Facebook Ads and Google Ads can be helpful tools for businesses whose desire to reach a new audience beyond their current organic reach. They are, however, very different experiences and serve different business growth objectives. Keep in mind that we usually only recommend pay-per-click advertising after you’ve reached some other digital marketing milestones.
Both Facebook Ads and Google Ads can make your head spin when you first log into their respective dashboards. Over time you’ll become more comfortable with the each platform’s bells and whistles and discover how you can make them work for your small business.
Facebook Ad’s vs Google Ads at a glance
- Passive audience intent – Your ad is interrupting the user’s scrolling.
- Advanced audience targeting (interests, age, life events, job titles, lookalike, etc.)
- Ads with images
- Ads with videos
- Remarketing options available (website visitors, facebook page visitors, etc.)
- Lead generation forms available (user submits information directly within Facebook)
- Geographic targeting
- Ads display on Facebook, Messenger, Instagram
- Active Audience Intent – Your ads is showing up for terms that the user is actively searching for
- Audience targeting is based around keywords and negative keywords
- Image ads (kind of)
- Video ads – 15-20 second recommended for some ad locations
- Remarketing available
- Can target specific geographic areas (cities, counties, zip codes)
- Ads display on Google Search, Youtube, partner websites
- Direct integration with Google Analytics
When to use Facebook Ads
The use case scenarios for Facebook ads are large. Name a service or product in the world and there is likely someone leveraging Facebook ads to build awareness, grow engagement and generate new business.
We generally recommend Facebook ads for people interested in building Top of Funnel brand awareness. The opportunity to show your businesses’s products or service to a new audience is significant and valuable for many businesses. Lead generation and conversions may take longer with Facebook Ads because the audience is just getting to know you and didn’t come to Facebook looking for your service. Successful brand awareness campaigns can lead to some amazing remarking options that allow you to move users down the marketing funnel.
For most of our clients we start them off by developing a solid brand awareness campaign, making sure to have set up the pixel/conversion tracking correctly. Then we move toward a remarketing campaign that allows for a more direct call-to-action.
Facebook Ads might be right for your small business if:
- You have a new offering that you’d like to introduce to a new audience.
- You are looking to grow your brand awareness and potentially retarget that audience in the future
- You know your ideal customer well (interests, job titles, location, etc)
- Image friendly and longer story driven text works better for your product or service
- You have compelling video that you can use to get attention
When to use Google Ads
Google ads are built to show to users who are actively searching for a product or service. Typically the users that respond to Google Ads are closer to the buying stage of their journey so ads that are straightforward and extend a call to action are most successful.
The clients of ours who have the best Google Ads ROI have a focused offering and a great understanding of the keywords that resonate with their ideal customer and a great website. The also are a relatively affordable and effective as you only pay when a user interacts with your ad.
Google Ads might be right for you small business if:
- You have a need based product (dental service, home contractor, lawn maintenance, traffic lawyer, etc.) that matches a common search intent.
- You can communicate your offering succinctly and directly
- You have historical information of your search results and highest performing keywords
- You have a defined ideal audience profile
Bottom line regarding Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Both Facebook Ads and Google Ads provide a valuable marketing tool for small businesses. However, without an effective overall strategy guiding your campaigns it can feel like you’re throwing money out the window. The best campaigns are driven by an overall strategy that generates the best ROI for your marketing money. Take some time to discern your target audience, business goals and understand which platform is best suited for your product or service. This will set you us for success with either Facebook Ads or Google Ads.
Need some help with your pay-per-click advertising. Center Street Digital takes on a limited number of marketing accounts that involve Facebook ads and Google Ads management. Contact us to see if we’re a good fit for your small business.