When I polled my tweeps recently about who they would like to see interviewed for the SEMrush blog, Akvile DeFazio’s name was enthusiastically mentioned numerous times. With good reason.

Akvile is the President and powerhouse behind social media advertising company,  AKvertise. She has worked with large brands, such as Bing, Search Engine Land, and Meals on Wheels America.

Her areas of expertise include e-commerce, mobile apps, and lead generation, by way of Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter Ads. She is also super nice and friendly and agreed to answer a few questions for us today.

1. When it comes to social media marketing (e.g., Facebook ads), what do you see not working?

Often, when I dive into preexisting social media advertising campaigns for an audit, or to take over an account, we see things that are culprits of poor performance such as irrelevant or broad targeting that wastes budget and doesn’t line up with the messaging. For example, like targeting openly for a homeowner specific product that renters may not be interested in or want to commit or invest in for their rental spaces. 

Other times, it can be that the landing page doesn’t coincide with the ad copy and that results in high bounce rates and low conversion rates. 

In addition, if you are trying to push a hard sell on a cold audience, that can lead to an unsuccessful campaign. Understand where your audience lies in your funnel. If it is a colder audience, test an awareness campaign as an introductory point for people to learn about your offerings. Once they have visited your website and are more familiar with your brand, move them along your funnel and test a stronger call to action to make the purchase in a conversion campaign.

Line up your ad copy, creatives, and call to action with relevant landing pages that will provide value to your target audience. By doing so, you should see success in your campaigns.

2. What can business owners learn most from these fails?

To improve your chances of success from your advertising efforts, I encourage business owners and account managers to create a strategy before jumping in to set up campaigns and ads.

In addition to this, always test. Test various targeting strategies, test ad copy, creatives such as images and videos, single image ads vs. carousel ads, test calls to action, and lastly, test your landing pages. What may work with one person viewing your ad may not resonate with another, so be sure to create variations to see what works best over time. Optimize onward and upward.

3. How do you create beautiful Facebook ads with a small budget?

Excellent question. The answer: it is easy! If you are looking for beautiful imagery but don’t have the budget to pay a photographer or stock photo websites, Facebook has a free built-in option in the ad level to select stock images since they have teamed up with Shutterstock. If you don’t find what you are looking for there, there are other royalty free stock photo sites such as Canva, Pexels, or Unsplash.

4. How do you create a video when you have no money or equipment?

If you want to bring your products or services to life with video, all you need is your smartphone and some free and freemium iOS or Android video editing apps. It doesn’t take much to create a professional, low cost, and effective video for your advertising efforts. Some apps I enjoy using are InShot, Stop Motion Studio, Boomerang, FilmoraGO, and Flixel for cinemagraphs.

5. What three tips do you have for site owners regarding social media marketing?

1) See what other brands you admire are doing as inspiration if you aren't sure where to start. I recommend checking out what popular brands outside of your industry are doing, as they have the budget and the experience as they have most likely been in business for quite some time; by seeing what they are doing, you can reverse engineer their posts and ads to see how you can apply similar tactics to your campaigns.

2) Get creative, have fun, showcase a genuine passion for your products or services because it will rub off on those that get exposed to your brand through your social media efforts.

3) Test everything all ways, always.

Thank you to Akvile for answering our questions!

To recap:

  • When it comes to your social media strategy, in particular your ads, line up your audience targeting with captivating, informative, interesting, or entertaining ad copy, creatives, a strong call to action, and a landing page, for maximum success.
  • Always test. Test various targeting strategies, test ad copy, creatives such as images and videos, single image ads vs. carousel ads, test calls to action, and lastly, test your landing pages.
  • Use Facebook free photos, stock photo sites, and video editing apps to create beautiful imagery to go along with your ads.
  • Don't be afraid to get creative and have some fun with your social media advertising efforts.

So, which social media marketing tactics have worked (or not worked) for YOUR business? Let us know in the comments.

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