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How Facebook Advertising Can Generate More Leads Than You Ever Thought Possible!

Why on earth should you focus all of your marketing dollars on Facebook Advertising? Well, you want to generate more leads than ever, and this is really what you need in order to accomplish your goals for a better bottom line and sustainable growth well into the future. You’ve just had a direct response experience when you chose to download this report. So that means that direct response advertising works – and now I’m going to show you more.

Branding vs Direct Response Advertising

Branding is one of the hardest things to do and that’s because of the money it takes to do it properly. You have to be where your people are – and you have to give your brand the exposure it needs for your ENTIRE audience to see it over and over again. You don’t think Kleenex got to be a household name because they spent $100 in one geographic region one time, do you? Of course not. Large brands spend millions of dollars to get their brand in front of you.

You don’t have millions of dollars. If you do, then you really don’t need to be reading this. Since you don’t have that kind of marketing budget, you need to focus on direct response advertising instead. Your brand will grow organically as a result of getting your brand in front of the right people and getting them to take action.

Here’s the really great part about direct response advertising:

  • It’s affordable
  • It’s highly targeted
  • It’s 100% measurable

Let’s talk about that last point for a moment. It’s 100% measurable. That’s a really big deal because you can learn about your ROI. You can use coupons and other incentives to learn how many people are converting, too. This means that you can see how much your investment is paying off. You can’t say the same thing about branding. 

If you’re spending a lot of money on branding, you don’t know what is and isn’t working. That’s because you’re using things like billboards and radio ads to promote your brand. How do you know how many people drove by your billboard or visited your website because of hearing your website mentioned on the radio? You don’t. It’s impossible to know how well it really did, which means you could have dropped thousands of dollars for nothing. 

Making the Most of Your Marketing Budget

In order to make the most of your marketing budget, you have to go with direct response advertising. Facebook Ads is a great way to reach a large number of people. You set the budget and therefore it will reach as many people as possible with the money you have available.

You also get to determine your audience you play to. Have different audiences? Great, you can have a different ad copy and set a different audience for each ad that you run.

The “direct” in direct response advertising is what you need to focus on. You want to advertise DIRECTLY to your target audience in order to get an immediate response (which is your call-to-action – click here, buy this, download this).

Who is your audience? Well, that depends. Once you figure it out, Facebook allows you to home in on it with the audience selection tools to include:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Regional area
  • Interests
  • Behaviors
  • Life Events

This is a powerful tool. You can’t market directly with billboards or radio. While you can choose where you put the billboard or what radio station you choose, you don’t get to truly focus in on the audience with laser accuracy.

But Why Facebook?

Facebook is by far the largest social media platform. There are certainly others that are popular, but they don’t have the same draw as Facebook. Plus, Facebook makes it SO easy to really home in on your target audience. This makes it easier for your message to be seen by the right people.

When you show someone an ad that really connects with them, they comment, like, and share. Sharing is exactly what you need because it stretches your marketing even further.

By now, you have probably heard about the unicorn Frappuccino that Starbucks launched. It was available for a limited time. People took pictures of it, created hashtags about it, and it went viral. Here’s the crazy thing about this: Starbucks didn’t do anything. They let their product stand for itself. They earned over $1 million in extra revenue in a single day because everyone wanted a unicorn Frappuccino. Because it was cute (even though filled with tons of sugar), people talked about it.

This is what you want to accomplish with your Facebook ads. You get the concept (or product or service) in front of the right people. Then they do a lot of your marketing for you.

When you give up all of your other marketing (such as radio, SEO, and more), you also have more money to play with. This means that you can use the money to give something to those who take advantage of the offer. It’s a better use of your money because it results in guaranteed conversions. Maybe it’s a really amazing coupon or a free product when they purchase a certain amount from you. Whatever it is, it’s the carrot that you dangle in order for them to convert and buy from you.

Client or customer engagement is critical and that’s what will help you with your word of mouth, SEO, and more. Get your audience hooked and let them do a lot of the marketing for you.

If you need help in getting started with Facebook Advertising, call us direct at 831-789-9320.

BONUS ARTICLE

6 Successful Facebook Advertising Hacks

Facebook is a great tool when you’re a small business. However, posting on your business page is not always enough. You might not be getting the reach you really need, which is why Facebook Ads is an important component to explore.

Various hacks have been used at Coastline Marketing Group and we have found them successful with some of our own clients.

