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Facebook Post Promotion Ads for Lower Conversion Costs? DMMH #4

In this 4th episode of The Digital Marketing Happy Hour, Lynda and Brian discuss how post promotion ads can have direct and indirect effects on your conversion performance, e.g. lowering lead generation costs.

Don’t forget to click through and subscribe to the DMMH channel- and comment on YouTube if you have any questions- or even suggestions for future videos!

REPLAY: 5 Biggest Lead Gen Mistakes [Facebook Live Show]

Episode TRES of Live Online Learning (LOL)… as usual we debuted a cool cheatsheet (8 Tips for Lead Magnets That Sell) AND gave away a seat in my Facebook ads course.

To be sure not to miss future live shows, opt in here to join the email list so we can keep you notified!

Here’s what we talked about, in addition to attendee live questions we answered:

  • Why build a list?
    • Most people don’t take action right away first time they come to your site- what % of your visitors become customers the first time they come to your site? How long do they spend on your site the first time they come? Often it’s just a couple minutes.
    • You have to build a relationship and take time to tell the whole story of
      • your value proposition,
      • your company,
      • how you can help them,
      • how you’re different,
      • why they should work with you
      • And you need to capture their info so you can continue that relationship.
    • Historically email marketing is the highest profit digital marketing channel, period.
    • Along with retargeting, it’s hard to do profitable digital marketing without email marketing and lead gen.
  • Do you have an email list?
  • What should leads cost?
    • List some of our results
    • Home furnishing client: 84% reduction in cost per lead through customer analysis to discover ideal customer profile, plus ad and audience testing.
    • Self-help author: 32-cent quiz leads and $3 ebook leads.
    • Staffing company: job applications at 75% lower costs than CareerBuilder.
    • Travel and hospitality: 10-cent B2C leads.
    • Marketing services: $1.82 B2B leads through combination of ad testing and personality quiz.
    • Musician promotion and mentorship website: 7x the new users mainly by testing 80+ images and 15 audiences.
    • Microsoft partner cloud hosting company: $29 B2B leads from CTO’s and IT sys admins.
    • What are your leads costing you?
      • If they’re free, you’re probably not advertising which means you can’t accelerate your volume. Very few companies find free ways to drive enough lead volume.
    • How do you drive down lead gen or email subscriber costs?
      • Smart advertising and testing- having an optimization process to drive more action at a lower cost- ours is called A.C.T.
      • Conversion optimization through split testing
      • Great lead magnets- creating and testing 4-5 of them at least over time
      • Have you analyzed your audience with facebook audience insights?
        • Targeting helps a ton- if you’re in front of the wrong people, you may not get leads, and even if you do, you won’t get sales
  • How do you get more leads? Are you getting enough leads? How many new leads or email list subscribers are you getting a day?
    • Are you giving people a reason to give you their contact info?
    • A newsletter isn’t good enough
    • Are you split testing your landing pages
    • Do you want five times as many leads?
    • List the x times we got from each kind of testing
  • Are leads good enough or do you want sales
    • Are your leads becoming customers?
    • What’s the lifetime value of your leads? (how much revenue does the average subscriber bring you?)
    • Are you reaching enough people? If you don’t get enough leads you’ll never get sales-
    • It’s possible to get leads in a way that doesn’t make them think of you as someone to buy from- they get the thing and forget
    • They maybe get the lead magnet and don’t even read it
    • You might get an email but not have a follow-up sequence to engage and educate and warm them up
  • How being a thought leader increases the power of your lead gen- they want you not just one of you
    • Is it hard to sell the leads you get?
    • Maybe you aren’t differentiating yourself enough
    • How are you different or better than your competition?
    • Do you know who your competition is?
    • Does your lead magnet position you as different and better?
    • Start selling before they talk to a salesperson
  • 10 Lead magnet types
    • What kinds of lead magnets have you created?
    • Quiz, checklist, ebook, case study, webinar, free report, whitepaper, swipe file, cheatsheet, toolkit
    • Whitepapers are boring but credible and highly shared on linkedin
    • Quizzes are the most shared type of lead magnet on facebook
    • Checklists and ebooks are good on fb, li, twit- so doing quizzes, checklists and ebooks is a good way to hit all three.
  • What you need to do great lead gen
    • Advertising (traffic source)
    • Lead magnet (reason to give up contract info)
    • Split testing landing pages, with platform like unbounce, leadpages, clickfunnels, optimizely, optimizepress (or maybe skip this with fb lead ads)
    • Email provider like aweber
    • Email follow-up sequence

 

The 5 Biggest Lead Generation Mistakes

Do you want to grow your business by marketing and selling more effectively?

Lead generation is a great way to succeed at online marketing by establishing authority, activating reciprocity, growing a list of prospects and ultimately creating sales.

In this article I’m going to talk about 5 major lead generation mistakes that industry leaders don’t make…

  1. Sour Milk Content: Almost no content can be evergreen forever. Most content has an expiry date. You need fresh new content, so let me teach you how to innovate it.
  2. The Nobody Syndrome: Are you just another voice, or are you special? Showing off your expertise, results and leadership is key not just to getting leads but to sourcing hot leads that easily convert to sales.
  3. Wrong Audience: Who should you be marketing to? Most businesses fail or barely survive because they don’t reach their prospects- or don’t reach enough of them. If you want to grow your influence, you need to expand your reach and market to your ideal prospects.
  4. Lazy Landing Page: Do your landing pages convert at an industry-standard rate? Having only one landing page is a major mistake. Our tests show that split-testing multiple versions of your landing pages creates, on average, FIVE TIMES as many leads.
  5. Cotton Candy Leads: Do you care about the ultimate sale? Focus only on marketing-quality leads but not lead quality and you may not get sales.

Why listen to us about lead generation? The Brian Carter Group has a ton of experience:

  • We’ve managed millions of dollars in spend generating leads for companies over the last decade.
  • We’ve generated tens of thousands of leads.
  • We’ve done it in many industries.
  • We’ve done it with and without advertising.
  • We’ve innovated lead gen tactics via search, social, organic and more.

I’ve been doing lead generation for my own business since 2004 when I started doing Google AdWords.

