The Beginner’s Guide to Facebook Ads for Entrepreneurs


This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure for more information.

The use of Facebook ads for entrepreneurs is a low cost and effective solution to your marketing needs. Whether you are an online or brick-and-mortar business owner, a strong Facebook ad strategy is going to be one of your top assets.

Today’s article is going to explain why Facebook ads for entrepreneurs is such a good bet in 2020, plus:

  • What kind of businesses can and should use Facebook ads
  • The types of ads you can run for your business
  • How to start running Facebook ads for your business
  • Best practices that every Facebook advertiser needs to know

Alright, let’s get started!

Why Facebook ads for entrepreneurs

Hey there small business owner. We see you. You’ve been competing in so many ways with the big box stores, chains, corporate America, and behemoths like Amazon. The struggle is real.

But that’s why Facebook ads for entrepreneurs is such a powerful thing to add to your business plan. Big companies have been running Facebook ads for some time. Most of them have teams of marketers, designers, and copywriters on standby, ready to create their next big ad campaign.

Again, the struggle is real.

However, small businesses can also leverage Facebook’s massive reach in a way that sees real results.

That’s because Facebook’s platform is built specifically for targeting the kinds of customers that are already interested in the kinds of products and services you’re selling.

Here’s what I mean… say you run an organic dog treat bakery. You can run Facebook ads that target dog owners, people who value organic foods, people in your area, people who like high-end dog products, etc. Like your niche business, you can target a niche audience.

Real estate agents can run campaigns for people who are actively looking at houses — think people who follow sites like Zillow, millennials, people in specific areas, etc.

There are literally thousands of different types of campaigns that you can run on Facebook, and that’s because you can get specific with the kind of people you want to reach.

So, rather than spending money on a print or TV ad that you hope someone sees, you can put your ad in front of people that you know are searching for the kinds of things you’re selling.

Your ad budget is being used effectively with Facebook ads, but if an ad doesn’t work, there are some really easy and inexpensive ways to test it and find a solid solution.

And, here’s the really cool part… there are Facebook ads for entrepreneurs of every type. We’ve seen Facebook ads do extremely well for carpet cleaning services, gyms, authors, child care centers, bloggers, freelance business owners, and more.

That’s a wide variety of business owners for a reason — Facebook ads for entrepreneurs is an effective strategy all around because every type of business already has customers and clients using Facebook.

Facebook ads let you find those clients with the kind of targeting we just talked about.

The type of ad campaigns entrepreneurs should know about

Brand awareness is a great Facebook ad objective when you’re just starting out, and that’s because brand awareness campaigns show your Facebook ads to people who are likely to be interested in your type of business. It’s an introduction. While that might not sound like immediate cash in your pocket, it warms a new audience up to you.

Here’s an example:

This ad for Jasper’s Market is telling people in the area about a service they might not know about, even if they are familiar with Jasper’s. The photo and the copy in this ad tell new visitors what they can expect — fresh, organic produce and friendly faces. What’s not to love?

The next time someone drives by Jasper’s Market, they’re more likely to go in now that they’ve been gently introduced to the business and know what to expect. And, if there happens to be another ad with a coupon or offer (lead gen ads), the audience is more likely to click on that offer if they’ve first seen a brand awareness ad.

For small business owners who are trying to reach customers in their area, check out Facebook Local Awareness Ads for even more information on crafting high-quality ads.

Here’s another example, using Facebook ads to promote events your business is hosting:

Okay, this ad speaks to me on a personal level. I want to watch the Goonies in a tent while drinking a beer, too! Part of the reason this ad works so well (619 people are interested!) is because of that photo — it’s cool people, at a cool event, having fun.

The ad copy also explains why someone would want to engage with this ad, “Limited tickets remain – get yours today!” This creates a bit of FOMO, so a targeted audience is going to want to click the “Going” button to save their spot. In turn, the more people interact with this ad, the more it gets shown to people browsing the Events tab in their area, and that’s another win.

Want even more inspiring Facebook ads? Check out 7 Examples of Great Facebook Ads and Why They Work.

How to create Facebook ads for entrepreneurs

Now is the fun part — let’s start running some ads! You can use this step-by-step guide for creating your first Facebook ads. We’re going to keep it simple with a brand awareness campaign objective.

Quick tip: If you haven’t set up Business Manager or Ads Manager, check out Your 7-Step Facebook Ad Manager Training Guide to learn how.

Okay, let’s get started!

Step 1: Go to Ads Manager (make sure you’re in Campaigns), and select “+Create.”

Step 2: Select the “Brand Awareness” campaign objective, then you can select one of the considerations. In the beginning, you’re best selecting a consideration like traffic or engagement. Traffic is great for getting your ads in front of as many people as possible, and engagement is for reaching people who are more likely to engage with your post through likes, comments, and shares.

