4 Steps to an Effective Facebook Sales Funnel

Facebook Sales Funnel

I recorded a Pubcast with Amy Porterfield today, and we had a great discussion about how we use Facebook as a sales funnel.

The funny thing is that we had two largely different approaches. Both that work. But it inspired me to detail my approach.

If you follow me closely, you know that I stress building a quality, engaged audience. This is critical to your Facebook sales funnel.

As I’ve found, Fans are the most likely to buy. Proof of that was found in my recent Power Editor training program launch, where I got a 35X ROI overall on Facebook ads.

In fact, they are also the most likely to provide an email address. Getting the Like is easy. It’s a light action. Anything else requires trust.

So, I see the progression in the following order:

Fans > Email Address > Buy

Here’s how it works…

1. Attract Relevant Fans

It’s the first step for a reason. This is the key to your Facebook sales funnel. Without it, the whole thing falls apart.

I see it time and time again. Brands buy Fans. Or they use ads that target “cheap” countries that bring in spam bots. Or they run contests that attract countless Fans with an irrelevant prize.

In all cases, they are focused far too much on quantity and not enough on quality.

You’re tired of hearing it. It’s an overused phrase. Yet it seems most brands still don’t get it.

Yes, you want more Fans. But they have to be relevant Fans who are most likely to buy from you later.

Yes, you want to limit the cost of adding Fans through ads. But not at the expense of quality.

Your focus should be on spending the least amount of money for the highest quality Fans. Period.

It’s a difficult balance, I know. Your main focuses may be in the US, UK, Canada and Australia (as are mine). You may see that the Cost Per Like for US users is 20% higher. Don’t abandon them.

Always work to bring in new, relevant Fans who are likely to buy from you later. Do that with Facebook ads.

I always keep two types of ads running:

  • Page Like Sponsored Story
  • Page Like Ad Offering Value for a Like

The second currently offers access to my eBook on Facebook ads (from a Facebook tab) in exchange for a Like. That way, I know that those who like my Page are potential customers at a later date.

I then target the following groups with each of those ad types:

  • Users who like similar Pages and with similar interests
  • Lookalike Audience based on my core email list (focused on Similarity)
  • Lookalike Audience based on my core email list (focused on Reach)
  • Similar Pages & Interests + Lookalike Audiences (Similarity)
  • Similar Pages & Interests + Lookalike Audiences (Reach)

How do you find the list of similar Pages and interests? Use Graph Search and follow these steps.

Don’t understand Lookalike Audiences? Read this post.

Start these campaigns out extremely broad. You already have your target audience. Focus on all placements. Men and women. All (or most) ages.

Then use the new Facebook ad reports to find out what’s working best and optimize from there.

I may have as many as 10 of these campaigns running at once. Getting relevant Fans in the door is the highest of priorities.

2. Provide Value

Great, you got a bunch of relevant Fans in the door. Now it’s time to sell, right?

Of course not!

I succeeded at getting the Page like, but I don’t yet have full trust. That happens by providing consistent value.

Every day, provide content that helps your target customer. Continually drive them back to your website. Get them used to seeing your face.

That value includes some sort of personal connection. Respond to them. Provide a look behind the curtain regarding who you are. Share more than just a brand.

Without value and without a personal connection, any sales effort will go ignored.

3. Collect Email Addresses

You can collect email addresses earlier, but it’s certainly easier getting them from qualified users.

This is an important step that is often missed. By collecting email addresses, you can reach these potential customers with your promotions in two places: Email and Facebook.

That gives them two opportunities to read your blog post. Recommend it to friends. Or buy from you.

You’d be amazed by what the addition of email can do for your overall campaign. Expect far greater results than if you use only Facebook or only email.

So, how do you collect these email addresses?

Once users are Fans, periodically offer them something of value in exchange for that address. Host a webinar. Offer an ebook. Send a reminder to sign up for your newsletter.

Now, you could theoretically do this up front. I’ve offered free ebooks in Step 1 to incoming Fans. In exchange for the ebook, they have to like the Page. Then provide an email address.

But that’s one more step, and it can be off-putting. Don’t try to rush the user down your sales funnel.

Guide them!

4. Sell

Okay, so now it’s the good stuff. You have a captive audience of people who are interested in your focused niche. You offer consistent value, and they’re eating it up. You’ve gained their trust to the point that they have provided an email address.

Now it’s time to sell!

When you release a new product, you’ll announce it via email. You’ll announce it with a Facebook post. But also turn it into a Facebook ad, displaying it to Fans only.

Now, there’s definitely a balance here. And I will be the first to admit that I’m still figuring out that balance.

You need to monitor frequency. How many times are your Fans seeing an ad every day?

Obviously, the smaller your audience the tougher this will be to manage. So be careful.

What you don’t want to do is now push away those people you’ve spent so much time nurturing. Granted, some will be put off as a result of any self-promotion. You were never going to get them to buy anyway.

But what you don’t want is to lose those who may have bought but you overdid it with ads. I’m sure I’ve lost people before. And my goal is to find that balance to keep the best of the best Fans who are most likely to buy.

Your Turn

What’s your approach to Facebook marketing? Do you have a similar funnel, or do you handle it differently?

Let me know in the comments below!

  • http://brankicaunderwood.com/ Brankica

    Hey Jon, I like these recommendations and do similar things. I do have an additional question though. Offering them stuff to subscribe (which I do) – but if you have several different offers, do you still send them all to the same list or you have multiple lists? Thanks!

    • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

      I tend to do one offer at a time, but you don’t need to do it that way. You could also split test what people respond to best.

