Facebook Ads are a great tool for small businesses, thanks to their super precise targeting and relatively low costs per click. Still, a lot of the entrepreneurs and business owners I talk to think Facebook Ads would be too complicated for them to take on.

I get it-but even if you don't have a ton of time available, you should give them a try.

Facebook Ads work in much the same way as PPC ads, but have some cool features that can really benefit a smaller business. For starters, they can appear in the Newsfeeds of your target audience and appear much the same as the organic content they're used to seeing, so they're not too intrusive.

Second, as I said, the costs associated with Facebook Ads are lower in most industries.

But best of all, they have this amazing social quality that can make them travel far beyond your target audience. When people interact with your ad by Liking, Commenting, or even Sharing it, they're exposing it to their friend network. (Twitter Ads can also go viral and may be a good option for you-read more about them here.)

So whatever doubts you might have had, cast them aside. Here are 5 indispensable tools to try out that will help make the tasks of creating and managing effective Facebook Ads easier:

The iOS app for Facebook Ads lets you manage your campaigns and even create new ads from your mobile device. It didn't make a whole lot of sense that you could only manage your ads from your desktop, considering how mobile-friendly Facebook itself is. This app is welcome and was long overdue. Android users fear not-there's an app coming for you this year.

This is a must-have if you're using Promoted Posts, which basically means you make a regular post to your page and then pay to expand the audience. It's super annoying to make a post and then get an error message saying you can't promote it because the image has too much text. You're allowed to cover up to 20% of an image with text, but the way Facebook measures it makes it difficult to gauge while you're making your images. Use this tool to upload your images and see if they qualify as ad images.

If you're doing business in a number of different locations (like an Etsy seller promoting your products across the US, for example), Social Stats offers a great way to visualize the potential audience for your Facebook Ads. You simply choose the locations you want to evaluate from the map or a dropdown list of countries, then set your age, gender and interests preferences. Social Stats brings back the estimated size of the audience you could have in that area. More advanced advertisers will want more granular targeting options, but this is a great place to start for your first campaigns, while you try to determine the opportunity.

Qwaya is a paid tool, with plans starting at $149 a month (at time of writing). Basically, it allows you to create and test multiple versions of your ads. A/B testing is super important in any PPC strategy and Facebook is no exception. You'll need to test different combinations of titles, images, messaging and offers to pinpoint your highest converting and best ROI ads. When you're ready to take that step, Qwaya is a decent option.

Facebook Ads isn't your only marketing effort, and it's important to understand how your different marketing campaigns work in audiences that now habitually use different devices to connect with you. KISSmetrics is a cross-platform measurement tool that connects the data it collects back to individuals, so you have a more comprehensive view of your customers. You'll be able to see funnel and A/B test reports to help inform your campaigns, and revenue reports will show you which channels are most lucrative for you. The Starter Package allows you to track up to 500,000 per month for $200 (at time of writing).

Looking for more affordable and relatively painless ways to promote your business? See Why You Should Be Podcasting and up your content game with these Attention-Grabbing Blog Titles That Actually Work.

Published on: Jun 2, 2015