How to Generate Leads Using Facebook Ads
With more than 1.6 billion daily active users, Facebook is one of the most popular social media platforms on the internet.
Whether you are looking to reach parents to sell the latest kids' toy or find executives looking to buy your data software system, Facebook can successfully capture leads from nearly any demographic.
The challenge for many businesses, however, is figuring how to reach their audience. Organic reach is abysmal — brands can expect their regular posts to reach around six percent of their total audience.
This leads many brands to rely on paid Facebook ads mostly to sell their products and services.
But what if your product or service isn't an impulse buy, or you are just looking to gather leads? Can you still rely on Facebook's massive reach to connect with your audience?
You can — if you use Facebook ads to drive leads rather than directs sales.
For Leads, Aim for Quality Over Quantity
When it comes to brand awareness, reaching more people is a good thing. The more people who know about your brand, the more likely they are to interact with your brand — and possibly buy.
When it comes to lead generation, however, more leads aren't always a good thing.
A hundred low-quality leads could land you fewer sales than four high-quality leads.
For example, if you are a SaaS company specializing in enterprise-level data analytics, would you rather chase 100 leads from people who may or may not actually work at enterprise companies — or have just four leads that are all executives at large corporations?
Context, and (in our case) quality, matters.
Instead of focusing on getting more leads, brands should focus on finding the right leads.
The challenge is determining what a qualified lead looks like for your brand.
Where are they in the funnel? What position do they hold? Who they work for? Does the size of the company they work for matter? What about their income level?
Before working to generate more leads, consider what a qualified lead looks like for your brand — then build a strategy to attract those high-quality leads.
5 Tips for Generating Higher-Quality Leads With Facebook Ads
Generating higher quality leads through Facebook will require some trial and error. First, make sure your audience is actually on Facebook. (There's a good chance they are.)
For example, high-earners are an integral part of Facebook's audience. In fact, 74 percent of high-earners use Facebook, which makes it an ideal place to market higher-end items and even B2B products and services.
Then, test the following strategies.
Use Facebook Lead Ads
There are several ways to promote content and create ads on Facebook — you can boost posts to increase your reach, drive traffic to a website, show multiple photos in a carousel ad, and even use video.
What you might not realize is that Facebook created an ad type specifically for brands who are looking to attract leads, not sell products.
Lead ads are designed to make it easier for users to fill out mobile forms, reduce drop-offs, target very specific audiences, and even integrate with your CRM.
Facebook lead ads pre-populate lead forms with Facebook contact information so the user can just tap to sign up or click to call you right away. As a bonus, these ads can show up on Facebook and Instagram, which means you can reach a wider audience.
Here's how to use Facebook's lead generation ads:
- Click Create an ad in Facebook's ad center.
- Select the Get More Leads option.
- Create the form you want users to fill out.
- Write your ad creative. (And pay attention to the size of your image — larger images may not show up properly on mobile devices.)
- Then select your target audience, duration of the ad, and budget.
- Tap Promote Now.
Using Facebook's lead generation ads is just the first step, however. Here are a few more tips to help drive more qualified leads from Facebook.
Optimize Your Ad to Increase Click-Through Rates
What makes an ad appealing? Will a longer form drive users away? There's only one way to find out — and that is to test your ads over and over again.
You'll want to pay special attention to Facebook ad metrics such as engagement, reach, impressions, clicks, and click-through rates.
- Include a smiling face to encourage a personal connection.
- Test funny or odd images that will make people look twice.
- Keep text and images simple to avoid overwhelming users.
- Test emoticons and emojis. One brand found using emojis increased ad performance by 2000 percent.
- Communicate the value of your brand to entice users to reach out to you.
- Avoid blue and white, Facebook's main colors, so your ad stands out.
If testing ads over and over again feels overwhelming, consider using an AI-powered tool like Zalster, which runs ads one at a time and then picks the winner for you.
This reduces ad fatigue and ensures ads show to the right audience at the right time.
Offer Something Valuable
The average American sees as many as 10,000 ads every day between social platforms, paid ads on our favorite websites, and email. This leads to ad blindness, where users begin to block out ads, especially ones they see too often.
(When was the last time you noticed a banner ad?)
So, how do you overcome ad blindness and attract leads when you have to compete with the thousands of other ads every day?
By offering something they want in exchange for their contact information. For example, you could:
- Gate valuable pieces of content such as an ebook, template, or downloadable resource.
- Offer a discount or coupon code on a smaller item/service in exchange for contact information.
- Use ads to promote a contest, which requires contact information for entry.
- Promote exclusive email content, which requires signing up to your list.
- Use videos (which have a far higher reach) to promote lead generation content.
Offering valuable content in lead gen can be incredibly effective — but only if you target carefully. Remember, the goal is not to get as many leads as possible, but rather to focus on attracting high-quality leads who are ready, or almost ready, to convert.
Target Your Audience Carefully
Here's the thing — all the ad optimization in the world won't help if you are targeting people who have no interest in what you have to offer.
If you want to get access to high-quality leads, you need to make the most of Facebook's ad targeting options — and there's a ton of them.
According to Facebook, you can target audiences based on:
- Connections (include or exclude)
- Parent status
- Marriage status
- Actions they've taken on your website, app, or Facebook page
Look at your most valuable customers and crunch the data. Where are they located? Where do they work? Are they high earners? Do they tend to lean towards a specific political party, or do they interact with a popular industry group?
Use this demographic and interest information to target more valuable leads.
There are also several other audience targeting options.
For example, you can create lookalike audiences, which find users with interests and demographics similar to your current followers. This can help you reach users who might not yet know about your brand.
Codeless, a content writing services company specializing in SaaS, A/B tested a lookalike campaign vs. cold. Here were the results:
✅ A better CTR.
✅ A lower CPC.
✅ And, an improved Relevance Score.
Here's how to create a lookalike audience:
- Go to Audiences in Facebook ad manager.
- Tap the Create Audience button in the left-hand corner to see this drop-down menu:
- Select Lookalike Audience, then select an existing audience or data source. For example, you can use your email list, contacts from your CRM, or people who like your page.
- Select the location and audience size.
- Tap Create Audience.
Once you've created a lookalike audience, you can create brand awareness ads or — if you target carefully — jump straight into creating lead generation ads for users who are very similar to your current audience.
Dynamic ads are Facebook ads with a bit of magic thrown in for good measure. Okay, it's not magic; it's automation, but still, it's a pretty cool concept.
Here's how they work: Dynamic ads adjust the content of ads (including images and content) to each user based on things they've expressed interest in or content they have interacted with.
If you've ever felt like Facebook was spying on you by showing you the perfect ad, you've likely experienced dynamic ads.
"Dynamic ads for lead generation lets you acquire customer information and intent by directing people to submit their information through a native form, called an "instant form," in the ad unit (pre-filled with the person's information).
This ad format also allows you to personalize the creative in your ad unit to each customer, by creating an ad template that automatically uses images and details from your data feed for things you'd like to advertise."
This makes it far easier to show users the right products and find higher quality leads because your ads are carefully calibrated to optimize lead generation.
Note: You will need to implement Facebook's pixel to use dynamic ads.
When it comes to Facebook ads, many brands rely on it to promote physical products. However, it is also incredibly effective as a lead generator due to the site's expansive reach — even for B2B companies and high-end retailers.