Facebook Algorithm Update January 2018: Does this apply to ads?

Facebook Algorithm Update January 2018: Does this apply to ads?

Facebook Algorithm update January 2018: Does this apply to ads?

Short answer: No….well maybe….

There has been a lot of buzz about the new algo update and I’m sure your inbox has been full of influencers giving you their take on it. Everyone seems to be up.in.arms over the latest update. Here's the official newsroom article

So, you're probably wondering "WHHHHHY does Facebook keep doing this to us?????"

Well, we might be part of the problem! According to Jon Loomer, it’s because we (as marketers) keep trying to push the envelope with organic and paid reach and when we do that (and it makes for a bad experience for Facebook users) Facebook has to compensate for that and make changes so users don't leave the platform. 

From what Jon mentioned, we are part of the problem. You can check out his (rant) blog post here. (And if you have a side hustle selling through a MLM (think: Thirty one bags, LuLaRoe, you definitley want to check out this article. Word to the wise: Do not start posting your products on your personal profile to compensate for this update. That is no bueno!) 

If you still need a bit of explanation about the algo change let me take a step back for a minute.

Here’s what we know about how Facebook works:

It knows A LOT about its users. It knows what we click on, what we like, what we comment on, what we talk about in messenger, etc so if you are constantly engaging with those funny cat videos on Facebook it’s going to show you MORE of those funny cat videos (I only know because a friend told me. ;) ) 

Facebook's mission is to create a happy-go-lucky, Pleasantville, type user experience so that people STAY on Facebook. If people are starting to get cranky with what they’re seeing in their newsfeed they’ll leave and find another platform to socialize on (notice the word socialize. I’ll get to that in a minute). Facebook doesn't want that. It likes it's over 2 billion users and wants to keep them happy!

So, in this effort, Facebook is now going to prioritize the things you see in your feed based on your experiences. So that means more friends posts and less page posts. Now, keep in mind, Facebook is going to MONITOR this new algorithm and see how it pans out with it’s users. If users like it, they’ll keep it and if not, they’ll make adjustments. So, don’t go leaving Facebook just yet. They are truly trying to make the user experience better and if the user experience is good people stay and businesses will advertise more on Facebook. 

So, back to the word "socialize" I mentioned earlier. Let me remind you of something. Facebook was created for USERS to connect with their family, friends and build a community online. It was created for users to SOCIALIZE.  It was not…..let me repeat…..it was NOT created for businesses. So, you shouldn’t get all upset over these changes as they are focused on how they can improve the USERS personal experience and less focused on how you can grow your likes or reach more of your customers. Capeesh?

So, what does this mean for business pages? Again, we’re talking about organic reach on your business page – not (necessarily) PAID ads.  It means you need to: 

1. Post better stuff!

You must do a better job of posting content that you know is meaningful to your followers. Not yesterday’s sale on your coaching package. Content that is going to GENUINELY help your users and yes, that means giving away free content…..free GOOD content. And that takes time so if you’re not willing to hire someone or do it yourself reconsider if you should be on Facebook. Gone are the days of trying to slide in some great promo you’re doing. Facebook doesn’t like that.

2. Grow your List!

Don't rely solely on Facebook to communicate with your followers and customers. You have to work on growing your list. Remember, we don't own our pages but will do own our lists. We'll have them forever so nurture them! Here's a blog I wrote on how to grow your list and get likes/followers as well. 

3. Use your group:

If you have a group and your running your group the RIGHT way (meaning—providing valuable content to your group members) then keep doing that. According to Mark Zuckerberg,

“The first changes you'll see will be in the News Feed, where you can expect to see more from your friends, family and groups."  

Now, this doesn't mean you should go out and create a group. Not all businesses would do well with a group. They are time consuming and need to be managed well. They do provide you with more visibility and promote engagement which is why Zuck wants to show them to its users.  But don’t RUIN in! Don’t think “Hey, Facebook is going to reduce my organic page reach so I’m just going to make a group and promote the heck out of my stuff over there. " Noooo! That's only going to scream for another algo update down the road. People aren't going to flock to a group that is constantly selling. If you have a group already or are considering one, check out this blog where I share how to manage it properly.

4. Stop BAITING!

·  Engagement Bait: What the heck is Engagement bait? That’s when you ask your followers to do something to build engagement inauthentically and therefore be seen more in the newsfeed. For example: Like if you’re a Libra, Vote for A or B, tag a friend, Comment ‘Freebie’ in the comments to get my latest freebie <-- It will be interesting to see how this one pans out as chatbots are quite the rage these days. Here’s a newsroom article on engagement bait.

· Clickbait: It’s gross. It’s manipulative. (This applies to ads also!) What is it? It’s when you post a headline or content that entices someone to click on the link and lure them into reading the content. Often on the other end there is something spammy. So stop it. If you read your ad copy and headline and think it’s misleading the user or being tricky, that’s a red flag that it’s clickbait. Don't do it. The ad won't even get approved anyway. 

5. Ask followers to use the “See first” option:

Post on your page and ask followers to ‘see you first’ in their newsfeed. Email your list as well and ask them to do this or better yet, put some money behind it and boost the post so more people see it. Here’s how:

  • Take a snapshot of the banner image on your Facebook page. 
  • Put an arrow showing them where they can find the 'see first' option.
  • Ask them to click the drop down menu and select 'See First.' Now your page posts will be seen in their newsfeed first. 

6. Use Facebook ads:

Remember when I said this update doesn't affect paid ads, well, it does. Sort of. This update now means that we need to put some budget behind the content we want our users to see. Guys…. Marketing is NOT free. Make sure you are putting some money behind your content. Facebook ads are now more important than ever to be seen!

7. Use more live video:

UGGGGHHHH... I hate video. I should be taking my own advice here and going live more on my page. I tend to go live in my student community but need to really step up my game. Here are some things you (and I) can do to get more reach with video:

  • Show behind the scenes videos (followers love getting a look inside of your world)
  • Offer a free training or provide weekly tips
  • Use your FB live as a paid ad to create more awareness of your business (Its a great way to introduce yourself to new fans)
  • Use it for lead generation. Include a link to a freebie in the copy.
  • Be you. Just go on to say hi, talk about a new program or product you found and loved. Be real and be authentic. People buy from people. Not logos. 

Tip: Don’t make any drastic changes yet – This algorithm is just rolling out. Monitor your stats on your page and see if you reach increases and decreases over the next few weeks. Keep an eye on your numbers and make a determination if you start to see a trend.

Bottom line: We need to roll with the pushes here. Facebook isn't out to get us as business owners. It's primary focus is to it's users and it's forcing us as marketers and business owners to step up or step aside. The choice is ours. 

The Power of Retargeting

The Power of Retargeting

The Power of Retargeting

First, what IS retargeting or you might have heard it called 'remarketing'? Well, retargeting is when you see a pair of shoes on the Target website and those shoes follow you all.over.the.internet. until you buy them. It's partly due to that powerful Facebook pixel that we have placed on our websites, landing pages, etc. 

Retargeting is an amazing strategy to use when running Facebook ads and it should be included in your ad campaigns. There are many ways to retarget. You can retarget based on website visits, engagement and even your customer files (email lists).

Here are just a few ways you can retarget people:

  • Retarget people who visit your landing page but don’t opt in
  • Retarget people who visited your sales page
  • Retarget people who have visited certain pages on your website
  • Retarget people who have messaged your Facebook page
  • Retarget people who have spent a certain amount of time on your website
  • Retarget people who have engaged with your Facebook posts or ads
  • Retarget people who have engaged with your Facebook page
  • Retarget people who’ve watched your videos or FB lives
  • Retarget people who have expressed interest or are going to an event
  • Retarget people who have clicked a call to action button

So, how do you retarget?

Step 1: Make sure your Facebook pixel is placed on your website, landing pages and thank you pages. For some of these retargeting options you don’t need the pixel but get it on there anyway.  

Step 2: Create your audiences. Inside Ads Manager go to:

Ads Manager>3 lines (AKA the Hamburger)>All Tools>Audiences>Create Audience>Custom Audience

(If you use business manager it will bring you to your “Asset Library”)

Once you select custom audience you’ll have a few options:

My screen currently appears like this. I highlighted the ones I use frequently. 



Customer File: This is where you’ll upload an email list so you can run ads to your list (or create a Look-a-like audience of that list)

Website Traffic: This is where you’ll build audiences of website traffic (ie. People getting to your landing page, people visiting a blog post)

App Activity: I’ve never used this one but this would be for people who are developing or promoting apps

Offline Activity: This is more for those businesses who have instore purchases. What you do is upload a list of purchases you received in store and compare it to the data inside of facebook to see if any of your ads attributed to those sales. Again, more for local businesses.

Engagement: This is where you’ll see TONS of options like people who’ve engaged with your page, posts, ads, videos, lead forms, etc.

