Facebook Benchmarks: Do You Measure Up?

Posted on Posted in Analytics, E-Commerce, Facebook Advertising, Facebook Marketing, Facebook Posting

FB Benchmarks

How do you know if you’re doing well on Facebook? And once you’re doing ok, how good can it get? Here are the minimum thresholds and some of the best metrics we’ve seen:

Minimum Threshold Awesome
Facebook Post Engagement Rate 1.0% 16%
Newsfeed CTR 1.0% 5.0%
Right Column CTR 0.1% 0.5%
Lead Gen Squeeze Page Conv Rate 5.0% 40%
Ecommerce Site Conversion Rate 1.0% 3.0%
Amazon Product Page Conv Rate 12% 20%
B2C Cost Per Lead $10.00 $0.15
B2C Cost Per Sale $10.00 $3.00

Social Selling Is Now As Easy As Engagement

Posted on Posted in Books, E-Commerce, Facebook Posting, Social Media ROI

Authors, experts, and influencers sold $10 million dollars worth of eBooks in 1995 almost exclusively through Amazon.

In 2014, they sold about $1.6 billion dollars worth of eBooks on Amazon alone.

Now influencers, experts, and authors are becoming more digitally savvy and have built email lists, Facebook fan pages, and Twitter accounts.

They’re using these channels to sell their digital content using a new tool called Heyocart.com.

Heyocart.com allows authors, experts, and influencers to sell to their Facebook fans by asking their fans to simply comment “buy” to purchase. I talked about it at my Social Media Marketing World presentation!

Now, I’ve got additional data to add along with the process, and best practices.

Here’s how it works (you can do this too, it’s free):

  1. Go to http://heyocart.com and click “Try for Free”
  2. Select the fan page you want to sell on then type your status update, upload a strong image of the eBook, put in a product title, set the price, then click the orange next button.
  3. Next, upload the product (Heyo Cart takes care of product delivery for you) and type in how you want Heyo Cart to pay you (either a debit card or your bank account) when you get sales. Click next.
  4. View a live preview of your post and when you’ve got it set how you want, click publish to publish now or schedule it for later.
  5. Once your post is live, fans can comment Buy to purchase and Heyo Cart will automatically respond to them telling them to finish their purchase:
  6. The best part about Heyo Cart is that once fans buy once from you, they never have to put their information in again (they don’t have to click any links!). They simply type “Buy”, and Boom! You’ve got a new sale:
  7. Once your fans have paid, Heyo Cart then takes them to the product page where they can easily download their new purchase:
  8. As sales come in, use the Heyo Cart back end to see who is buying. You’ll get first name, last name, and email (many people say buyers lists are the most valuable – so segment this list in your email marketing or CRM tool for future upsells and product launches).

3 Tips For More Sales From Heyo Cart

Heyo Cart is just a tool- you need a good product and the right price, too!

  1. Price your product between $5-20 dollars (any more expensive and it becomes too big a decision for Facebook buyers)
  2. Put the “Comment Buy” call to action on the image like Kim Garst did here.
  3. Tell your fans to “Comment buy to purchase for $5.99” within the first 3 sentences of your post. During the rest of the post, tell them more about the product.

It’s a good idea once you post your product to alert all your email subscribers and social contacts as well. The sooner you get responses on that Facebook post, the wider it will go.

Brian’s Tip: Never Start With a Wedding Cake

Have you ever spent dozens of hours creating an infoproduct and then debuted to lackluster sales?

I have. I’ll admit it.

Even though I ran a poll about it before creating The Awareness Blueprint… what people say they’ll buy is different from what they actually buy. You can’t find out what they’ll buy until you’re selling it! I only made about $1500 from that, which is not good enough given how many hours I put into it.

So instead of creating a whole wedding cake first, create a cupcake to see if they’ll buy it. If they buy, then make a wedding cake.

In other words, create a small $7 or $17 product first, sell it with Heyo Cart, and then if that goes well, create a bigger version that’s more expensive!

Read more on cupcakes and product design in this great piece by Des Traynor.

I’ve tested a couple cupcakes now with Heyo Cart, and got radically different responses to each. I’m already saving time by not continuing to work on the less “buyable” one.

I’m going to create 3-5 more and then whichever one does best, I’ll create a bigger product for that one.

How Influencers, Authors, and Experts are Making Money with Heyo Cart

In a recent A/B test conducted by author and info-marketer Sue Zimmerman, Amazon and heyocart.com were both put to the test. Sue posted her latest eBook for sale on Amazon and also to her Facebook page using Heyo Cart to see which would drive more sales.

