After Facebook earlier this year lowered organic reach of all posts made by Business Pages, it has become apparent to many small companies that social media has become a pay-to-play landscape.

One of the biggest advantages about advertising on Facebook, as opposed to any other social network, is the ability to target very specific groups of highly engaged individuals. When creating a business’s first campaign, however, Facebook’s Ad Manager can seem very daunting. Building a target audience for Facebook may seem to provide the most bang-for-your-buck, but where do you even begin when it comes to the multitude of targeting options that the social platform offers?

Let’s break down the basics of constructing a Facebook ad for an HVAC brand:

Basic Demographics

When first entering Facebook’s ad creation tool, small business owners will be faced with some basic demographic options to begin building a new audience. One of the fundamentals of Facebook targeting begins with one option: location.

Location targeting allows businesses to reach customers sorted by country, state, city or zip code. It also enables brands to exclude locations and include a radius around a city if small business owners do not know more than one or two sections of a given state.

Additionally, Facebook presents the option to sort users by age range, gender and language. Facebook’s “More Demographics” dropdown menu even goes as deep as life events, education level and employer name. This can be powerful for businesses that are attempting to reach users who recently purchased a home or those who work for a competing HVAC company.

Interests

The Interests section of Facebook’s targeting options is by far the most powerful tool in its array of selections. Interest targeting lets small business owners define the ideal audience by their interests and Pages that they already like on Facebook. Facebook gathers Interests via the information a user posts on their Timeline, the targeting of ads they’ve already clicked and the keywords used to define Pages they already like. As small business owners begin typing potential keywords in the Interests section in Facebook’s ad creation tool, they will be prompted with suggestions related to the keywords they’ve already selected. As new keywords are selected, the number of potential people that a business could reach increases or decreases. In general, Facebook recommends defining an audience of 10,000 people or more. So, get creative and think about where a business’s audience may already be dwelling online, regardless of whether that subject matter is related to the business.

Ad Budget

How much should be spent on an ad? Well, that’s up to the small business owner. If its target audience is strong, a small business will see results no matter what their budget is. That being said, the more an HVAC brand invests, the greater results it will see on Facebook.

When determining Facebook Ad Spend, businesses can designate a Lifetime or Daily Budget. The minimum spend is $1.00 a day. Determine how long the ad should run. It is best practice to take the total budget, divide it by the number of days the ad will run and create a daily budget. Next, determine how Facebook should optimize that ad: for Page Likes or for Clicks. If it is more important to a business that someone follow the link in the ad, optimize for Clicks. If the goal is to build an audience, optimize for Page Likes.

Creative

Now comes the fun part! Upload an image that fits within the confines of 1200 pixels by 444 pixels and begin crafting clever copy for the ad. Remember to determine where this ad will land users, such as on the business’s Timeline or on one of the other tabs on its Facebook Page. Additionally, the ad can have a 25-character headline. Utilize all of these options for best results.

That being said, Facebook has a restriction regarding ad images. Images being advertised cannot contain more than 20 percent text. There are multiple tools on the web, such as this one, that allow small business owners to verify that an ad image meets Facebook’s standards.


Facebook targeting allows HVAC brands to find the right customers across any device and deliver relevant messages to interested people. It is worthwhile to experiment with different targeted audiences, multiple ad images and creative ad copy. For more tips on social media advertising, read our recent list of ways to make your Facebook Ads stand out.