3 Mistakes Home Services Businesses Make with Facebook Ads

David Chudzinski

3 Mistakes Home Service Businesses Make with Facebook Ads

Whether you're a home service business owner or contractor, you've probably heard that Facebook is a great platform for increasing brand awareness and garnering leads. But if you've ever put your curiosity to the test, you might be aware of the struggles associated with generating good results.

Sixty-two percent of small business owners claim Facebook ads are ineffective. The problem is not that using the platform is ineffective, it's that small business owners use the platform ineffectively.

In this article, we're going to explain the top three areas and causes of failure most small business owners, home services businesses, and contractors face when attempting to advertise on Facebook. If you have some experience running ads on Facebook for your business, you might have fallen victim to one or more of the following causes of failure.

1 – Improperly Targeting Prospects

Far too often, small business owners fail to target their ideal client. Generally, the root cause of this is the lack of understanding who your ideal client it. Once that is understood, targeting on Facebook becomes easier.

A good technique used by marketers to understand an ideal client is by creating what is known as an Ideal Client Profile. An ideal client profile is effectively a fictional character based on attributes and characteristics of past clients.

Make an Ideal Client Profile

To make an ideal client profile consider your top five to ten best clients. To do so, answer the following questions:

  • Who are your most profitable clients?
  • Do you enjoy working for your client?
  • Has the client referred friends and /or family?
  • Does the client pay promptly?
  • Does the client review your business online or provide you with positive and constructive feedback?

Once you have a better understanding of your client, compile the information into a profile and consider their:

  • Background 

  • Demographics 

  • Personality
  • Goals 

  • Challenges and how your home services business can solve them
  • Objections 

  • Purchasing process 


Once you understand who your ideal client is, making a custom audience on Facebook is much easier, and targets those who are more likely to hire you for your services.

Make a Facebook Lookalike Audience

If you already have a list of clients that have trusted you enough to hire your company, it may benefit you by taking advantage of Facebook's Lookalike Audience (LAL) instead of making a custom audience from scratch. To make one, navigate to Audiences which can be found here. Then, select your lookalike source. In this case, a .CSV file of at least 100 past clients will suffice. Next, be sure to select your chosen geographic area. Choose the appropriate areas your home service business is willing to travel to. If you are in need of setting up your Facebook Ads, set up a FREE 30-minute consultation call and we can discuss more about your business needs.

A shot of how to properly create a lookalike audience on Facebook.

Above: Creating a Facebook Lookalike Audience (LAL).

Below: Choose customer list as a source for your first LAL.

A shot selecting a customer list as a source in order to create a custom audience

Conclusion

Knowing who your ideal client is, and even using Facebook's lookalike algorithm, helps you begin the process of creating a strong Facebook ad campaign. This is important especially when it comes to creating your awareness campaign, which a great segue to our next issue.

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2 – Not Making a Funnel

More often than not, small business owners are fixated on leads or conversions, and misuse Facebook Ads campaign goals and objectives. Make sure to have an awareness campaign and a retargeting campaign to capture missed opportunities and previous clients.

The typical Facebook ad structure for a home service business or contractor, is composed of three campaigns. Those are: Top of Funnel, Middle of Funnel, and Bottom of Funnel, or ToFu, MoFu, and BoFu, respectively. Each of these campaigns has a distinct objective. It is not good enough to set the campaign objective to "Conversions," as that is typically the objective for the BoFu campaign (as you will see in a moment).

As mentioned, each campaign has a different objective. The three marketing objectives on Facebook are: Awareness, Consideration, and Conversion. The first campaign, ToFu, should be the awareness campaign, while MoFu should be the consideration campaign, and BoFu should be the conversion campaign. This is why it is not enough to only have campaigns set to the conversion objective. A properly structure marketing funnel will result in much better results and more conversions in the end.

A shot showing the list of available marketing objectives to choose from when creating a Facebook ads campaign.

Top of Funnel Campaign (ToFu)

The ToFu campaign has two options when setting a goal: brand awareness or reach.

Brand awareness attempts to increase the awareness of your brand by reaching only those people who Facebook thinks are most interested in your home service business.

The reach goal attempts to reach as many people as possible.

The point of the ToFu campaign is to facilitate awareness. It has the largest audience but are the least likely to convert.

Middle of Funnel Campaign (MoFu)

The MoFu campaign has several more goal options, but most are not applicable to contractors and home service businesses. The ones that are most applicable are: traffic, lead generation, and messages.

