Towards the end of June Facebook hit 2 billion monthly users. That’s more people than the population of China, Russia and the USA combined. Facebook aims to bring the world closer together, and whether you are a fan of the social media platform or not, it’s clearly here to stay.
How does Facebook know what you like?
Facebook is a global community. It gives the opportunity for like-minded people to share ideas, collaborate, and create friendships. From liking good causes and joining groups, to updating your relationship status and your home town, Facebook uses all this information to create bundles of users that share common interests and social characteristics.
At first glance knowing that your data is being used to create a profile of who you are can seem intrusive. Thinking about it more closely however, this is the only way Facebook can protect your newsfeed from becoming overrun with irrelevant information you couldn’t care less about. Without this profiling of who you are, and what your interests are, you would find your newsfeed crammed with adverts completely irrelevant to you.
Why is this important for business?
Facebook’s back-end interface allows posts to be targeted to specific groups of individuals. Businesses are never able to see exactly who they are targeting, for the sake of privacy and data-protection, however they are able to target age ranges, employment, interests, and so much more. This is not easy and takes a significant amount of experience to get right, however an effectively-managed and monitored social media campaign can yield huge results. A well-worded and attractive advert for your service or product can be placed directly in front of your target audience. No longer do you have to spend vast amounts on advertising just hoping your target market stumbles across it.
What about lead generation?
Lead generation is what should immediately jump to mind after reading the above. Get your advert in front of those who it will appeal to most, and watch the leads come in. We see this as an art more than a science, and there are a number of important considerations. Getting an advert in front of the right person is immensely valuable; however you can never be sure of the other factors that impact whether someone clicks on or not. These external factors, which impact whether or not someone interacts with an advert are there with every form of advertising and with social media this is no different. However, you can dramatically improve the odds by only paying for those that fall within your target demographic to see your advert.
How can you tell if it’s effective?
Facebook has worked on its advertising platform for over 10 years now, thus had implemented some fantastic means of tracking where leads come from. Tools like the Facebook Pixel allow you to measure the success of certain Facebook adverts by tracking who clicks through the advert and contacts you via your website.
In short, Facebook is a hugely effective tool for lead generation. Being able to place your adverts directly in front of your target audience makes your advertising far more cost effective.
The most important advice we can give is to hire a professional. Targeting and audience creation is not easy, and by no means is it an exact science; experience is needed to analyze and refine advert performance. Don’t get sucked in to thinking you can set up an advert and leave it, this can quickly turn into a waste of money. Patience is also very important. Often what you consider as your dream audience will not be the optimum targeting area within Facebook, this is generally discovered through analysis and targeting alterations.
Be cautious of agencies that promise leads straight away. Remember, quality not quantity is the name of the game. We find the best results are achieved with the first one to two months spent building accurate audiences and analyzing responses, with the following months focused on bringing in an increasing quantity of quality leads.
If you are interested in lead generation through social media, why not give us a call.