If your business or company attends trade shows or other specialty events like festivals, street fairs, entertainment events, an event at a mall, beer festival, corporate health fair, etc, then Facebook sponsored posts can be used very effectively the day of the event to create awareness and drive customers to your booth or location for very little cost.
The key is in Facebook’s excellent geo targeting and its “interests” targeting. Almost everyone at an event, or festival has a smartphone and accesses Facebook from it to share their life moments, and are most likely using Facebook to check-in or take selfies and post to their account. Why not target these people with sponsored posts right in their mobile news feed while they’re at the event?
This post assumes you have some familiarity with Facebook’s Power Editor.
The first step is to create a sponsored post (a dark post), whether that ad is to drive sales, or just create awareness. Here is an example ad similar to one we created for a micro brewery in San Diego that was attending the San Diego Brewers Guild Festival in downtown. We had also developed another ad announcing an award winning beer the brewery had developed.
First we set up targets for anyone that had an “interest” in the San Diego Brewers Guild festival. It’s a fabulous event with dozens of micro brews from around San Diego exhibiting their fine handcrafted mico brews. Unfortunately we had trouble finding that “interest” within Facebook.
In spite of not having the San Diego Brewers Guild Festival interest in Facebook, we found plenty of related interests to target. What better place to look for people attending this event that would like your micro brew than to target people that “like” other local micro brews (well some of these weren’t local, but many were).
On the day of the event we limited the geo targeting to just those zip codes in and around the event where we knew we could entice those people that were already there, and for those people that weren’t there but close enough perhaps we could get them there — after all, beer enthusiasts are very passionate about their beer. Days prior we had a much larger geo target.
So within Power Editor under the Audience tab is where you can designate the geo targets and the “interests.”
From here we added on the “interests” of other local micro breweries.
So that was it in terms of targeting. We ran the ad for only a few hours during that day of the event using oCPM (optimized CPM) and got the results below. Not a lot of exposure relative to longer run campaigns with much larger targets, but nonetheless it cost almost nothing to create that awareness.
The booth was “mobbed” the day of the event, and a post from the owner below apologizing for the wait.
We wanted to also set up retargeting in Google for this campaign (and one we had prior set up that was larger) but Google doesn’t allow remarketing of alcoholic beverages for obvious reasons (another post here on remarketing). Although we haven’t set up Custom Audiences yet in Facebook and we could probably retarget people that way.