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Love it or hate it, Facebook commands attention for your business.

With over 1.71 billion monthly active Facebook users and an average time spent per visit of 20 minutes (Source: Infodocket), Facebook is too big to ignore.

You may or may not enjoy using Facebook in your personal life but from a purely business standpoint, Facebook is something your business can leverage to drive targeted traffic to your website.  And I’m not talking about the organic reach of Facebook, I’m talking about advertising on Facebook.  Because as most marketers already know, Facebook organic reach has now dropped to single digit percents of 2-8% as widely cited in many studies.

But instead of bemoaning the loss of reach for your organic Facebook posts (that’s why you only receive 20 views of your posts even though you have 500 followers) look at it as an opportunity to harness this community to drive traffic to your own offers.  Yes, it will cost money to do so, but advertising on Facebook is still considerably cheaper than Google Adwords and you do have the following benefits:

  • Reach new people by target people who are NOT your followers
  • Get immediate action
  • Target by age, sex and interests
  • Target geographically
  • Small budgets can go a long way

TYPES OF FACEBOOK ADS

There are two main types of advertising on Facebook:  Ads and Boosted Posts.  While both can be effective there are important distinctions between the two.  First, the similarities.  Both Facebook ad formats provide the following:

  • Location targeting
  • Age & gender targeting
  • Interest targeting
  • Language targeting
  • Multiple images
  • Right side ads
  • Tracking pixels

So either Facebook ad format is perfect for reaching a targeted group of people with your message.  It’s what you want people do DO when they see your message that the difference between the Facebook ad formats come into play.

IMPORTANT DISTINCTIONS BETWEEN BOOSTED POSTS & ADS

The major differences between the two Facebook ad formats is that only the Facebook ADS allow a clickable call to action button on the ad itself.

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Between boosted Facebook posts and Facebook ads, only ads have a clickable call to action. Click To Tweet

Since most of what we do for our clients revolves around generating website traffic, having the clickable Call to Action (CTA) is really the option that makes the most sense.  The boosted posts are more about creating awareness or increasing “likes” to your Facebook page.  But rather than spend money to increase your likes, which Facebook then doesn’t allow to see your organic posts (see the irony?), why not drive the targeted traffic to your own website where you should have an offer waiting for them when they click through?

THE BEST WAY TO HARNESS FACEBOOK ADS

So let me back up a second.

Before you even consider a Facebook ad campaign, you need to decide what the offer will be when they get to your site.  What is the course of action you want the reader to take when they click your ad (which costs you money because you’re paying by the click, remember?)?  What do you want them to do?  Possibilities include:

  • Make a purchase
  • Download a coupon
  • Sign up for an event
  • Download information

Our favorite strategy for getting the most out of a Facebook ad campaign for general marketing and lead-generating purposes is to create a landing page with a tool such as LEAD PAGES and get the visitor to optin to a download of some kind so you can build your lead list.  You can also use landing pages to sign people up for webinars, podcasts, newsletters, workshops, live events, etc.

Here’s a lead-generating ebook we set up for one of our Career Coaching clients in Boston:

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You can see that the audience is clearly people in career transition.  Facebook ads can be targeted to the exact demographics and interests of prospective clients looking to make a career move.

Once the person opts in to the download they are automatically added to an email newsletter or automated marketing sequence.  This is often referred to as “lead bait” or a “lead magnet.”  The value of one opt in is more valuable than 100 Facebook “likes” in our opinion.  The person is obviously looking to make a decision about a career move and the information provided in the ebook provides information that is useful and relevant, building trust and authority with the reader.

One email opt-in is worth 100 Facebook likes. Click To Tweet

SUMMARY

Facebook ads provide an immediate and relatively low cost method of reaching relevant people with your message or offer.  I suggest giving it a try but only if you have a specific offer in place that you can drive the person to when they click the ad.  By using the Facebook tracking pixel you will also know how many people converted (made a purchase, downloaded, signed up) so you will know exactly what your return on investment was.  For instance, if you spent $100 on an ad that resulted in 10 “conversions” (sales, downloads, etc) that would be a 10% conversion.  Is that worth it?  Well, depending on how much each conversion generated in revenue you’ll know whether to continue, modify or improve your campaign.  Or step on the gas and do it again!

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO ON OUR LEAD GENERATION CAMPAIGNS