Step 3: Once you’ve built your audiences you’ll need to wait until they are large enough to retarget to. Generally, it must be more than 20. When you’re ready to retarget, place your custom audiences inside the Ad Set level (make sure to exclude people who you DON’T want to see the ad (like people who already purchased, maybe your list depending on your goal, etc) and you’re set.


That's it. Now you're ready to run your ads. Retargeting is really powerful because it keeps your ads front and center and reminds your warm audiences that they need to take action. 



1) If your retargeting audience is small you don’t need more than $5-$10 to target them. You will reach them with that size budget.

2) If your retargeting audience is small also keep an eye on your frequency score. You don’t want to over saturate your audience and as it could annoy them and they might mark it as spam. If your frequency creeps up (around 3-4) change out the image and run a new ad to them.

3) Consider using the 'reach' ad objective when you retarget if the audience is small (under 50K) because your goal is to reach as many people in that audience as possible.


What to know before you hire a Facebook Ads Manager

What to know before you hire a Facebook Ads Manager

What to know before you hire a Facebook Ads Manager

I like to keep things real. Hiring a Facebook ads manager is a big decision. Many people often get so frustrated with Facebook ads that they throw their hands up and make a B-line to the nearest Facebook group to post “I need a Facebook Ads Manager. STAT.”

I see it all.the.time.

I’m an ads manager. I have wonderful friends who are ads managers and would never want to take business away from them (or myself!), but there is definitley a time and place for when you should hire an ads manager and I want you to know what to expect when you do consider hiring one of us. First, ads managers don’t come cheap and second, they sometimes come with some criteria they want you to meet in an effort to help make both parties successful with their ads.

As I mentioned, there is ABSOLUTLEY a time and a place to hire an ads manager. Here are some times: 

  • You have an online presence and/or have launched your course or product/service and it’s been profitable and you’re ready to let someone else take the reigns on ads or...
  • You’ve budgeted for an ads manager (either monthly or for each launch) plus ad spend and are willing to outsource it so you don’t have to even THINK about stepping into the ads dashboard of Facebook or...
  • You see the value in outsourcing Facebook ads as it’s not your area of expertise and want a pro to do the work. (regardless of cost)

These are some reasons why you’d consider hiring an ads manager but I want you to know this comes at a price. We are not cheap and that’s for good reason. There is A LOT of work that goes into managing ads. Here are just some of the things we are doing behind the scenes.

  • Researching your audiences (meaning hours of finding your perfect clients inside of Facebook)
  • Building your audiences
  • Uploading email lists, FB fans and building warm audiences, engaged audiences, look-a-like audiences, video watchers, etc.
  • Create the ad creative (searching for images or hiring a graphic designer to assist)
  • Creating the ad copy and headline (or hiring a copywriter to assist)
  • Putting a strategy together for when the ads will run and for when ads will be retargeted (and how and to what audiences)
  • Installing pixels, confirming their working
  • Testing all pages/opt ins to ensure everything is working
  • Reviewing landing pages (and sometimes creating landing pages)
  • Building the ads in ads manager and running the ads
  • Monitoring them daily and optimizing/scaling/reviewing stats
  • Making determinations on what ads will perform and which ones to turn off
  • Creating reports and communicating with you weekly (if not daily) on the status on the ads
  • Troubleshooting when ads are tanking

Etc. etc. etc.  So you can see why some ads managers are charging a premium for their services.

And, as I mentioned above, some ads managers have some criteria that they want their clients to meet. Some are, for lack of a better phrase, picky on what clients they take. Heck, they want to get results for you and if certain things are not in place it might be a poor launch or campaign.  We don't want that for you. At least I don't! so there are times I often turn clients away because they might not be ready for ads.

Criteria #1: Minimum Ad Spend

Some ads managers require a minimum ad spend of $500 a month (or more). This allows us to do testing which is crucial for Facebook ads. We WANT your ads to be successful so giving us a budget of $5 a day is going to tie our hands a bit as it limits us on the testing we can do. Is it doable? Yes, but it will lengthen the process of seeing results.

Criteria #2: Your funnel needs to be SOLID.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Facebook Ads are a tool to get leads into your business. Your FUNNEL is what sells. Some ads managers won’t even consider taking you on if you don’t have your follow up sequence nailed down and for good reason. If you’re hiring us to get you conversions but ultimately you want sales you have to have a solid funnel in place to convert them on the back end of the funnel. We can bring you the leads but the funnel needs to sell the product or offer.

Criteria #3: You’re a new online business

Some ads managers won’t take on businesses that are brand new. This is because the pixel isn’t "seasoned" (or in some cases not even installed onto your website). You might not have an email list or website traffic so the ads manager is starting from scratch and some ads managers are picky on who they take. They want wins. 


Aside from this criteria (and not ALL Ads Managers have these 'rules'), you’ll probably find a few different types of Facebook Ads Managers out there. They are:

Per Campaign Basis Ads Managers:

There are many ads managers who work on a ‘campaign’ basis. This means that they’ll often run ONE campaign (either a conversion ad or traffic ad or engagement ad) for a fee of (as an example: $300). This does not include the ad spend. Sounds sweet, right? But what happens when that campaign craps out?  Or what if you want to do another campaign objective (like retargeting or traffic objectives to warm up an audience?) Got another $300 (each) for another campaign? See where I’m going with this?  I’m not saying this can’t work for you, just be sure you know what you’re getting.

Monthly Facebook Ads Managers:

These are ads managers who work on your ads every month and (in most cases) pretty much do whatever it takes to get you the results you want but they charge for that. MANY ads managers are charging at the very LOW end of the spectrum of $1000 plus a one-time set up fee. (and this is low). I’ve worked with ads managers (especially in ecommerce) who charge up to $5000 a month. If you find someone who charges less it might be because they are just starting out with Facebook ads. That is fine as long as you know that ahead of time. We all have to start somewhere and many aren’t comfortable charging a lot of money when they are brand new to Facebook ads. (Been there, done that!) I appreciate those who are willing to charge less in exchange for a case study or testimonial. Just know that they’re prices will go up as they get more experience.

Launch Ads Managers:

So, you’re just launching a course and don’t need someone monthly. I get it. But these ads managers are starting around $1500 per launch (some even charge a set up fee or percentage of ad spend). And if you plan to launch a few times a year, this will add up quickly. But, if your launch is profitable it might be worth it to you to invest in the ads manager.

Pay for results only Ads Managers:

This one makes me a little crazy. This is when an ads manager or agency won't charge you unless you get results. It sounds great and maybe some ads managers are awesome at this but what worries me is that Facebook is CONSTANTLY changing and no (good) ads manager is going to guarantee you specific results. We do not own nor can control Facebook. We don’t know how each audience is going to respond (or if they will). There’s no one ‘right’ way to run Facebook ads. It’s trial and error, hence the high cost of ads managers as we need to test, test, test. Know the old saying “If it’s too good to be true…” ….yeah, that.

The Extras:

Many ads managers don’t manage a few other things so if you’re looking for assistance in this area, check to see if they provide this as a service and if so, what is the extra charge.

  • Landing Page creation
  • Ad copywriting
  • Ad image creation
  • Funnel development and/or review
  • Email sequences creation

Many ads managers just work on the campaigns (including researching, targeting, pixel placement, audience building, optimizing ads, scaling ads, etc.) but some don’t do the above ‘extras’ (some do, so be sure to ask what’s included in their fee (or what’s NOT included).  

Remember, the fees above do not include your ad spend. For a course launch I generally recommend $1250-$1500 per launch. This allows you to do a lot of testing to see which audience, image, copy converts the best.

Again, if it’s in your budget I’m all for hiring an ads manager, but I do always suggest people learn the basics of Facebook ads so you know what to look for when hiring someone and/or reviewing your stats. You CAN run your own Facebook ads. You just need a stellar training and a support group for when you have questions. 

Here are some tips to hiring an ads manager

  • Ask how much experience they’ve had running ads for your niche or business. If they specialize in ecommerce and you’re a course creator, they might not be a good fit.
  • Ask for testimonials from past clients
  • Ask for case studies to show they’ve gotten results for these clients
  • Find out how they’ve been taught (self-taught? Do they invest in training for themselves? Do they have support if they get stuck?)
  • Ask if they charge per campaign or per month? And what does that include (and not include)
  • Ask them if there is a one-time step up fee
  • Ask if they have any minimum ad spend requirements
  • Ask if they expect a percentage of ad spend

Many people reach out to me asking to run their ads and some don’t realize what goes into running ads for clients so I hope this helps. I want you to avoid that "sticker shock" when you see our fees. Still not sure if an ads manager is good for you, feel free to reach out to me. 

Crap-tastic Facebook Ad Results? Here's what to do.

Crap-tastic Facebook Ad Results? Here's what to do.

Craptastic Facebook Ad Results? Here's what to do.