Regardless of whether you’re paying to reach 1,000 people or 10,000 people, there are some ad tips you need to incorporate so you get people clicking the ads and taking action on the link that they arrive at.

Ad Hack #1: Create Buyer Personas

A buyer persona allows you to create your ideal customer. The reality is that you might have several personas based upon the product or service you have to offer.

With each potential customer, think about their age, their gender, what they do for a living, and the kind of problem they have that would be solved with what you have to offer. Have fun with this and maybe even create a graphic to go along with your customer. It’s something that will assist you in future marketing campaigns as well.

When you have a buyer persona in hand, it will make it easier to design a Facebook Ad. This includes being able to identify the best target audience. You will be asked to enter keywords and locations to home in on who your target really is. As you enter more information, Facebook knows more about who they need to show the ad to – and this ensures you’re not wasting your money.

The more you know about your buyers, the easier it will be to get a ROI from your ads.

Ad Hack #2: Speak To Their Emotional Side

You have a limited number of words to use when creating a Facebook Ad. You have a headline and a description – and neither of them give you a lot to work with. Additionally, you are limited by the amount of text you can include within your graphics.

That being said, you have to speak to the audience’s emotional side within your post. Through your image (or video) and your words, you have to make a connection. People shop with their emotions, whether they realize it or not. It’s more important to focus on the benefits of a product or service as opposed to the features. This means that you have to figure out why a certain feature is so beneficial – and focus on that.

There are options available when you want to include several benefits and therefore play on a few different emotions. When you create the Facebook Ad, create a carousel of images. This will allow you to have different “cards.” Each card features a different photo as well as a different headline and description. It gives you more to work with so you make the connection with your audience. You can also choose to have the most popular cards featured first, which means if it has already worked for others, it will show that one before going to the other cards.

There are two different types of buyers: emotional and rational. Within your description, focus on a little bit of both. List a benefit to be emotional, followed by a great feature. Use emotional, powerful words that people will identify with, such as “money saver,” “time saver,” “free time,” and so on.

Ad Hack #3: Use Call-To-Action

There’s a call-to-action built into Facebook Ads. This is an optional pulldown so the button says “Learn More,” “Book Now,” “Shop Now,” and the list goes on and on. This is absolutely a feature to use because people will get an idea as to what they will be prompted to do upon clicking on the link you have connected with the ad.

However, when it comes to creating a call-to-action, you don’t want to depend solely on the button itself. You need to use your words to convey a strong CTA so you grab people’s attention and pull them over to your link. 

A call-to-action probably isn’t going to increase the click-through rate. It will reduce friction once a user lands on your landing page. They will know what to do, so they will get right to performing the desired action. 

The CTA can be anything from “click for your free trial” to “download this amazing offer.” Get creative with the CTA and make sure you deliver once people get to the landing page. If your Facebook Ad promises a coupon and there’s no coupon on your landing page, you won’t get the conversions and you could end up with a lot of negative comments on the ad itself. 

Ad Hack #4: Limit Stock Photography

A lot of websites offer stock photography. Some might be free while others are going to charge you for use of the images. The problem with stock photography is that it’s impersonal. Don’t underestimate your audience – they will be able to tell stock photography from internal photographs. Plus, if they just saw another ad that uses the same stock image, people will keep scrolling right past your ad.

Forget about professional photos. Instead, use the photos that you capture of your employees working, your products, and real customers enjoying your real services. It will be more emotional and more REAL, which is the whole idea.

Remember, you’re not just limited to photography on Facebook Ads, either. You can choose to use a video. This could be something you record from your smartphone. It could be a time lapse of something being built, a video of your assembly line, a head decorator frosting a cupcake, or something else that is personalized to your business.

It’s also a good idea to use photography that’s geo-targeted. For example, if you’re targeting NYC for one ad and Chicago for another, you need to use different images. This could include the use of the city name in the ad in order to get someone’s attention.

The more you get target specific in your ads, the more your photos (or videos) should reflect it. This could be as simple as going into Photoshop to add a few words across the photo. Get creative and see how it can pay off with a higher click-through rate.

If you’re really stuck on the photo to use, consider how much people like to see faces. A study from Caltech in 2005 shows that there are specific brain cells that only fire when a face is seen. The faces don’t have to be human, either. Look at all the cartoon mascots on cereals and even for a bag of Cheetos. We see the face, we identify with it, and it’s humanized. Next thing we know, we’re hooked on that product. That’s what you want when you share photos inside of a Facebook Ad.

