Fortunately for you, Facebook now gives independent schools and higher education institutions the ability to target audiences with mobile ads. You might be sitting there thinking, “I’ve run Facebook ads for years…so what?” Well, although Facebook has allowed you to run targeted ads for its web version, this is the first time Facebook is making mobile ads targetable by education.
And it’s no surprise Facebook is continuing to up its mobile game—nearly 400 million of its users only access the network on mobile and mobile ads are a growing factor in Facebook’s sales growth.
Mobile ads are awesome in that they bring the user right to the app store to download your app—perfect for spreading the word to alums about EverTrue, so you can easily get new users and capture updated data. Another great feature of mobile ads is that if an alum has already downloaded the app, you can select not to display the ad on the user’s newsfeed.
Mobile ads (above) offer a more compelling call to action for an app download versus desktop Facebook ads (below) that don’t explicitly prompt alumni to get the app.
These three schools have already seen a direct ROI from their Facebook mobile ads:
Impressive, right? And there’s no reason your school can’t find the same success. Follow these six steps to create your own Facebook mobile ad to help promote your EverTrue app to alumni and see your own social media ROI:
1. Log in to Facebook and choose “Create Ads” from the pull-down menu on your top bar.
2. Choose the type of ad you want to run.
You should choose “App Installs” and insert the link to either your iOS or Google Play app stores. Both of these links can be easily found in Console in the Growth section. Once you have the link inserted (insert them one at a time), click “Continue.”
3. Set your target audience.
Facebook gives you a host of options for targeting segments of your audience for your mobile ad. We suggest that you keep it as open as possible with the most important segmentation happening in the “More Demographics” section; choose “Education,” then “Schools,” and enter your institution.
4. Set your budget.
We recommend running your ad for at least seven days as a first try. Spending $10 a day is a good start. However, you’ll see significantly better ROI as you increase your spend. Remember, the more you pay, the more apt Facebook is to surface the ad. Keep in mind your budget per day is the maximum amount of money you want to spend per day. Facebook subtracts money from that amount each time a user clicks the ad. Once your budgeted clicks are all used up, Facebook will stop showing the ad for the day. If you can find the resources for Facebook advertising, going bigger is always better!
5. Upload images for your ad.
Images can often be an afterthought in ad (and general content) creation. But if you truly want to achieve the social ROI you’re looking for, make sure you include at least one—if not more—high-quality images in your Facebook ads; campaigns with images have a 42%-higher click-through rate than campaigns without them.
We’ve added both images and copy (copy comes in the next step) to the Growth section of Console to support your mobile ad creations. Feel free to use these images and copy or create fun, institution-specific ads by uploading your own pictures and words. The more images you upload, the more images Facebook will have to work with, so your ads will look different every time a user sees them. That will make them more likely to engage with the ads.
6. Finally, choose a Facebook page to run the ad through (for billing purposes) and write your customized ad copy.
Place your ad order by clicking the big green button at the bottom to “Place Order.”
Just as they did for Amherst, Western Reserve, and Shady Side, Facebook mobile ads will increase your EverTrue app adoption and in turn increase your verified alumni emails. And at such a low cost, they’re a great vehicle for meeting your alumni relations goals.