Five Secrets to running a Flash Sale on Facebook

Five Secrets to running a Flash Sale on Facebook

Five Secrets to running a Flash Sale on Facebook


There’s a secret to running a flash sale on Facebook. And you won’t believe what it is when I tell you, after the advice I have given before.

Black Friday and Christmas is a busy time for businesses and marketers as well as those customers on the lookout for a bargain.

In a recent blog, ‘Are Black Friday and Christmas Ads More Expensive I explain that the cost rises around this season due to the sheer increase in adverts on the social media platform. Every business owner wants to get in front of customers when shopping is high on people’s agendas.

But, sssh, here’s what to do if you want to be running a flash sale on Facebook

Let’s say for example that you want to do a sale for four days to cover Black Friday through to Cyber Monday. You don’t have time to test. You don’t have time to build up audiences. So what choices can you make to get a better result?

My advice is to give Facebook the reigns and let the social media platform take charge of your campaign. Yes, really!

Give the control to Facebook

There are choices that you can make when setting up an ad campaign that actually allows Facebook the power to make some of the decisions for you.

As a Facebook Ads manager I don’t always use these options myself because I want to be in complete control of everything, and no, it’s not because I’m a control freak (well maybe a little bit), it’s because I need to see what is and isn't working directly correlating to my choices. Understanding this allows me to optimise and test to get better results.

But for a flash sale it’s different. When you have a short time, it’s time to listen to Facebook and follow their prompts.

Here’s how to hand over your flash sale to Facebook to get you the best results:

1. Set the correct objective.

For sales always set your objective for conversions and set it at purchase level to tell Facebook that that is the outcome that you want for your ad (you will need to have registered purchases through your pixel to be able to choose this option). This gives Facebook the green light to go out there and find the people who are highly likely to make those purchases.

2. Schedule your campaign.

The other option is to choose to schedule the campaign and give it a lifetime budget.

lifetime budget for Facebook ads - Five Secrets to running a Flash Sale on Facebook

By giving the maximum amount of money you're instructing Facebook to spend it. Facebook will spend that money to get you the most results for your campaign. When you choose daily spend, Facebook can spend under the amount on some days, so your reach might be less.

This also stops the messing around with scaling the budget, or watching to clock waiting to turn the campaign off.

3. Expand your reach.

Under detailed targeting is a little tick box saying “Detailed targeting expansion: Reach people beyond your detailed targeting selections when it's likely to improve performance".

Expanded reach for Facebook ads

Normally I don’t choose this, as you don’t know who or what it is targeting to get you the better results and in the past it didn’t help with finding quality leads. However recently Facebook has upgraded it’s automated options and this can really help to find better quality leads.

Or try a broader, much larger, audience than you usually would target – all Women in the UK for instance, without any detailed targeting options.

I have discovered from experience that I can sometimes get a much better cost-per-result when I exercise this third option.

4. Automatic Placements.

The other thing you can try is automatic placements for your ad placement.

Automatic placements for Facebook ads

In this choice, Facebook decides where to put the ads depending on where it gets the best results. You might find that you get results from Marketplace or the Audience Network, somewhere you might not have tried before.

5. Dynamic Creative for your ads.

Switching on the Dynamic Creative option in the ad set level is another way to give Facebook control.

Dynamic Creative for Facebook ads

Here, you provide up to 10 images and videos – you can mix these up, five types of copy, five headlines, five descriptions and five call to action button choices. Facebook then optimises which combination will perform the best for any given person. It also creates videos from your creative sometimes too.


In all five of these options the Facebook algorithm takes over when using them to run a Flash Sale on Facebook. I have used this recently for a client and we got much lower costs and a higher conversion rate on purchases without having to micro manage the campaign when there isn’t time. Never underestimate just how clever Facebook is! Think of these as the ultimate marketing department doing all the work for you.

Why not give them a go and let me know how you get on. If you need more help with how to set up your ads, why not book a Power Hour with me for £97 where we can do some bespoke training. Good luck with your festive campaigns! And don’t forget, I’m always here if you need some help!

Are Black Friday and Christmas Ads more expensive?

Are Black Friday and Christmas Ads more expensive?

Are Black Friday and Christmas Ads more expensive?


Why is it that Black Friday and Christmas ads are said to be more expensive? Before you make any decisions about whether to do an ad for Black Friday or Christmas let’s bust some myths!

I hear people say that they are concerned that it may cost them more to run an ad for these occasions and they won’t see a good return on their investment. It worries me that some people may decide not to run these ads before they learn the truth.

A recent study from Shopify revealed that Facebook marketers view Facebook and Instagram as one of the top-performing marketing channels, especially for e-commerce brands. Simply put, more gets sold on these channels.

So, what this means is that over Black Friday and Christmas, there are going to be many more advertisers and marketers on these platforms. This puts up the costs per sale, sometimes by as much as about 25%.

Why do Black Friday and Christmas ads cost more?

Before I explain why this increase occurs, we need to look at how the Facebook Ad platform works.

When you're putting a Facebook ad on, you are essentially entering an auction. Think of it as going to an auction house where you are bidding for a certain audience to see your ads. Now consider that there are more advertisers who also want this particular audience, the bids keep going higher in an attempt to secure the sale.

