In the world of Facebook marketing, results matter. Sales funnels are similar to real-world funnels, in that large volumes of consumers arrive at the top end of the funnel which sends them to a finite endpoint, usually a sales page. Conversion-driven sales funnels aim to present the customer with a series of steps which results in a sale.
Building a conversion-centric sales funnel can be done in a matter of five steps. Let's look at what it takes to create a conversion-fueled sales funnel on Facebook.
Step 1: Use audience specific campaigns
One of the most potent tools that Facebook offers digital marketers is the ability to inform their marketing through specific demographic information. Any business developing a marketing strategy shouldn't assume that all their customers are the same.
The sales funnel requires a lot of potential buyers to notice the product. Not all of them (or most of them, as a matter of fact) will want the product, but the initial contact will help determine hot, warm, and cold customers.
Cold audiences have very low intent to close a sale. They might not recognize the company as one they know, or had any interactions with the brand. To warm up these customers, we'll have to use touchpoints to build trust with this particular audience.
Facebook offers marketers a range of sub-groups in their Ads Manager, including goals such as Awareness, Consideration, and Conversion.
Testing conversion goal campaigns with cold audiences is a bad idea as this audience is unlikely to convert, and the business is merely wasting its ad budget. Conversion campaigns are the most expensive of the campaign types available to businesses. Awareness campaigns tend to cost the lowest and are where a company wants to start connecting with cold customers.
Step 2: Consider conversion campaigns differently
As we noted, the high cost of conversion campaigns makes them unsuitable for a starting ad operation. Additionally, there's a secondary reason for avoiding conversion campaigns initially. Facebook's algorithm is designed so that it optimizes and improves on its ad delivery based on successful goal completions per account.
Facebook suggests that a user should have 50 goal completions per campaign per week for it to collect relevant data to know where it should serve ads.
For a conversion campaign, this can be a challenging prospect. If the drive is unable to hit that mark of 50 goal completions, then Facebook has a harder time determining what the ideal customer the ad should target is, and the ad campaign itself becomes suboptimal. The result is that the company keeps paying for ads and isn't getting the value that they should out of the ad campaign.
Step 3: Content auditing
A content audit is an exploration of all the content that the business or page has previously published, in an aim to find gaps and also the best performing content pieces, patterning future material after it.
Now that we've segmented our audience based on our sales funnel, we can start using our content to convert the cold audience into the warm and eventually hot pool of prospects. For each of the prospect types, some approaches can easily be applied:
- Cold Audiences: Explanatory content about the brand works well in this spot. A brief brand story video is an excellent way to build confidence with cold prospects.
- Warm Audiences: To capitalize on these audiences' trust in the business, we can leverage a traffic campaign. How we do this could be in the form of an educational blog post or a lead generation campaign such as a free e-book download.
- Hot Audiences: Hot audiences are ready to buy. The business needs to close the sale by encouraging the buyer, so deals and special offers come in handy to help the customer complete their purchase. One of the most consistent methods to help close a sale is free shipping.
Step 4: Crafting the right ad campaign
Now that we've finished our planning for content delivery and understood what the types of customers we're aiming for and what kinds of ads we have at our disposal, the time has come to decide how to craft the perfect ad to reach out to customers. We have a selection to choose from, including:
- Traffic Campaigns: As we mentioned above, traffic campaigns are suitable for directing warm customers to our site with an active call to action for them to shop. They're more cost-effective than conversion campaigns and tend to have a better chance to convert.
- Messenger Ads: These are hit and miss with some campaigns, but they are perfect for certain types of products. A canned response allows users to be sent a quote, directed to the business' FAQ page, or directly send a message to the page organizer, creating a lead we can exploit later down.
- Add to Cart: This strategy is suitable for a hot audience as it lowers the number of clicks the user has to perform before closing the sale.
Step 5: Get new customers into the funnel
The final step is to get relevant customers to start clicking into our sales funnel. We've already designed the funnel in such a way as to direct the customers based on their "level of warmth." Using cost-effective ad campaigns and objective-appropriate ad systems, we can drive cold users into the wide end of our funnel and slowly warm them up to the idea of a purchase.
The business needs to have an ultimate goal for conversions, and if it’s not reaching the goal, it should readjust its content. Continual auditing of ads and their impact on target audiences helps to improve the delivery of those ads, which in turn impacts how Facebook understands the target demographic for the most likely to convert customers.
The aim is to balance ad costs with customer conversion. It's an iterative methodology that takes time to flourish, but once the company puts in the work, the power of Facebook's targeting system is more than equal to doing the rest.