Facebook is a fantastic advertising platform for businesses of all types, offering a way to reach a potential audience of thousands instantly, and in a place where people are relaxed and open. As of September 2018, there were 1.49 billion active daily users on Facebook, a number which increases year on year. People tend to visit Facebook multiple times a day, and 57% of consumers admit that they use social media to inform their shopping decisions. This means that, for businesses, there is almost no stronger place to advertise.
However, whilst Facebook ads are nothing new, many businesses are still getting it wrong when it comes to using it well. Spending money on Facebook advertising and then doing it wrong is just like throwing your money down the drain.
The problem is that many marketers are looking towards the end goal with their advertising – sales. However, your average internet user will take lots of steps between first noticing a brand and actually spending their money. If you aim your marketing at just getting sales, chances are that you will lose your target audience a long time before they ever get to that point. And this is where the Facebook sales funnel comes in.
How a Facebook ad funnel works
Facebook is able to analyse your data and is more likely to consider you a worthwhile business to push to your target audience if they can see that you are getting conversions. This is why you need to make your conversions smaller, easier wins than just going straight for the sale. Advertisers need to look at the various stages of a potential customer’s interest in their product or service, and make sure that their advertising is able to hold the customer’s interest throughout these steps.
If you think about subscription boxes – an idea that was unheard of 10 years ago but is now one of the best selling products on social media – your initial engagement goal is just to get someone to notice what it is that you do, and take an interest. You then build up interest in tiny increments until the final conversion goal. By targeting smaller actions that take place earlier in the sale, you are able to get more conversions per week than you ever would if your only goal was to make a sale.
The four stages of a Facebook sales funnel
1. The Facebook user is made aware of your brand and product or service
2. The Facebook user becomes interested in your product.
3. The user is ready to make a purchase
4. Follow up. It is up to you to nurture this relationship and create a long term relationship with your new customer, to take them from one-time purchase to loyal customer.
Creating a sales funnel
The first step in the sales funnel is often the most difficult. The average organic reach for a Facebook business page is 6.4% of the page’s total likes. This is why buying likes doesn’t really work anymore, because you won’t reach any of the customers that are genuinely interested in your brand.
To generate real awareness some strategies you can try are:
- ‘Refer a friend’. Use your existing audience to reach other similar users by running a contest or promotion where they share or tag a friend in order to win something from your brand.
- Create original, interesting content. Sometimes the traditional ways are the best, and the old saying ‘content is king’ still very much applies. Don’t post clickbait or boring ads all the time, challenge and interest your audience with content they will want to share.
- Use Facebook Ad tools to target users who may be interested in your brand. Things like Lookalike Audiences can be invaluable when it comes to finding new customers.
Tackle pain points and be transparent
Facebook is the perfect place to deal with pain points and help to overcome problems or questions that your potential audience might have. Make sure that you are active on your page and ads, and answer every (or almost every) question or complaint that is posted both publicly and via private message. Not only does this help to overcome objections that users may have with your company, but it also shows that you are interested in and engaged with your audience.
You should also be as clear as possible in your content and ads not only what you do, but why you do it and why these users need your product or service. Be explicit in order to head off any concerns or disbelief before it is even expressed.
Create a time constraint
It is a natural impulse that human beings want to be part of something that other people want and also that they want to get something that other people don’t have. However, people don’t like to feel pressured, so it is critical that you create a time constraint without resorting to bullying. Offering rewards and incentives that have a time limit on them is the perfect way to do this. You can offer customers who are ready to purchase a discount, free shipping etc, if they click on a certain link, or for their first purchase. Flash sales are also a really savvy business move, as customers feel the pressure of a deal going away, without being aware of pressure tactics.
Encourage your existing customers to do the work for you
If you have a happy customer then there is no better advertising tool, particularly on social media. Customer retention is great for any business, because fostering a good relationship with those who already have first hand experience with your company helps you to get good reviews, spread to new potential customers via word of mouth and so on. But your customers can also be used to sell to their friends and contacts, whilst you simultaneously strengthen your relationship with them, through referrals and loyalty schemes.
Offering an existing customer money off their next purchase, or freebies if they can get friends to use a referral code, won’t cost you a lot but will help you to reach plenty of new customers in no time at all.
Facebook Ads can seem overwhelming for those who are new to social media advertising, but it is one of the fastest and easiest ways to quickly grow your fanbase and boost your selling power, as long as you follow the sales funnel and stay aware of your audience throughout.
At MaxWeb we can take care of all your web and social media needs – from creating great sites to creating good content. Why not give us a call on 0151 652 4777 or email [email protected] to find out more.
Posted on Friday, September 6th, 2019 in Branding.