First of all, I would like to mention that comparing Facebook Ads with Google AdWords is not really appropriate. Google is a search engine and Facebook is a social networking site. The intent and engagement levels of the audience are completely different for both the sites. In Google people actively search for information and products and on Facebook they are looking to connect with their friends. Keeping these points in mind, I would like to give a brief summary of what advantages do Facebook Ads have over Google AdWords;
Usually Much Cheaper (specially for Small Businesses)
Google AdWords is quite expensive even if you bid on low or medium popularity keywords (and especially keywords related to buying online). Facebook is a new system wanting to jump into paid advertisement. If you hit the right niches, you can get traffic for a fraction of PPC pricing. Facebook ads are much more cost-effective and very good for small businesses trying to gain a presence online without a big budget.
Advantage of using Images/Photos in ads
Visual aid will be provided to your ad through this feature. An image is worth a thousand words and the ability to show images in ads is a huge advantage Facebook has over Google AdWords. You can use images in Google AdWords by creating your own image banners but they don’t convert too well. In Facebook ads, it is easy to upload a small image along with your text, which helps drawing attention of your target user. It is also good if you want to show images of your brand or product. I believe this is the most powerful feature of Facebook ads.
Facebook ad descriptions can be up to 135 characters long (versus 75 at Google AdWords). More space for creativity. In Google AdWords you can’t use exclamation marks (!) while Facebook allows you to use it, this creating more effect in the ad. Restrictions are also less when it comes using many different words (copyright issues) in Facebook. On the whole, setting up an ad campaign on Facebook is much less frustrating.
Highly Targeted Demographics/Keywords
Facebook advertising helps you target keywords and demographic much better. AdWords doesn’t know as much about user searching (apart from their cookies and previous searches). Facebook has an advantage of getting more information about the user because we login to our profiles first and then see the ads, so you can be sure that your ads are shown to people with profiles that contain your targeted keywords and demographics. Facebook provides the following 11 targeting factors for advertisers;
Birthday – this one is more recent. Try wishing a user happy birthday and offer them something special
Keywords – these are based on a user’s profile information including activities, TV shows, Movies, Favorite Books. Even job titles are included n this field.
Connections – to avoid showing ads to people who have already joined a group or become a fan of a page etc.
Take advantage of these targeting factors, because if you’re not then you’re missing out on the huge advertising potential of Facebook. Increase targeting to make an advertisement more relevant.
Facebook advertising does have some troubles such as there is no conversion tracking option and undoubtedly AdWords is great for this. Also, there is no ability to show ads at a particular time of the day. Business-to-business advertising also becomes less likely on Facebook (keeping the friends’ social networking concept in mind).
If you are using Google AdWords or any other paid search platform, it will be a great idea to try Facebook ads. You will be surprised by the outcome and scope.