So, you decide to run some Facebook ads and after a few days you’re seeing craptastic stats that make you want to scream. I hear ya! Facebook ads can be frustrating as all get out. But, the numbers don’t lie and this is why it’s really important to dig into the reporting area of Facebook once you’ve run your ads for a few days (I recommend 72 hours and a reach of 1000) and look at the numbers to try to figure out why you aren’t getting the results you want. The numbers will also give you an idea of what to do next.

Before I get into the stats to look at I want to make sure you’re running the correct ad objective. If you’re looking for conversions (opt ins) and you’re running a “Traffic” ad objective that’s your first faux pas. Each ad objective "tells" facebook what you want so it's important to select the right one. Check out my complete guide to ad objectives so you know which ad objective to choose for the result you want.

Here are some numbers I look at first after my ads have been running for a while. You can create a custom report inside of Ads Manager but to quickly see these numbers, go to the button that says “Performance” and click it to see a whole slew of other reports. I like the “Performance and Clicks” report. Click that and then take a look at these stats.



What’s your CTR (LINK)?  

There are two CTR stats inside of Ads Manager. CTR (ALL) and CTR (LINK). There's a difference and it's important that you're looking at the right one. 

CTR (ALL): This is the percentage of people clicking anywhere on the ad. It can be the ‘see more’ button, the ‘like’ button, the ‘learn more’ button, the image itself, the link to the landing page, etc. This percentage is typically higher than the CTR (link).

CTR (LINK): This is the percentage of people who are clicking on the link to go to the landing page. Therefore, THIS is the stat you want to look at when looking at your stats. Ideally, you want this number to be OVER 1%. This means that your ad is interesting enough for people to click on it to go to the landing page and that’s what you want.

What do you do if you have a low CTR (link)?

If you have a low CTR (LINK) you want to look at a few things: 

·        Your Ad Copy

·        Your Headline

·        Your Ad Image

·        Your Targeting

Ad Copy: Make sure your ad copy is speaking directly to your audience and you are talking about the benefits they’ll receive if they click on your ad. Assume they know nothing about your product/offer and explain what it is, why you created it and how it will help them with their problem/challenge.

Headline: Make sure the headline grabs they’re attention. Often, this is the second thing people see is the headline (after the image) and it should be a quick snapshot of what the ad is about and what they're going to get.

Image: Your image needs to be scroll stopping. You don’t want it to look like an ad—I know, easier said than done—but think about the images that you slow down for in the newsfeed. What elements do they have? A familiar face? Bold text? A landscaped image? Striking colors? Generally, if you’re sending an ad to a warm audience it’s ok to put your personal photo in the image. (I’ve even had good luck with an ad to look-a-like audience that had my photo in it.) Try it. Can’t hurt to test!


When you’re marketing to everyone, you’re marketing to no one. – Marie Forleo

I share this with my students all the time. You have to be VERY specific with your targeting. You might serve people age 20-60 but are they all likely to buy from you? If you had your ideal client sitting across the table from you who would he/she be? Is she a 35 year old mompreneur who reads the Wall Street Journal and who enjoys yoga?  Well, then let’s dig into the targeting to find more of these people. Get specific with your age range, gender, location, interests, etc. And don't go overboard with interests. Try to focus on one or two interests at a time or interests that align with each other. (ex: If your fans follow Social Media Examinar, Digital Marketing and the Wall Street Journal, you might be ok to target Social Media Examinar and Digital Marketer in one ad set as they align with each other and have similar fans, but don't throw in fans of the  'Wall Street Journal"  as they don't align with those two companies.and you won't know which people are clicking on the ad (the social media business fans or the Wall Street Journal fans). Lastely, you want your audience size (if you sell a product that has no demographic boundaries) to be around 1-1.5 million. If you’re a local business it will be considerably less. Remember, it’s ok to be specific. You don’t want to waste ad spend on people who aren’t interested in what you have to offer.


Run an ad to a cold audience as a ‘traffic’ ad and let THEM self-select. Sometimes we might not want to start with a conversion ad right away. We need to warm them up first and take a step back in our funnel to  allow the people who are interested in what we have to offer to click on our ads so that we can retarget them later. This way we know for sure that when we run our retargeting ads these are people who are likely to opt in in the future. Run a traffic ad to a great blog post or video that aligns with what you’re offering.

Relevance Score

I also look at the relevance score. This tells me how well my ad is resonating with the audience. It’s on a scale of 1-10 and is seen at the AD level once your audience as reached 500. The higher the score the better.

What do you do if your Relevance score is low (under 6)?

Look at your targeting. You might be targeting the wrong audience. Something isn’t resonating with them. Consider adding another ad set with  a new audience to see if your relevance score increases. See my notes from above on targeting.

Landing Page Conversion Rate:

You’ve got a decent CTR (LINK) and you’re getting link clicks but you’re not getting conversions.


When you divide the number of conversions by the number of Link Clicks you’ll get a percentage. This is the landing page conversion rate. This tells us the number of people who are actually converting when they click on your ad. We want this to be over 20% - the higher the better. 

What do you do if your landing page conversion rate is under 20%?

It’s time to work on your landing page. You must make sure it is congruent with your ad. Is your copy similar to your ad? Is your headline similar, if not the same? Do the images look the same. You want someone to get to your landing page and think, “Yep! I’m in the right spot.” For more on what to include on your landing pages check out this recent blog post.

So, I hope that helped understand a bit of the stats that I look at when I'm running ads. I know it's often confusing at times, but once you run ads for a while it becomes old hat. 




Tracking your results - Custom Conversions vs Standard Events

Tracking your results - Custom Conversions vs Standard Events

Tracking your results - Custom Conversions vs Standard Events

One of the reasons that the Facebook pixel is important when running Facebook ads is because you’re able to track your conversions. Why run ads if you can't track to see if they're getting you the results you want, right?

To do this you need to place your base pixel code on the page you want to track (generally, this is the thank you page (the page someone gets to after they’ve opted in to your offer). Once you place your base pixel code on your thank you page (it should also be on your website pages and landing pages) you’re not done. You will need a way to track these conversions so that you can see if you’re getting the results you want. So, you have a choice.

You can either:

  • Create a custom conversion which is based on the Thank You Page URL or

  • Use a standard event which is a snippet of code that’s place inside the base code and then placed on the thank you page.

Let’s go into each of them now.

Custom Conversion:

As I mentioned the custom conversion is based on the thank you page URL. You will need to create this custom conversion inside of Facebook so that you ‘tell’ Facebook to track this action. To do that go to:

Ads Manager>Hamburger>All Tools>Custom Conversions>Create Custom Conversion. When you select that this screen will appear.



I generally change the setting to URL Equals (as opposed to ‘contains’). I then put the URL to my thank you page in the box beneath that and select a category. Note: The category can be whatever you’d like it to be. It’s whatever makes sense to you. If I’m list building I generally select ‘lead’ as that makes sense to me. Alternatively, if I’m trying to get webinar registrants, I will select ‘complete registration.’ You’ll then name the custom conversion. (Name it something you’ll remember.) For example, for my free starter kit I named my custom conversion “Starter Kit thank you page.”

The next step would be to opt into your freebie so that the custom conversion / pixel ‘fires.’ Once you do this the light should turn from red to green. But, give it some time. It’s not uncommon to have to wait a couple of hours.

Using your custom conversion:

When you’re ready to run your conversion ad you’ll be asked to select a ‘conversion’ at the Ad Set Level. (see image below) This is where you might see categories like “Lead,” “Complete Registration,” “Add to Cart,” etc. You will also now see your custom conversion. It will say (as in my example from above) “Starter Kit Thank You Page.” It should also be green. If it’s not and it’s been 24 hours I would delete the custom conversion and try again.


Now you are set to track your conversions based on the thank you page!

Standard Event:

A standard event is a little snippet of code that you place inside of the base code. You then take the entire code (base code and snippet) and place that on the thank you page. If you’re not allergic to code this should be easy for you. If you’re anything like me, you might find a custom conversion a bit easier to deal with. Both work the same. 

Facebook gives us 9 different standard events to choose from. Here is what they look like.


What you’ll do is copy your base pixel into a google or word document and select the standard event you want to use and place it underneath the ‘Page View” code as you see in the image below. Then, copy the entire code (base code and standard event) and place that on your thank you page.



Which standard event code should you use? It’s similar to the custom conversion. Select the one that makes the most sense to you but do remember which one you select for each thank you page you create so that you are selecting the correct conversion event inside the ad set level when you’re ready to run your ads.

Using your standard event

When you’re ready to build your ad you’ll now select the category you used for that thank you page. So, if you placed the snippet of code for “LEAD” in the base code you’ll look in the drop down menu for “Lead” and it should be green. Again, if it’s not green, make sure you opt into your freebie and hit that thank you page to ‘fire’ it.

