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Looking Big, Spending Small. Using Facebook Ads to Focus on the Few Who Matter!
I get told this quite a lot, and to be honest as a marketer (and a big show-off) I take that as a compliment. Being described as ‘omnipresent’ (Jo would say that my ego doesn’t need any comparisons with God!) and appearing all over the social media timelines of your prospective clients with useful content can only be a good thing.
It’s not spam if you help people and add value to their lives. A lot of the content I share online is tips, advice, and the type of content I tell people to share all the time. I’m developing relationships and building the trust in those relationships. And they’re real relationships, it’s important to add. There’s no false flattery or pretending to be interested. My ‘business’ networks are full of people I consider very close friends.
There’s no faking, there’s no trickery, and certainly there are certainly no shortcuts. Trust is so important in business and it takes time to build.
“Facebook Ads don’t work. I’ve boosted loads of posts and they got some likes and some comments but no one bought anything.”
Does that sound familiar?
Einstein apparently said:
“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”
Facebook Ads do work… when you create them correctly.
When you apply the Ads carefully, you not only spend less but you appear more often and in the eyes of the people who really matter – making it seem like you’re everywhere.
But they’re a notoriously tricky beast to master.
So what do people do wrong, and how can you avoid making the same mistakes?
Boosting is a great way to waste money.
The boost button itself isn’t flawed as such. It’s the way people use it and the mindset behind it.
“We need a few more sales. Let’s whack £40 on that post”.
Done that before?
If you do that it could be where you’re going wrong with Facebook Ads. It’s not about the sale, or the ads, they might be fine. It’s about the steps you missed out.
Here’s the thing:
Money doesn’t replace the lost relationship. You can’t buy love, you can’t make up for missing your kid’s birthday with a bigger present, and you can’t skip the steps with cash!
Money simply makes it easier to perform a task and putting money on Facebook Ads gives you access to the audience. What Facebook (and money) doesn’t give you is the understanding of your buyer behaviour.
“Facebook Ads are not the Yellow Pages!” I really like this statement from Martin, a Facebook Ads expert I know. It’s true. The Yellow Pages is a place you go to buy. Or certainly people used to. Not so much these days. The way it works is simple. You know what you want, you search for them, and you call them up.
The Yellow Pages needs Ads.
Facebook isn’t the Yellow Pages.
Facebook is where you go to be entertained, educated, and mostly while away some time whilst you wait for a bus or a meeting, or simply read while you’re on the loo. (Don’t pretend you haven’t done it.)
You don’t go there to buy anything!
Facebook posts (and in part Ads) are for building relationships. You can’t change that; it’s what the platform was created for.
Yes, you will see a load of ads that sell, sell, sell…. But how much do you think that costs? How many times do you see the ad? How many other people are seeing it? And what are they selling? Can you buy it right there and then? Can you get something online right away? Order something? It’s all very important to the result of the ads.
There’s a different way to look at ads aside from ‘whacking 40 quid on it’ to ‘see how it goes’ which is not a great mindset but it’s the one many people seem to have with Facebook Ads.
1. Relationship goals
With your marketing you’re in the relationship game. You’re in it (in part) to build them. Your marketing should aim to grow trust, audience, respect, awareness, and of course sales… but the sales can usually only come after the other bits.
Building trust requires some evidence that you know your stuff or you’re selling something awesome. Giving away free content is a tried and tested way to do this and paying to give away content is common. Who are your ideal prospects? What do they want help with that you can do? How can you create a series of content to show and prove that you can be the person to do it?
The online world is busy. Your timelines are no doubt bulging at the seams with ads and posts from friends all fighting, ranking, and paying for your attention. The fact is, you rarely buy something on the first ask.
You’ll often go to other places before returning to the first shop. You’ll sometimes flirt with a company’s shopping cart before one day something just happens, the planets align, you click add to basket and complete the sale.
We all do it.
You need to make sure that your audience and relationship building, your content and your ads are seen more than once. If you want results then you need to make sure your ideal audience see your ads and content from between five and 20 times!
3. Hours of time spent on content rarely seen?
It amazes me that someone will spend about an hour on a blog post like this one, stick it on their website and then walk away and just hope for traffic.
I wanted you to read this. I wanted you to read this far and I really wanted to change your view of Facebook Ads. I wanted to help you be more successful with them.
That wouldn’t happen if I didn’t shove this content under your nose today.
Whether you’re reading this from a community I spend time being a part of or on a platform that I post on a lot and therefore you see my content or even a paid ad – I wanted you to read this as it’s part of our relationship building. Plus I do genuinely love helping small businesses.
You wouldn’t have seen this blog without some effort or cash and that’s where most content goes unread or unnoticed. It’s a real shame as there’s some incredible content out there, hidden on the internet. Don’t let yours be amongst it.
All this needs combining…
Great content takes time to create. Great content certainly helps you to build trust and gain sales. Your content deserves to be seen.
Yes, it could cost a lot of money to get your blog post to be seen by all your ideal prospects between 5 and 20 times, and then the next one, and the next one, and then 10 times for the ads and sales posts, and so on…
I said that Facebook Ads could make you look big and that you can do this with less budget that you think. I said in the title of this blog that you can use Facebook Ads to focus on the few who matter and here’s what I mean.
Your website will allow you to use a Facebook Pixel to target your website visitors, and your Facebook account will allow you to use your email list to target your list on Facebook.
So people subscribed to your emails and people who visit your website can be served up ads and sponsored content. Those people are already talking to you. Those people are already interested. Those people (who may be in both the website visits and the email list) are the ones you should be building relationships with.
When you boost a post you forget about these guys. When most people ‘whack £40 on it’ they forget about all the relationships they’ve already built up that all far closer to the sale than they realise, and pay to sell to brand new people.
Instead of asking for the sale from those who’ve already got a vested interest, they’re paying to sell to people who couldn’t give a crap.
Build rapport over time with content, keep sending them to your website, and keep emailing them solid trust-building tips and articles and then pay to promote it to them… and then pay to advertise to them.
Who is more likely to buy from you? Someone who knows likes and trusts you? Or someone who just met you via a paid ad that interrupted their scrolling and looking at cat videos?
Facebook got in trouble recently for spying on us and holding personal information about us, but we all give that up freely when we accept terms and conditions and then post a selfie whilst checking into a public place that people who check in next time can see.
Scary? Possibly. But this is a marketing blog. So for me and for you reading this it’s rather exciting. As a marketer you have the ability to reach anyone on Facebook, but I’d rather not do that.
I’d rather spend my money targeting those who really matter to me. Those who know me, those who are still not sure, and those who recently subscribed to me or read some content right here on this website.
The result of this choice is cheaper ads. The sponsored posts are helping me to stay connected with and help convert those who matter. In their world – I’m everywhere!
Focus on those who matter… Whack 40 quid on them instead!
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