Driving leads via Facebook is now about strategy, not about tactical tricks anymore.

Driving leads via Facebook is now about strategy, not about tactical tricks anymore.

Years ago, Facebook had a LIKE button on ads– do you remember?

Back then, fan growth was all the rage– and it was before there was a newsfeed or even mobile.

We could even drive 600 fans for a dollar– not a typo, since traffic was about 20 cents for every thousand impressions.

So we drove millions of fans for major brands, as well as some sales, though digital plumbing hasn’t evolved to where it is today.

Ten years ago, I thought paying $1 per thousand impressions was a lot of money. And now I think $6 per thousand is doing pretty well.

Curiously, even though the price of traffic is literally 5,000% higher than back then, the ROI is almost as good.

Why? Because the algorithm has gotten smarter (to optimize for us), the creatives are more effective (more video), and we have better strategies to measure and manage social.

Driving leads via Facebook is now about strategy, not about tactical tricks anymore.

Just put it out there

I uploaded a 20 minute training video on how to optimize ad campaigns, step-by-step.

No need to go to a landing page, enter an email address or anything.

Zero teasing, as you typically see— going straight to the techniques. And zero sales pitch at the end.

I targeted the people who are interested in digital marketing.

It started out at a 6 cent cost per 10 second view and is now down to 2 cents per view, with a lifetime average of 4 cents.

Zero tracking codes and zero selling, so I can’t measure a direct ROI.

But I have had a few people come up to me, telling me they’ve seen it and loved it. These people then bought out membership to get more training and some became clients for $20,000.

So I’d say that the $200 I’ve spent on this over the last 4 months has been worthwhile.

And so I extended this another few months.

Why not just put your best stuff out there for free?

Don’t worry about competitors “stealing” your best tips or people taking your advice instead of hiring you.

What actually ends up happening is that people realize this stuff is harder than they thought. And then they reach out to hire you.

Watch Your Notifications

Two notifications here show our interactions being a multiple of our reach. Except in rare circumstances, like photo gallery views and super small audiences, you cannot have an engagement rate greater than 100%.

Should you freak out at this bug?

Nah, any more than someone in California losing their mind over a 3.0 earthquake or seeing jaywalking in India.

We seek to have a 10% engagement rate as part of our “Standards of Excellence”. So if 1,000 people see something, we’d want at least 100 interactions to know that the post did well, paid or not.

And if the engagement rate is high, we would consider putting some “boost” dollars behind it, whether to a lookalike audience (top of the funnel), first touch video view audience of 10+ second viewers (mid funnel), or 28 day site-wide audience (conversion).

Watch your notifications to see what Facebook thinks is doing well– then seek to understand why they think so, whether false alarm or real.

Find Out For Yourself

I got this message from Facebook just now, recommending that I boost my posts.

I test their recommendations to find out for myself what works and what doesn’t.

Instead of going off what other people are saying, no matter how good it may sound or how confident they are of their opinion– find out for yourself.

Facebook CTR has less than a 1% correlation with sales or business results.

Surprising. I’ve fought this for a couple years now, but now I finally understand why Facebook is not recommending us to choose “website traffic” (clicks) as a bidding objective, when we can choose conversions or brand awareness.

We used to bid for clicks because we didn’t have enough conversions for the system to optimize. Plus, PPC folks like me have been bidding on clicks since the entire system started.

But if you bid on clicks, that’s exactly what the system will give you. Don’t get mad if you don’t get conversions.

Logan and I have learned this one the hard way– don’t make our mistake.

Just because posts do well organically doesn’t mean that they’ll behave the same in a boost.

Here are the reasons why:
– Text- heavy posts, especially memes, violate the 20% text rule, so you get disapproved or penalized.
– Some organic posts cannot be boosted– they have profanity, use Facebook’s brand the wrong way, or violate the ads TOS (like have a gun pointed towards you).
– You’ve exhausted the original audience, so your frequency is high when you a boost.
– You’re targeting the wrong audience– this is hard to diagnose.
– Your organic post wasn’t evergreen– perhaps for an event that expired.

You can see that the boosted part of this post got north of 10% engagement, which is excellent.

But we’re paying a $50 CPM– meaning $50 to reach just 1,000 people.

(Yes, the experts here will point out that impressions and reach aren’t exactly the same, but for the purposes of simple analysis, it’s good enough).

Even with a high base cost of traffic (CPM), the cost per engagement is good enough that I’m willing to let the boost live for a few months longer.