“How Do I Generate New Clients For My Business Using Facebook Ads?”
We field this question at almost every one of our Facebook Advertising Workshops.
The truth is Facebook Advertising should be a Professional Service Business Owner’s best friend.
It’s your always on, always available way to generate new business. Even better – it’s the ultimate tool to target those clients you wish you had more of.
But…..there’s a catch.
If you get some of the core principles wrong when it comes to your Facebook Ads, things can go wrong, quick.
You can end up out of pocket, without results and frustrated at the wasted effort that went into pulling your ads together.
But that’s not going to happen to you.
You’ve taken the time to read this blog post and learn the principles of successful Facebook Ads for Professional Service Businesses.
By the end of this post, you’re going to know what separates a bad Facebook Ad from one which guarantees success.
Plus you’ll know how to get started creating your own successful campaign today.
Let’s get stuck in.
1. Pick Your Ideal Client/Customer From The Start
With more than 13 million monthly Australian Active Users, it’s hard to imagine a bigger opportunity to find your ideal clients.
But the first key to successful Facebook Advertising is to avoid trying to be something for everyone.
You want to show that you’re a specialist, an expert, in something that a specific group of people will LOVE! Alternatively, you want to show that you can take away the PAIN that that they are currently feeling – financial, legal, administrative or otherwise.
Black and white – knowing exactly who to target online will make your Facebook Advertising more effective and less expensive.
So start thinking – Who are your favourite or most profitable clients to work with? What type of clients would you like more of?
…Have you carved out a niche getting Young Professionals to tidy up their finances?
…Or can you help Small Business Owners keep their book keeping in order all year round?
…Or maybe you’ve developed a reputation of being the go to for businesses looking to get their contract documentation in order?
Once you’ve decided who your ideal clients are, the next step is to start creating a profile or “persona” of these ideal clients.
We’ve created a whole other blog post on how to do this here but the short of it is that you want to be able to answer the following questions:
- What are the basic details about this ideal clients: Job, Income, Marital Status, Gender, Age, Location, Size of Family etc.
- What are the goals and challenges that this target audience are trying to solve? How can your services help achieve or solve these?
- What are the key messages that will make you and your services stand out in their mind? How can you sell them on your solution?
It takes a bit of effort but it is critical that you are crystal clear on the answers to the above.
Your answers to these questions will help inform each of the next elements of your campaign like:
- What your offer should be
- What type of campaign you should select
- What your campaign targeting should be
- What your ads should say and how they should look
To make the creating this profile easier, we’ve created a buyer persona template you can use. It will help guide you through finding the information that you need to create your personas.
2. Craft The Perfect Message To Make Your Ideal Clients Take Action
Once you know who you’re ideal clients are, the next step is to create the offer or message that will make them want to act.
There’s no one size fits all approach to this but you’ll want to make sure that your offer covers each of the below:
A. It’s Valuable To The Target Audience
B. It’s Designed to Overcome Any Barriers They May Have To Working With You
Truth is, we’re lazy and pretty suspicious when it comes to what we do online.
To convince someone to take action, you’ll need to convince them that there’s something in it for them.
You’ll also need to find a way to overcome any barriers that they may have when it comes to working with you. Time, money and trust are the big 3 that will stand in your way.
So whether it’s a giveaway, a freebie, a discount – make sure your offer shows that there’s something of value you’re providing. Better still – it should overcome a specific challenge that they may have to working with you.
When you’ve cracked an offer that your ideal clients will LOVE, it’s time to put it in front of them in a Facebook Ad!
3. Stop Boosting Posts And Pick The Right Campaign Type For What You Want To Achieve!
Have you created a Facebook Page for your business?
If so, we can guarantee that at some time Facebook has asked you if you’d like to “Boost Your Post”.
This is a great way of ensuring that your existing Facebook Fans and their friends see what you’ve been up to.
But the reality is that there are much, MUCH better ways for you to spend your advertising budget.
Jump into Facebook’s Ads Manager and you’ll see an array of different campaign types to choose from.
We won’t go into them all here but you can rest assured that there’s a campaign type suited to whatever marketing goal you have.
But when it comes to generating new client leads for your Professional Services Business, pick one of the campaigns listed below.
OPTION A. Campaign Type: Website Conversions
This is our favourite campaign type to generate conversions or registrations on a website.
This type of campaign optimises for the action you want your target audience to take (e.g. registering their information). Plus, as the campaign evolves, Facebook will get better at determining those people most likely to take action from your ad (and show your ad to those people more often).
To run a Website Conversions campaign, you will need to be a little technical and be able to add your Facebook Pixel to your website.
If this isn’t an option, don’t worry, there’s another 3 campaign options that you could use.
OPTION B. Campaign Type: Clicks To Website
If you’re unable to add the Facebook Pixel to your website, then a Clicks To Website Campaign is your next best option.
Choosing this campaign means you’ll be charged each time someone clicks on your link or ad.
The benefit of this campaign is that you are only paying for when your target audience takes action – a good sign that they’re likely to enquire about engaging your services.
The negative of this campaign is that it can become quite expensive if people are clicking on your ad but not taking the action you want them to.
