The objective of your advertising strategy is obviously to generate more sales. That makes perfect sense – you’re spending money to reach people, you need them to then click on your ads and buy your products to justify that spend. But there is another element to advertising that shouldn’t be overlooked – that is, the capacity to generate leads.
A lead is anyone who has registered interest in your products, be that by clicking through on an ad, clicking ‘Like’ on a relevant post or, importantly, registering their email address with your site.
This last one is a key point of focus – if someone has registered their email with your business, that’s a strong indicator of interest. Think about the places you’ve given your email address to – you’ve likely only done so because they offered something you were really interested in, such as a product or content that you could only access by giving over your info.
The way you manage the information gathered is key to boosting your marketing performance. Here are some tips on managing leads gained via advertising campaigns.
1. Understand context
One of the key mistakes people make when managing leads derived from ad campaigns is that they add them to generic email lists, which often leads to an ‘unsubscribe’.
Again, you’re likely aware of this in your own experience – you go looking for a specific product on a site, you register interest, based on that one product, then every two days you get another email from them, highlighting their latest specials, none of which relate to the product you were initially interested in.
More advanced businesses manage their leads based on each product, making their future outreach more focused and relevant based on that initial query.
For example, if a man registers an interest in hair care products, he’s not likely to be interested in the latest special on a curling wand as well. Allocating that contact to a specific ‘men’s hair care’ list, however, would be much more relevant, increasing the likelihood that the recipient will be open to your future emails, thereby boosting the chances of them becoming a paying customer.
2. Measure response
Even if your campaign isn’t resulting in sales, there are ways to use the information gathered to increase engagement.
For example, if you see a lot of people registering interest in a campaign – such as by clicking through or registering their details – you can get an understanding of behaviour, and use this to determine why they’re not moving through to the purchase stage.
For example, if people are clicking through on your ad and then not going any further, you need to assess your landing page and ensure it’s delivering on the promise of the initial message. If they’re providing their contact details but not making a sale, maybe there’s a problem with your pricing – there could even be a problem with your user experience that’s stopping them from moving through the cycle.
By allocating specific behaviours to each stage of the process, you can get a better understanding of which elements are not working, then use the leads you’ve gained to re-target those users with more relevant ads once you’ve improved the points where they’re falling away.
3. Lookalike audiences
Another benefit of gathering leads is it gives you the ability to better focus your ads based on people who’ve registered an interest – and not only those who’ve signalled their interest directly, but also people similar to them.
Facebook, for example, has a system called ‘Lookalike Audiences’. Lookalike Audiences are exactly as they sound – you enter in a list of email addresses or phone numbers, whatever you have on your books, and Facebook will cross-match them against its database and see if they have those people in their system.
Given the amount of people who use Facebook (more than 70% of all active internet users in Australia), it’s a fairly safe bet that a lot of these people will be registered – once Facebook can identify them, it’ll then examine their profiles and find commonalities in interests and behaviours. Facebook can then build you an audience of people not on your list who share the same traits, helping you expand your audience to people who are also likely to be interested in your products.
Most social platforms offer a variation of Lookalike Audience where you can enter in the details of your contacts – this is a great way to utilise the leads you’ve gathered from your campaigns to expand your reach.
Sales is the key goal of all advertising, there’s no mistaking that, but there are additional ways to utilise the information gathered through your ad campaigns – even if they don’t result in a sale straight away – to enhance your future performance.