Ad Hack #5: Use Attractive Landing Pages

Within your Facebook Ad, you determine the link where people land. This means you have the opportunity to create custom landing pages within your website for people to arrive at when they click from the ad. When they get there, you want it to be attractive and feature rich.

What are people going to see when they get to your page? Will they see a lot of clear information about your product or service? Will they see the same kind of design as what was in your ad? You need to focus on branding so people don’t question whether they landed on the correct website.

The reality is that getting people to click on the link from Facebook is only half the battle. Once they have clicked on that call-to-action button, you have less than 10 seconds to convince them to stay on your site and read more about what you have to offer.

Your landing page has to be interesting and deliver the same message. If you promised a free download, then people need to see where that is. If you promised a discount, be sure the discount code or link is easily identifiable.

Some things to consider include:

  • Bold graphics
  • Minimal images
  • White space within blocks of text
  • A clear offer
  • An enticing call-to-action

Your landing page should take at least as long as it takes for you to create your Facebook page. Before you go live with either one, be sure that they are branded in a similar way. They have to appeal to the buyer persona you are targeting, which means the images and the way in which you pitch have to be considered.

Ad Hack #6: Use Promos and Giveaways

Promos and giveaways are a great thing to use on your Facebook Ad because people love being able to get something for free, or at least for a discount. Approximately 34 percent of users have identified that they will “like” a Facebook page in order to get a discount or be eligible for a promotion.

This means it’s in your best interest to provide a contest or conduct a promotion on Facebook. 

A sweepstakes contest, for example, lets people know what you’re giving away. The landing page shows off what you’re giving away and you have them do a few steps to win, such as liking the Facebook page and signing up with their email address. You might even ask them to share the contest with their friends, giving you even more exposure. The added benefit is that you have now collected their email address to target them through a newsletter at a later point in time.

Refer Your Friend giveaways are also great tools because it helps you to gather more likes to your Facebook page. When people get their friends to enter, they earn more entries into the contest. With the trust factor involved, a promo has the chance to go viral.

Other types of contests include essays, vote for a specific item/design, or a photo contest. It gives you future marketing fodder for down the road, and ensures people engage with your brand.

There’s also the Facebook coupon, which is something you can add to your Facebook page and have a landing page to match. The Facebook like button will coincide with getting the coupon. Ask people to enter their email address and next thing you know, they have their coupon and you have a new subscriber to your newsletter.

The tools are out there for you to run sweepstakes and contests, so get creative and make sure that it ties back to your brand. With the right graphics and a prize worth winning, people will give you the likes and shares needed to give your brand considerably more exposure than what it’s getting now.

Final Thoughts

Facebook Ads are simple to create. Plus, the social media platform walks you through all of the different steps. It’s all well and great to launch just any ad. However, if you want a good return on your investment, you want a high click-through rate as well as a high conversion rate once people get onto your landing page.

Branding matters and this has to be taken into consideration with all that you do. A buyer persona will allow you to learn more about your target demographic. From there, you can choose the right images, the right wording, as well as the best overall promotion. What goes in the Facebook ad should also match what goes on the landing page as this is what will make it easier to convert someone into a customer.

You don’t have to spend a lot on Facebook advertising. You simply have to be smart about your approach and what you want people to do. It might be in your best interest to create a campaign where you ask people to refer a friend in order to win something. Once you have more likes on your page and traffic to your website, you then run another Facebook Ad and target the same people. This time around, you drive them to a product or service on a landing page and with exposing them to the brand in two different ways, you have developed a higher level of trust.

With these advertising hacks, you might be surprised by how much easier it is to improve ROI and overall conversion rates each time you run an ad.

If you need help in getting started with Facebook Advertising, call us direct at 831-789-9320.


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The Perfect Facebook Post: Ask, Statement, Call To Action

When posting on Facebook, it is important to follow the right format in posts so that customers are more likely to be engaged in a way that can lead to a sale. By constructing posts in the right way, businesses can increase the effectiveness of their posts to get more out of their social media marketing efforts.

Social Media Requires a Special Approach

Notice the ad above isn't telling the viewer to "call now to buy a website". Instead, the ad begins with a question. The question is specifically tied to the pain point that Coastline Marketing Group's demographic struggles with the most.

As with all digital marketing efforts, businesses must keep in mind that individuals who consume their content are not a captive audience like they are with traditional media. With television advertising, for example, viewers wishing to continue their show have no choice but to watch the advertisements. In contrast, social media is vastly different because readers always have the ability to unfollow a business or scroll past its messages.