Step 3: Name your campaign.

Step 4: Start picking traits for your audience — age, location, interests, and you can even do more detailed targeting as shown below.

Step 5: Choose placements, and Facebook recommends that you select “Automatic Placements” so they optimize where your ad is seen.

Step 6: Set your ad budget. We recommend $20 a day — it might seem like a lot at first, but when you compare it to other forms of advertising, it’s a good bang for your buck. You can always try less if you’d like and then work up.

Step 7: Pick the style of the ad. There are carousel ads, messenger ads, single images, live ads videos, etc. You can keep it simple in the beginning and stick with a single image ad.

Step 8: Fill in your text, headline, and the URL for your business.

Step 9: Add a call-to-action button, which can be as simple as “Learn more.”

Step 10: Click “Confirm,” and you’re finished!

For even more in-depth information on running Facebook ads for entrepreneurs, check out our Facebook Side Hustle Course. We teach business owners and marketers on how to leverage Facebook’s massive reach to grow businesses.

In this course, you’ll learn:

  • The three levels of an ad campaign: objective, ad set, and the ad
  • Targeting the right audience for your ad
  • What the Facebook Pixel is, how it works, and why you want to install it
  • How to create sales funnels that convert leads into customers
  • Testing and troubleshooting ads

Plus a whole lot more, but you’ll have to click over to the Facebook Side Hustle Course to read about all nine-course modules and the bonuses.

Facebook ads for entrepreneurs best practices

Running ads is one thing, but running effective ads is what you really want. These tips will help you create Facebook ads that work.

Follow the rules

Facebook has rules on everything from the right ad size to how much copy can be in an image (it must contain 20% or less text). There are also rules about the type of content you can advertise. You can get to know all of Facebook’s advertising policies here.

Facebook has the right to reject your ads if they don’t follow these standards.

Read more at Everything You Need to Know About Facebook Ad Specs.

Know your audience

As far as Facebook ads for entrepreneurs, you may know your audience better than a hired marketer and this is a good thing because that will help you:

  • Target the right users
  • Write super-relevant ad copy
  • Understand the problem(s) you’re solving

Finding out what makes your customers tick and why they’re using you will help you create ads that reach even more people like them.

Focus on compelling copy

Even though Facebook ads are known for being image-focused, your copy still needs to be on point. Good ad copy is going to get people excited, entertain them, appeal to their emotions, or focus on addressing a pain point. You want to give someone a reason to click on your ad!

Your copy doesn’t have to be clever, rather focus on being clear. Simple copy that touches on someone’s emotions or needs is going to be much more effective than fluff, confusing text, jokes no one understands, etc.

Just say “no” to stock photos

This point is especially true for local business owners who should be using photos of their customers in their business. However, online business owners should create and use your own photos as much as possible too.

Your photos should be as compelling as your copy — think bright colors, smiling faces, and not pixelated.

Check-in on how well your ads are doing

The only way to produce better ads and better results is to monitor how well your ads are performing, and the most useful metric to look at is CTR, or click-through rate. The value of this metric is that it helps determine how much your ads are costing you overall.

CTR is calculated by total clicks/total reach x 100. This percentage is your CTR. Percentages vary by industry, but the average CTR is around .90%. To learn more about CTRs and how to improve yours, read What Is A Good CTR for Facebook Ads?.

Test your ads

If you find that your ad isn’t doing well, then there’s something wrong with it. But with so many factors (image, text, headline, CTA, etc.), how do you know where the issue is? The answer is split testing, also known as A/B testing.

This is when you change one of your ad’s variables and test it against the original to see which one performs best. Facebook makes this really easy to do, and they split your ad budget so you can get a clear picture of which ad test better.

If your ad still isn’t doing well, change a different variable and test again. You’ll eventually start to notice what resonates with your audience.

Have a long-term strategy

Using Facebook ads for entrepreneurs is a great strategy to bring some new customers to your business, but let’s think bigger… How are you going to turn those new customers into life-long customers?

And online business owners especially want customers that sign up for your email list because your email list isn’t subject to algorithm or policy changes that affect how you reach your customers on Facebook. The cool part? There are Facebook ads specifically for lead gen!

The final word on Facebook ads for entrepreneurs

As an online or brick-and-mortar business owner, it’s time to start leveraging Facebook’s massive reach. With a couple of hours of work setting your ads up and a few bucks a day, you can target and find new customers — way more effective than traditional forms of advertising!

But if you need help along the way, check out our Facebook Side Hustle Course. It’s loaded with tons of in-depth nuggets for online business owners and digital marketers.


Posted in ,

Leave a Comment