  • I was driving leads for new business to manage Google AdWords accounts.
  • In the beginning I was not good enough. I actually had to take a regular job twice (in 2006 and again in 2008) because I driving enough leads to build my own business.
  • But eventually I got good enough at lead gen to sustain a freelance business.
  • Then I got so good that we’ve built an agency of multiple practitioners on the strength of these lead gen strategies.

I’m going to teach you these powerful lead gen strategies that are powering our business and our clients’ businesses.

I’ve also created a great free download for you: it’s a cheat-sheet with 8 tips for lead magnets that don’t just get leads but will get you leads that turn into sales. Not only does it give tell you the goals you need to achieve and the 8 tips, but it shows you an example type of lead magnet that’s perfect for this (the 5 mistakes/myths/lies ebook) and two examples of how you’d create them. Get it here.

There are a number of factors that are important to being able to succeed at driving leads and converting them into new business, whether you are a solo service professional, whether you do marketing or advertising or plumbing- no matter what you do.

Shared Lead Services Aren’t Ideal

For certain types of professionals there appear to be shortcuts where you can get access to shared leads. But they’re actually horrible.

What are they?

Let’s say you’re a contractor and somebody wants a quote on roofing… and as soon as a homeowner submits the lead, if you signed up for this service, they’ll send you the lead.

Next you try to call them right away.

But five other roofing people have already called this person!

You don’t get an exclusive shot at the deal. You’re fighting over scraps with ten competitors.

That’s not ideal, because…

You Want To Get YOUR OWN Leads

What you want is for a lead to have contacted you specifically because they want to talk to you.

In our ideal world, they don’t want to just talk to just any roofer or contractor or marketing professional or coach or piano teacher or whatever the heck you are. Why?

The prospects who are talking to tons of your competitors are more likely to price compare you and negotiate your price down until you have no profit leftover. That sucks.

You want leads that want to talk to you. These are great leads. The reason they’re reaching out to you is because they want you specifically. That’s the goal.

That’s a much warmer lead that’s easier to turn into business than someone who thinks, “I just want one of whatever you are.”

Get Your Leads to Want YOU

Many of my lead gen (and sales) successes come from convincing people before they ever contact me that I am or my agency is really amazing. I know that sounds narcissistic but that’s the thought-leader portion of what I do:

  • “Oh, Brian’s best-selling author.”
  • “Hey, Brian’s an amazing speaker.”
  • “Wow, Brian’s been on TV.”
  • “Huh, Brian has worked with Microsoft and NBC.”
  • “Look, all these people say great things about Brian’s speaking and agency and course.”

All those little things that are in my bio separate me from the competition, whether I’m a Facebook ads guy, or I’m the guy that’s going to split test your landing pages or I’m going to do your keynote speech.

If you think thought-leader is a weird term, just think “being an authority in your field.” It makes a huge difference in your leads and sales.

“Oh, Brian has a stand-up comedy background- he’s funny and our people are not going to go to sleep. They’re going to eat their food and then we’re going to have the keynote speaker and if it’s not Brian they might fall asleep! Shoot, we better get Brian because he’s funny. We can get this other speaker to talk about marketing or social media sales or how to lead through digital media, how to write emails and how to remote manage your workers but these other speakers may put our people to sleep after they’ve eaten the chicken. We better get Brian. He’s going to keep people awake, he’s going to get the laughs, he’s got the great takeaways and all that stuff.”

That’s why I get a bunch of the keynote speaking deals I get.

So…

Make Them YOUR Leads

You want to get leads that are your leads right?

They’re not just anybody’s leads- they’re your leads.

That makes those leads not just hot to get what you provide- they’re hot for you. 

That’s very important.

But something else…

Get Your Leads Ready to BUY

When I talk to salespeople or even chief marketing officers about lead generation, inevitably we talk about the sales department being unhappy with the lead quality. Why?

Because there is more than one type of leads

  • Unqualified Leads: Somebody says, “Yay we got a lead!”
  • Marketing Qualified Leads: Marketing says, “This person fits our target/persona.”
  • Sales Qualified Leads: Sales says, “I think we can sell to this person.”

Obviously there are a lot more leads that come in that are unqualified, and there are more marketing qualified leads than ones that the sales department says are qualified.

One of the reasons some companies have a lot of leads that the marketing department is excited about but the sales department is not excited about is because…

…when the marketing department creates their lead gen program- their marketing materials, their ebook, their quiz, the content, lead magnet, or their advertising- the marketing people aren’t thinking in terms of the sale.

At worst, marketing can get all excited about crazy weird lead gen content pieces that may not bring in people who are ready to buy. The leads might be qualified in the sense that they’re part of the prospect audience but they’re not ready to buy. They’re nowhere near persuaded.

To improve, they need to talk to the salespeople. Interview them and ask them key questions like:

  • What gets the prospect to convert?
  • What phrases or words convince them?
  • What objections do they usually have?
  • Who are the worst prospects you talk to?

With this blog post, I’m writing and speaking a bunch of mistakes as my content mode because I want you to know that I have enough authority to talk about mistakes and that makes me an expert.

Why would I do that?

It tells you:

  • I can help you.
  • I’m experienced.
  • I’ve gotten results.
  • I’ve tried things that didn’t work and
  • I’ve tried things that do work.

Telling prospects about mistakes they should avoid doesn’t just get you leads… it gets you leads that turn into sales.

Why?

Because if the customer wants someone to lead them through the jungle without you falling into a pit… get past the crocodiles, kill the snakes, get you safely through the jungle and find the treasure, get back to civilization safely so they can have a beer in the tiki hut, well that’s me because I’ve been through the jungle of marketing, sales, social media and communication.

I know the territory. I’ve been there. I’ve made the mistakes myself. I’ve seen my clients and other people make mistakes. I know what works and what doesn’t that.

All of that is implicit when I do a piece of content that tells prospects what mistakes not to make, right?

So with a mistakes piece of content, I’m demonstrating leadership and building trust and credibility.

They don’t want to make those mistakes right? Nobody wants to make mistakes. That’s why people read these blog posts and lead magnets. That’s why this is such an important approach in lead gen.

Other lead gen approaches may get leads but not leads as likely to turn into sales.

Now let’s talk about some specific lead generation mistakes… (that was a long intro!)