Therefore, although businesses can increase the conversion rate of their content with a call to action, it is critical to avoid being too pushy in a sales approach because this type of activity can quickly chase customers away. Messages posted on social media should always add value to the reader to prevent decreased engagement and a decline in total subscribers.

 

Start with a Question

When posting on social media, it is important to create content that is likely to capture a viewer's attention. Unfortunately, getting the attention of a potential customer is difficult on social media because viewers are constantly bombarded with messages from hundreds of other sources. The first sentence of a post, therefore, is critical for grabbing the attention of a potential prospect. In general, questions are the best way to capture someone's attention with social media because these types of messages force a reader to think about what is being said and become engaged.

Questions can be powerful tools for capturing the attention of a prospect, and business owners should make use of this fact to obtain better results from their Facebook marketing efforts. When posting on a business page, start posts with a question that points out pain that a buyer is likely to be experiencing. If, for example, a business offers web design services, a good question might be, "Wouldn't your time be better spent building your business than building your website?"

 

Give a Statement

The next step after asking a question is to give a statement about how the potential customer's pain can be solved with a product or service. Since customers have just been reminded of pain that they are experiencing, they will be highly interested in reading about a solution.

The statement must be tailored to the social media format so that it will be as effective as possible. Social media users are generally unwilling to read long articles, and they prefer sentences that are relatively short and easy to understand. The time that it takes to read content is a critical factor to consider when crafting a post for social media. A good example of a statement that would follow a question would be, "We help busy professionals improve their web presence so they can focus their time on what they do best."

 

Call to Action (CTA)

The final element of a social media post for a business should be a call to action. As with other areas of the post, the call to action should be short and easy to read. Most importantly, readers should be made to feel ready to take immediate action because of the content in the message. An example of a good call to action would be, "Contact our agency today for a free consultation!"

-Phil Fisk - President, Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.


How To Mix Up Social Media Content, By Percentage

When developing a smart social media strategy, it can be hard to determine what type of content to post. We have discovered that the answer is a good mix of several different types of content. Not all types of content are made equally, so some should be used more often than others.

Below we've listed the types of content you should be delivering to your readers regularly as well as the corresponding percentages of each.

Keep these percentages in mind when marketing to your social media followers and connections. These percentages will help you to stimulate interest in your business while avoiding social media mistakes such as coming on too strong with too many in-your-face marketing tactics.

Organic Posts - 70%

The meat of your social media marketing strategy should consist of what we like to call "Organic Posts." These posts include anything that gives your followers value, stimulates interest, or provides a personal connection or insight.

You may choose to post a simple comment or update about something that is happening with your business. The more personable you can be, the better. You want to avoid writing in a voice which sounds like "marketing speak," and instead let your customers get some insight into your business. Help them realize that there are real, live people running it.

You may also choose to engage your customers directly by asking them questions or by getting their opinion on a new service you are providing. Make them feel like you are there and ready to listen to them. You may also choose to create a poll for your followers to answer.

Organic content also includes any content you have created which provides value to customers. Your website should have an active blog, and you can use social media to share these posts with your customers and get them to visit your site.

If you have created Youtube content, videos, or infographics, you should also share these with your customers by using social media.

Informing Your Audience - 20%

The next most important type of content to share with your social media networks is content that informs. While your own blog posts and original content should do a good job of informing your customers, you can also link to external content, news articles, and sources.

You may choose to share an article or blog post written by an expert that is relevant to your particular industry. Use news articles and these articles to inform your audience, somewhat indirectly, why they should use your services and help them to understand the value of what your business provides.

For this type of content, you can also include other types of external content, such as humorous videos, memes, or funny photos that you think will be relevant to your customers and your industry.

It's okay to have a sense of humor and making your audience laugh can do wonders in helping them to feel a connection to you and your business. You don't want to overdo it with this type of content, however, but it is certainly okay to "cut loose" every now and then.

Promoting Your Business - 10%

It may come as a surprise to many, but the actual promotional posts should be the last thing you should think about posting on your social media accounts.

Today's consumers are very smart and don't like to be bombarded with promotional messages and marketing hype. Typical marketing tactics are less welcome on social media sites and make your business seem cold and impersonal.

Social media is meant to break down the walls between consumers and businesses. Typically, if you're great at the other 90% of social media post types, customers will actively seek out your services and will take it on themselves to discover what your business has to offer.

