Social platforms like Facebook are amazing for engaging users and cultivating new and loyal customers. But they have that one nagging issue: It’s clear that they own their users, not you. Even if you have a dedicated fan base, you still need to use their platform - and spend a bit on their advertising products - to reach them.
So what can you do to own your Fans?
Capture their email address using lead generating tactics.
Studies like the March 2013 Epsilon survey show that emails get read, opened and clicked on. It also shows that triggered messages (emails sent to subscribers based on specific events, such as sales, birthdays and more) have proven success, and are on the rise.
According to emarketer, however, lead generation remains the number one challenge for marketers in 2013. As it happens, used smartly, Facebook can be an incredible tool to get more emails from your prospective consumers.
There are a number of different methods for business to capture emails using Facebook. Many businesses, both big and small, are still not using these opportunities to their advantage. These include posting email-gated content, promoting email-RSVP webinare and running Facebook contests. In this article I’ll run through 6 ways that you can generate new email leads using Facebook:
1. Newsletter Signup Form
You’re in business, so you likely send out a newsletter to your customers. I’ve worked with businesses from one person shops, to large corporations, and every one of them send out newsletters. It’s part of what makes your email leads profitable. Generally speaking, the more you keep connected to your consumer in a personal way, the more they will buy from you. Emailed newsletters do this.
A simple way to gather more email leads is to put a newsletter signup form on your Facebook Page. At Wishpond, one of our favourite newsletter list managers is MailChimp. I won’t get into the detailed steps of setting up a newsletter tab, because, well, most email management providers like Constant Contact and MailChimp already have easy pre-built Facebook Sign-up Tabs for your email newsletters.
Here’s one thing you can do to boost your sign-up form: Customize your tab to make it enticing and brand related. Most newsletter management sites provide pre-made customization options. Or, if you have the luxury of a technical team, you can create your own in CSS or iFrame.
Chili’s Grill & Bar, for example, customizes their newsletter sign up with their logo. They send out exclusive offers, only available to those members of “The Email Club”.
They show the newsletter tab prominently, in the 3rd position of their eight tabs. The tab links to a page within Facebook, where customers can sign up directly for their exclusive offers.
2. Email-Gated Content
Many businesses, particularly B2B businesses like Wishpond, use free email-gated content to attract new leads. You likely have eBooks, infographics, or even pre-recorded webinars that show your industry knowledge. Giving these away in exchange for your prospective customer’s email is an easy way to drive more leads into the top of your sales funnel.
Drive even more leads to download your email-gated content by housing the registrations forms in Tabs on your Facebook Page.
Check out this article by Hubspot on how to create tabs on Facebook. It gives a 6 step process on making custom tabs on your Facebook business page.
3. Exclusive Offer Emails
Providing an immediate incentive for signing up to an email newsletter is a great way to drive new leads. A lot of people are hesitant to get on email lists for fear of being spammed or their email address being stolen, sold or shared with others. So providing them with an incentive just for signing up, and promising more to come, is a great way to get them in.
Check out how Crocs does this with an “Email Signup” Tab on their Page:
Like the Chili’s Bar and Grill example, above, the email sign up is prominently placed in the 3rd position of their seven tabs. This tab leads fans to a simple page in Facebook, requiring only an email address to sign up. Subscribers get access to exclusive offers, news and an immediate 20% off coupon for their next purchase:
4. Facebook Contests
Use contests, Facebook sweepstakes and group offers to generate emails from prospective consumers. Campaigns like these are fast becoming regularities in most marketers social media strategy. They’re cheap and easy to do, create a ton of engagement, and build mountains of new email leads.
You likely remember the Lay’s “Do Us A Flavor” campaign, where they asked customers what new flavour of Lay’s chips they want to see in store. This generated loads of publicity, new fans, and likely lots of new customers. It’s a great example of using social to engage with your fans and include them in your brand’s product development:
Consumers these days expect this level of interaction.
Even small businesses can take advantage of this strategy by doing something simple. Sunscape Tanning Studios recently ran an email-gated Facebook sweepstakes on their page. Fans of their page simply have to submit their name and email for a chance to win a $150 gift card.