Lead Generation Mistake #1: Sour Milk Content

Content has an expiration date.

You need to create new content.

Even if you have lead gen content pieces like eBooks, quizzes and checklists that are already getting you leads, over time they will become less effective. Just like advertisements do, if you go to the same audience, they get burnt out on what you’re showing them.

If you go fish in the same pond too many times, you’re either gonna

  • Catch all the fish (run out of prospects)
    – or –
  • The fish are going to get wise to your lures and start ignoring them (change in prospect perception)

Have you seen this happen yet?

So you need to create new content. You need to do it now before your great content burns out and your stuck with a lull in performance.

Think ahead like a squirrel before Winter.

Or a Game of Thrones fan:

You can’t rest on your laurels, or leads and new business can dry up. You may still get some leads but it can become a trickle.

If you want a healthy new business pipeline, it’s important at least every quarter at least every three months to come up with some new type of lead gen magnet, whether that’s an e-book or a quiz or a video, a checklist…

There’s a whole bunch of different types of content you can use as lead magnets, and we have a list of the types that get shared the most in different social media outlets. That will help you as well to get a little bit of free shares, although in other mistakes I will explain you are going to have to advertise if you want to reach enough people but shares help.

Quizzes are great on Facebook. Whitepapers are great for LinkedIn but not Facebook. Checklists are pretty good on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.=

Altogether those three content types are pretty good. A whitepaper may not make sense for every type of business- it’s good for b2b but may not make sense for a B2C company like Nike for example.

And there’s all kinds of outside the box stuff you could do- crazy pieces of the content like the Marketo Thought Leader coloring book that Chris Beuhler of Scorch and Jason Miller (now with LinkedIn) did a few years back- you can get really creative too.

So you need to have a new lead magnet every quarter. Don’t rest on your laurels.

Keep pushing, because not only can you get better results, but the results from even your really good lead gen pieces right now will eventually taper off.

Lead Generation Mistake #2: The Nobody Syndrome

Are you just another voice, or are you special?

How are you special? Are you communicating that?

I talked before about demonstrating not just expertise but also results.

I can list off a whole bunch of results we’ve gotten

  • 10-cent B2C leads for cruise company…
  • $1.82 B2B leads for a marketing agency…
  • $29 B2B leads for a Microsoft cloud hosting partner…
  • Job apps for a staffing company 90% cheaper than Careerbuilder…
  • $5.28 leads for a home furnishing buying club…

We’ve been able to take the initial cost per lead for all those clients and cut it down quite a bit.

Usually we can cut the cost at least fifty percent if not ninety percent. How?

It’s all about testing…

  • Testing multiple lead gen content pieces as bait and
  • Testing multiple audiences – even if you only have one target prospect persona there’s still multiple ways to target them with different ad platforms
  • Test different ad platforms as well, if you want to get great results, because you never know where it’s going to come from. Sometimes it’s AdWords, sometimes LinkedIn, somtimes Facebook. It depends on the client and campaign. Sometimes B2B Facebook ads are best. Sometimes it surprises you, you really need to have an open mind and test a lot of platforms.
  • Test a lot of ad creative and
  • Test a lot of targeting if you want to find the best results

So we get a lot of results through testing. That’s one way we’re special.

Do you get results? Are you talking about it?

What other things make you special that you could talk about?

Lead Generation Mistake #3: Wrong Audience

The third biggest mistake is not reaching enough the right people.

Who should you be marketing to?

There are two things you need to do:

  • You need to reach the right people and
  • You have to reach enough of them.

Now I think one of the biggest problems that most businesses have is they don’t reach enough potential customers- period.

Their business is not growing at the rate they want because they simply are not in front of enough people often enough.

As humans, we make this mistake because we see our business and think about it all the time and we assume that other people have seen it, too, right? But they haven’t.

I think you’ve probably experienced this: you’ve been probably talked to a friend and you’re surprised that they haven’t seen what you’re up to lately because you showed it on Facebook or Twitter or elsewhere, but they didn’t see it.

The fact is people are pretty busy, and they’re focused on their own stuff.

So unless you get in front of them somehow, unless you put yourself in front of them on purpose, they’re not going to see it.

And you have to put yourself in front of people in an attention-grabbing way, right?

Your ad or marketing or social or communication needs to get them to think or say, “Oh gosh, the way you put that, that really speaks to my problems and my pains, where I want to go, my goals…”

“Oh, you really showed me a picture or a thing that I really like, that really grabbed my attention!”

Unless you’re doing that…

It’s one thing to put your brand in front of people, but if you haven’t connected your brand to people’s what they care about, then you’re not really going to grab them and hold them, ok?

So you’ve got to:

  • Reach out to the right people
  • Reach enough of them and
  • Reach into their minds and hearts

Very important.

There are a lot of tools for that… a lot of data out there.

So make sure you’re analyzing your audience’s using the insights available through Twitter and through Facebook audience insights.

Facebook audience insights doesn’t just contain what people have told Facebook about them. It also contains billions of data points from three of the biggest consumer data companies in the U.S.:

  • Acxiom has detailed entries for more than 190 million people and 126 million households in the U.S., and about 500 million active consumers worldwide.More than 23,000 servers collect and analyze more than 50 trillion data ‘transactions’ a year. pigeonhole people into one of 70 very specific socioeconomic clusters (personas) in an attempt to predict how they’ll act, what they’ll buy, and how companies can persuade them to buy their products.It gathers its data trove from public records, surveys you’ve filled out, your online behavior, and other disparate sources of information, then sells it to banks, retailers, and other buyers.
  • Epsilon has the world’s largest cooperative database (over 1 Petabyte of data across global data centers) with over 8.6 billion consumer transactions and 4.8 billion business transactions. The different data Epsilon sells includes age, profession, residence, ethnic information and political affiliation.
  • Datalogix, acquired by Oracle in 2015, now called “the Oracle Data Cloud,” it helps Facebook advertisers find customers on Facebook by onboarding first-party data, target customers through relevant audiences, measure campaign effectiveness based on offline purchases; their expertise spans across all industries including; CPG, Retail, Auto, Travel, Financial Services, Telecommunications, Technology and more.Datalogix aggregates and provides insights on over $3 trillion in consumer spending from 1,500 data partners across 110 million US households… across Auto, CPG and Retail Industries;DLX Auto: 99% of all U.S. Sales Captured, 20+ years of ownership data;DLX CPG: 50+ Grocery Chains; 7,000 brands; 300+ categories;DLX Retail: 10 billion transactions; 1,400 retailers; 1,000+ categories.

