12 Actionable Facebook Marketing Tips For Financial Advisors
Facebook isn't only for funny cat videos or seeing what your friends had for dinner last night.
It's also a marketing tool financial advisors can leverage to generate a steady stream of ideal clients.
In this article, I’m going to share 12 Facebook marketing tips to get Facebook working for you day and night, continuously bringing prospects to your business. (Yes, dreams do come true.)
Want to learn something specific about Facebook Ads? Jump ahead to:
What To Beware On Facebook...
If Facebook marketing is profitable for you, it can be a great tool to have in your tool belt. However, I’m going to tell you what I told listeners on an episode of the “Financial Advisor Marketing” podcast:
Facebook is just one example of a marketing strategy you can use; never depend on it as your only play.
In fact, no marketing strategy should be your only one, whether it’s LinkedIn, email or direct mail. Always have multiple strategies to test.
In this article, you’ll learn tons of actionable ways to optimize your Facebook marketing — but these tips won’t mean diddly if you don’t understand how to navigate the limitations of the platform.
Before you market yourself and your services on Facebook, know how to do it correctly, which can be easier said than done. Because it frequently updates its rules, you might have to print them out every couple of weeks to read, highlight and study them to know which lines you can’t cross — like calling out a certain group of people in your ad.
If not, you risk losing access to your account. (And trust me: It’ll do that in a heartbeat.)
Here are a few shoddy Facebook marketing elements to watch out for...
You have to get creative to thrive in the skeptical, competitive and expensive market you target as a financial advisor.
Although Facebook is a useful strategy to find more clients, the truth is you’ll continue to get squeezed out of your money if you don’t rely on other marketing strategies, too. The exception to the rule? Get extremely good at Facebook to the point where you're number one or two in the world.
Otherwise, be aware of the strings attached — oh, and once you find something that works, rush to amplify it. When it comes to this platform, you don't know how much time you have before something changes.
12 Actionable Strategies To Leverage With Facebook Marketing...
Now that you know the truth about Facebook and why you need to have multiple marketing strategies, don’t publish another ad without considering these 12 tips.
1. Dial In Your Targeting
Take a look at your marketing. Is it dialed in?
I got this piece of advice from someone who’s sent millions of pieces of direct mail over the years, but it applies to Facebook marketing, too: “Paper's cheap and ink is cheap, but stamps are expensive.”
It means targeting is the most critical element in your marketing, no matter the strategy. If you aren’t specific about who sees your ads, any advertising initiative will feel like you threw money away. But with dialed-in targeting, you’ll increase your conversion rates and lower costs.
You heard it here first: it's one of the best ways to supercharge your marketing efforts.
(💡 Psst! If you want to learn from someone who’s sent more than 300 million pieces of direct mail, subscribe to my Inner Circle newsletter. As soon as you sign up, new members receive the 46-minute interview I did with Craig Simpson, arguably the greatest direct mail marketer of all time.)
Rather than take your existing marketing and try to squeeze it in to fit whoever you want to target, start with your market first. Many advisors create the product or marketing materials, then try to reach their audience, but that’s not effective.
Figure out who you want to target, then build your ads for the audience you want to serve. If you're a financial advisor who specializes in teachers, for instance, cater your ads to teachers.
Regularly assess your entire marketing sequence, and ask yourself if it’s appealing to your demo. If not, then change it. Don’t fall into the trap of trying to appeal to everyone with generic ads that send traffic to boring pages that don’t appeal to anyone.
That marketing aim is too broad or general, which is where most financial advisors screw up.
ALSO READ: 27 Financial Advisor Marketing Ideas That Work!
2. Start Small To Win Big
The pressure to be everywhere at once is real for financial advisors — if you don’t market on Facebook, LinkedIn, Google, Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter all at once, you might feel like you’re not doing enough.
The truth? Start small. It’s smarter to start with one platform and master it before you move on to another.
Facebook alone has a variety of advertising offerings to test, so you'll have your hands full with the learning curve; don’t complicate your process by experimenting with other platforms at the same time.
It’s tempting to think you could feed two birds with one scone, but you run the risk of making the common mistake: taking the same ad creative and running it on all the platforms available.
