Luckily for you, Facebook wants to make this super easy to figure out.

If you’re just getting started, I highly recommend leaving the options for budget and scheduling at the default settings. You want to avoid setting anything too high or too low. For example, if you set the daily budget too high, then you could end up spending WAY more than you intended. If it’s too low then you might not get very many hits and it will seem “broken”.

You can’t go wrong with the default budget and schedule for your first Facebook Ad campaign.

Facebook Ad Budget Recommendations
Facebook Ad Budget Recommendations

Step 4: Add images and wording (10 minutes)

This is where you engage your audience and convince them to click your ad and buy your stuff. It’s important to have high quality images and compelling text in your advertisement. Please note: Facebook does have some rules about what is acceptable.

For example:

Avoid any scammy sounding language or images and think about it from your customers point of view. Even an innocent health related “Before and After” picture will get flagged by Facebook. You also can’t jam a picture up with mountains of text.

Once you’re happy with the way everything looks in the preview, click review order (or place order, if you’re ready)

Facebook Ads Images and Pictures Examples
Facebook Ads Images and Pictures Examples

Step 5: Review the details and place the order (1 minute)

Facebook makes it pretty easy to review all of the important details before submitting your order. You can also view these details after the ad set is created.

Facebook Ad Details
Facebook Ad Details

I’ve been on two winter hikes since that first trip I took up Mt. Washington. Thankfully, I had an easy to follow guide that gave me confidence and eliminated all of the confusion I had about winter hiking.

Did this guide help eliminate any confusion you had about Facebook Ads? If so, please leave a comment below about your experience!