We all hear about how great the internet is at generating business for us and helping us get our word out about what we do or what we sell, but the internet is a crowded place these days and if you want to get people to see you it may be time for some paid ads online. But you have to be ready for it or you can waste a lot of money getting in front of people you can’t handle.
We have found 6areas you have to be ready in if you are going to spend effort and money on paid traffic.
Are you “physically” ready?
What happens if someone calls your place of business right now? Does someone answer the phone? Can that person help the lead with all the questions they may have and get them on the way to the next step in the process of them becoming a paying customer? What happens when you get a new email address? Does that email just go into the list of emails and get the monthly email that goes to everyone on your list or do they get a specific follow up either manually or automatically depending on the volume of leads you are dealing with? If you can’t answer any of these questions or if the answer isn’t what you would like you probably want to work on that before you spend money creating new leads
Are you “offer” ready?
Do you have an offer that you know works? At our massage studio we know that a $30 off regular price offer will generate traffic. At a gym we work with we know that a free 14 day pass works well. We got there through testing both online and offline, but we know what gets people’s attention. If the only offer you have right now is a “Look how great we are! You should be our customer!” offer you may want to work on refining it before you spend too much on paid traffic for leads.
Are you “time” ready?
Are you willing to and do you have the bandwidth to answer the questions that will undoubtedly come with running paid social media advertising? Or can you pay someone to do it for you, maybe one of your staff members? If we are going to put our business out there socially we need to engage with people. People ask questions because they are interested in what you do. If you peak someone’s interest enough for them to ask a question or make a comment we need to be able to respond so they remain interested and we can create a new customer or client.
Are you “goal” ready?
Do you have a goal that can be measured and that can be accomplished with paid fb/instagram traffic? “I want more customers/sales/visits/etc…” is a good start, but what is “more” and what can you commit to it each month from a budget standpoint? What are you currently paying for a lead/customer and what is that lead/customer worth to you? Leads from different channels can be worth different amounts to you in the long run (a groupon customer may have less value than a referral from a current customer because they are looking for different things when they come in…a deal vs. a good place to do business). So while this may change for people you get through paid traffic it is good to have a starting place. If you haven’t been tracking to this level that’s ok…take your marketing dollars and divide it by the number of new clients/customers you get a month and you can get a pretty good idea what your cost per lead and cost per customer are…
Are you “customer” ready?
Can you define who your customer is? “Anyone can use my service” is a really bad answer. While it may be true that anyone can use what you provide or sell it is also true that you are going to talk with some of them differently than you are going to talk with others. I would also argue that you haven’t spent the required time to really find out what your customers are all about if you answer with the “everyone” idea. Anyone can go to starbucks and at some point in almost every adults life they will have a cup of coffee, but that doesn’t mean that starbucks target customer is everyone…Starbucks’ primary target market is men and women aged 25 to 40. They account for almost half (49 percent) of its total business. Another roughly 25% is from 18-24 year olds…does this mean they will never advertise with the spin of 40+, no, but if 75% comes from people under 40 and 50% is from 25-40 that is where the spend should be concentrated for easiest growth. For local businesses that aren’t nationwide the location of our customers can be crucial information to have as well. In years past it could be tough to get a good handle on this information (think push pins in a wall map!). Now all you have to do is put your customer addresses (if you have them) in a google map and you can get a great visual representation of where your customers come from. Doing this can yield some valuable information and maybe surprise you a bit! https://support.google.com/mymaps/answer/3024836?co=GENIE.Platform%3DDesktop&hl=en is the link on how to do it…
Are you “fail” ready?
Are you willing to fail? When we started our massage franchise a while back we put a ton of money ($2500) into a single marketing for our holiday gift card promotions. We did other things as well, but for a small business we put a ton of eggs in that basket and we did so because o the recommendation of the person selling the product (weird she said it would do so good, huh? haha). It was a digital product and we could see very early in the run of the product that it was not converting-we weren’t getting enough clicks and we were not getting any sales at all! At the end of the 24 hour takeover period we got a whopping $0 in sales from it. And sure we got some clicks and created some “Brand Awareness” but we wasted a ton of money! If that had been on a facebook or instagram ad we would have had the ability to stop it, change it, adjust it, or punt it and we could and would have started much smaller and scaled it up once we figured out it worked well. When you run fb ads you are going to have some that don’t work at first, but you are going to learn from those and not make the same mistake again when you run ads the next time. Because we get so much data when we run fb ads we can learn what was wrong with it-targeting, the ad, the landing page, the offer-we get to test and fail and win and see what works the best for our business. If you are the kind of person that is only going to give something one chance to be a home run, paid traffic may not be for you. While there is no guarantee that you will get sales, I can say with certainty that your business and offer will get in front of the right people. And if we work it we can figure out how to make it return a positive ROI.
Getting into the world of Facebook and Instagram marketing can be a ton of fun and yield a lot of success for your company, but it is important to be sure you are ready for it. No matter how good the ad is or how revolutionary your product or service, if you aren’t ready for what happens when it goes out into the digital social world you can waste a lot of hard earned money. Here is a quick checklist to make sure you are ready for paid traffic.
If you have any questions we can answer for you about anything Facebook ads related please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll answer it for you.