Asserting itself as more than a space for social engagement, Facebook has continued to build its platform into a great lead-generating option for advertisers in the automotive space.
Car dealers can use Facebook’s robust targeting options to capture low-funnel leads. Follow these tips to ensure your campaigns achieve success by focusing on the right objectives and targeting the right subset of Facebook users.
Dynamic Facebook Ads
New improvements to inventory-based catalog ads have made dynamic advertising an absolute must for any competitive dealership. By linking your vehicle inventory feed to a Facebook catalog, you can instantly create ads with a rotating carousel that include vehicle descriptions up-to-date pricing information, and more!
Group your inventory into Vehicle Sets if you want to segment by particular makes or models. Vehicle Sets can also be matched with targeting options to show make/model ads only to relevant Facebook users. Getting specific can lead to improved results; however, car dealerships should be wary that ads aren’t too specific and therefore limiting the overall scope of their targeting.
Facebook Advertising Objectives
Standard dynamic carousel ads are designed to drive traffic to the Vehicle Detail Page (VDP) of interest when a user clicks on an ad. This is a great option if you have a high conversion rate for leads on your website. The Catalog Sales objective is also perfect for quick launches as it requires very little back-end setup once the vehicle feed is in place.
Advertisers with a well-organized CRM should consider running dynamic carousel ads with the Lead Generation objective. With these ads, instead of users clicking through to a VDP, they will be prompted to fill out a form with their contact information. This lead form, including specific vehicle information, is automatically sent to the connected CRM where it can be assigned to a sales representative. This ad type tends to require a longer setup period, but has out-performed dynamic traffic ads in all of our tests.
Facebook Targeting Options
The most successful targeting method for Facebook ads of any type is Remarketing, or showing ads to previous website visitors. Advertisers can easily track and retarget previous visitors via the Facebook Pixel. Further options for segmenting this audience exist based on the pages that were viewed, the amount of time elapsed since the last visit, the total amount of time spent on the site, and much more.
Building off the remarketing list, dealerships can also create a Similar-to-Remarketing audience where Facebook finds users that are similar to your previous website visitors. This is a relatively opaque process, but tends to produce moderate success at a low additional cost.
A third recommended targeting option requires integration with a custom third-party data provider, but allows dealerships to target in-market vehicle buyers. These audiences give dealers the ability to target buyers based on their make of interest, whether they want to lease or buy a vehicle, and even which model they’re considering. Pair a custom audience with Vehicle Sets for maximum targeting accuracy!
Other Considerations for Automotive Facebook Ads
Traditional branding and website traffic campaigns can still be effective Facebook advertising campaigns, as long as your goals match these objectives.
For Traffic campaigns, advertisers should set up a dynamic Catalog Sales campaign with VDP links because of the significant boost to engagement and click-through rate (CTR). Brand Awareness and Reach campaigns are best suited to new dealerships or dealers with a substantial advertising budget who are looking to promote a specific aspect of their business or the dealership as a whole. The Video Views objective is recommended for Brand Awareness campaigns when the goal is to gain video impressions.
Brand Awareness and Reach campaigns are secondary campaign types that are not designed to generate leads via Facebook form submissions or website leads. Because of this, we do not recommend them as a first priority; however, they can supplement primary spend areas if your budget allows for it.