This can work, yes, but it’s mostly just dangerous. Each platform primes its unique users in different ways, plus many of the functions and capabilities vary.
Instead, take it one ad and one platform at a time.
Make sure you have an ad that works for the platform you’ve mastered before you roll anything else out, then test it against other ads. Does it still win? If so, test it again. Keep split-testing your ads to always find the winning ones that can increase your conversion rate over time.
You also want to start small in terms of ad spend, especially if you haven’t done any testing. Rather than spend a ton of money on ads that might not work, try to only spend $20 per day on ads to see if they work. Then, adjust accordingly.
Keep your objectives small and simple, too.
If you try to get a prospect to convert into a booked appointment with cold traffic and a single ad, you may need to spend a lot of money.
But when you start with a smaller conversion objective — like getting someone to subscribe to your email list — you could score an email address for $15, then $10 over time, and eventually, even lower than that.
From there, you can figure out how many people on your email list convert into booked appointments, and I bet you’ll see it doesn't require you to throw $500 against the wall every day.
Don’t forget: as you focus on one platform, you should still attempt to reach your audience through other marketing strategies like webinars, email marketing, direct mail or your website’s content.
3. Disregard Vanity Metrics
Some advisors who are too cool for school turn their nose up at strategies like direct mail because they think it’s too old-school. Folks, if it makes you money, run the darn ad — even if it means you have to put your face on the side of a bus.
The only metric that matters is how many dollars come in versus go out. That’s it.
Vanity metrics like follower counts and website visitors have a stronghold on marketers, but the only way to enable the existence of your business is with $$$.
That’s why I’d rather have a business that gets 100 website visitors per month with an average dollar collected value of $10 per month to earn $1,000 than 1,000 visitors per month with a per visitor value of $0.50, or $500.
Increased rates of downloads are nice, but… they mean nothing; it’s a distracting vanity metric.
Ask yourself this: why are you in business? Are you in business to maintain a professional image and copy everyone else’s strategies? Do you want to help people and make an impact? Do you simply want to turn a profit?
No matter the reason, there’s nothing wrong with your answer — but smart financial advisors lead with this: it’s all about dollars in versus dollars out.
4. Timing Matters
Pro-tip: find out when your target market scrolls Facebook, and post ads at those times for maximum engagement.
Want to figure this out faster? Monitor your Facebook chat for the next week to make a note of how many people are “online” at various times of the day. If those people are representative of your target market, you can make a quick judgment.
Advisors who target businesses almost always see higher engagement on weekdays, for instance, while those who target consumers see an increase in engagement on the weekends.
Here’s another rule of thumb: the best days to post on Facebook are Thursday and Friday, and the best times are between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Of course, don’t let that stop you from posting outside of these days and times. After all, it’s better to have some people see you than no one at all.
Databox conducted a study of 45+ Facebook Ads experts (including me!), asking what they consider to be a good engagement rate. Check out the breakdown of the responses 👇
5. Your Facebook Ad Spend Is An Investment, Not An Expense...
An expense is typically a sunk cost — you’ll never get your money back from your dinner at Outback Steakhouse last night, for instance. But when you pay to show your ad to people on Facebook, it’s an investment.
Sure, there are savvy investments and poor investments, but when you view Facebook marketing purely as an expense, you miss golden opportunities to expand your presence and win new business.
Right now, financial advisors see tremendous success in building email lists with Facebook ads. Of course, not all companies can do this because every company's policy is different. However, these advisors send traffic to email opt-in pages where their target market can opt in to their email list, then the advisors follow up via email.
This works extremely well if you send niche traffic to a niche-specific opt-in offer. For example, you can create a free PDF report titled “7 Retirement Mistakes Teachers Make (And How To Avoid Them)” and offer it as a free bonus whenever someone joins your email list. Then, advertise the opt-in on Facebook and target teachers.
If that sounds simple, that’s because it is.
Too many people overcomplicate this because they want to confuse financial advisors. Because the real power of Facebook is in the targeting, this niche-specific content works best.