Make sure you’re analyzing your fans and email lists.

Upload your email list to Facebook ads as a custom audience and analyze it using Facebook Audience Insights to find out who they are:

  • What they like
  • How much money they make
  • What they buy
  • What they don’t buy

…so that you know who they are.

Then you have a better chance of grabbing and holding their attention.

Lead Generation Mistake #4: Lazy Landing Pages

Do your landing pages convert at an industry-standard rate? Having only one landing page is a major mistake.

There are a lot of people that do a great job testing a lot of ads and audiences with their advertising but they still don’t test landing pages.

It’s one thing you’re doing e-commerce. It’s harder to split-test that. I understand that.

But…

Unfortunately some companies have policies – but even if you have to send the traffic to your website, there are solutions.

  • If you use WordPress some of the great split testing platforms like Unbounce, ClickFunnels and LeadPages have WordPress plugins that will allow you to make the landing pages appear to be on your website domain.
  • Even ClickFunnels will give you an HTML page that works as an iframe that can keep appear to be on your website even if it’s not WordPress

…so there are workarounds for this. And you should do this anyway, because Facebook has changed their policies so that your destination URL and your display URL and the URL associated with your Facebook account need to be the same. So you want to do this anyway.

But there’s no excuse not to split-testing landing pages and let me tell you why…

Because in our experience with testing even just two alternates to your initial idea so you have three total variation your landing page meaning

  • I’m going to try a different headline a different image maybe a video versus an image different call to action or
  • a different layout to the landing page

…just doing that on average gives us five times more leads.

Across all of the lead and campaigns we’ve done… when I did the presentation on this for Content Marketing World I listed out all of our lead gen campaigns for all our clients over the last four years, and how many tests we’ve done and the difference in the cost per lead for the best and the worst…

And the average difference we saw was that if you split-test your landing pages you get five times as many leads.

What does that mean?

Your leads are five times cheaper.

Why is that?

Because your conversion rate is five times higher.

That’s insane. Insane. Why?

Because you’re sending the same people to the same lead magnet, whether it’s an e-book or quiz or whatever but you’re getting five times as many leads.

Why wouldn’t you want that?

So yes it’s a little bit harder. YSu have to figure out how to do landing pages, or you hire somebody like us to do them and it’s not that expensive, right? It’s not that expensive. How much more money are you going to make by having five times as many leads? Let me ask you that- because you’re going to have five times as many prospects… you should have time times many sales or your salespeople are going to be able to be more selective with who they pursue and they’ll be able to call better prospects, ok?

Which means your lead quality just went up, right?

So you have to split-test landing pages, whether it’s leadpages or unbounce or clickfunnels- there are 17 other split testing platform out there- I don’t know anybody who knows how to use all of them- those are the three that we use, and they all have pros and cons.

LeadPages is pretty strict and that you can’t even change an image size on the page of a template. However if you’re new to split testing it is an easier way to start because you don’t have to do an entire design thing.

But if you have brand guidelines that you need to follow I would recommend something like unbounce or clickfunnels because it’s a little bit easier to use the WYSIWYG interface what-you-see-is-what-you-get to make it look like your brand.

It only should the average web savvy person three to five hours to be able to design well enough- maybe eight hours or you hire someone to do it, but it’s worth it if you want five times as many leads for the same ad spend right?

Who doesn’t want five times many leads? That’s ridiculous.

Lead Generation Mistake #5: Cotton Candy Leads

Do you care about the ultimate sale? Not just the leads?

if you focus only on marketing-quality leads but not lead quality and you may not get sales.

If you get 1,000 leads and no sales, who cares? That’s like cotton-candy; sweet but no substance.

If you don’t have any customers at the end of the process, who cares about the lead gen?

So lead quality is critical and you can’t afford to ignore whether they’ll ultimately buy.

The quality of the lead is affected by every step in the process:

  • Your understanding of who to target affects that. If you target the wrong people, you’re not going to get sales in the end.
  • If you don’t know why they want to buy, then the way you write your ad copy and the content you create (the e-book or the quiz or whatever) will be off… it might be exciting or engaging, but it might not grab the people who are most likely to buy.

Something I learned a long time ago with Google ads, and it’s true of every type of ad is that a high click-through rate ad is not necessarily a high conversion rate ad.

Interest does not equal buying intent.

Some people are window-shoppers. Looky-loo’s.

Just because some people love to click on something doesn’t mean that they’re going to want to buy anything.

It’s like window shopper- some peole love to walk around all the stores but not necessarily buy anything

Now, my typical behavior is, “I need these five things and I’m gonna get in and out as fast as I can!”

Just because someone loves to look at the stuff doesn’t mean they’re going to buy it.

It’s the same with Facebook post interaction: just because you get a fan on your page and they interact with the post does not mean they’re going to buy.

When we’ve done audits of a bunch of different companies’ customers, we’ll upload their email list and analyze them and we’ll look for overlap between the email lists- the difference between loyal buyers and non-loyal buyers, then we look for the overlap between the buyers and the fans and at first we were surprised: “Wow, like only 1% of the fans are buyers! Why is that? Did the buyers not go to the page and like it? Did the fans never go buy?”

So it’s a it’s a myth, a mistaken assumption that just because you like a brand on social media that you are their customer or that because you’re a customer you’re going to like their Facebook page.

Just because you’re walking through the mall doesn’t mean you’re going to buy anything, and just because you fill out a form to buy an e-book does not make you customer.

So marketing departments have to be very careful- and if you are a solo service professional you have to be very careful, because this is your livelihood- don’t create a lead gen campaign that is so exciting that it gets tons and tons of cheap leads but no sales.

You gotta avoid that.

It’s great if they’re excited, but you want to make sure they’re excited about something that is qualifying them as a buyer. And that’s why you have to talk to the sales people here to find out what separates a good prospect from a bad one in the salesperson’s eyes.