So, which should you use? In most cases, a custom conversion is easiest and will meet your needs. If you run an ecommerce store then you might want to use standard events. Since I work mostly with info based clients and students I always encourage the custom conversion as it's easiest to use. Once you get more comfortable with facebook ads you can certainly venture a go at standard events. 





Facebook Ad Policies

Facebook Ad Policies

Facebook Ad Policies

Facebook has recently updated their ad policies and it's really important that we understand them. As advertisers, we're playing in Facebook's playground so we need to abide by their rules. As part of my Facebook Ads Classroom course I have a lesson on ad policies. Since the recent changes I decided to update it and wanted to share this with you as well. It will give you a great understanding of why Facebook has ad policies in the first place and also includes what you can (and can't) do with ads. (I also wanted to give you a taste of my course for those who might be interested in diving deeper into Facebook ads.)

To read the complete list of Facebook ad policies, click here. Facebook updates their policies frequently, but doesn't share when they update them so it's important to review these quarterly. 


Landing Pages 101

Landing Pages 101

Landing Pages 101

Before I get into what to include on a landing page I want to remind you that a landing page is a place where you’re sending your Facebook Ad traffic. This can be (and I recommend) a stand-alone page that is free from navigation bars, social icons, lots of buttons and links, etc. This is why I generally recommend that clients use a program like Lead Pages to create their landing pages. Lead Pages is a great starter program that is reasonably priced. They have several ‘drag and drop’ features that make it easy to design a clean landing page. The alternative, if cost is a factor, is to create a landing page on your website. If you do this, I recommend that you make this page a ‘hidden’ page so that it is distraction free and no headers/footers/nav bars appear. Our attention span is short these days so if we start to see lots of ‘shiny objects’ like navigation bars, buttons, links and social icons we might not get the user to actually opt into what they’re there for in the first place!

Lead Pages isn’t the only program you can use to create a landing page. There are many other sites like:

·        Click Funnels

·        Optimize Press

·        New Kajabi

·        Instapage

·        Optimizely

·        Unbounce

I recommend Lead Pages because it’s just so simple and their support is great. It’s a great starter program for those new to landing pages (and online marketing In general). I encourage baby steps if you’re new. You can always upgrade to a more robust program as you get more comfortable with online marketing.

So, now that we understand WHAT a landing page is and where to create it, let’s talk about what to include ON the landing page.

Remember, Facebook looks at your landing page to ensure you are following policies as much as it looks at your ads. Here are some tips: 

Headline: You want your headline to be very similar (if not the same) as your headline on your ad. When they click on your ad they’ll be sent to the landing page and you want them to know they are in the right place when they land there. If your ad headline talks about your Free Productivity Guide, make sure your landing pages says “Free Download: Productivity Guide” (or something similar)

Benefits: You’ll want to make sure you explain the BENEFITS they’ll get if they download your product. Not WHAT they’re getting (i.e. a productivity guide). What is that productivity guide going to do for them? Will it give them more free time? Have more energy in their day? Make them feel more confident and in control? Think "Benefits" but don’t make crazy outrageous claims. Facebook doesn’t like that. Don’t talk about “Living a laptop life at the beach while raking in the dough”. That’s considered a “False Claim” and is against Facebooks ad policies.

Also, I often like to see a landing page with benefits listed in bullet points (not one gigantic paragraph) Bullets are easier on the eyes. So, think of 3-4 benefits and list them on the landing page.

If you have a landing page that is a webinar registration page (and you will be offering a course at the end of the webinar, do put a disclaimer at the bottom of the webinar registration page that says there will be a pitch at the end of the webinar (see below example) and that 'results my vary.' 

“Reserve your spot for this free training and if you enjoyed it and want to learn more you’ll be invited to see how this training can work for you. Do note that results may vary."


Image: I like to put an image of the actual download on my landing page or use the same image from inside the ad. A mock up of the download gives the user an idea of what it is they are going to be downloading and it seems more ‘real’ to them. You can use something like placeit.net or canva.com to make a mock up of your PDF download. Here’s an example of mine.



Privacy Policy: This is part of Facebook’s ad policies and your ad WILL be disapproved if you don’t have a link to your privacy policy. You should have one on your website so make sure to link it on your landing page. (If you want to take a look at my privacy policy you can check it out here.) 

Non Functioning Landing Pages: Facebook also requires you to have a way for the user to opt OUT of the landing page. In policy #15,  it states that “Ads may not direct people to a ‘non-functioning" Landing Page which includes landing page content that interferes with a person’s ability to navigate away from the page.”

Yes, people can easily click the X button to get away from that page, but Facebook likes to be difficult sometimes. So, I typically include a link to my website (alongside of the link to the privacy policy). This way they have easy access to leave the page if they decide.

Button: Button colors and text can vary. Generally, many people use their branding colors on their button so everything aligns, but others have had success with yellow as a button color (even if that isn’t part of your brand). I suggest you test them out.

Button text will also vary. Here are some button copy suggestions:

·        Download Now

·        Free Download

·        Yes, I want the ___________

·        Heck YEAH I want the guide

·        Yes, please send me the download

·        Gimme the guide

The key is to be fun and light. Be creative. Be you. 

Important Content “Above the Fold”: Remember newspapers? Yeah, those paper things we got delivered to our driveways every day? Remember how it folded in half and all the juicy headlines were at the top? Well, think of your landing page the same way. You want the important pieces to be ‘above the fold.’ If someone has to scroll for decades to get to the opt in button, chances are good they won’t opt in. Keep the important pieces (headline, bit of text and button) above the fold. If you have a lot of content to include put that beneath these pieces.

What not to do:

Instant Access: Do not mention ‘instant access’ if they are not getting instant access. If someone has to give you their name and email that’s not giving them instant access. This is a big red flag and Facebook will disapprove the ad.

Clutter:  With landing pages, less is more. Keep it short, sweet, and to the point. The only thing you want them to do when they get to the landing page is to opt in. If they are distracted by tons of text or links, buttons, etc you won’t get the opt in.

Other notes:

Make sure you check to see if your landing page is mobile friendly. Another great thing about lead pages is that with just a click of the button it will show me what my landing page will look like on mobile, desktop and tablet.

As always, keep up with Facebook Ad Policies. They change frequently (and have recently changed) and they don’t notify users. You can find them here.


Disclosure: If you do use the link above to sign up for Lead Pages I do get a small commission as I am an affliate of Lead Pages.


I Survived My Launch

I Survived My Launch

Lessons from my first course launch

My nerves were high, I drank a lot of wine, ate a few too many cupcakes, shed a few tears (ok a lot), and my husband was ready to admit me into the looney bin.

Yes, my friends, it was course launch time.

Although this was not my first course, it was my first full-on, webinar scheduled, ads placed, money spent, copywriter hired, no turning back course launch.

To say I was nervous would be a complete understatement. It was that 'omg, I think I'm going to throw up' kind-a nervous. I’m an introvert at heart, so putting myself ‘out there’ was a huge step for me. Would my ads convert? Would people sign up for the webinar? Would the attendees find the training useful or a load of crap? Would.I.get.any.sales?

So many thoughts and fears ran through my mind.

If you’re an entrepreneur or course creator, you get it. It’s emotional. You put your blood, sweat and tears into a program and pray it works out. There are lots of highs and lows. Lots of second guessing yourself and wondering if the funnel will convert. Even with all the planning and preparation, you just don’t know what to expect!

It’s a crap shoot.

Many of you might be launching in different ways—some might do a week-long challenge that leads to the pitch of your course. Others might try a daily video series (ala Jeff Walker style), and some might go the ‘old-faithful’ route with a traditional "webinar-to-sale" strategy. That’s what I did.

Facebook Ads>Free Training>Provide Training>Ask for the sale

Did it work?


Did I reach my personal goal?

Almost! #SoClose 

I was one sale shy of my goal, but I’m counting that as a win and not even because of the sales. I’m counting it as a win because I DID IT. I actually put my money where my mouth was and used all the training and experience I had and put it into action. 

Now, having said that, I really didn’t know WHAT to expect. I tried to do everything in my power to optimize this launch. I definitely didn’t go into this half-assed. I did the best I knew how, and I learned from it. 

"When you know better, you do better" – Maya Angelou

So, am I rolling in the dough?

HA! No way.

My 4-figure launch (bet you won’t see THAT on a Facebook Ad anytime soon!) came with expenses. A copywriter, sales page build, Facebook Ads, email service provider, course-hosting site, an awesome VA who helped me…and so on. (Don’t you just love it when people tout their 6-figure launches, but fail to share the important details of the expenses that came with that?) But, I’m being kind to myself and realizing that next time I won’t have many of those expenses again AND I learned SO much which excites me tremendously. And here's the thing, we have to start somewhere!  Right? I don't know anyone who launched for the first time ever and made 6 figures. If you know someone, well, I'll eat my hat, but I'm callin' BS on that one.

