FB Ads funnel. Help me understand something...

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Hi all.

I am dipping my toes into FB ads and have been referring to quite a few well known teachers of the subject. Most of them seem to recommend a similar 4-step funnel:

1. Engagement (get people to watch your videos, read your blog, etc.)
2. Leads (get people to opt-in to get your giveaways.)
3. Conversions (direct call to action.)
4. Retargeting (discounts, social proof, anything to put them over the top.)

I was wondering about fellow Warriors' experience with that kind of funnel. In particular, I'm curious about the necessity of the first engagement step - is it still beneficial if you can get cheap leads right off the bat?

Any thoughts welcome!
#ads #funnel #understand
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  • Profile picture of the author ElGuapo
    Thanks for the reply Mol.

    Engagement is not a problem - I can get lots of cheap clicks to my website from FB. We also do well with video views. My question regarded the necessity of doing this rather than jumping right ahead to the leads stage.

    For example: I could spend the daily budget on getting 400 clicks to the website and therefore building a custom audience of 400 warm-ish individuals. It would then take time and a fair bit of work to get most of those 400 the list with some giveaway. But if I had used that initial budget to send people direct to an opt-in page, I'd have 100-200 leads immediately.

    But I think I was perhaps missing the point of FB ads. Maybe the ideal strategy goes something more like this:

    1. Identify an audience you want to target, say 1m.
    2. Run multiple engagement ads (each one excluding prior website visitors) to build as big an audience as possible out of the initial 1m.
    3. Run multiple opt-in offers to that audience to build as big a list as possible from it.
    4. Target that new audience with conversion ads and retargeting ads.

    Does that sound about right?
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  • Profile picture of the author dburk
    Hi ElGuapo,

    The 4 step marketing funnel is time tested concept that has worked consistently well for at least a century. It's called "full funnel marketing" and is a perennial marketing concept adapted by FB marketers because it is based on the ubiquitous 4 stages of the customer buying cycle Attention, Interest, Desire and Action (AIDA).

    This strategy works well on FB because people do not typically go to FB to shop for products or services, instead they go to places like Google or Amazon . Most people on FB are there just to socialize with friends and family.

    While you certainly can conduct direct marketing campaigns on FB, you are likely to get better results if you engage FB users socially first, before you attempt to pitch them products or services. After all it is a "social" network, not a shopping network.

    However, as with all things in marketing you should test that. Best practices usually work 50% of the time, but you can never tell which 50% you're in without testing.


    Don Burk
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  • Profile picture of the author ElGuapo
    Hi Don,

    Good points all!

    I think I'm just coming at it from the budget perspective of a FB newcomer.

    We recently created a custom lookalike audience from our buyers and ran an engagement campaign to one of our more popular blog articles. We got a few hundred clicks for $20 or so (it's a non-English market, hence the cheaper clicks.) We then had a follow-up opt-in campaign in place for those clickers, and we have initially got 8 opt-ins from a hundred impressions or so.

    I suppose I look at it from the perspective of: we got 8 opt-ins for $20, but we could have got 100 opt-ins for the same price if we had marketed a giveaway in the first place.

    I think I am obliged to test the direct marketing (followed by sales offers and retargeting), just because it would seem to be much faster and cheaper results. But of course, as something of a newcomer to FB ads, I'm concerned I'm dead wrong about that and am misunderstanding how to best use the platform.
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  • Profile picture of the author dburk
    Hi ElGuapo,

    That's my point exactly, Direct Response campaigns are often not the cheapest way to go in FB ads. Facebook charges advertisers a premium for outbound clicks, they discourage any traffic leaving the FB network. You can now generate leads without sending traffic outside of FB, though there are major limitations to those campaigns as well.

    Regarding the giveaway idea, keep in mind that it can seriously degrade the quality of your opt in leads if you do not set that up properly to filter out unqualified leads. You want to hit them with that giveaway after they are pre-qualified, not before.

    Not all opt ins have the same value, so looking at just the cost per lead will be wrong if your strategy ends up pulling in as many non-qualified leads as possible. I've seen those giveaway type campaigns chase away many of the most qualified leads while at the same time attracting loads of un-qualified leads. The illusion of success is not something you can deposit into a bank account, beware of the FB ad platform because it is loaded down with low value illusions of success.

    Opt ins that cost less may be worth even less than they cost. Instead, focus on measuring the true "value" of your opt in campaign results, not all opt ins have the same value (Profit = (Value - Cost) * Quantity). Apply that formula to every marketing segment of your campaigns.

    Value, Cost, and Quantity have to be applied, in the proper formula, to get a true understanding of your campaign "profit" results. Total campaign Profit is the key metric, other metrics are just diagnostic in nature. Anything that is negatively impacting the value of an opt in (i.e. giveaways) has to be calculated to determine true campaign results (total profit/loss).

    When you make adjustments to the value of an opt-ins on a giveaway offer, the quantity differences alone might not be enough to make up for a loss in average lead value. Pre-qualifying giveaway recipients can fix that issue. That means you may want to limit giveaways to a previously engaged audience, or even an audience of previous customers, for best results.

    As stated above, test both approaches and make sure you are comparing total "profit", not just opt-in "costs", or just quantity. Allow for "value" as a variable in your tests results, never assume that opt-in values are fixed values.


    Don Burk
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  • Profile picture of the author adrianpag
    Hey, I know this post is a few weeks old but here are my 2 cents for what is worth:

    The first step (I would call it awareness more than engagement) is super important, because at least in my experience (after investing over 7 Fig in ads for me and my clients) it should almost always reduce your cost per lead.

    An opt-in is also a transaction, if you're asking directly for an optin and you're getting a good cost per lead that's great, but when you add step 1 it should get you an even lower cost per lead

    But even better than that, is that you'll build more trust with your leads right from the beginning which will increase your conversions through the entire funnel, specially with sales.

    Hope it helps

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  • Funnels are proven to work. 4 step, 5 step doesn't matter.

    It all depends on your offer.

    Also, do not focus on getting cheap leads or leads in Quantity, its all about the quality of the leads.

    I spent upto $9 per lead and every 5 leads was converting into a $600 revenue sale.

    1. Know your Target
    2. Have a powerful message
    3. Follow up with that same messge (retargeting, FB bots, email, sms etc...)

    Focus on ROI not cost.

    Hope that helps
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