Starting with Facebook Ads

Of all advertising channels for mobile app installs, Facebook seems to be the best choice.

It provides unprecedented targeting options and brings loyal users who spend more inside the app. If you have a quality app, you have got to try this.
Frankly speaking, we are not very successful with our Facebook ads at the moment. But as we are preparing to set up a few test campaigns, we found a few important steps that many developers overlook when planning their Facebook advertising. And we decided to share them with you.

Apparently before you open Power Editor or Ad Manager of Facebook, there is a lot you need to do. Briefly, about these steps

Install Facebook SDK

Follow the instructions on this page. Make sure to track your events correctly from day one. Especially if your app has in-app purchases. This way you’ll reveal users who bring you the most value. Once you track 100-300 conversions, you will be able to create a lookalike audience. Facebook has huge data beyond what you choose under Interests and Demographics. And lookalike audiences will let you fully benefit from this. Many developers say that Facebook ads didn’t really work for them until they started using lookalike audiences based on events.

Select the right countries


Source: AppInTop

I suggest you start with countries that have lower CPIs. This way the budget you spent experimenting with creatives and texts will be lower. And once you find a few high-performing banners, you will be able to move on to higher-CPI countries like the USA. This picture will give you an idea on how much an app install costs in different countries. It’s surprising that Spain, for example, has a low CPI, while advertising in the rest of Europe may cost you a small fortune.

Create a Facebook page

The key here is to provide credibility. Post milestones, get likes, and update the page regularly. Change the call to action to Use App and direct those who click to the App Store. If you have an opportunity to create a custom link and track downloads, do it.

While the data is being collected for the lookalike audience, you may start designing your banners and write the copies.

Look for best practices


Start with looking for best practices in your niche. Sign up to Sensortower (free) and go to Products > App profiles. After that look for your competitor apps and top and featured products in your category. If the app is currently advertised on Facebook or Instagram, you’ll see their banner in the profile.
It’s a good idea to include text on the banner (it should take up less than 20% of the image). By the way, if you are bad at Photoshop, you may use Canva for creating banners.

Localize your copy

Localized ads work better than English ones (unless you are running a campaign in an English speaking country, of course). If you don’t know Thai, for example, there are a few tricks that will save you the translation money. Take a look at the positive reviews Thai users write for your app. Insert them into Google translate and see whether they would make sense as ad copy. Do they? There you go! You don’t have any Thai reviews? No problem, go to Sensortower app profiles again, and look through the reviews of your competitors (better pick your competitors on Android, this way you’ll be able to filter the reviews by language, not by country as in iOS apps) and find some good phrases there. Even short phrases would go.

To sum up

If you follow these recommendations before the moment you actually set up and run your Facebook campaign, you’ll have a great audience (because you’ll create lookalike audiences based on your most loyal users), countries that will spend your advertising budget more wisely, and banners your target audience is likely to notice.

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