How can you work that into your content marketing design?

Get with your sales team talk to them about what makes a quality prospect and then see if you can work that in to your concept for your content… or at least make sure that the direction you’re going with your content doesn’t conflict with what they know about good prospects.

Is it a good prospect if they make more money?

What do you know about them?

Can you analyze the difference between buyers and non-buyers?

What you learn may change the way that you design your content. Your content may call out to them.

Conclusion: Thought Leadership and Authority

Those are the five biggest lead gen mistakes people make and if you don’t make those mistakes and you do what I recommend it to you you’re going to do a lot better.

The only other thing I can say to you is it’s a good idea to establish credibility the way that I have.

Look at your bio. Build an impressive bio or company profile. It takes time to do that and it sounds a little narcissistic but more things you have that I call credibility points, credibility factors or credibility markers… the more of those you have the better and they are things like:

  • Who you’ve worked with or for
  • Media mentions
  • Recommendations
  • Awards
  • How many years you’ve been in business
  • Achievements
  • Book bestseller status
  • Anything where third-party endorses you
  • Trust logos in ecommerce
  • Testimonials

Those are the kind of things you want to be able to add to you or your company’s description on the website, on the landing pages.

All those credibility markers can help quite a bit. As I said in the beginning, you want to make sure that the leads are interested not just in what you offer but in you specifically doing it for them.

This is your lead, not anybody’s lead.

And the way that you do that is by establishing how you are better and different than the other people or companies who offer what you offer, ok?

Credibility markers are very important.

And that is how we get big results with lead gen, and you can too!

32-Cent B2C Leads and $1.82 B2B Leads with Quizzes and Facebook Ads

When we do lead generation for clients- we have achieved $0.32 B2C leads and $1.82 B2B lead with quizzes! We help them create quizzes, ebooks, checklists, whitepapers, and then run Facebook ads to generate the leads.

Why?

Most people won’t buy the first time they hear about you. If you want customers, you need a list of people to contact over and over again. Those are called leads. You need to generate leads.

If you want to do lead generation you need lead magnets.

The lead magnet is why people would give you their contact info.

Maybe it’s a white paper… maybe it’s an ebook

Hopefully it’s NOT just an email newsletter because email newsletters are BORING… and annoying.

Almost every website you go to there’s a gigantic pop up that says, “Hey, here’s my email newsletter! Jump on my email newsletter! You’ve got to get on my email newsletter if you want your life to be good! If you want your business to be good! OR click NO if you don’t want your business to be good because you’re stupid and you suck and I’m guilt-tripping you and that’s pretty obvious! WAIT WHERE ARE YOU GOING???”

So the question is what’s a good lead magnet?

  1. Get their contact info: What’s going to spur people to give you their contact info?
  2. Satisfy them: What’s going to make them happy they gave you their info?
  3. Increase your conversion rate: What’s going to maximize the number people who give you their info?
  4. Go viral: What kind of lead magnet gets shared the most?

Quizzes get shared the most overall in social media… but it’s a little bit more complicated than that.

The Lead Magnet Types That Get Shared The Most

Quizzes gets shared the most on Facebook.

White papers get shared the most on LinkedIn.

Here’s the full chart:

lead-magnets-shares

This data came from Buzzsumo (which I call “the Google of highly shared content”).

One consideration in your choice of lead magnet is: which social network do you want to thrive on?

Most of us care about more than one.

You probably care mainly about Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, right?

Some people try to be active on all of the social networks, but usually those people spread themselves too thin, and you don’t want to be like that right?

Maybe if you have a big company, and you’ve got 25 people working on it you can do that, and that’s great.

So you are going to have to create a bunch of content, and you need to decide: “Am I going to create a books or quizzes or white papers or what am I going to create?”

Are you going to have a team of people creating it? Great, but what kind of content are they going to create? And how far is that content going to go given how these types of content do on different social networks?

My recommendation would be to choose your lead magnet type according to:

  • What people like and share
  • What people convert on
  • What takes the least time to create

The third factor is really important. If you take 6 months to create a 100-page ebook, and it flops… or 2 months to write a highly-research expert-collaborate whitepaper that doesn’t convert customers… how many quizzes or 5-page ebooks could you have written and tested in that timeframe?

You can get a quiz going in a week. A 5-page ebook in a couple weeks. A checklist in a week or two.

Easy.

Digital Marketing mega-success comes from testing more things faster. Not just quality but also quantity. So make sure you have diversity in your lead magnets and you’re not putting everything into one hugely-time-consuming lead magnet.

If you refer back to the chart…

lead-magnets-shares

If you do quizzes, checklists and short ebooks, the combination of those three content types will have you doing well on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Your major social media platforms are covered, and these are lead magnet types you can get created quickly and affordably.

Smart strategy.

Here’s an example B2C Quiz:

To promote a book, we created this B2C quiz…

quiz1

And with Facebook ads we attracted leads for $0.32 apiece. (It’s not running anymore, though.)

For our own marketing agency, we use a variety of quizzes. This one:

bcgquiz

…gets us leads for $1.82 apiece. (And you can click on it to take it, if you like.)

Why the celebrity approach? Because these people are recognizable, and we’re using the identity psychological trigger… A lot of people are walking around asking themselves, to one degree or another, “Who Am I?”

If you analyze enough of the most shared content via Buzzsumo, this is one of the patterns you’ll see. Identity quizzes are huge.

“I am my sports team, my job, the style of clothes I like, the TV shows I like, my political party… etc.”

Even if your prospect is pretty sure who they are, they still want confirmation that they’re right- they look at the people in that quiz and think, “I want to be Steve Jobs, I sure hope it doesn’t say I’m Bill Gates!” or the reverse of that, depending on who they are; maybe they think Steve Jobs was a big jerk and Bill Gates is admirably altruistic. Whatever. Identity is relative, and as a marketer, you need to be neutral.

The other type of quiz is a score quiz… “Only Real Friends (TV Show) Fans Can Get 15 of These Questions Right” plays into their fandom and their pride… but of course it has to be relevant to what you’re marketing.

But how to conceive a quiz that’s relevant to what you’re marketing and qualifies the lead? Well, that’s part of our process as consultants. 😉

The Problem With Free Content Marketing

What’s the point of content marketing? What’s the goal? Why do we do it?