So, yes, even after that highly-emotional, my-husband's-going-to-commit-me launch, I’m going to do it all over again armed with more knowledge and data. 

I’m writing this not only for my own personal therapy....errr...I mean debrief session, but also to share what I've learned with YOU because some of you might be right where I am and could benefit from this knowledge. 

So here goes:

#1: Facebook Ad Results

I want to preface this with something I talked about in my free training and what I share in my course to all students who are just starting out with Facebook Ads. 

Facebook ads are a tool to get leads into your business.

Let me repeat.

Facebook ads are the TOOL to get LEADS into your business. Your funnel is where the magic (i.e. the sales) happens. So, I was pleased with getting many new leads, but I think I need to do a better job with my funnel and webinar pitch. I also now know which ad copy and images resonated better with my audience. So, here’s the dealio:

I gained 260 new subscribers to my email list. My costs per conversion were between $3-$6 per lead. Most Facebook Ad experts, like Rick Mulready and Andrew Hubbard, will say anything under $8-$10 per lead is great. (Ekkkk $8-$10 seems high, right? More on that below.) But, costs per conversion will vary GREATLY depending on your industry! So, stop listening to people who are telling you that YOU’LL get .50 cent leads if they don’t know anything about your niche. Can it happen? Sure (I’ve done it for some of my clients), but no one who's any good at Facebook Ads will guarantee that! It is industry specific. Period.

Some of my ads went down in flames, while others did much better. It’s all about testing to see how YOUR audience responds. For example: For one ad, I got a lot of clicks, a CTR rate well over 1% (which means the ad image/copy resonated with the audience), but my landing page conversion rate was crap (way under 20%)! This means they clicked on the ad, but they didn't opt in. Boo. 

These ads were more ‘cartoony’ images. You can see a sample of an ad below along with the landing page I was sending them to. These totally went down the crapper. I wanted to test them to see how well they’d convert, and they didn’t. But, I’m glad I tested them because I would never know otherwise. The reason they likely didn’t convert to leads was that the landing page wasn’t congruent enough with the ad. So, I either change my landing page to be more aligned with the ad or I skip the cartoony images altogether. The bottom line is you gotta test and the beauty of testing (yes, I mean spending money on ads to see what happens) is that you get a lot of data back (both good and bad), but the point is you're learning all the time.


#2: The strategy that crapped out

I have a small email list, but I wanted to run some ads to my email list and warm traffic first for a few days to try to get those who already knew me to sign up for my free training, but I also wanted to get some social proof (i.e. likes, comments, shares, clicks, etc.) on those ads. I then planned to send those ads (the one with the good social proof) to a COLD audience. This strategy is good because generally ads that run to your warm audience will have a higher relevance score (which mine had) and that brings the cost per conversion down (which it did for me). So, when you send an ad that already has a lot of social proof to a COLD audience, you should get lower costs per conversion. Before I get into why this ad didn't do well, here's how to run an existing ad that has social proof to a new cold audience.

1) Run your ad to a warm audience. (This could be a PPE ad as it will show it to people who are likely to like, comment, share and react) 

2) Once you start to get a lot of social proof (likes, comments, shares, etc) create a new campaign and pull THAT ad (the one above) into the new campaign. (So create the campaign, ad set, but at the ad level you'll select "Use exisiting post." (see next step.) 

3) To find that ad (the one with the social proof) go to "Page Posts" inside Ads Manager and find the ad. (see image below)

4) Copy the post ID and hop over to the new campaign you built. (see image two)

5) At the "Ad" Level of the new campaign, find the link that says 'Use Existing Post" and enter the Post ID. Now you've build a new ad that's going to a cold audience, but has an ad that has a bunch of social proof on it and it should bring you a lower cost per conversion. 


The problem I ran into...

The problem was that the warm audience ad wasn’t getting a good CTR (Click Through Rate). As a reminder, the CTR should be over 1%. That meant people weren’t clicking on the ad as much as I had hoped. If your CTR is under 1%, that means you’ll need to change something in your ad. (When you make a change to an ad, you LOSE the social proof.) [Waaa…..waaaaa.] So, even though I had a good relevance score, I had to stop those ads and tweak them to get that CTR up.

Now, if you’ve run Facebook ads before, you know that you need to run an ad for 3 days before making changes. (If you make changes too soon, Facebook gets cranky and your costs go through the roof). So, because I needed to make changes to my warm audience ads, I was going to need to wait 2-3 more days to get it back into Facebook's algo and then take another look at the new stats. This was going to set me back. Even if those new ads converted well after 3 days, I’d then only have a few days before my webinar to run those ads to the cold audience. (Still with me?) So, I decided to simply look at the best ads that ran to my warm audience and run them to the cold audience without the social proof.

Now, I’m not saying that this strategy doesn’t work. I’m just saying that you want to make sure your ad converts in the first place. So, for my next launch, I have a better idea of what copy/images/headlines worked so I’ll use those and try again.

#3: List build first:

The strategy I want to try next time is to list build a week or two before my webinar ads start running. My goal will be to warm them up with a freebie that aligns with what I’ll be training them on the webinar. The cost to get someone onto your email list with a freebie is generally lower than a webinar. There’s a bigger time commitment on the part of the user who signs up to sit through a webinar, so that cost is generally higher to get them to sign up (especially if it’s a cold audience of people who don't know you.). If you’re giving away a freebie to a cold audience, you can generally expect to pay anywhere under $2-$4 (again depends on your industry). Webinars can be higher. As I mentioned before, the big guns are saying that to get leads into your business it can cost anywhere between $8-$10. For freebies (list building), I try to tweak the crap out of an ad to get it under $3, sometimes it works, but sometimes it doesn't. (Again, it’s industry specific, so keep that in mind). Webinars do seem to cost a bit more for markets that are a bit more saturated (as mine is). But, if you think about it, if you’re turning those $5, $8, $10 leads into a $50 product, $100 consultation, $497 course or $1000 coaching program, you’d pay $8 all day long, right?

And again, it all goes back to starting to build a relationship with your tribe. (You have to start somewhere!) If you are running an ad to a cold audience, they don’t know you and probably won’t buy right off the bat anyway. You need to spend that money to get the leads into your business and then nurture them in your funnel by providing them with great value. Then, lead them to a sale ONCE you’ve built that know, like, and trust factor. 

#4: Messenger Ads

After the webinar, I ran a retargeting “messenger ad” (as a placement) so that people who registered for my webinar could ask me questions about my course offer. Here’s what it looked like. (You might have seen it!)


When someone clicked on the ‘send message' button, it opened their messenger inbox. They were able to send me a message, and I received the message in my inbox. This is a great way to engage with your audience. It gives them a direct B-line to you and gets an open dialog going. Maybe they had a question about the payment plan, or maybe they wanted to know if the course was right for their business. This is a great strategy when it works. I got a lot of link clicks for this ad, but no messages. So, either it’s still too new of a feature that people are curious enough to click, but don’t want to send me a message (Psst....I don’t bite people!), or people just didn’t have any questions. Now, I’m not saying not to use it. I haven’t given up on this as I know it does work from case studies I’ve read. So, I’ll try it again for the next launch.

#5 Build a Bot to Build Engagement and Subscribers via Many Chat

I think I’m going to try this next time. Have you seen posts or ads that say “Download my Freebie by commenting “FREEBIE” in the comments?” This can either be a paid ad or an organic post on your newsfeed. For my launch, I will most likely use this as a paid ad so I get more reach (as opposed to just posting it on my business page organically). This ad would work best as a Page Post Engagement Ad which is linked to a software program called Many Chat. The first step would be to create a ‘bot’ inside of Many Chat with trigger words. For my example, the trigger word could be FREEBIE. When someone sees my ad and types “Freebie” in the comments of the ad, a message pops up in their messenger inbox. The message might say "Hey Laura—I see you are interested in my free download the Facebook Ad Starter Kit. Type "YES" to get the freebie delivered instantly." Once they type “YES,” Many Chat delivers the actual PDF freebie inside of their messenger AND their name/email goes into Many Chat as a new subscriber.

**Note: They are not added to your email list, but this is a great way to get engagement on a post AND through messenger. Why? Because you can then build a custom audience of people who’ve engaged with that post or ad (for retargeting), AND you can now run a DESTINATION Messenger ad to the people who’ve messaged you. Remember, if they engaged with your post/ad or via messenger, they are interested in what you have to offer and are more likely to convert when you ask for something more, like joining your webinar, opting in to get another freebie or even making a small purchase.

#6: Look-A-Like Audience vs. Cold AudienceThe Battle Royale

I ran ads to my warm audience first. As I mentioned above, it’s easier to get people who know you to opt into a free training or purchase a product. So, I always start there when working with clients who are launching courses. Then, I tested two audiences: A cold audience that I built based on Facebook pages/interests and a Look-A-Like audience (I call this a ‘cold-ish’ audience) which was based off of my email list. (If you want to learn more about Look-a-Like audiences, check out last week’s blog post here.)

