If you have ever tried to target LitRPG fans with Facebook ads then you are probably aware that there is no convenient way to do it. Facebook boasts the most complex and accurate ad targeting in the industry, yet “LitRPG” is not an available preference, interest, or placement. That means we have to get creative!
Step 1 – Install the Facebook Pixel
The Facebook pixel is a piece of code that allows you to track the users on your website. It also allows Facebook to follow what actions they took on your website. The importance of the pixel will be clear later in this article, all you need to know now is that you will be much more successful with it, and that you want to install it before you do any advertising.
Click here to learn how to install the Facebook pixel. You will need a website and to sign up for Facebook ads or business manager.
The audience and behavioral data you get from the pixel is indispensable. However, it is possible to advertise your LitRPG book on Facebook even if you don’t have a website. In fact, you can advertise directly to your Amazon page if you want. If you do this however, you will only be able to see half the picture of your advertising performance.
Step 2 – Find a Good Ad
I won’t dig deep into this topic as there are many resources already available. What you should do is think about who your target market is and what they like to see. A trick I often use is to find one person that completely represents my target market and create an ad specifically for that person. If you try to make your ad appeal to everyone, it will appeal to no one. Once you have an idea of what your target market wants, start searching for other articles on the best way to implement your ideas.
My favorite resource for anything social advertising is Social Media Examiner. I am not affiliated with them in any way, but they have been a huge help my entire marketing career. P.S. if you ever get the chance to go to Social Media Marketing World I will be super jealous.
Step 3 – Test Targeting LitRPG
Now we get to the good stuff. Facebook gives you a ton of options to choose from when developing your targeting. Unfortunately, you cannot simply choose “LitRPG fans”. You cannot even choose to target the members of a group that you know has all the perfect members. Since this is the case, we need to get creative.
A good start would be to choose any related term that all LitRPG fans know. I did some research and found that you can target the terms Sword Art Online and Ready Player One. However, other books, even if they are extremely popular within our genre, were not available to target.
In the below picture you will see that it is possible to target people that are interested in X in addition to Y. This makes it possible to target people that are interested in Reading but also MUST be interested in Role Playing Games. In the future, I may write up more articles with the information I receive from these tests.
Step 4 – Implementation and Testing
This is where your Facebook Pixel comes in.
I recommend splitting your ad budget across multiple test ads, each targeting people with different preferences. Make sure to save the majority of your ad budget for later, the main purpose of these tests ads are to set you up for success later. Since we don’t yet have the ability to directly target LitRPG with Facebook ads, splitting your budget up like this will allow you to build a custom audience filled with exactly the right people you want to target.
Here is the theory. No one knows the best way target LitRPG fans on Facebook yet, not even me, who runs tests in my free time for fun. Since Facebook doesn’t give us the easy option to target them, we do our best with a series of test ads that allow us to siphon the most interested people. These ads will go out and are bound to get people to click on them and visit your website. Chances are the people that visit your website are fans of LitRPG unless your ad was extremely vague or click-bait. All the people that are actually interested in LitRPG have clicked your ad, visited your website, and were captured by your Facebook pixel.
Step 5 – Actually Targeting LitRPG with Facebook
Now that you have run some test ads and got some visitors to your website, you should be able to build a custom audience on Facebook. This custom audience will be filled with people that are definitely interested in LitRPG. Here is a guide for setting up custom audiences to target. You can even further break down your targeting by creating different custom audiences. For example, if you create a page on your website dedicated to authors, you can target all the people that clicked that page. The same is possible if you want to target and other subsets of LitRPG fans, like people interested in one of the many different categories of LitRPG.
Pros of this Method
- Your custom audience will be more accurate than conventional Facebook targeting methods
- You will have the flexibility to segment your target audience
- Having a pixel on your website allows your custom audiences to grow, even if you’re not running ads
Cons of this Method
- You will have to deliver traffic to your website to grow your custom audience. In this guide, we did that by running test ads. If you are not in a rush however, you can grow your custom audience by getting traffic to your website in any manner you wish, as long as the pixel is installed.
Facebook ads are flexible and complicated. There are many different settings and targeting methods to choose from. The thing that separates the pros from the noobs is tracking and testing. Whenever you run a campaign there is always something to learn. Analyze your performance and use the information gathered from it to make your next campaign more successful. Are you completely new to the Facebook ads? Then do your due dilligence before you purchase any advertising or invest in a professional.
There are many ways custom audiences can be made. You can even upload your contact or email list to Facebook to create one. This method listed above is used to find new people in your target market.
Writer of disparate LitRPG stories. Current works = Legends of the Great Savanna (published) , Milton (Ongoing) Stay in touch at JLLincoln.com