Some would say it’s to grow an audience. Some say it’s for search engine optimization. Some do it for lead generation. Some only care if it ultimately increases sales.

My problem with focusing entirely on freemiums and growing an audience with free content is that it can almost become “guilt-trip content marketing”…

“Hey, if we give them a whole bunch of free content, they’ll feel like they owe us and they’ll have to buy from us!”

Whether that’s consciously or subconsciously manipulative (no more manipulative than trying to sell people something), I’ll table for now…

Even if the freemium approach is “get-to-know-like-trust-us” and we’ll build-an-audience, it only works sort of well.

  1. So you’ve grown a list of 10,000 or 100,000 emails…
  2. And 20-30% of those people open your email- are you emailing daily or every other day or twice a week or weekly?
  3. About 8% of them click to the site and read more free content-
  4. How many of them are actually buying something? Are you tracking that?

Freemium, high quality content marketing is only PART of the answer because… we human beings are all a bunch of freeloaders!

We’ve Created a Bunch of Information Freeloaders

As content consumers, we’ve been trained now to expect a lot of free helpful content.

Marketers have been taught over the last decade to create free content that is as good as content people should have to pay for, but the companies that are creating this free content aren’t getting paid for it…

  • How many newsletters have you joined and then never paid that company a penny?
  • How many podcasters have you listened do and never given them a dime?
  • How many bloggers have you read and you’ve never bought their course?
  • How many blog posts have you read and you don’t even remember them or who wrote them?
  • How many whitepapers and ebooks have you downloaded and you didn’t fully read and you don’t remember where they are on your computer?

This freemium deal with the devil strategy only makes sense if you can monetize that audience- but are you monetizing that audience? How? Are you tracking it well enough to know it’s profiting you?

Sure SOME of this audience of freeloaders converts without you trying that hard. But how many more people would have converted, how much higher would your ROI be if you’d thought about converting them? If you were better at direct marketing?

So content and lead gen are just one piece of the puzzle and if you do them the wrong way you make it hard on the salespeople. Or if you’re an entrepreneur you make it hard on yourself to get sales.

You haven’t done all the work, just part of it…

Why Do People Buy?

Because we as people only buy when we are really excited or in really big pain we can’t stand one second longer or when marketers make us feel special or we think it’s a really good deal on a really valuable thing that’s going away forever (there has to be value and trust there for that to work, of course)…

  • Why should the potential buyer take action with you right now?
  • Why not procrastinate?
  • Why not ignore you?
  • Why not choose your competitor?

You have to sell. How?

  • Urgency
  • Scarcity
  • Pain relief
  • Gigantic opportunity now
  • Limited-time only

The difference between rich and poor people, billionaire and middle class, successful sales organizations and unsuccessful ones is understanding:

  • Pain
  • Value (which includes relevance)
  • Urgency and
  • Tribes

“Join our tribe now and we’ll relieve your pain and you’ll be special and have super powers like us but if you want in, you have to join now, for a limited time only!”

This is the difference in getting 2% of your webinar attendees to buy and 16% to buy.

It’s the difference between 1% of people interacting with your Facebook post and 21% interacting with it.

The difference is measurable and huge.

  • Why is your thing a new, big, limited-time opportunity?
  • Why NOW?
  • Why do you think Microsoft puts out new versions of Offce and Windows all the time?
  • Why are there always new iPhones?
  • Why are there new models of the same cars each year?
  • Why does the McRib keep going away and coming back?

If you’re too free and too available, you’re not that interesting. When they see your content there’s a lot of hmm and huh and meh. You can’t compete.

So- the biggest pitfall of the marketer is being too soft, not wanting to sell.

Don’t be soft.

Sell Something and Track It

Freemium is not bad. I do all kinds of lead magnets. They’re great. But you have to sell something too.

  • You need to track which of your leads become sales.
  • You need to track which of your customer targets are not just great lead sources, but which ones are great buyers.
  • Which of your lead magnets create customers, not just leads?

Use AdWords and Facebook pixels and conversion tracking. Make sure you have a way to trigger a conversion for the purchase not just the lead. Then you can track all of that back to the content.

If you can’t do that, your content marketing and freemium work will always be off target, and you’ll be at a competitive disadvantage.

Content Marketing World: Facebook Advertising Lead Generation and Content that Sells

Want to hack your customer’s brain, create content that sells, and get affordable, high-quality leads from Facebook?

Want to harness the power of Facebook ads and content marketing to boost not just leads but also your LEAD QUALITY and SALES?

I’ll be teaching a special in-depth 3.5 hour WORKSHOP on September 6th at Content Marketing World in Cleveland, Ohio about combining Facebook ads and customer analysis with lead generation and content marketing that sells. Topics include:

You can create content that not only grabs attention but also attracts leads and sales. Based on dozens of case studies with results like $7.00 B2B leads and $0.10 B2C leads, I will teach you:

  • Highly-effective Facebook advertising targeting, images and copywriting for Content Marketing.
  • The “7 Types of Social Content That Convert”, so you can get into the customer’s consideration set, build brand authority and customer trust, make you their #1 choice, and activate buyer emotions to trigger them to buy from you.
  • How to get $10,000 of market research for free and uncover the difference between your best buyers, your competition’s customers and the average Joe Schmo so you can laser target your best customers and get them to buy.
  • “The 4 Basic Marketing Strategies” in The Persuasion Grid™ to ensure you’re selling at full power. Many companies are losing customers and revenue because they’re ignoring one or more of these basic marketing strategies.
  • Killer scientific tips on lead magnets and squeeze pages so you can lower your lead cost and improve lead quality.

BONUSES just for attending…

  • I’ll share with workshop attendees only my exclusive, proprietary, highly-protected Conversion Questionnaire. This questionnaire was developed over 15 years to identify the most important elements that go into “Content That Sells” and high-performance Facebook ads. Answer its questions and you’ll be 80% of the way to success with Facebook advertising lead gen.
  • Also, just for attending, I’ll also share with you several other valuable content and ad creation tools not available to the general public, including my SuperProfitable Ad Messages Template, SuperViral Facebook Post Blueprint, ViralProfits Meme Creator and World’s Best Facebook Ad Blueprint.
  • I’ll also give you access to a private, workshop-attendee-only Facebook Leads & Sales Community Group so you can get answers to any questions that arise as you execute day-to-day.

