Facebook is one of the most popular social media platforms and can be used to strengthen your brand and increase sales to your eCommerce store with a little help from the right marketing techniques and the proper cultivation of a dedicated following.

Can Facebook advertising actually drive sales? While you may have your doubts, bloggers, business owners, eCommerce store owners, and entrepreneurs use this platform every day for just this very reason. Here’s why:

  • Facebook can help you build an audience that is loyal to your brand and your products specifically.
  • Facebook has some of the most granular audience targeting available to marketers.
  • Seamless connection between Facebook and Instagram, which is one of the hottest places online for eCommerce marketers.
  • Low-cost advertising compared to other platforms and forms of digital marketing.
  • Multiple ad formats available. You can focus on text elements, graphics, a slideshow, or video content, or combine all of these into one single ad.
  • A cultivated Facebook business profile is a brand asset you can leverage in a variety of ways, such as in the creation of an email list or for pushing a sale.
  • People want to buy from brands they recognize and connect with. Facebook is built from the ground up for connecting with people.

These are just some of the ways that Facebook can be used to not only build relationships but to increase traffic and sales to your eCommerce website. If you have been thinking about using social media to improve your sales but haven’t known where to start, this guide will help. Below we will cover how Facebook (and Instagram!) can be used to build an audience, how to find lucrative opportunities with the right targeting, and how you can use the features these platforms offer to give your store the boost it needs.

Building an Audience on Facebook

The best reason to use any social media platform in your eCommerce marketing efforts is to create a dedicated audience or following that is loyal to your brand and that cares about you and your business at more than a surface level.

Once you are able to make that personal connection with someone, the chance that they will stick with your brand and purchase your products increases dramatically. Social media platforms like Facebook present a new world of opportunity for marketers, because connecting with shoppers on this kind of level was previously unheard of.

Sure, commercials, billboards, radio, and newspaper ads have their place and have been used effectively to drive sales for decades, but social media advertising is on another level. By having direct access to potential customers, you can gain unparalleled insight into their needs and pain points, and communicate with them directly, on a human level.

Connect With Your Audience on Facebook

Users want to feel appreciated and engaged with. That’s why they are on social media after all. Not to be sold to, but to have their needs met. Keep this in mind when crafting your ads.

This alone makes Facebook advertising a lucrative proposition. With just a few clicks and a well-made ad, you can essentially reach out to tens of thousands of ideal customers that you target based on everything from income level to personal interests. Facebook gives you the power to sell to users based on very specific demographics and criteria, using graphics and other forms of media that they might specifically relate to.

Using an audience that you build on Facebook might be an incredible way for you to drive sales, but you might be wondering, how do you actually go about building an audience in the first place?

There is no one way to create an active following and community on social media. The methods may differ depending on the niche you are in and what your specific business goals are. However, here are a few audience-building tips to keep in mind:

  • Be as human as possible. No one likes talking to a faceless company on social media.
  • Always respond to questions and comments. To create a community you have to engage with your users.
  • Provide free value. Not every post you create should involve a sales pitch. In fact, you want to aim for the 80/20 rule: 80% free value, 20% offers.
  • Create trust by running contests, giveaways, providing high-value advice, and connecting with your audience in a genuine way.
  • Never just post a picture of a product and say “go buy this.” Everything should have a purpose or reason behind it. Tell a story, make a case, answer a question, solve a problem. If you are linking out to a product or offer, it better be for a good reason and should come with a human explanation behind it.
  • Be creative with your ads. Each ad you run on Facebook should have a multifaceted goal. Sure, you want to get traffic and sales, but you also want to be mindful of the way an ad feels. Most users have an innate dislike and distrust for social media advertising, so it is your job to not only make the ad appealing, but worthy of being on a person’s Facebook feed.
  • Present the story of your business. Users want insight into what goes on behind the scenes. Your Facebook page should include day-in-the-life material, the production process, user-generated content, and stuff that has little to no relevance to the business itself, such as memes or photos from a company gathering. The goal of your page should be to create a sense of belonging for your audience, otherwise you will not be able to get decent results.

Your audience is everything on social media. If you are an eCommerce store owner looking for ways to connect with more people and increase your revenue, you need to be willing to create relatable content on a consistent basis, and that includes the ads you run.

How to be Successful Using Facebook Advertising

There is no exact science to social media marketing, but there are certain techniques you can use to increase the likelihood that your advertising efforts will be successful. On Facebook, to get results you need to be social, generous, and authoritative.