My LAL performed WAY better than my cold audience. I got more leads and lower costs per conversion. Since this launch, my email list has grown by 66% and now I can feed Facebook that data to find me a more ‘fine-tuned’ look-a-like audience.  

This is definitely an audience to test if you have an email list. 

#7: Learn More About My Webinar Registrants BEFORE the Webinar

To better understand my webinar registrants, I plan to ask them a few questions BEFORE my webinar. This will also help me tailor my training and be a little less fearful of the ‘unknown.’  I mentioned this in a post in my free group. Someone asked what the hardest part of the launch was, and I said it was probably being so nervous to do the webinar. 

I was going in cold.

I didn’t know who was showing up. I didn’t know what level of Facebook ad training they had. I didn’t know what industry they were in or if they’d ever run Facebook Ads before. I couldn't customize a training to every single industry or knowledge level, but I can ask some pointed questions to get a better idea and be more prepared for questions that they might have. It will also help to give me more examples to share with them. Yes, the goal of my training was to get sales, but more importantly, it was to provide value, get to know them, build a relationship with them and HELP THEM (whether they bought or not). Broken record here, but I’ll say it again— Digital marketing is about relationship building.

For this launch, my ads sent them directly to a webinar registration page where they simply entered their name and email and were added to the webinar list. Depending on the software you use, you can set up an additional step in this process. You can create another page that, when they click to register for the webinar, they are taken to a new page which asks them a question. So, for me, I might ask:

“What level of Facebook Advertiser do you consider yourself?”

  • Beginner (“Total newbie. Power Editor, what?”)
  • Intermediate (“I’ve run ads before and boosted, but didn’t have great results.”)
  • Advanced (“I’ve run ads for myself and/or clients, and I’m looking to scale”)

This allows me to better understand the level of experience my audience has, to make sure they are a good fit for the webinar (as I tend to attract those who are beginners to intermediate) and therefore speak DIRECTLY to them in my training. I don’t want to share a training on advanced strategies if the majority of my audience are beginners. Right? After they answer that question, they go on to enter their name and email to register for the training.

Another strategy I’ll try to do is to engage with my registrants BEFORE the webinar via email. You want to get people to show up LIVE to the webinar. To do this, it helps to engage with them prior to the webinar. For this launch, when someone registered for the webinar, I sent a series of 5 emails. They were as follows:

  • Email #1: Welcome Email. "You’re registered, here are the details." I also included a worksheet that they can use during the training (more on the worksheet below).
  • Email #2: An email to encourage them to show up live. I mentioned the worksheet again to download and provided the webinar date/time details again.
  • Email #3: A case study on using the right Facebook Ad Objectives (and how it’s easy to make a mistake which results in poor ad results). I also reminded them to download the worksheet before the webinar.
  • Email #4: [Sent the day before the webinar] This was a reminder email about the webinar. How to access it if they lost their details, and I also attached the worksheet again.
  • Email #5: [Sent 1 hour before the webinar] Reminder email and how to access it if they lost their details, etc.

Next time, I’m going to do this a bit differently. I’ll stick with the same amount of emails, but I’m going to provide more value (i.e. specific case studies from clients and students, testimonials on how the course has helped my students, simple tips and tricks on Facebook Ads, and information on WHY Facebook ads are one of the most cost effective and targeted forms of advertising for your online business). <---- 'cause it is!

Let’s face it. If they're new to the topic you're teaching, they don’t know what they don’t know. So, we need to do a good job at sharing great value with them to get them more excited about being on the webinar to learn more about whatever you're teaching.  

#8: Images

I tested a few different types of images. Cartoony ones, images of me, ‘stock’/ ‘desktop’ looking images, etc. See below and scroll through them. (I purchased some of the images from this website. You can pay $39 for a certain amount of credits. Each image is between 2-4 credits depending on size. Other images I got from Canva and my video ad I created in Camtasia (which is how I record my lessons).

The image with me in the ad worked best for both warm AND cold audiences. (Who knew??) We’re trained to not use our personal image in ads that are going to a cold audience, but it just shows that you should always test things out. The second best was the ‘desktop’ type images. For the first image, I added a filter on the image inside of Canva to make the image 'pop' a bit. 

#9: Pre-Webinar Worksheet/Post-Webinar Workbook to Get Registrants On Live

In an effort to get registrants to show up live to a webinar, it’s advised to give them a worksheet or workbook to use as a guide during the webinar. Amy Porterfield suggests sending it out as soon as they register for the webinar. This gets them excited and gives them an idea of what things they’ll learn. My worksheet was a basic, fill-in-the-blank worksheet. Too basic I think. After the training (if they stayed until the end), they got a workbook that reviewed the topics we discussed and helped them map out their plan so they'd be ready to run Facebook Ads.

For my next launch, I plan to enhance the pre-webinar worksheet a bit. I think that might help to get them a bit more excited about the things they’ll learn live on the webinar.

Here is the data for my webinar show up rates:

  • 20% show up rate (showed live) for the first webinar
  • 35% show up rate for the second webinar

Both of these are within normal range (35% is better though).

So, I’m not sure if it was my email sequence that didn’t give them a sense of urgency to show up live (could have just been a bad time of day for someone), OR maybe the worksheet wasn’t enough to entice them. Either way, I plan to revise my emails (as mentioned above) and beef up that worksheet. Again, we must provide value to build that relationship.

Big Takeaways:

  • You're going to get cheaper leads from warmer audiences. So, if you're list building try run ads to your Facebook fans and exclude your current email list. They are more likely to opt in because they already know you. Or, build a custom audience of your website traffic and also exclude your current list. If you're running a webinar to sell a product you WANT your list to attend (of course exclude past buyers). So  always run an ad to them first. 
  • Test. I talk about this with my students. You have got to test different audiences, images, headlines copy and more importantly you have to allow TIME to do so. If you're launching a course consider starting a few weeks before to do so list building as this will allow you to test different audiences to see what works and it also allows you to grow your list of warm subscribers. 
  • Have your funnel built out. If you're launching a course this is essential. If you are selling a course live on a webinar you have to continue the relationship with them via email once the webinar is over if they don't buy right away. The emails shouldn't scream 'buy me!' 'buy me!' all the time. They should provide value while encouraging the sale. There is an art to writing for sales which is why I enlisted the help of a copywriter to help me. You want to provide them with more reasons why the product you offer is important to have. You should provide them with testimonials from happy customers/clients, case studies and other tips that will leave them with the feeling that they MUST have this product. This is where you need to decide to invest in a copywriter or do some more research on your own on how to write email sequences. 
  • Try new programs and tools. Messenger bots are the latest 'shiny object.' Using bots and bot strategies will be a new feature in my course when I relaunch in October. I think this tool and method of reaching our clients is going to improve over time. It's new, but it's one to keep an eye on. 


Now, some might say, "Well, Laura, you’re a Facebook Ad Manager. Shouldn’t you have known all of this?" 

Well, no, not really. Again, I know FB ads, but I'm not an expert on launching (yet!). I know the ins and outs of Facebook ads, I know what stats to look for, and I know when ads are doing well and when ads are crapping out. I know how to test, tweak, pixel, scale, and optimize, but I was running ads to a totally cold audience. One who didn't know me. I knew there would be a lot of testing involved, ads that worked and ads that didn't. This is why it's so important to allow time to test. It was also my first "real" launch, so I wasn't sure how my funnel would convert or if I'd pitch the course sale on the webinar well. There are just so many moving parts and you have to focus on one piece at a time.   

Overall, this was a great first launch for me. I almost reached my personal goal. I gained new email subscribers who I can help by sending them weekly FB ad tips/tricks. I gained more members to my Facebook business page and Facebook group. I learned more about what audiences worked for my ads (and what ones didn't). I learned new strategies to try. I learned what images worked (and what didn't). I learned what subject lines converted to higher open rate than others. I also now have warm audiences built from people who clicked on my landing page and people who’ve engaged with my posts, videos or ads, so I can retarget them with ads for my next launch. 

So, yes, it's a win for me and I'm excited about the next one. If you're thinking of launching a course or program, my suggestion is to DO IT. Remember, we all have to start somewhere. The key is to start. 

Lookalike Audiences

Lookalike Audiences

A Lookalike audience is a new audience that is created based off of a ‘seed’ audience (for example, Website Traffic or your email list). I like to call lookalike audiences warm-ish audiences because they are cold in the sense that the people seeing your ad don’t know who you are yet. However, they are warm in the sense that they have similar attributes of the seed audience. 

