How can building contractors use Facebook to generate a steady stream of high value clients? Hi, my name is Francisco. I own a digital marketing company called Planet Marketing. We specialize in Facebook ads, Google ads and Remarketing. Some of my clients are building contractors. Almost always the first thing that they want to know is whether or not it’s possible for people in their line of business to get clients by advertising on Facebook. Are Facebook Ads an effective tool in this regard? That’s a question that I am going to answer in this article. The post is divided into the following sections;
Why Facebook Ads make sense for building contractors
Should building contractors bother advertising on Facebook? If you have been asking yourself this question, then the answer is yes! Facebook Ads work very well for building contractors. In fact, Facebook ads work very well for most conceivable types of business that are out there.
If you go through this blog, you will notice that this is a topic that I have covered in detailed. I have previously written on how to do Facebook Ads marketing for eCommerce. I have also written on Facebook Ads marketing for adult stores.
Fact is, whatever your business, you are likely to find your audience on Facebook. But why is that the case? How come Facebook is so effective as an advertising platform? The following are some of the reasons why building contractors should do Facebook Ads marketing;
Facebook is a big platform
Facebook is one of the biggest social networking platforms in the world. Simply put, the platform is huge. As of the time of writing this article, there were over 2.7 million people using the platform every month. Those figures are likely to have grown exponentially.
Find more statistics at Statista
You can check the current statistics in the graph above from Statista. But what does this mean for building contractors? Well, it simply means their audiences are more than likely active on the platform. The challenge lies in targeting them in the correct manner, and that’s what I am going to show you here.
You get a plethora of targeting options
A major strength for Facebook Ads is that you get a wide range of targeting options when creating your ad. As an example, you can target a custom audience. Custom audiences can be derived from a wide range of sources.
As an example, you can target people who have previously visited your website, as tracked via Facebook Pixel. That’s something that I am going to talk about below. You can also target people who have liked your Facebook Page, or similar Facebook Pages. It’s also possible to direct your ads to a new audience.
The challenge when creating Facebook ads for building contractors lies in ensuring that your ads are reaching the right people. The above targeting options give you the ability to do a lot of testing to find the right formula. As an example, you can have one ad running with a custom audience, and another targeting new people.
The value of Custom Audiences
Custom audiences are something special whenever you are doing Facebook Ads. We have already noted that you can target people who have been to your website. It means these people are already interested in what you have to offer. What they need is a simple nudge. Give them that and they can easily be converted.
It’s a lot simpler than trying to convert somebody who has never heard of you before. The same situation obtains when it comes to targeting people who have liked your Facebook Page. These people already know about you, making it easy for you to convert them.
Remarketing using the Facebook pixel
I have mentioned Facebook Pixel a couple of times already in this article. But what is Facebook Pixel and how does it work? Well, pixel is how Facebook does remarketing. Remarketing is also referred to as retargeting. It how businesses can target people with ads based on their interest on their sites.
Let’s say building Contractor X has a website and is running pixel. What happens is that when people land on this site, their interest is noted. Perhaps they were interested in a particular area of the site. The next time they go to Facebook, they are shown contractor X’s ads featuring the areas in which they were interested on the Contractor X website.
Pixel is simply a code that Facebook uses to track people’s interest on a website. And remarketing is not peculiar to Facebook. I have previously compared Facebook and Google remarketing. With Google, you may have noticed ads that seemingly follow you all over the place. That’s retargeting at play.
You get several choices when it comes to ad types
Another great thing about doing Facebook Ads for building contractors is that you can create ads in a range of types. You can have single image ads. These are the most popular. You can also do video ads. These tend to be a lot more complicated because you are looking to cram so much into 15 seconds or so.
15 seconds is the recommended maximum length for Facebook ads. Beyond that, you run the risk of losing your audience. You can also create carousel ads. These would be great for showcasing different products in your catalog.
So, which ad type should you go for? Well, I am always noting that one great thing about Facebook Ads is that you can do a lot of A/B testing. What it means is that you are not stuck with one particular ad or with one particular ad type. You can play around in your settings to find the angle that works best for your business.
Facebook ads are affordable
Most business owners worry about the cost of running Facebook Ads. But really, you have nothing to worry about. For one thing, you can get started with Facebook Ads for as little as $1 a day. For that, you can boost a post or create a brand awareness ad that reaches hundreds, if not thousands of people.