Traffic is intended to bring as many people to a specific location. In this case a specific website. The website should be a landing page with a form to request a quote from your company. Contact us to learn how we can build a professional landing page for your Facebook Ad campaign.

Lead generation uses Facebook's request form to capture leads without the need to exit Facebook.

Messages is intended to get more people to message you on Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, or Instagram direct message.

The point of the MoFu campaign is to facilitate evaluation. It is the first phase of the retargeting campaign and generally targets audiences who are already aware of your brand.

Bottom of Funnel Campaign (BoFu)

The BoFu campaign also has several goals that are not applicable to service-based businesses. The applicable goal for this objective and campaign is conversions. This involves the use of Facebook Events such as the Facebook Pixel or Offline Events.

Finally, the point of the BoFu campaign is to facilitate conversions. It should include previous leads as well as past clients. In the BoFu campaign, you should explain why your company is the best solution.

Conclusion

It is important to remember it is unrealistic to simply make an ad in a conversion campaign and hope for a good return on ad spend. Though there is always a possibility of mere success, a properly formed funnel will ensure your ideal client is being made aware of your business, and that your prospects are being retargeted. It is also not enough to simply make a set of campaigns, turn them on, and leave them running for months on end. This brings me to the final mistake small businesses, home services businesses and contractors make.

3 – A Lack of Campaign and Budget Optimization

Lastly, and most importantly, is budget and campaign optimization. A lack of awareness of ad performance may result in ad fatigue. Constantly testing ad copy, audiences, placement, etc. will keep your ads rotating, preventing ad fatigue.

Fortunately, in 2017 Facebook announced Campaign Budget Optimization (CBO). According to Facebook, CBO efficiently uses your budget spend in order to achieve the best results. Because of the shift from the ad-set level budget to the new campaign level budget, CBO helps find the best occasion to generate the best result, depending on what your bid strategy is set to. CBO is a very useful feature which Facebook automatically applies to every campaign. Even though this budget optimization is automatic, there are still certain campaign optimization techniques we must consider to prevent ad fatigue.

Identifying Ad Fatigue

How to do you know ad fatigue is occurring? It is important to keep a close track of your performance metrics. In particular, be mindful of the following metrics:

  • Frequency: This is one of the most important metrics to watch for. It is the average number of times your audience has seen a particular ad. When frequency is greater than ten, the likelihood of someone converting is very low, at which point consider solving the issue of a high frequency.
  • Click-through-rate: CTR is another metric to watch for when trying to prevent ad fatigue. It is calculated by dividing the number of impressions by the number of clicks on your ad. Each industry has a different average CTR. The consumer service industry has an average CTR of 0.62% and home improvement has an average of 0.70%.

Preventing Ad Fatigue

Now that you know how to spot ad fatigue, what can you do to prevent it from occurring in the first place? These are some of the techniques to help stop ad fatigue in its tracks:

  • Ad rotation: This is the process of creating multiple versions of your ad so your audience does not quickly become tired of seeing the same ad over and over. You will continue to deliver the same ad but in a fresh way. Ad rotation also includes pulling out ads that are not performing as well as others, ultimately better optimizing that campaign.
  • Auto-optimization rules: Auto-optimization rules allow you to set rules, or certain triggers, that would enable automatic things to occur based on certain conditions. For example, turn off an ad when the frequency is greater than ten.
  • A/B Testing: This is an experimentation processes with two differing variables. This experiment is done to find out what works and what does not. For example, A/B testing an ad with a different ad design.

Conclusion

These are the three biggest mistakes home service businesses and contractors make when running Facebook ads. Here is a quick overview of those mistakes:

  • Not properly reaching the correct audience on Facebook.
  • Simply relying on the leads objective or conversion objective and not structuring the Facebook ads in a funnel that will result in a better outcome.
  • Being unaware of campaign performance, falling victim to ad fatigue, and not optimizing your campaigns.

At Aurora Marketing, we help home service businesses and contractors such as yourself with implementing, running, and optimizing Facebook ads for lead generation. You can schedule a FREE 30-minute consultation call to learn more about our services and share your business needs.


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About the Author

David Chudzinski is the founder of Aurora Marketing. When he is not serving clients, he is enjoying time with his wife, practicing jiu jitsu, or playing guitar. He calls beautiful British Columbia home.