3 Steps To Better Targeting

3 Steps To Better Targeting

3 Steps to Better Targeting

Step #1: Targeting a cold audience:

When you’re working with a cold audience (people who aren’t on your email list and who don’t know who you are) you want to really think about what problem you’re solving for your clients/customers before you start targeting a million pages, interests or demographics. Where do THEY look for resources on Facebook?  For example: If you sell specialty dog food, you’d want to target Facebook pages like Pet Smart and Chewy.com, NOT people who are "interested in Golden Retrievers." Why? Because the pages that focus on "I Heart My Golden Retriever" are going to include people who want to post funny dog videos of their pets and connect with people who love the breed, but they aren’t necessarily looking for your specific dog food. well, in fairness, they *might*, but you will have better luck targeting the fans of Pet Smart and other stores that SELL specialty dog food because you sell specialty dog food and so you want to show your ad to the people who want to BUY the dog food. Make sense? So, think about your offer/product/service and then think about what pages your clients/customers might follow to get that problem solved. 

Here's another example: Some of my students don’t know what the Facebook pixel is and don’t know how to install it. That’s their "problem." Guess what? I have the solution, right? I know what the Facebook Pixel is and how it can help them capture new audiences of cold traffic. So, I might develope a Facebook Pixel Lead Magnet which will solve that problem! So, I’m going to run an ad to the fans of people like Kim Garst or Mari Smith because both Kim and Mari teach Facebook advertising and many of their fans will want to know about how to install and use the Facebook pixel. Smart, right? 

Step #2: Narrowing Your Audience:

Be sure to also NARROW your audience. If you’re targeting a larger market, you might find that if you target one Facebook page it brings your audience up to a gazillion and you don’t want that. You want to have an audience size of between 500K to 1.5 million (at the most). At least from experience, that has been what works best for myself and my clients. So, hit the little ‘narrow audience’ button (see image below) and add in another page that your clients/customers might follow. So, for example: Let’s say you know your clients hang out on the fan page for Marie Forleo (I use her as an example a lot don't I?) When you target that page your audience size might be 3 million (I’m guessing here…so don’t hold me to it). So, you want to narrow that audience a bit, right? When you press the narrow audience button another box will pop up where you can add another page or interest. This is where you might want to ad Tony Robbins as an example. So, this will mean that your ad will run to people who follow the fan page of Marie Forleo AND Tony Robbins (not one or the other, but BOTH). Sound good? Good!

Now, with that said, I also want you to be aware of the "Exclude" button. You can (and should) use this to exclude anyone you don't want to see the ad. So, for example, if you're list building you don't want to run your ad to people who are already on your list so you'll upload your email list into facebook and EXCLUDE them from this audience. 


Step #3: Retargeting:

The Facebook pixel is used to track visitors to web pages (like your website or landing pages and thank you pages). As you begin to run ads you might see that people are clicking on the ad, but aren’t opting in. That doesn’t mean they weren’t interested. It just means that life happened – the dog barked, the kids were running around screaming (this would be my house!), the door bell rang, or maybe they stepped away from the computer and the chance to opt in disappeared. Poof! So, if you don’t get them to opt in right away, remind them by running a retargeting ad (generally this is the same ad objective, like a conversion ad), but you’ll send the ad to people who got to the landing page, but never opted in. It just puts that ad in front of them once again to remind them to opt in. I liken it to that stupid fidget spinner my son saw on the Target website. That dang fidget spinner followed me all over the internet for days until I caved and bought it. Yep, that’s the power of retargeting. That spinner was staring at me for daaaaayyyys!

Here are more ways you can use retargeting. You can run ads to people who have: 

·        Visited your website in a certain period of time

·        Engaged with your Facebook Page

·        Engaged with your posts or ads

·        Watched your video ad or FB lives

·        Messaged your Facebook page

Retargeting is powerful. Don’t forget this step in your Facebook ads campaign.












Split Testing - What to test and why

Split Testing - What to test and why

Split Testing

There are so many variables that come into play when running Facebook Ads and one mistake that most people make is that they don’t test. I don’t believe there are "failed" ad campaigns. If you run one ad and the results are less than ideal, use the data to find out why, make a change and run them again. The numbers don’t lie and they give you such great data so you know what NOT to do the next time around. But, let me back up a bit. When it comes to testing there are a few elements you’ll want to test and if budget allows test as much as you can.

Audience: I generally teach entrepreneurs to test 1 audience in an ad set at a time. So, for example: Run 1 ad to the fans of Marie Forleo. Then, run another ad to the fans of Digital Marketer. The reason I don’t suggest lumping them together is because you won’t know if one audience worked better than another. Now, when you follow this method, it means that each audience will get it’s own budget and that might be something you can’t afford. If that’s the case, then group the audiences into "like" categories. So, build an audience of ‘Coaches” which could include Marie Forleo, Tony Robbins, Brendon Burchard, etc. and then build another audience of ‘Digital Marketing businesses’ like Digital Marketing, Social Media Examiner, etc. You just want to make sure everyone in that audience aligns. So, don’t group Dog Grooming with Financial Institutions, if you know what I mean.

Ad Image: The image is the first thing people see, but if you’re not targeting the right audience then it doesn’t matter WHAT type of image you have it just won’t resonate. (Which is why I generally test audiences first). Test a few different images (one of which can include a video) against each other to see if there is one that stands out as the winner. You can test an image that features your product (try placeit.net to build mock ups of your product inside a Ipad/Laptop/Ebook cover, etc). You can test an image with your headshot in the photo (I only run this to a warm audience of people who know you though). You can also test a video ad—maybe you have a freebie and you want to talk about what it includes. Be sure to include a strong call to action at the end of the video and also upload the captions. Facebook can do this for you with a click of the button.

Ad Headline: Headlines matter! It’s generally the second thing people see after looking at the image. Test different short phrases, but make sure they are STRONG headlines (Check out this free mini course on 10 Strong Headlines by group member Sarah Cousins , Founder of Ideas Girl. >>>>> www.10strongheadlines.com  

Ad Copy: Short or Long? Test both. You never know what will resonate with your audience. I'm a skimmer and like to get straight to the point so long copy doesn't work for me personally, but it definitley does for others.  Sometimes if you are targeting a cold audience, long copy works better because they need to 'warm up' to you a bit. But, test both and see what works for your audience.

Landing Page: If you use a software program to create your landing pages consider testing that as well. I use Leadpages and they offer A/B split testing so making a variation of your first landing page is easy to do. You can test things like the landing page Headline (that would be my first choice) and also button colors (try red vs yellow)

As always when you’re testing, test one thing at a time. Let the ad run for a few days and review the stats to see what the numbers are telling you.

Does this lengthen the process of running ads? Yep.

Does this mean you might need to spend more money up front. Yes, siree.

But, the rewards include getting back great data. If you put some money into the testing phase when you run another set of ads you’ll know what works - - and what doesn’t!

So test….tweak…repeat.


How to create the right offer

How to create the right offer

How to Create the Right Offer

Your freebie has to be SO good that people are going to say, “Wow, I can’t believe this was free!” So, how do you make a totally irresistible offer?

Here’s what I do:

1. Think about the one question you get asked ALL the time from your ideal clients/customers. For me, I get asked about the Facebook pixel.  What it is, what it does and why we need it. Which is why I created a blog post on the pixel with a content upgrade (freebie download). The pixel is something that my peeps struggle with, and I decided to make that one of my freebies because I knew they’d just snatch it up!

2. Think about what problem you solve for your ideal client. Maybe you’re a business coach and you help your clients with time management. You might want to create a PDF cheat sheet “Top 5 hacks to find more hours in your day.” They have a problem (they need more time), and you have the solution (your hacks).

3. Stalk groups. Find groups where your ideal clients hang out and spend 5-10 minutes a day searching the feed for keywords that relate to your niche. To find groups, go to the search bar at the top of the Facebook newsfeed and type in some keywords that relate to your business.



Click on the ‘Groups’ tab and spend some time going through a few groups. Now, as a former group addict, I do recommend you vet the groups a bit before joining to make sure they’re legit. Most will require you to ask to join. Once you do have access, look through the news feed, look at the descriptions and rules to learn more about the group.  Make sure it’s a group where people are seeking guidance that you can assist with.

Then, set a timer and spend about 5-10 minutes looking through the discussion feed. In the discussion search box, type some keywords that relate to your business and see what types of discussions pop up.  Make notes when you see where people are struggling and turn that into an offer. I’ve literally made a spreadsheet of all the questions that I’ve seen in groups (I copy and paste screenshots), and I’ve asked my VA to go through MY group and write out all the questions that were in there. This helps me create content including freebies, my course lessons, and blog posts!




4. Go onto Amazon and look at book reviews. This may or may not apply to you, but there are tons of books on Facebook Marketing. I’ve gone onto Amazon and looked at the reviews. Not the 5-star reviews. Not the 1-star reviews. Look at the 3-star reviews to see what those people thought. They didn’t love the book enough to give it 4 or 5 and they didn’t hate it enough to give it 1, so what was missing for them? Where did they struggle? What wasn’t addressed in the book that should have been? There’s my freebie topic!