Of course, boosting a post has debatable usefulness, as I argue in this article. But there are admittedly some instances where it can be very useful. Whatever you decide, between boosting a post or creating a full Facebook ad, fact remains that you will be hard pressed to find a cheaper advertising option.
Why Facebook Ads for building contractors sometimes fail.
It would be unfair for us to simply look at the benefits of advertising on Facebook, without looking on the challenges that people sometimes encounter along the way. Truth is, many building contractors do not achieve the desire results through their Facebook Ads. To put it mildly, they fail dismally. But why is that the case?
People are not on Facebook for work
One challenge when it comes to marketing any business on Facebook is that people are usually not in a work mood when on the platform. Do YOU go to Facebook to work? No, you go there to unwind. You go there to read the latest bout of fake news, and to watch the latest silly video.
That's an important consideration. As an advertiser, you need to understand that you have your work cut out for you in this regard. Your ad will likely be ignored. The same cannot be said of Google.
A person that searches for building contractor probably has something that needs to be done. So, their intent is a bit more advanced than on Facebook. But there are solutions. I will give those shortly.
How to overcome this challenge
Fortunately, all is not lost. There are some things that you can do to ensure the success of your Facebook Ads.
Create an eye catching ad
First you need to create an eye catching ad. There are many ways of doing this. You can use a picture that’s guaranteed to catch people’s interest.
Depending on what you are advertising, you can also create funny videos. Make advertising incidental to the funny bit of the video. Fun is what people are looking for on Facebook.
Give people valuable information
Another way of bringing attention to your ads is by giving out useful information. Your ad should not be primarily about your business. It should offer helpful tips to people. That way, they will stop by to read through the ad or to watch your video.
There are many topics that you can cover in your content. Maybe you can make a video containing tips on how to keep renovation costs down. Another example would be to offer tips on how to avoid foreclosure. These are all serious issues, but they are useful. Even a person looking for fun will stop by to find out more.
How to market your business on Facebook for free
Facebook ads are a great option. But before you even get there, it’s worth noting that you can market your business on Facebook free of charge.
All that you need to do is to create a Facebook Page. Once you have done that, you can then use it to reach out to your target audience and to keep the conversation going with current and former customers.
Check out my article on how to properly run Facebook business pages. It’s important for you to have someone dedicated to answering queries from your customers and from others.
That’s particularly the case if you are a big company. A Facebook Page can be very useful as far as boosting your online visibility is concerned.
Creating Facebook Ads for Building Contractors
Now we get to the part where we can start creating Facebook Ads for building contractors. Everything that we have been talking about here has been leading up to this point. Facebook Ads are created in Ads Manager. To get started, you need to have a business account. It’s a simple matter to get one. Creating an ad on Facebook is mainly a 3 step process;
- Choose a Campaign Objective
- Set up your Audience
- Create the Ad
The Campaign Objective
Choosing a Campaign Objective is your first port of call when creating Facebook Ads for building contractors. Facebook provides you with 11 Campaign Objectives. For each ad, you can only have one. The Campaign Objective that you choose will depend on your overall goals.
It’s important, therefore, to be clear on what you wish to achieve before you even get started. There are many possible goals when it comes to marketing a business anywhere in the digital marketing sphere. Perhaps you wish to introduce a new product.
Maybe you are looking to get brand awareness. You could also be looking to sell products directly to your customers. That’s usually the case for those running Shopify, Magento or any other online shops. They can sell their products via Facebook Ads. The following are the available Facebook Ads campaign objectives;
- Brand awareness
- Catalog sales
- App installs
- Video views
- Store traffic
- Lead generation
Which Campaign Objective is best for Facebook Ads for Building Contractors?
Most people needlessly worry about this aspect of creating Facebook Ads for their businesses. Thing is, there are no prescriptions here. Of course, some Campaign Objectives work better than others.
That depends on the type of business. Online stores, as an example, would be better place to use Catalog sales as their Campaign Objective. However, all other businesses can play around with the Campaign Objectives to come up with the best.
Again, that’s the power of Facebook Ads; you can tweak them as much as is possible to find the right angle. For this example, we are going to go with lead generation as our Campaign Objective.