5. Facebook Covers with Signup CTA’s
Just a few weeks ago, Facebook made changes to their page policy, making it acceptable for businesses to include calls to action on your Facebook cover.
Use it to drive signups to your email-gated tabs.
The easiest way to use your cover photo to drive traffic to your contest or sign up form in a Page Tab is with a short piece of text and an arrow. For a recent contest we ran on the Wishpond Facebook Page we useed a plain, white arrow on our blue background, clearly pointing to our “Enter to Win” sweepstakes tab.
Check out more ways to convert using Facebook cover CTA’s. Try it for your email-gated content, and watch your email generation grow. Also check out “8. Events and Webinar RSVP Forms” to see how Mari Smith used her cover photo to drive sign-ups for her recent webinar.
6. Posts with Links to Email Gated Content
Include email-gated content as part of your regularly scheduled posts on Facebook. If you have a webinar, exclusive deal, or ebook available, tell your Facebook fans. Direct them back to the email-gated landing page on your website.
Posts can be simple and just include the title of the content, an image and a link, like in the following Wishpond example. In this example, Wishpond provided an update on our eBook guide to social media marketing for Mother’s Day:
The link brings Fans back to an email-gated landing page on Wishpond’s website.
If the content is older, it can be repurposed anew by pulling specific questions/answers or quotes from it to peak the interest of people with a specific problem. Check out an example of this tactic below from Hubspot:
7. Facebook Ads with Links to Email Gated Content
Facebook Ads are a relatively low-cost tool to get your email-gated content seen and clicked on by targeted consumers.
For as little as $5/ day, you can promote your post with email-gated content. Facebook has step-by-step instructions on how to create an ad. They’re very easy to do. For promoting content I recommend using a “Get More Page Likes” style Right-Column Ad that clicks through to Sign up form in a Page Tab for two reasons:
1. Ads that link to a page within Facebook have much higher conversion rates than those that link outside of Facebook. This is because many people do not like to leave their social network while their browsing.
2. It allows for full control over the text and image to create a great call-to-action.
Check out an example below from Marin Software:
Facebook’s targeting abilities give you an easy way to reach a highly targeted market. I’d suggest marketing your post to ‘precise interests’. Choose sites that offer complementary services to yours. For example, at Wishpond, we might market to fans of Hootsuite or Mashable. Fans of these sites are interested in social media. They would be interested in our free social media marketing ebooks.
I wouldn’t necessarily go after the Fans of your direct competitors. Those people already have a personal relationship with your competitor and it’ll likely be harder to convert them into customers for your business.
Facebook makes it easy to track conversions, in this case email signups, using their Conversion Pixel. In a nutshell, it allows you to track how many people click on your Facebook Ad and then complete the signup form. Check out Social Media Examiner’s great article “How to Track Your Facebook Ad Conversions” for a complete guide on how to use it.
8. Events and Webinar RSVP Forms
A live or online event is an enticing way to generate new leads. Watching a live person speak is much more interesting to people than reading, so make sure to mix up your content marketing strategy to include some live events!
Instead of using Facebook’s basic Events application, a signup form allows you to collect email and other contact information when people RSVP for the event (the Event application does not allow you to collect emails when people RSVP). Just like with the email-gated content and contests, it’s easy to house the registration form inside of a Tab on your Facebook Page.
Mari Smith did a great job of utilizing the Tab and her Cover Photo to promote her recent webinar “7 Steps to Facebook Success”:
So there you have it. By making a few tweaks and additions to your social media strategies, you can harness the power of social to increase the power of your email leads.
What do you think? Have you used Facebook to enhance your database list? What successes have you had?
Also: check out the article: 6 Surefire Methods to Generate Email Leads Using Twitter.
At Wishpond, we want to make it easy to engage with your customer. That’s why we’ve created a whole range of social marketing apps with comprehensive analytics, making your marketing successes a little easier.
This article first appeared on the Wishpond Blog