ALSO READ: 3 Lessons From An Advisor Losing $1,000/Day
6. When You Get A Positive ROI, Expand ASAP
One of the biggest mistakes I see advisors make with Facebook marketing is they create a set budget for Facebook ads. The intentions are good, but you’ll hold yourself back if you never spend more than a set dollar amount.
Here’s why: let’s say you spend $1 in ads and get $2 back. Would you stop and say, “I can’t spend more than my $1,000 budget?” Of course not; you would pump every dollar into the system until it stopped working.
It’s one thing to pause ad spend on a losing ad — it’s something else entirely to cut a winner when it’s performing. It would be a massive error to cut a marketing “expense” when it consistently delivers a positive ROI.
Your goal should be to figure out how much it costs you to acquire a client and how much money you make per client.
Once you have this magical ratio, use it as your guiding light. From there, the only questions you should ask are “How much can I scale this?” and “How quickly can I do it?”
In the last point, I talked about sending traffic to an opt-in page and building an email list. This is incredibly easy to track, because you only need the answers to these three questions:
With the answers, you can reverse-engineer and figure out exactly how profitable you are and how much you can expand.
Let’s try another example. Say you spend $10 to “buy” an email subscriber. Because your email autoresponder converts 2% of email subscribers into booked appointments, your total cost per booked appointment is $500.
If you convert one client out of every three booked appointments, that means it costs you $1,500 (three appointments X $500 each) to “buy” a client.
Assuming you’ll earn more than $1,500 from a client, you can scale this ad up as much as you want. You can also work to lower the cost per email address, improve your email marketing or improve your presentation to make this even more profitable.
7. Focus On Clicks And Ignore The Rest
Because your goal is to get people away from the rented land and onto owned land, optimize your Facebook ads to get a low cost-per-click (CPC) to your website.
Are there times and places for likes, engagement and other vanity metrics? Sure, but that also depends on your business. When sending traffic to your site, your best bet is to focus on clicks 99% of the time.
Over time, you’ll begin to see trends in your online marketing process. You might notice out of every 100 clicks to your website, 10 people give you their contact information, or “opt in.”
Let’s say every click to your website costs $0.50 (depending on your target market, this could be really cheap or ridiculously expensive) — that means 100 clicks will cost you $50, and every warm lead costs you $10.
Run some more numbers: if you set one appointment for every three leads, that’s $30 per appointment, or 3 x $10. If, on average, you get one client from every three appointments you have, your cost to acquire a client is $90, or 3 x $30.
If you acquired clients for $90 each, would you be profitable? It’s simple math. Tweak the formulas and ratios to suit your business, but the idea is the same.
The coolest part about this is once you have a baseline number, you can work to lower the costs at every part of the chain.
Lowered your CPC? That goes to your bottom line. Increased your appointment ratio? Your bottom line. Are you closing more of your appointments? You guessed it — that goes to your bottom line, too.
Some advisors might wonder, “What about the conversion objective?” Yes, conversions are good too, but I’ve found it much easier to lower my CPC than my cost-per-conversion through Facebook.
Plus, when I lower my CPC, my cost-per-conversion goes down, too.
8. Take Advantage Of Your Best-Performing Content
View Facebook ads as an amplification tool: you pick the message you want to get out to the world, and the platform helps you amplify it.
With that said, one of the best (and most cost-effective) materials to amplify is content that’s already doing well for you.
Take your highest-converting page from your website and amplify it. Do you have a blog post that consistently gets more views, comments and shares than anything else? Amplify it!
You already have solid proof the content works for you, so it makes sense to get it in front of your target market as quickly as you can.
Too many financial advisors try to reinvent the wheel when they should take what already works and build on that — don’t fall into this trap.
9. Always Test Your Images
With Facebook marketing and paid ads, you can’t be a know-it-all. Never assume you know which ad will perform the best, because you likely don’t.
That’s why you should always test your images if you run ads. You’d be amazed at how well people respond to one image over another.
For example, I recently ran an ad for a free PDF giveaway — one image was of a smiling man in a suit. The other image was of the PDF itself with the word “free” in big, bold text.
