Businesses should be measuring their social media activities, but many still don't. According to this year's Industry Report from SocialMediaExaminer.com, only 42 percent of businesses surveyed said they were able to measure their social activities.
As for measuring ROI, 37 percent in 2014 indicated they could do this; and in 2013, the percentage was only 26 percent. Contrast those numbers with the 87 percent of businesses surveyed reporting that they planned to increase their investment of time and money on social channels.
In short, most businesses have no idea what social media is doing for them, yet they continue to invest time and money there every day. This is akin to going to a really expensive gym for several hours a day, yet never getting on a scale or assessing yourself for improvements in health and appearance.
I certainly don't fall into that category. My favorite part of my fitness regime is seeing those pounds drop off; and my favorite part of Facebook marketing is tracking results. After all, “cha-ching” has a beautiful ring to it, right?
So, pay attention. Because, with Facebook, the use of precise targeting, effective bidding, the practice of first, sell/second, create content and, finally, close monitoring of the rules (so you don’t get kicked off), you can find rewards with ready-to-act prospects that will fill your business sales funnel.
Still, the cold hard truth is that most businesses don’t market on Facebook this way. They haphazardly post, advertise blindly and follow the masses. And, guess what? The masses aren’t making any money on Facebook, so they are a dangerous lot to follow. It's time to be bold and follow your own path to real, measurable results on Facebook.
Here are four rules to follow that will make you a champion of sales with social media marketing:
1. Precise targeting is key.
Life is too short to waste time on unqualified prospects. So, target your perfect prospective buyer and no others for maximum ROI.
For a start, write your “About Us” section on your Facebook page to target your ideal customer. Tell those who visit why they need to connect with you by stating your unique selling proposition (UPS). Your UPS is the why people need to do business with you instead of the competition; it lays out how your products or services benefit them.
Be sure to include a link to a landing page where you offer even more value. If you have a lead magnet or opt-in -- like a free report, chapter download, or video -- that is a great place to start. If not, send viewers to your blog or to another value-rich page on your site.
One of our own clients, GKIC, focuses on small business owners looking to increase their revenue through more effective marketing. Here's GKIC's About Us description on its Facebook Page: Get “The 10 Rules to Transforming Your Small Business into an Infinitely More Powerful Direct Response Marketing Business” for FREE.
That About Us message is specific and geared toward the business' target market members, letting them know clearly whom the products and services are for, and how they will benefit.
2. Do not sell at 'hello.'
Whom do you trust more: your best friend, or a company trying to sell you something? If you try to sell at "hello," you are falling into the latter category. Take time to build a relationship with your prospect before going for the sale. Here's an example of a sales funnel that I find works best:
- Create a newsfeed ad that links to a blog that doesn’t ask for an opt-in.
- Retarget to ask for a Facebook "like."
- Retarget to a page that asks for an opt-in that then sends the prospect into a sales funnel.
Whether your business is a dentist's office, a gym or an accounting firm, your sales funnel stays the same. Blog first; second, opt-in for a Facebook like; third, opt-in for a lead magnet; and, fourth, monetize.
To get an idea of the numbers, here are a few examples of the sales funnel in action:
For a dental client, we first sent people to the blog, then for a certificate for a free cleaning.
- Cost per patient acquisition: $27
- Patient value: $3,500
- ROI: more than 100 times the original investment
For my own book campaign, we first sent people to a blog and then to a webinar at www.FBSalesLaunch.com
- Total spend: $213.02
- Sales: $17,560
- ROI: A lot
3. Measure everything.
Don’t allow anyone to tell you that Facebook marketing’s effectiveness cannot be measured. (I’m talking to you, mister I-love-awareness-campaigns-with-no-accountability!) Everything on Facebook can be measured, using conversion tracking.
In fact, Facebook recently updated these metrics to provide more in-depth analytics, using Conversion Lift. What is Conversion Lift? Facebook describes it as a tool that accurately captures the impact that ads have in driving business for marketers. Here’s how it works:
- For the creation of a Facebook ad campaign, a randomized test group (people that see ads) and control group (people that don’t) are established.
- The advertiser securely shares conversion data from the campaign with Facebook. Typically, this data comes from sources like the Facebook Custom Audiences pixel, the conversion pixel or secure point-of-sale (POS) data.
- Facebook determines the additional lift generated from the campaign by comparing conversions in the test and control groups.
- The results of the study are made available in Ads Manager.
This is quite different from hitting the “Boost Post” Button. Which, by the way, leads us to rule number 4.
4. Don’t hit Boost Post.
Tracking your results makes optimization, smart scaling and delicious results possible. In fact, all the cool kids (a.k.a. the successful minority) are doing it, and so should you. When you hit Boost Post, you are at the whim of where Facebook wants your ad to go.
Sure, they'll give you some targeting options, but that won't carry a tenth of the power of precious targeting and bidding that Ads Manager and Power Editor do. Resist hitting the Boost Post easy button and instead use the more advanced platforms to develop a higher return on your investment.
Yes, getting an ROI on Facebook requires extra effort. But walk the extra mile. It’s a lot less crowded there, and the view is spectacular.