The way to combat this is to ensure that you offer is 1. targeted to your ideal client and 2. so compelling that anyone who clicks on the ad is almost certain to take it up.
OPTION C. Campaign Type: Lead Ads
Lead Ads are fast becoming one of our favourite tools to use for our clients because:
- They are able to be created quickly and painlessly
- They make the process of users registering their details just as simple.
Lead Ads look like any other type of Facebook ad within the Desktop or Mobile News Feed. But rather than send someone to a website to register their information, users can complete their information while they’re still on Facebook.
Better still, since Facebook already knows their name, email address and often phone number, these details are auto populated, reducing another barrier – effort!
These are a great option for PTs looking to quickly generate a list of prospective clients. However the key is to make sure that you follow up quickly!
Remember – these people are ready and interested to learn more right then and there. Don’t leave it too long before contacting them.
4. Use Interest Targeting To Get Laser Focused On Your Ideal Client
Now that you know your ideal client and the message you’d like to put in front of them, it’s time to find them on Facebook.
But be careful – the targeting you use for your Facebook Ads will either make or break your campaign.
A successful campaign comes down to figuring out the details and interests of your ideal client.
This is why it’s so important to put in the effort to create that buyer persona of your ideal client we mentioned back in Section 1.
Use the details you put down about their age, job and interests to create a defined set of targeting criteria that you can use to find them on Facebook.
Below are all the options that you can use when it comes to selecting who to target on Facebook.
1. Custom Audiences:
These are groups you create based upon your email lists, phone numbers, app users or website retargeting.
Postal code, city, county, state, or country.
3. Age & Gender:
Pretty self explanatory here.
Income, job title, employer name, language, relationship status, education, financial (affluence), home ownership, parental status, etc.
Everything from brand pages to celebrities and most topics you can think of.
Charitable activities, online shopping habits, car shopping, financial spending, mobile devices, travel habits etc.
7. More Categories:
Expats of specific countries and their friend/family; Facebook Partner Data.
People connected to your page, app, or event (and their friends).
9. Exclude or Narrow:
This functionality allows you to become laser focused on exactly who you want to talk to; and exclude those that you don’t.
With limitless options for you to choose from, it’s crucial that you know the details of your ideal clients as intimately as you can.
Make sure you’re able to answer questions like:
- What magazines do they read?
- What age and gender are they?
- What type of job do they have?
- Do they have kids and if so, how old would their kids be?
- What TV Shows do they watch?
- Who do they currently get their training and nutrition advice from?
- And so on and so on…..
Bottom line – you must put in the time and effort to do the research about your target audience in order for your campaign to be a success.
But for most of you, there will be certain similarities in the types of clients you’d like to target – Busy White Collar Professionals, Small Business Owners, Families with a specific level of Household Income etc.
To help save you time and effort, we’ve created four ready to go audience templates that you can use straight away for your campaigns.
You can download them for free by clicking on the image below.
5. Make Sure Your Ads Are Simple And Social
You now know your ideal client, your offer/key message, the campaign type and targeting you want to use.
All that’s left to do is to create your ads themselves!
A quick Google search will be give you a range of different templates and examples that you can use for your own ads.
But the truth is this – you need to be willing to test a few different types of ads to find the perfect formula for you.
This means trialling different images, video and text until you come across the perfect combination for your audience.
That being said, there are 3 key principles to keep in mind when it comes to creating Ads that work on Facebook:
1. Make sure your audience knows that you’re talking to them
Open up Facebook and think about what you see – a News Feed already cluttered with videos, status updates and links.
For your campaign to succeed it’s critical that you’re able to get your audience’s attention quickly and keep it long enough for them to want to learn more about you or your business.
The key to cutting through is to make sure that your audience knows that you’re talking to them and that the content that you are sharing with them has been created with them in mind.
2. Keep your message social and lead with value
This is a big one that even major brands seem to keep getting wrong!
We go on Facebook and Instagram to be inspired, to catch up with friends and to see what’s happening around the world. We don’t go there credit card in hand ready to be sold to!
The ads that we have found work best on Facebook are the ads which look and feel like they aren’t an ad. Instead they feel like they are providing a piece of value for their audience.
So rather asking people to buy from you straight away, provide them with something that they can use while learning more about you in the process.
3. Keep your images and video natural and authentic (not perfect)!
There are some important rules you need to follow when it comes to the videos and images that you use for your ads. For example don’t have more than 20% text in an image and don’t use before and after photos as an ad image.
But the most important rule to keep in mind is to not get hung up on how “polished” the image or video you use is.
The most effective ad images don’t necessarily feel like an ad. We’ve seen great results from photos and videos that look just like something a friend would post to Facebook.
So rather than spending money on stock images, try using a video of a recent workshop or client success story. Provide your ideal clients with an idea of what it is like to work with you and let them see you and your services in action.
Bringing It All Together
If you’ve made it this far, you’re ready to go. You now know the principles you need to start generating new clients for your Professional Services business using Facebook.
Remember – know who your target audience are, how you can help them and create ads that show them that you can help – it’s that simple.
Don’t be afraid of testing new offers, audiences and ads until you find the ones which work best for you.
The most important thing is that you get started and start refining from there.