While you shouldn't over promote on social media, you should regularly post info about your services and products. Be sure to make each of these posts worthwhile and highly engaging. If you have an exceptional new product, be sure to let your social media followers know. If you're hosting any upcoming events or sales, you can let your customers know.

Just make sure that this type of post is kept to a minimum to make sure that customers don't click that dreaded unfollow button.

Final Thoughts

While there are no hard and fast rules to social media usage, we have found the above mix to be ideal for the majority of businesses.

Although it can seem daunting at first, creating an excellent social media strategy doesn't have to be a complicated task. Just make sure to keep the specific characteristics of social media marketing in mind.

Social media isn't the place to shove products and services in the face of customers but is instead a great place to build a connection and cultivate ongoing relationships.

Make sure to provide value to your customers while helping them to remember that there are real people behind your business. If you do, you'll be sure to make your social media channels shine and grow your business faster than you could have possibly imagined.

Happy Marketing

– Phil Fisk, President Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.


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2 Biggest Facebook Marketing Mistakes

Facebook. It's the place we go to keep in touch with old friends, to share moments of our lives with the world and to occasionally be bombarded by political discussions that we'd rather be left out of entirely. While Facebook certainly drives our personal lives significantly, it's also one of the most important tools in any online marketer's social media arsenal.

Some brands do really well on Facebook. These brands generally create a feeling of community on their pages, a place where like-minded individuals come together to not only discuss the products, but to discuss the lifestyle related to the brand. I see this a lot with cosmetics companies. The pages of popular cosmetics stores and lines frequently become popular hangouts for teen girls to chat about makeup, beauty and everything under the sun. Every online marketer dreams of creating a page like that.

Sadly, for every makeup company-turned-hangout-spot, there are thousands of Facebook brand pages that are real disasters. To ensure that you don't fall into that category, here are the two biggest mistakes I see time and time again on Facebook, in addition to some tips on how you can avoid them.

Mistake One: No Clear Message

Unlike a Twitter account or a blog, a Facebook page really thrives on that aforementioned sense of community. Facebook is the best platform, hands down, for creating a conversation. Sure, people can communicate on Twitter and Instagram, but the structure of the conversation tends to be clunky and hard to follow. Conversations on Facebook are well-structured and easy to follow.

This is why it's exceptionally important that marketers create a Facebook page with a clear message. By that I mean that not only are posts regular and frequent, but they follow a common theme. Remember, as the person with control of the page, you are the one guiding the conversation. Think of yourself as the host of a dinner party. If you bring up conversation points that seamlessly connect to each other with a good flow, you'll have a lively conversation. If you randomly bring up whatever point pops into your head, the conversation will be a disaster.

That's not to say that every single post has to be directly related to your brand. You can absolutely post popular memes and videos, just make sure that they tie into your overall theme somehow. For example, the aforementioned cosmetics company would be foolish to post a viral video involving a monster truck, but they'd be fools not to post a viral video of a girl using items from her pantry as makeup.

It's not so much about posting things that relate to your brand as it's about posting things that you know your target demographic is interested in discussing. This goes back to my emphasis on how important it is to understand your buyers' persona. If you haven't read my article about this, please do.

Mistake Two: Too Focused On Selling

There's no web marketing professional on the planet who will advise brands to bombard their audience with ads on social media and yet so many companies seem intent on doing it. I can't stress this enough: Your social media is about creating a conversation and a community that promotes the lifestyle related to your brand, not about spamming people with ads for your products.

In the early days of web marketing, people weren't savvy enough to understand when they were being sold to versus when they were reading genuine content. This is why a lot of rather unscrupulous web marketers were able to make a lot of fast cash during the dawn of online marketing and affiliate programs. I can guarantee you that not many of those unsavory types are still working in this field today.

No one is saying that you can't post things that promote your products. However, it should never be a bombardment of ads. Instead, it should be a soft sell that provides genuine content to the reader. To return yet again to the cosmetics company example (they really do well on Facebook), a lot of these companies' posts announcing new products will be accompanied by a visually appealing video or photograph of someone actually using the product.

It's also okay to post announcements of sales, discounts and promo codes. Just be sure to pace these well and not overwhelm your audience. People take advantage of these deals when they seem sporadic. If they see a new one every day, there's no rush to buy.

In Closing

If you can avoid these two mistakes, you can use Facebook advantageously. Remember, your end goal on Facebook should be about creating an active community. Once you have that, those enthusiastic commenters will translate into sales. Create great content and you'll enjoy great, loyal customers.

Happy Marketing

– Phil Fisk, President Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.