Here are some ways to go about doing this:

Your Ads Should Read Naturally

Don’t try and make every ad sound as though you are an infomercial. We’re long past the days when that form of advertising works well, even in traditional mediums. You need to sound personable, almost flawed. Don’t be afraid to use figures of speech, meme sayings, and trendy catchphrases. Emojis are also a powerful way to connect with users on social media and are particularly effective on Facebook ads.

Always Provide Value

Your first thought shouldn’t be “how can I make money on Facebook?” but “how can I create value for my audience?” Whether it’s through special Facebook-only sales, insight into the way your products are made, visual tours of your factory or brick and mortar locations, how-tos or tips on using your products, or even a live Q&A session, you always want to be providing value on your Facebook page.

You can even provide value in an ad. Display how your product will make a difference for your audience, list the benefits of using it. Be creative in your approach but always keep in mind that your users don’t want to feel as though they are there to be sold to. Yes, you are an eCommerce store, so on some level, there’s an expectation. At the end of the day, however, your users are on social media to have fun, learn, and engage with other people.

Position Yourself as an Authority in Your Niche

Another way to improve the effectiveness of your Facebook advertising strategy is to act as an authority. Your expertise should ooze from every social media post. You should have blogs on your website detailing what you are doing in your industry, how your product is making waves, and why people should shop at your store. You should be sharing these blogs and similar kinds of content on your Facebook on a regular basis.

While you don’t want to come across as arrogant, you do want to be authoritative. Users visiting your Facebook page should know that you are an expert in your field and a go-to source for information on products in your niche, and your industry in general. Your page should feel almost like a semi-exclusive club that revolves around your product line and industry, where users can come not only to find certain products they are interested in, but to learn about these products and the story behind them.

If that sounds a bit extreme, you don’t understand social media enough to market your products properly. These days, everything on social media is community-based, and if you position yourself as an authority and give away value for free, you can create a community around anything.

A dedicated community will be willing to buy your products. It’s that simple.

Effective Facebook advertising requires paying attention to the kind of content you are creating, and that includes your ads. If your ads sound dry, salesy, and not for the benefit of your community, scrap them and go back to square one.

Exploring Instagram’s Potential as an Advertising Platform

If you are interested in Facebook for eCommerce marketing, Instagram will be of great interest to you as well. This visual social media platform is one of the largest and most active social media platforms, and is directly integrated with Facebook.

In fact, if you launch an ad on Facebook, you can push the same ad right to Instagram just by toggling a switch.

Is Instagram effective for eCommerce marketing, however?

There is quite a bit of difference between the demographics of Facebook and Instagram, despite the fact that they are currently under one umbrella. However, Instagram already has had a long history of use as an eCommerce marketing platform. Influencers and businesses have used the platform for years as an effective way to sell everything from clothing to handmade soaps. Small business owners love the platform because it is easy to generate organic engagement and get your products out in front of new customers with ease.

Selling Products on Facebook

No matter what industry you are in, Facebook and Instagram make it easy to promote your products. You have an incredible amount of control over the presentation, so if you cultivate a loyal audience, these offers can appear quite attractive.

Recently, Instagram has greatly expanded its features, making it a formidable eCommerce platform on its own. With the addition of Instagram Stories and Reels, the platform enables users to promote content in a variety of highly engaging ways using video, music, and interactive graphics.

The great eCommemrce features of Instagram don’t stop there. They recently introduced Instagram Shopping, which brings full eCommerce functionality to the social media platform. You can list your products on the platform itself, not unlike Facebook’s marketplace, but with the added benefit of Instagram’s graphic-centric layout. For verified stores, shoppers can even checkout right on the platform, without even having to visit your website.

You can create ads that take shoppers right to these products, or simply use the ads in a traditional way that takes them to your online store. Either way, by using Instagram in tandem with your Facebook marketing efforts, you might be surprised how easy it is to generate profits. You simply have to remember to prioritize the human face of your business and give your audience plenty of value on a consistent basis.

Social Media Marketing Done Right

There’s a lot to learn when it comes to advertising on Facebook. You can try a hundred different tactics and wind up spinning your wheels and burning through a ton of money in the process, all for nothing.

If you have been confused and frustrated with your social media marketing attempts in the past, it might be time to think about handing the reins to an eCommerce marketing company that knows exactly how to generate profit using platforms like Facebook and Instagram.

Genius eCommerce is an elite marketing agency specializing in eCommerce businesses. We provide management services for Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest, and can help you succeed when it comes to building an audience and improving your sales. It doesn’t matter if you have failed in the past when it comes to social media or if you think you don’t have a relatable niche. With the right eCommerce marketing team by your side, you will get the results you are looking for.