Get more info about Content Marketing World and Sign Up Here.

5 Keys to Social Ad Lead Generation For Cloud Hosting & IT

Not long after keynoting for Microsoft, I was contacted by a leader in a Microsoft team that helps their partner companies sell MS hosting services. They had me design a digital marketing training program for these partner companies.

We also did a number of pilot programs with cloud hosting companies.

For one of these, in 2013, we wrote a whitepaper, guided them to create a lead gen download page, and we ran Facebook ads to generate leads. It was quite open-minded of them to do this, because even now on the doorstep of 2016, many B2B companies aren’t sure Facebook is right for them.

The results were:

  • We reached 467,000+ CXO’s and I.T. Sysadmins
  • We generated leads from $29 to $59 apiece.

Overall, it was a success.

Could it be better? Yes. These are definitely some of the more expensive leads we’ve seen… in B2C, leads can go below $1.00 CPA at times, and even in B2B I’ve seen them below $10.00.

I believe these leads cost what they did for several reasons, all of which we’e addressed in our marketing processes since, and here’s how we do it better now:

  1. TARGETING: Targeting chief executives can be more expensive. However, testing more ways to target the same groups helps you find lower costs, and Facebook has added more targeting options since we ran this campaign. We recommend testing at least 5-10 targeting criteria audience variations per target customer.
  2. PASSION: Whitepapers are boring and the way to lower costs on Facebook is to find the customer’s passion. The more interesting and stimulating you can make the content, the better. We’ve learned that selling to the intellect only is not as good as also selling to the emotions.
  3. DESIGN: There wasn’t a budget for design, so the graphic design of the whitepaper wasn’t that attractive- again, low excitement leads to higher costs. We recommend the budget include design work if you don’t have an in-house designer.
  4. SPECIFICITY: I also believe that in the whitepaper writing, instead of covering 11 I.T. problems, which is general and vague and gives you nothing to grab onto, we should have chosen the most painful specific problem and homed in on that. Then perhaps the name of the whitepaper itself would have evoked more interest.
  5. SPLIT-TESTING: The client insisted on using their own website for the landing page, which meant we could not split-test any creative; we’ve found that the best practice is to test at least three if not five versions of the squeeze page, and this can increase conversion rate by 50% – 200%. That means we might have cut the cost per lead in half right there. We now have platforms on which we create and run split-tests for clients.

So, if you are looking to grow new customer leads in the I.T. space, or any B2B effort (we’ve done other industries), reach out and let’s talk about achieving your goals!

35 Facebook Profit Tips UPDATED for 2018

REVIEWED & UPDATED January 8th, 2018:

This post was originally written in June 2015. And some of these tips have been true since I started teaching Facebook marketing in 2011. I wrote this list a few months back for a keynote talk and have kept them up to date.

The tips are divided into 3 groups

  • Overall Facebook Marketing
  • Facebook Posting
  • Facebook Advertising

Note that Facebook marketing is a stepwise, funneled process- so, though not every tip is focused on the last step of the funnel, each tip is trying to increase your results down the funnel.

16 Tips That Apply to All of Facebook Marketing

1. Check out Facebook Audience Insights for your type of customer. This tool is located in the Ad Manager. Learn who your fans, prospects and customers really are. I’ll bet at least one thing surprises you. If you don’t have enough fans to see other likes, choose your biggest competitor, or an interest in your niche instead.

2. Don’t bring up a bad thing unless your offering fixes THAT problem. Or unless your specific audience likes warnings (e.g. bad weather) or being negative. In which case, your bad posts will get a LOT of likes. If they don’t, you don’t have that kind of audience. However, empathizing with your customer can be really powerful. Some of our most powerful case studies come from this.

3. Use happy positive faces that are close-up enough for us to read their expressions. 🙂

4. Avoid bland stock photography. Even if you have to take your own photos, find something authentic. If you do use shutterstock, find something exceptional.

5. Animals work. Even people who hate kids love animals. Yes, you can definitely make an animal relevant to your brand and yes people will love it. Yes, even in B2B. They’re still human beings. Open your mind and try it.

6. Cute works. Kids, pandas, Ann Handley, etc.

7. Dogs always win. Pugs and labs are some of people’s favorites. This is the cutest dog on the planet.

8. Try something WEIRD. At the very least you’ll STAND out. Like that joke about my Grandma. You haven’t heard that? You need to watch this video.

9. Write content about mistakes people make in your niche- if you want to boost conversions.

10. Be brief, simple and clear. Try Hemingwayapp.

11. Test everything. Test posts, ads, images, cover photos and landing pages. I even split-test my blog post titles.

12. Capitalize on the big winner. Do more of what works and less of what doesn’t. Learn from what did and didn’t work, and come up with new ideas that are more like what worked and less like what didn’t.

13. Learn from what your customers like. What they like is in Audience Insights and how they respond to your posts and ads.

14. Keep testing new ideas. Don’t give up. Don’t settle for what’s the best right now. Watch this video: The More You Test The More Likely You Win

15. Shorten your funnel. Try to take out a step or two. Make it easier for your customers. It’ll boost your conversions and profits.

16. Think about whether your customers public and private faces are different. Serve the public one with public posts. Try segmented ads, private videos and segmented email lists for the private ones.

8 Facebook Posting Tips

17. Test multiple ways to say the same thing. Try more than one way to express it. Use science to test diverse language.

18. Include links in posts to get website traffic. (But when it comes to ads, this is not the most affordable way to get website traffic- read this).

19. Include a call to action to get them to do something. Like, “Hey, subscribe to my podcast, it’ll make you a better marketer, better business person, and you’ll smell better too!”

20. Track which Facebook posts work and don’t work. Figure out why you think they work or don’t. Develop your theories and test them with your next set of posts. This is one reason not to create a whole month of FB posts at one time. First, it doesn’t give you time to learn from the current month before scheduling new posts, and second you’ll get smarter every week, but your posts will be up to 4 weeks dumber than you are now.