Here’s an example.  This is a 3-star review from a book on Facebook Advertising:



Here’s why this is great: He talks about how the book covers the ‘nuts and bolts’ of Facebook advertising but doesn’t give strategies for creating a profitable campaign. Well Mr. K. Hill, the author knows nothing about your business, so it’s hard to address that in a book. This is how I’d turn this into a blog post or freebie download: I’d create a blog post (with a content upgrade) on 3 basic strategies that online business owners can use to either grow their email list, grow their social proof, or get a ROI from their ads using an upsell method. This would be the best I could give this guy without knowing more about his specific business. (Note: A content upgrade is when you write a blog post and offer a free download at the end. It’s another way to capture their email address.) By the way, this is a great strategy to use for those of you who are brand new on the Facebook scene. You can use a “Traffic” objective to a great blog post and include a content upgrade to get their name and email. But…I digress….


5. See what your competitors are doing. I do this ALL the time. I opt in to claim other Facebook Ad Strategists freebies, read their blog posts and learn more about what they’re doing. (Turns out, we all seem to be doing similar things.) It’s great to hear what others are doing so I can also learn. (You never stop learning about Facebook ads and others might have a different spin on things.) So, check out your competitor’s websites and blog posts. See what they’re doing. Now, I don’t suggest you copy exactly what they’re doing but use it for inspiration!


So, in conclusion, it’s really important that your offer doesn’t suck. Even though YOU might think it’s the most fantastic thing in the world, if your audience doesn’t, the ad is not going to convert. So, make sure it’s something that your audience HAS to have! It has to be a no-brainer.

Page Post Engagement with a Twist

Page Post Engagement with a Twist

So, you might have seen it. I posted something really juicy to my Facebook business page and ran it as a Page Post Engagement Ad. I’ve been experimenting with this ad objective a bit and wanted to see what kind of results I could get.  My main goal was to get more engagement on the ad, but what I got was SO much more.

New Facebook Ad Feature- Optimization

New Facebook Ad Feature- Optimization

Facebook’s newest feature specifically focuses on the ‘Conversions’ ad objective. As a reminder, a conversion ad is the ad that you’ll use to get people to take action (i.e. opt into a freebie, sign up for a webinar, etc.) Facebook’s newest feature specifically focuses on the ‘Conversions’ ad objective. As a reminder, a conversion ad is the ad that you’ll use to get people to take action (i.e. opt into a freebie, sign up for a webinar, etc.)

Facebook Pixel Update

Facebook Pixel Update

Facebook Pixel Update

Without getting all techy on you, Microdata (which is just fancy talk for a form of code) has been added to your Facebook pixel to send more data from your website (like specific actions people are taking on your site) back to Facebook. This data will help the algorithm to optimize your ads even better because it will have even more data on the actions visitors are taking when they're on the site (like button activity - purchase, add to cart, and I suspect, time spent on site).  It will also include information from your websites metadata to better understand context associated with these actions.

This new update was rolled out automatically, so there is nothing you need to do aside from checking to make sure your pixel is showing "Microdata" and specifically Schema and Open Graph. To check, you'll need to use your Chrome Pixel Helper. If you don't have the helper, you can easily download it here.

This is a screenshot of my website. As you can see, there are two new events that Facebook now fires on every page, pulling Schema.org and OpenGraph data.   


Now, I'm not going to pretend that I even understand what all the code is, but you DO want information in both the Schema and Open Graph. If you do not have microdata, there are plugins that you might need to download in order to get that data. I highly recommend talking to your web developer as this is something neither you (or your Facebook Ad Manager) can do.

Here's the link to the update directly from Facebook

Here's an easy to understand article on understanding Schema

Do note, if you use Click Funnels, they have NOT rolled out this update. As soon as I learn that Click Funnels is on board, I'll let you know! 



Grow Your Email List (and get the likes!)

Grow Your Email List (and get the likes!)

Grow Your Email List (and get the likes!) 

I hear this all the time. 

"I want more "Likes" on my Facebook page. How do I run a "Like" ad?"

ARRRGG! Please! Don't focus your marketing efforts on getting that like. I mean, sure, having tons of likes "looks" good because you have some social proof. And sure, you can run ads to your Facebook fans, but besides that, there aren't many other reasons. (Now don't get me wrong--these two reasons are good, but there IS a better way to get the like than just running a "like" ad.) 

So, if you're set on getting the 'like', just hear me out first. I'm going to give you a more strategic way to do this so hang tight, but let me share a little ditty with ya first.

When I first started learning about digital marketing, the first course I took was “Profit Lab” which is now called “List Builders Lab” by the wonderful Amy Porterfield. The biggest take away from that course was to GROW YOUR LIST. At first, I thought, what the HECK is a list? But once I started to understand how digital marketing worked, it clicked. The 'list' is not just names and emails. The list is your tribe of leads....of potential customers. Your list is what makes the money. (Ever hear the phrase "The money's in the list"?) The list is what will make you profitable. But don't forget, behind every email is a person who is looking to you for knowledge and support, so don't take that lightly. Yes, you want to grow your list, but you also want to LOVE on your list. You want to provide your list with great value because as you do that, they'll learn that you know your s***, they'll learn to trust you, (and they'll hopefully turn into paying customers). But, I digress.....

After completing Amy's course, I heard her message loud and clear! Social media changes like I change my mind (that's what my husband says, anyway....) and if Facebook were to go ‘POOF!’ tomorrow, how the heck are we going to market to your customers if we have no list??? (You’re up the digital marketing creek with no paddle, my friend.)

So, I knew the list was my golden egg. The next question was how do I grow this list? 

Amy's course went on to give me a road map, and I want to share that with you. It includes a list building funnel, but for the point of this blog, I'm going to share a funnel that will get you the like as well. So, stop spending money on that like ad. Here's what I want you to do instead: 

Step 1: Create a lead magnet. This is also called a freebie. This is a valuable item or piece of content that will entice the user to give you their name and email address.  This can include an offer like free shipping, 10% discount code, or information like "Top 10 reasons why you need to grow your email list" or "Top 5 ways to eliminate sugar from your diet." It can be a video, PDF, coupon, case study, lookbook, etc. But, it's something that is SO good they won't believe it's free!

Step 2: Instead of running a "Like" Ad (which is now listed under "Engagement" in Ads Manager), you're going to run a 'Conversion" ad and drive people into your funnel. The user will get your awesome lead magnet, and you'll get their name, email, and the like. (Doesn't that sound like a more valuable deal than just the like?)  

Now, there are additional pieces you'll need to do this (which is why some might not want to bother), but I promise, if you follow this funnel, you'll thank me later. Here's what you'll need:

  • A Facebook Ad (You'd need this anyway if you were doing a like ad.)
  • A Landing Page (This is where someone will go to enter their name and email address.) I use Lead Pages to create a very basic landing page. You can also use a 'hidden' page on your website. 
  • A Thank You Page (This is the page they'll be sent to AFTER they enter their name and email address). I also use lead pages for this. Here's where the magic happens. This is where you're going to ask them for the like. On the thank you page, you're going to say: 
"Thanks so much for grabbing my free download! Be sure to LIKE my page for more great free content and discounts! Click BUTTON to like my page!" 

That button will take them right to your Facebook business page where they can "like" it. Now, if you have a Facebook group you want to grow, you can also direct them to your group page. In this case, your thank you page will say:

"Thanks so much for grabbing my free guide. Click BUTTON to join my private Facebook group to get more free content and discounts."

Here's a sample of my Thank you page displayed after someone grabs my free Facebook Ad Starter Kit. 

So, that's it friends. If you follow this funnel, you'll get the like AND an email address where you can nurture them into life-long buyers!

If you're a visual person like me, you'll want to download this free list building/like funnel. It's a great map of what to do at each step. 



If we want to run Facebook ads, we all need a business page. Business pages also allow us to be seen as an authority in our field and…well… “profesh.”  But, I’m not going to lie, organic reach is low these days, so we want to make sure what we are posting is engaging so that your posts get seen!

Manage and Promote Your Facebook Group

Manage and Promote Your Facebook Group

Unlike Facebook Pages, Facebook groups tend to be more engaging and a great way to build a relationship with your ideal client. When someone joins a group, they know they’re going to learn something because the group was formed based on one common interest that all members share (whether it be weight loss, travel, art & culture, relationship advice, or digital marketing).

The Facebook Pixel

The Facebook Pixel

If you haven't started running Facebook Ads yet or don't plan to for a while, that's OK, but I want you to make sure you place your Facebook pixel on your website and webpages….now.

Yes, now! Why? I’ll explain, but I promise you’ll thank me later.