  • Josh Sample

    Hey Jon,

    I get everything in this article except : Once you find your Similar Pages & Interests from graph search, where do you use that info ( I assume the power editor) but I don’t understand how…

    • Josh Sample

      For example: If I found my audience also likes the local carwash how would I target users of that specific page

      • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

        Enter those interests into the Precise Interests area when creating an ad (Audience).

  • http://www.sierratierra.com/ Lisa Kalner Williams

    Great piece! The targeted ad types you give all look promising. Which has given you the best CTR and/or actions? (Or conversions?)

    • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

      Oh, that’s a loaded question! I’ve had a lot of success getting likes with both Page Like Sponsored Stories and a gated offer. But it’s not so much the ad type that led to the conversion. It was the targeting that I explained at the top.

      Also, I’ve had a lot of success with Conversion Tracking — targeting my Fans with a product — as well as FBX. Did you see my recent case study on ROI?

      • http://www.sierratierra.com/ Lisa Kalner Williams

        I hear what you’re saying about ad types being less important than the great targeting abilities that Facebook provides. Maybe I wasn’t clear (it happens)! I meant the targeted groups you listed in the five bullet points. I like the way you sectioned them out and was curious what’s given you the best results. I thought I read the ROI piece but am not recalling the answer.

        • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

          It depends, Lisa. I initially had the most success with the similar Pages and interests. Eventually, that became less effective. Then I went with similar Pages and interests + Lookalike Audiences (similarity). That was very effective. Then became somewhat less effective. Then I tried similar Pages and Interests + Lookalike Audiences (Reach). That has been very effective as well.

          My point? They are all effective. And like any audience, you exhaust them eventually and they become less effective over time. So it’s good to mix it up.

          • Ali

            Completely agree with Jon I have had similar experiences, you need to keep mixing up things otherwise each ad reaches it’s threshold. I have noticed even changes in images make a lot of difference.

  • Renato

    Very interesting, but I’m curious to check Amy’s diferent approach to this. Can you post a link? Thanks!

  • Darren Hayward

    Excellent write up. Jon you’ve certainly been targeting me with your ads… See you everywhere! You’ve inspired me and a friend to create a Facebook ad funnel for weds development if nothing else

  • Shane Sams

    Here’s a question…why get likes anyway? If I can target anyone on facebook by interest, what advantage is there to likes? I know they are targeted fans who may be interested in my products, but it seems like I’m spending double the money… money to get the likes…. then advertising products. Make sense? Why not JUST advertise the product to precise interests, THEN get the opt-in on my page or the sale? Would love some input, thanks.

    • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

      Hey, Shane. I feel like this blog post explains that? I’ve found over and over again that fans are most likely to buy. And not until you warm them up for a while. You get them to like your page to add them to your sales funnel. You provide consistent value on a daily basis to get their trust. Hopefully along the way you get their email address. When you sell, they are much more likely to buy, and your selling then also includes email.

      You can sell without getting the like. But it’s MUCH more difficult.

  • Jon

    I recently saw a video that was trending a couple weeks back on why all facebook like ad campaigns are a bad idea. The guy said that even with targeted audiences it still results in click farms. What is your take on this?

  • Niz

    Any tips on how you created the shortstack like=download. Can’t see how to include a like button within a text box as you have done. Looks great btw.

  • Kristine

    I feel like all the marketing people who I follow are basing their results with Facebook advertising on what they do. But, selling social media marketing on Facebook is a whole other thing and not at all a real idea of how other businesses or cosumers react. It’s preaching to the choir. How does a business get conversions for ads on Facebook when you are targeting, say, B2B industrial or B2B agricultural? How do you even reach those people. FB industries are so limited and do individuals even have industries on their profile? If you target an industry, does it automatically show on a business pages admins feed?

  • http://anthonynitz.com Anthony Nitz

    So this is one I’ve been working on figuring out and still haven’t got a clue. In the scenarios you mention in the article, I think it’s safe to presume that this formula can work for people who have something to offer that people can use on a regular basis OR there is a sales funnel with upsells, downsells, OTO’s etc that can continuously be promoted.
    How do you effectively promote to your fans via organic or paid posting when the service you offer only is needed once every 5-7 years (according to statistics). This is the case in real estate. I feel like if I create a new post even once a week, the whole real estate story will get old. People are generally not interested in the real estate market until they need to buy or sell. Any suggestions for a strategy?

    • Lawrence Pickup

      I think you’d require a very different social strategy Anthony. You could look at including social activity in your lead scoring but you should probably focus on amplifying advocacy by encouraging previous satisfied customers to like your page and leave recommendations. You should also create content that promotes the neighbourhoods that the properties are in (location location location). Stories about the location won’t get old in the way stories about each property will. That way when a prospective client looks at your FB page they will be impressed by your popularity. If you are going to use ads then target women (but you knew that already).

  • http://www.djcola.net DJ COLA

    I’m clueless.

  • Alex

    Hey Jon,
    I have just one question. Getting the email or the like first really shouldn´t matter correct? I prefer to get the email, then on the thank you page, suggest that they “like” the page for “further-exclusive” material. Last time I did this, i got 400 email Opt-ins and around 366 page likes. So almost 100% of them gave me the like as well. I feel its more important to get their email to reach them on a 1-by-1 basis. But, either way, it seems as they are both the same strategy, just diversified into two channels. Same “Frank Kern” style “good-will” campaigns that we do through email marketing, now we also do through our fan page and then simply target fans and custom audiences. Correct?