21. Create coaching and cheerleading posts. Motivate people, and echo their values, beliefs and likes.

22. Find famous and motivational quotes.

23. Use universally revered people for images and quotes. Einstein and Maya Angelou are good. Thomas Edison is not- he’s actually controversial!

24. Follow the 6 do’s and 4 dont’s from my Contagious Content ebook.

9 Facebook Advertising Tips

25. Always choose website conversion ads if you can (rather than just clicks to website), and use a conversion pixel. Even if you aren’t going for leads or sales, try putting the conversion code on a deeper valuable page your best visitors would check out.

26. Modify your targeting with behaviors like people who use Facebook payments (tells you with more certainty they have money to spend and/or might be a good ecommerce prospect) or lines of credit or other financial info.

27. Test granular creative to granular targets. Did you find 3-4 main demographic personas from Audience Insights? Are you testing personalized advertising to these personas?

28. Try widening your targeting and making your copy more specific. You can “target” by using the ad text to tell them who should click and who shouldn’t.

29. Test retargeting, custom audiences and lookalike audiences. Sometimes they work. Sometimes they don’t. But they must be tested.

30. Test using the brand name in headlines vs. not. You could also call them out by job title or interest.

31. Test superlatives. Are you or your product the most/best/cheapest/biggest/etc?

32. Test images featuring the product vs. not. You could also show a representation of their dream aspiration, or their current nightmare.

33. Show a preview of a lead magnet- or use an image in the ad that’s also on the landing page. Then they’ll know they’re in the right place when they land.

34. You can do lead gen ads now in two ways- via website conversion ads, or the new “lead ads.” The latter have a few weaknesses right now. #1, they have been more expensive in our tests. #2 You have to remember to log in and download the emails regularly from Facebook, then manually email people. It’s easier to use LeadPages or ClickFunnels tied to Aweber or MailChimp set up with automatic welcome messages or an autoresponder series. I suppose you could weekly download them, upload those to a system like GetResponse that lets you upload emails, have an autoresponder there, but after a week they’re cold. You’d need to download and upload the emails daily. Some companies are working on a solution to this, but right now it’s a mess. We still recommend website conversion ads combined with a landing page split-testing solution like LeadPages, ClickFunnels, Unbounce, etc.

35. One of the biggest problems we see with clients are when they create their own landing page or lead gen process. Custom programming can create problems, inflexibility, or interfere with tracking. If your website can’t split-test, you should use an industry-standard landing page solution like LeadPages, ClickFunnels or Unbounce. They can be customized to fit your brand and often can be made to look like they’re hosted on your main website or a similar one. Branding can be fixed. A lack of split-testing or the inability to track conversions cannot be fixed as easily.

That’s it- start with a few, and add some more of these tips to your practices every week!

Social Media Guerilla Lead Gen Tactics (Video Interview) with Dave Schneider

Twitter and LinkedIn lead generation techniques with Dave Schneider of Ninja Outreach

Why B2B Facebook Ads Beat LinkedIn Ads Every Time

Some people have it wrong. You- savvy reader- probably already know this, though, right? 🙂

“Facebook doesn’t work for B2B. It’s for B2C,” people say. “Users aren’t on there for work.”

Correct, they are on there to be distracted. “I’m bored,” they say. “Show me something awesome!”

If that awesome thing you show them happens to help with their work, they’ll click on it. That’s what the data tells us about B2B Facebook advertising.

 Why FB works for B2B: FB users want distraction. Show them something awesome that helps their work and they’ll click on it. <– click to tweet

Besides, we live in an era where the line between home and work has blurred.

Here are some of our B2B Facebook advertising case studies over the last 12 months:

  1. An attorney got a case worth $100,000 from Facebook after spending just a few hundred dollars on Facebook advertising.
  2. A cloud hosting company got new business leads from Facebook advertising and a whitepaper for $59 each. The most affordable ads brought in leads at just $29 apiece. The most expensive ones targeted CIO’s and cost $74.08 each.
  3. A new B2B financial industry business discovered their offering wasn’t needed or wanted by the target audience- they discovered this (via extraordinarily low clickthrough rates) with an investment of just a few hundred dollars in Facebook advertising. They saved tens of thousands of dollars by not going further down that dead-end path.
  4. A financial industry event generated 305 registrations at $71.34 each while ads reached 1.5 million people and generated clicks from 18,125 people.
  5. A marketing agency generated new client leads for $29.26 apiece.
  6. An SaaS company used a whitepaper to generate 504 leads and 92 new demo signups for $26 per demo signup. Notable here was that the target was people who worked at Fortune 1000 companies.

Based on our experience above, people do click and opt in for B2B offers while they’re on Facebook.

The 4 advantages that Facebook ads have over AdWords and LinkedIn ads are:

  • Facebook has the largest audience.
    • Google is almost as big, but you can only target people looking for what you have. Facebook lets you target people based on job title, company, etc.
    • LinkedIn is much smaller than the other two.
  • Facebook ads are prominent enough for a lot of people to click.
    • Google also does a good job with this.
    • LinkedIn’s self-serve ads… what’s the last one you remember seeing? Exactly. Unless you spend $10k per month, you can’t use their more prominent “enhanced” ads. So the biggest problem is that your LinkedIn self serve ads don’t get seen and therefore don’t get many clicks.
  • Facebook has the lowest cost per click.
    Facebook clicks are usually below $0.75 and often as low as $0.10.

    • Google ads average over $2.50 per click and can go up to $25.00.
    • LinkedIn ads average over $3.00 per click and often are as high as $6.00.
    • Twitter ads are usually $1.00 – 1.50 each.
  • Facebook ads reward you for trying more ads and targets.
    You can lower Facebook ad costs by 50% or more when you create ads that get higher click through rates.

    • Google ad cost per click doesn’t vary much no matter how you optimizes- less than 10%.
    • LinkedIn ad cost per click doesn’t vary much either.
    • The same is true for Twitter ads.
  • BONUS: Facebook ads can target people by job title, company, seniority, what they majored in at college, net worth, income and nichey jargon. All of these can be used to hit your exact B2B prospect.

So, Facebook ads reach more people, grabs more attention, cost less, and cost a lot less if you work at it.

Now that you know Facebook ads are so effective for B2B, why aren’t you using them for lead gen?