On Amazon Sue sold 15 copies, earning her $106.76 over the first 10 days.

Using Heyocart.com, Sue posted on Facebook and sold 95 copies, earning her $591.05 in the first 10 days.

“An additional benefit we gained from using Heyocart.com was that it gave us the ability to collect the email addresses and names of our buyers. This made it easy to put them into our CRM like HubSpot, InfusionSoft or OntraPort for future upselling and content marketing. Amazon doesn’t do that,” said Zimmerman.

Heyo Cart CEO, Nathan Latka expects that trend to continue in 2015. Heyo Cart allows authors and infomarketers to sell on Facebook by having their fans simply leave a “buy” comment on a post.

“There’s an enormous opportunity for experts and influencers to sell digital products to their consumers inside of Facebook,” said Nathan Latka, CEO of HeyoCart.com. “This is where consumers spend their time and it’s where they’ll buy.”

According to internal data from heyocart.com gathered in Q1 of 2015, the best price point for authors and infomarketers to sell ebooks and other digital content on Facebook is $9.00. This was based on a sample size of product prices shown to 1m people who are fans of influencers and experts.

According to Heyo’s Q1 2015 data, the best price point for authors and infomarketers to sell ebooks and other digital content on FB is $9.00 <- click to tweet!

As influencers, experts, and authors look for ways to spread their content, make more money, and gain in popularity, Latka anticipates this trend toward social commerce to grow exponentially.

“Total transaction volume done on social media networks on both mobile and desktop will surpass $40 billion by 2025,” said Latka.

If he’s right, heyocart.com might be the next Amazon for authors and info-marketers. Click here and you can try it for free.

5 Secrets that Experienced Startups Often Learn the Hard Way about Facebook Advertising

Posted on Posted in Advertising, E-Commerce, Entrepreneurship, Facebook Advertising, Social Media Lead Generation, Social Media ROI

Nobody wants to learn the hard way.

You want to get customers and prospects. Facebook ads is a very affordable, targeted, powerful way to do that.

But you don’t want to waste your ad budget, right?

Here are 5 things I’ve learned that most start-ups don’t understand before they starting Facebook advertising… 5 things that can waste your money.

#1 Great Ad Performance Requires Testing. And Testing Costs Money

It takes money to test ads to find the profitable ads. You have to spend money to make money.

The simple fact of digital advertising is that there are a lot of ad settings and a ton of ways to write an ad. That’s true whether it’s AdWords or Facebook or whatever.

And only about 5% of the ad ideas you come up with will be profitable. That’s true even for advertising experts with a decade of experience. Research bears that out.

You must write 10-20 ads to find one outstanding ad. And outstanding ads are what we need to win this game.

Here are some of the decisions you have to make, and each variation costs money to test:

  • What image will you use? Positive or negative? People or objects? Problem or solution?
  • What will headline be? Calling out who they are? Asking a question? Making a bold statement?
  • What will the ad copy say? Gosh there are so many things we could say…
  • Who will you target and how? You can often target the same people with several different targeting options. We won’t know which targeting method is cheapest until we test it.

At the beginning of the testing process, we know the least. The more winning ads we find, the smarter our following tests are. But the first month is the worst. As we learn from those ad test results, profitability increases. But that learning process involves spending money on ads.

#2 Successful Companies INVEST in Their First Three Months with Facebook Ads

We’ve managed Facebook ads for dozens of clients- over $2 million spent on ads. They’ve spent anywhere from $33 a day to $1,000 a day; that’s from $1,000 a month to $30,000 a month.

That budget fuels testing and leads to profitability. We often find the first couple weeks is all learning. We start to see promising ads. By the end of month two, we should have some strong ads that reliably get leads or sales. By the end of month three, we’ve reached. Our goal is to cut the initial cost per lead or cost per sale by 50%.

How much does $1,000 spend in a month, for example, get you? Let’s do some math:

  • If you’re looking for leads, hopefully your opt-in page converts at 20%; if your cost per click is $0.50, then a lead is $2.50. If your lead gen page is not very effective and converts at 5%, that lead would cost $10. If the niche is competitive and the cost per click is more like $1.50, then that 5% conversion page makes your leads $30 each. That’s how the math works.We’ve seen lead gen costs as low as 12 cents and as high as $78. It depends on the niche, the competition, and how efficiently the lead gen page converts. That’s why we need to split-test landing pages and find out which one converts best.If you can split-test and take your conversion rate from 10% to 20%, you cut your lead gen cost in half. You double how many leads you can get from the same spend.At the same time, we’re testing ad creative and targeting to multiply that improvement.