Most marketers will tell you a happy, smiling face is one of the most clickable elements on the web; it draws attention and gets people to take action. But… the boring image of the PDF exceeded all my expectations because it literally performed 500% better than the happy face.
If I played the role of a know-it-all and refused to test my images, I would’ve paid 5Xmore than necessary.
After running thousands of Facebook campaigns, I have a pretty good idea of what works and what doesn’t (which gives me a running start), but I never make foolish assumptions.
When you pick an image at random and insert it into your ad, you leave money on the table and basically shoot yourself in the foot. One little test can save you thousands of dollars over the life of a campaign. Don’t neglect to do it. Your bank account will thank you!
10. Move People From Rented Land To Owned Land
Facebook is rented land — you don’t own or control it; you just operate on it. Like I mentioned before, it can randomly change the rules, limit your reach, or worse, ban your account.
That’s why you need to get people away from this rented land and onto your website, the “owned land.” If you don’t already, collect email addresses to build your email list. Can you imagine having a prospect list you own and control with 2,000 people you can reach with a single click?
Take me, for example. I have a ton of content on LinkedIn, but I don’t build my entire brand on the platform. I scatter links throughout my social media posts designed to get people to my website. Once there, they’re given several chances to give me their email in exchange for cool and useful content.
I’ve seen advisors advertise to get more likes and engagement, but you don't want to do that. Instead, get people to a medium you control, like your email list, which is one of the most powerful marketing tools you can use.
I own my email list and website, so if all of my social media accounts got shut down tomorrow, I’d still have a list of people who like to hear from me regularly.
That's how you want to think as you build your business — how can you build an asset you control?
I’m not naïve enough to think Facebook or LinkedIn will 100% let me play in their sandbox forever, which is why I build a massive email list. You should, too.
11. Retargeting Is Easy Money
In under 10 seconds, I can tell if a financial advisor’s website runs a retargeting campaign — it’s one of my super-secret tricks.
When you don’t retarget ad campaigns to people who are already familiar with you, you leave money on the table.
Retargeting is one of the most effective Facebook strategies I've ever seen financial advisors use, and it only requires two simple steps:
And that’s it.
Have you ever visited a website like Amazon, then promptly saw ads for the company all over the internet? That’s retargeting.
Imagine if someone visited your website, but the timing was wrong. Maybe something came up, or maybe they got distracted. Unless you captured the visitor’s email address, they’re gone forever — but not when you run a retargeting campaign.
If that same visitor got distracted and didn’t move forward, the next time they log onto Facebook, they’ll see a piece of your content, or perhaps a link to schedule an appointment with you. At this point, your warm lead will be much easier to convert than cold traffic.
The big idea behind retargeting audiences is they’ve already engaged with you, so the first piece of content serves as a demonstration of your credibility.
It also shows you're serious about helping people like them; so much so you've created content about it. This makes the second step much easier, because people are more likely to opt in once they know you're the real deal.
You can also get as detailed as you want, so retarget people who’ve visited pages of your website or even those who are already on your email list. If your email open rate is 20%, that means 80% of those people ignore you in their inbox. You can take their email addresses, upload them to Facebook and retarget them.
Setting up a retargeting campaign is one of the first things you can do to get a big ROI increase.
UPDATE: Major browsers (such as Safari, Firefox, and Chrome) are getting rid of cookies/have gotten rid of cookies, so retargeting may not be as effective as it once was.
12. Watch Your Ad Frequency
Frequency is the average number of times your ad is served to each person. One person could see your ad twice, while another person sees your ad four times and another just once.
For instance, a frequency of three means the average person you target has seen your ad three times. But once the numbers are large enough, these variations are irrelevant.
You want to watch this metric, because as your ad frequency skyrockets, so does your CPC.
That means if people have already seen your ad three times and haven’t taken action, they probably won’t. You’re paying to serve the ad to people who don’t click. Pause the ad and create a new one — or target a different audience entirely. After all, you want to maximize your ROI, and a major part of that is keeping your costs in check.
P.S. If you're a financial advisor who wants to get more clients from LinkedIn, make sure you check out How to Get Clients With LinkedIn: How Financial Advisors Can Set Appointments and Convert Prospects With LinkedIn.