Facebook ads

Refugee Action, August 2018


Glyn Thomas

Email: glyn@glyn-thomas.co.uk
Twitter: @glynmthomas

What I'll talk through


2. Overview of work with War on Want and Liberty

3. Results of work with War on Want and Liberty

1. Strategic approach to Facebook ads including timescales

4. Rates and ways of working

My experience


  • Been running Facebook ads since 2012
  • Keep on top of (frequent) changes to Facebook ads
  • War on Want, Liberty
  • Book Aid International, Global Justice Now, RightsInfo
  • Have also run Facebook ads training in London and Dublin with Amelia Showalter (Obama 2012 campaign)

Strategic approach


Organisations want
three things all at once


Lots of leads

Low cost

As fast as

Lots of leads

High cost


Low volume

Low cost


Lots of leads

Low cost

Take time
to optimize





Because of the way
Facebook works

  • There are things that are out of our control
  • Who else is trying to reach the same people




Auction: bid to get
ads seen



Bid for what a click or a sign up is worth

If we are looking for sign ups at around £1.50

Or clicks at around £0.40

What if other companies or organisations want to reach the same audiences and are bidding more? Our ads will get seen by a lot fewer people.

That's where the time comes in - if we want a stable
CPL and CPA.

ABC Strategy





ABCDE Strategy







ABCDE Strategy


Audience - who do we want to reach?

Bid - what's the budget?

Content - what will persuade them to click?

Data - analyse results

Escalate - scale up what's working best


Target people who like relevant organisations

Lookalike audiences

Judicious use of Pixel to retarget people who clicked but didn't convert

People who like Refugee Action Facebook page


Use per click or per sign up as the charging basis

Start low eg. £0.20 per click

Wait 5-7 days

Then increase by £0.05

Wait 5-7 days

Repeat until we reach the optimum cost/volume ratio


Campaign actions with a focus on people signing up to email list

Direct to donate asks focus on people who like the Refugee Action Facebook page, or have visited the donation page but not converted (if there's a strong proposition)

Usually organisation provides content and then I make suggestions to ensure it works best for Facebook ads


Look at ad performance

Separate ad set for each audience

Engaging Networks tracking links - unique link for each ad



Page Views

Sign ups

Opt ins


See the performance all the way through after sign up and during the email journey

Focus on the audiences that have worked best, and increase the budget behind those

But all the time still looking for quality leads, not just quantity


A lot of agencies go for upfront sign ups and wash their hands of the long term performance of the leads

Dynamic audiences

Build a dynamic lookalike audience

Whenever someone signs up from a Facebook ad they can be added dynamically / automatically by Facebook to a custom audience

That custom audience can then be used to build a lookalike audience - which is constantly changing and adapting and improving based on every new sign up



Daily/Weekly/Monthly budgets and targets

Quarterly budgets and targets

Annual budgets and targets

Case studies

War on Want


1. War on Want


2. Liberty


Specific campaign objective

5000 new sign ups to their email list

Sending people to a petition built in Engaging Networks



Testing and optimisation

5 images

4 sets of copy

Tried all 20 combinations

Found that 1 combination worked best



War on Want

January - June 2018

4685 sign ups to email list

167 regular donors

CPA: £64

Cost per lead: £1.50

Projected 5 year income: £73,600

Total spend: £10,627

ROI: 592% / 5.92:1

ROI: 671% / 6.71:1

War on Want

Latest round of ads

470 sign ups in 2 weeks

Cost per lead: £1.47


November 2017 - February 2018

5000 sign ups in 14 weeks

Cost per lead: £1.32

CPA: £49-£67

My rates

  • £400 + VAT per day
  • £200 + VAT per half day
  • Facebook ads work is on average half a day per week
  • Happy to spread that half day across the week

Thanks for listening!



Refugee Action Facebook Ads

By Glyn Thomas

Refugee Action Facebook Ads

Refugee Action, August 2018

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