    Doing a little math ahead of time helps you have more realistic expectations and be prepared to implement the strategies that work. Going in blind usually results in wasted money and unsatisfactory results.

  • If you’re doing e-commerce, the baseline is a site that converts at at least 1%. Sometimes a new site has problems and only converts at 0.5%. Amazing sites can do 2-4%, but that can take years of evolution to reach.If your cost per click is $0.50, a passable 1% converting ecommerce site has a cost per sale of $50.What is your profit margin? Is it more than that?Some products will kill your business, because their profit margin is too low for digital advertising.If your cost per click is $1 and you have a conversion problem and only get 0.5%, then each sale costs $200.

We’ve seen e-commerce cost per sales of $5 to $500. Again, it varies with the niche, competition, and your website’s conversion efficiency.

This is just the math of pay-per-click profitability.

#3 WHY Would People Want to Buy What You’re Selling? 

This is the most basic lesson of marketing.

And it’s critical to ask if no one ever has bought what you’re selling yet. Or if no one has ever bought it online.

If you have no marketing experience, 99% of the things you think are awesome about what you’re selling are likely features, not benefits:

  • Plush seats.
  • Moon roof.
  • 24-hour customer service.

Those are features.

The customer says, “Who cares? Why should I care? What’s in it for me?” So, yeah, really, you have to spell out what the benefit is to them.

  • Plush seats? “Experience luxury driving.” That’s a benefit. And, bonus: we get them to imagine having it, which makes them more likely to buy. But let’s be honest… plush seat luxury is only appealing to people who love 1984 IROC-Z Camaros. Look at this fine specimen:
  • Moon roof? Great for werewolves. Ability to look up when you should be looking at the road. Just kidding. “Your passenger can look out your moon roof and (s)he will be impressed. With YOU.” That’s a benefit that makes them visualize the experience of the solution. By the way, your 1985 Camaro is awesome. IROC you say? Yes, U really do ROC.
  • 24-hour customer service? “We’re there to help you fix it when everything goes wrong at 3:00AM. We’ll save the day, any time of day. If you have a huge everything-grinds-to-a-halt problem, you won’t have to wait. We’ll fix it now. Relax, you can rely on us.”  That’s a benefit that makes them visualize the experience of the solution.

Those are the benefits of your features. That’s the most BASIC level of copywriting you need to be able to do. They sell much more effectively than features.

Getting them to imagine experiencing the benefit will get you even bigger results. So do both.

#4 You need to know WHO would want to buy from you.

It’s easy to have the wrong idea of who your customers are, or a very vague idea. Some companies even achieve a level of success without an accurate picture of who their best customers are.

Digital marketing teaches you about them. Many of our clients find out their customers are only SORT OF who they thought. But there’s often something surprising…

  • “Oh, wow, people over 50 years old DO buy this. Interesting…”
  • “Our customers are mostly single? Weird!”
  • “Our customers like George Takei? Who the heck is is George Takei?”

That kind of stuff- which by the way, can dramatically lower your Facebook ad costs- can also be applied to all your other marketing. When you discover who they are, you may look at your email marketing or your print ads or radio or TV ads and realize you’ve pitched them to the wrong person. Changing that will improve your results. And since many types of offline marketing can’t be tracked- what worked or didn’t- this information from digital marketing is super valuable if you’re doing offline marketing.

And, by the way, there’s a ton of free market research inside the Facebook ad interface. Enough to put some market research companies out of business. It’s called Facebook Audience Insights.

#5 Your website has to be really efficient at converting your Facebook ad visitors.

You saw it in the math. If you can double your conversion rate, you cut your costs in half.

That sounds like a bonus. But if your conversion rate is sub-standard, your costs can be through the roof. So you might need to improve your website, or take the more modern approach of using squeeze page platforms that can split-test.

The most vulnerable people to mistakes here are web designers. Anyone who thinks they have a new way to design your website. A more aesthetic way. Lots of ideas about impressive designs.

If that gets in the way of usability, you’re done.

  • Sure, your web visitor may think it’s a beautiful website, but it’s so beautiful that they forget to buy.
  • Or can’t figure out how to buy because the navigation elements were too ugly for your web designer.

If you’re interviewing web designers, ask them what they do for split-testing and conversion optimization. The ones that trip over the answer? Move on  to another. The next evolution is using services like unbounce, clickfunnels, leadpages and optimizely.

If you want to run a profitable business, you need to strike a balance between form and function- between branding and conversion optimization.

That’s it- if you’ve grappled with these five issues, then relax- you can advertise on Facebook confidently, and look forward to great results!

If not, we can help with services or my online course, Social Marketing Profit System.