As you can imagine over the Black Friday and Christmas season especially, business owners want to be showing their products and their offers to people. And at Christmas, business owners are looking to reach their end of year targets resulting in more and more companies looking to advertise on Facebook.

How to keep your ad costs lower.

It’s not impossible to keep your Black Friday and Christmas Ad costs lower – I bet that’s music to your ears.

Here’s some tips for how:

  • Keep building your warm audiences in your audience section of Facebook ads manager - the people who are visiting your website, signing up to your email list for instance, using your messaging bot, watching your videos on your social media channels.
  • Leverage these warm audiences. Start sending ads to customers and potential customers and get them over to your website and your offers now to segment even warmer audiences.
    • Start advertising your lead magnet before Black Friday or Christmas and build your email list.
    • Get more people onto your website by boosting a post that sends them to your website to read an engaging blog.
    • Send your best-performing organic posts from your Facebook page to a wider cold audience to get new traffic to your website.
    • A great way to build an audience quickly is to send out a video detailing top tips and really adding value to the cold audience. What you are doing here is capturing them to market to later.
  • Don’t think of Black Friday and Christmas as the end of your advertising period. Post-Christmas and January are great times to keep advertising and the cost of ads drops too! Boxing Day sees incredibly high levels of people online – take advantage of that. People are keen to spend any Christmas money they've been given, and they're looking for bargains and sales.
  • The Christmas season is a good time to raise your average order price around this time. Your average order price is how much you would normally make from an average order. Think about how can you increase that. Maybe do special bundles - could you make a special Black Friday bundle rather than a discount that seems like it's a better offer? Allow the customer to buy two or more products together to get a discount. This will get people spending more.
  • Consider creating a landing page that only has special Black Friday or Christmas products on it to narrow their view and encourage a sale.
  • Focus less on competitive audiences. There are some very common audience-targeting options that a lot of people choose, but to keep costs low think a little bit outside of the box for interests to target.
  • Try some different placements. Many people use Facebook newsfeed or Instagram feed, but in actual fact you can sometimes get lower-cost sales if you only target Instagram Stories for instance, or Marketplace. To really make the most out of this use some really good creative that works with the different placement area (tailor your images to be the right size for Stories for instance with GIF images overlaid).

I hope that helps you to see that Black Friday and Christmas Ads don’t need to be expensive if you design your strategy now.

If you'd like any more information about how to run ads over this festive season, please do get in contact with me and we can have a chat. I’d love to hear from you.

Foundations for your Black Friday Facebook Ad Campaign.

Foundations for your Black Friday Facebook Ad Campaign

Foundations for your Black Friday Facebook Ad Campaign.


It’s November. Black Friday Facebook ads are being planned left, right and centre!

Are you wondering if you need to be doing some ads but don’t know where to start? Wonder no more, here are the important first steps you must consider to set the best foundations for success.

Prepare and plan for a smooth, well run Black Friday Facebook ad campaign that achieves the results you want.

Here are two crucial steps to begin with broken down into bite-size chunks for you:

#1. Check that all of your back-office elements are correctly set up.

  • This includes the all-important pixel on your website. It’s crucial that its functioning properly.
  • Check the diagnostics in the Facebook Events Manager (within ads manager). It’s key that you're tracking customers and potential customers and that you can optimise your re-targeting.
  • If you're product-based, check that your catalogue is syncing correctly and that there are no issues.

#2. Make sure that your custom audiences are set up.

Create your warm audiences. Often with a Black Friday Facebook ad campaign, you can get far cheaper results (spend less and make more) if you target people who already know who you are and are interested in what you sell.

To do this, you need to set up your custom audiences in Facebook ads manager in the Audiences section.

  • Track people who have visited your website, engaged with your Facebook page or Instagram page and those on your email list (subscribers only to be GDPR safe!). Create one audience for each.
  • Consider who else to target and upload. These could be the people who are watching your videos, people who have purchased from you previously, people who've added items to their cart but not completed the transaction and people who have viewed content online. There are lots of people to think about in this early stage. Who do you want to target with your Black Friday offer?

Now, you’ve set up these custom audiences of interested people you need to think about building these warm audiences some more.

  • I suggest you send out cold audience ads encouraging people to head over to your website - read a blog post, view your products etc. to build up the audience of people who have taken that first step to see who you are and what you sell.
  • Another great idea is to send out your lead magnet ads and start building your email list.
  • Or you could simply boost (not by using the boost button but by setting up an engagement ad) your best performing organic social media posts to reach a wider audience (engagement will build your audience of people who engage with your profile, and clicks through will build your audience of people who visit your website).
  • Videos can work really well for building a warm audience, plus if you share the video from your page into a Facebook group, you can also track people who are in the groups and you know are your ideal clients.

I hope you have found these background tasks helpful to plan your Black Friday Facebook ad campaign - they really will set you up for success. Of course, this is just the start, but one major element that I see people miss when planning their campaigns. Remember it takes time to work out a profitable audience to target with Facebook ads, so in a short time sales period, you don't have that time to really work it out. Using your warm audiences helps to speed up your results.

If you need more support with planning your Black Friday or Christmas Facebook ads please do get in touch – I’d love to help.