Do The New Facebook Lead Ads Actually Produce Leads?

I recently ran my first campaign using Facebook’s new lead ad format. I have a software client who is open to trying new things, so we ventured into the unknown and ran a low spend test campaign with lead magnets including special discounts, free offers, and free how-to guides for their software.

History – Facebook piloted these ads in the first half of 2015 and then rolled them out to everyone at the end of 2015. The ads run only on Mobile and feel a lot like a tiny survey in terms of customer experience.

Technical – Facebook does a lot of the lead collection work for you, and then you can ask customers a few more questions (with the usual character limits) in addition as part of the lead collection process. They integrate with some CRM systems, or you can just download your leads in a .csv file. If you know a little programming, you can write a script to do this auto-magically.

You must be comfortable using Power Editor and have a mobile-friendly audience and destination site. The ads can only be built and managed in Power Editor. And since they only run on mobile, your site needs to be ready for mobile lead traffic.

Experience with Lead Ads – My initial experience with these ads is that they would be great for companies that already have established brands and strong content marketing machines pumping out content around the clock on Facebook and other social media. Customers would recognize the brand, be familiar with their value proposition and not require a lot of explanation before converting.

The challenge I experienced working with a client who does not have a well-known brand is that if your brand is less known, or if your value proposition takes more than a line of text to explain, the new lead ads are just about impossible to execute.

No Landing Page – There is a reason funnels are so popular in digital marketing. Whether you get a click on your ad on Facebook, AdWords, Twitter, or from your website, a well-written and well-designed landing page and funnel does the work of Who, What, Why, and How am I supposed to engage with this brand and/or product offer. Without an LP and funnel, which the new lead ads eliminate from the lead collection process, only very simple value propositions and established brands will benefit.

Going forward, the clients I will recommend these ads to will include exclusively:

  1. Established brands within their vertical.
  2. Products that can relate their value in less than one line of text. Examples include message T-shirts and hats, designer handbags, well-known high tech products.

If they do not fall into one of these categories, I will go back to a well-designed landing page, funnel, and Facebook Conversion ad until further notice.

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