Setting up your Audience Targeting Options in the Ad Set
Now that you have chosen your Campaign Objective, you will need to set up your target audience. That’s done in the Ad Set. Here, there are a number of settings on which you need to work on;
Since we chose lead generation as our Campaign Objective, we are going to have to choose the lead method. That’s basically how people are going to get in touch with your business to become leads. You have 2 choices in this regard;
- Calls: People can call your business to become leads.
- Instant forms: People can fill out forms to contact your business.
Budget and Schedule
The ad set is also where you define how much you are going to be spending on your Facebook Ads. Please not that there are two models in this regard. When you sign up for a business manager address, you get to submit your credit card details. If you leave things open, Facebook will deduct money from your card as long as your ad is running.
However, it’s way better to get control of your spending. To do that, you need to define start and end dates for your Campaigns. Along with a Daily Budget, that’s a good way of knowing exactly how much you are going to have spend within a given timeframe.
You can see an example of what we are talking about in the above screenshot. We have set our daily budget at $20. Our ad will run for a week. It means at the end, we will have spent $140. That’s good because there is no risk of you overshooting your budget.
The Audience section is where you begin the important task of defining who you wish to have see your ads. You have a number of tools that you can use in this regard;
First, you can choose to go with a Custom Audience. This is something that I have already mentioned. Custom audiences already have had dealings with you in one way or the other.
Perhaps they have recently visited your website and were tracked using Pixel. Or maybe they liked your Facebook Page. In this example, we will be targeting people who have been to our Facebook Page.
You can also choose to reach people based on similarities to the audience that you have just set up. That’s useful if your target audience is limited in terms of the people that you can reach.
You can expand that audience by, in this case, targeting people who have liked Facebook pages for other building contractors.
You can also define the location(s) for delivery of your Facebook Ads. How you set this up will depend on the nature of your business.
For this example, we will assume that the building contractor for which we are making Facebook Ads operates in the small town of Durango, Colorado.
This business will be localized. It won’t be sensible, therefore, to target people throughout the United States.
You can set the age ranges for delivery of your ads. For this example, we will go with people who are 35 years and above.
It’s also possible to discriminate delivery of your Facebook Ads based on gender. Perhaps you wish to target only men. Or maybe you wish to reach only women. That’s particularly useful if you are into gender sensitive products.
Languages is another useful setting when creating Facebook Ads. It’s not really important when doing Facebook Ads marketing for building contractors. But there are cases where you will be looking to target people who speak a particular language.
The detailed targeting option is useful for narrowing down on your target audience. It allows you to really zoom in on the people that you are targeting.
Remember that Facebook knows a lot about it’s users. It knows who they are, what they like, what they don’t like, where they work and many other aspects of their lives.
Advertisers can take advantage of this data to reach out to precisely defined audiences. That way, they have a great chance of succeeding. For our example, we are going to be targeting the following groups of people;
- Home renovations
- Home repair
- Home improvement
You can target a lot of areas here. These are just examples. It depends on what you wish to achieve with a particular ad. If you are marketing yourself to other building contractors, then that’s something that you could do.
Perhaps you specialize in one particular aspect of construction, such as floor tiling. What you want to do in that case is to form linkages with other building contractors. You can then use these links to get leads.
I have already talked about the nature of the ad in this article. It needs to be good if it is to capture people’s attention. Just to remind you; people do not go to Facebook to work. They go there to play. So, your ad is intruding into their thinking. If you don’t know how to do it, they will simply ignore you.
You need to be able to create an ad that quickly and effectively captures a person’s interest. Make it such that they have no option but to stop by to find out what you are talking about. So, the ad is important because it’s what people get to see.
You can see the primary text at the top of each ad. Don’t make the mistake of going overboard here. People are not on Facebook to read stories.
They are there for the visual effects. So, your ad needs to be as visual as is possible. Make you Primary Text catchy but short. One or two lines will do in this regard.
That’s a summary of how to do Facebook Ads marketing for building contractors. In this article, we noted that Facebook Ads have the potential to fail, if not done right.
The major challenge is that people go to Facebook to play and not to buy. So, you need to have an ad that’s instantly catchy in order to draw their attention.
In this article, I also showed you the process of creating your own Facebook Ads. How you go about doing it depends on the Campaign Objective that you have chosen.
Anyway, I have come up with a great DIY Facebook Ads marketing course to help those that still need to learn more about creating their own Facebook Ads. Sign up using the form below!