Every Easter, churches gear up to start advertising their service(s), hoping to attract potential visitors.
They will spend a few hundred dollars, maybe more, in the hopes that someone will say, “Yeah, I think I’ll visit THAT church.”
Most of that money is wasted.
As someone who has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars running ads for “secular” companies, it makes me cringe when churches say, “I want to run ads for Easter.”
But let me be clear: the issue ISN’T that churches want to run ads on Facebook.
I think that churches SHOULD run ads on Facebook.
The issue is that there is no STRATEGY behind the ads.
And if there is no strategy behind what you are wanting to accomplish with your ads, you WILL be wasting money…and potentially a lot of it.
If your goal is to just run ads a couple weeks before Easter, you are wasting your money.
For one, your cost of ads is going to go up significantly around Easter time. This is because of HOW Facebook shows ads to potential customers. There is a limited amount of “newsfeed” space to show ads to targeted demographic.
So, what happens when churches ALL compete for that space? Prices go up. Your ads will show, but not nearly as often or maybe to be who are less likely to pay attention to them (we call this “lower quality” leads).
But here’s the catch: your ads aren’t just competing against other churches. You are also competing against companies that pour more of their ad budget into Easter sales. That hurts your ad as well.
All this means that if you aren’t going in with a particular strategy, you will blow your budget quickly and your ad won’t get very far.
You need a strategy.
While there are tons of strategies out there (and I would LOVE to craft a specific strategy for your church—reach out to me here), there are some things to do this Easter to maximize your return on your ad spend.
1. Make Sure your Facebook Pixel is Installed on Your Website
If you haven’t taken this fundamental step, you aren’t getting the most bang for your buck with Facebook ads.
A Facebook pixel is simply a snippet of code that is installed on your church webpage that tracks user’s activities. It isn’t that hard to install and there are several great websites that walk you through step-by-step how to do it.
If you don’t have it installed though, you are flying blind about how your ad is actually performing. You can see how many people clicked the link (and a few other things), but you aren’t getting the most important data. It is as if your website visitors vanished into thin air.
Install the pixel, get more data. More data lets you run ads more effectively.
2. Use Video
This should be a no-brainer, but I see a lot of churches use static images in their Facebook ad. They CAN work if you have a killer, scroll-stopping image…but video almost ALWAYS works better.
A quick video introducing the church, showing worship inside the church and giving information about the time of service will likely get more attention. Make sure the video is highly quality and runs between 10-15 seconds (not much longer).
3. Run a Retargeting Ad
Anyone who interacts with your first ad (whether by clicking on it, or reacting to it), can be retargeted later with a follow-up ad. Consider doing the following—a reminder of your church service (again, with a video) and another “after Easter” ad where you invite them again to your church.
4. Consider how you are going to get their information.
How will you actually know if people showed up because of your ad?
Consider giving them a special offer—maybe use a lead form to collect their information (which you can set up through Facebook ads), or send them to a landing page where they can enter their email address and get sent a “voucher” which they can use to redeem for a free gift at your church, maybe have them fill out a card saying where they found out about your church…
None of these are perfect. But they could potentially help you gage the success of your ad.
At this point, your head may be swimming. You may be thinking “I don’t have time to do any of this.”
Which is why Facebook ads can get so complicated.
And we haven’t even talked about ad copy writing, how to set this strategy up, bidding strategy, optimization strategies—ALL of which you need to know in order to successfully run Facebook ads.
So why would any church even do this?
Because Facebook ads ARE THAT valuable.
They can help connect your church to a younger demographic and reach people who you never dreamed of reaching before. It’s an immensely valuable tool.
So, here’s my pitch: I’d love to help train your church on how to run them. I’ll even great a full-scale ad-strategy that is specific for your church.
I’ll teach your team how to successfully run a campaign from beginning to end.
How to write ad copy that actually persuades.
And all those other pesky details that can come up.
In other words, I want to empower your key staff members on how to run ads, so you aren’t dependent on agencies (which charge hundreds and thousands of dollars a month just to run ads). In other words, I’ll teach you how to run ads so you can save thousands of dollars in the future and grow your church.