Test everything, assume nothing.

As a skilled marketing professional you may assume no one clicks on Facebook Ads.

You’re wrong. And so were we.

Pre-launch, our paid strategy was to test, test, test – as much as possible – and find out which paid channels converted at the lowest cost. Our preconceived notions for marketing a B2B SaaS product were that Twitter and LinkedIn would give us our best B2B users. Wrong again. So, how did we get people to click our ads? More importantly, how did we get them to sign up?

LOW-FRICTION CONVERSIONS

After some channel testing, we focused our paid efforts on Facebook, where users don’t want a big commitment. Facebook users aren't shopping, they are socializing. So if you offer them something it has to be simple: Like a quick email submission or an easy sign-up for something free. During our private beta, we originally had a multi-step process that took a few days for us to complete on our end. We lost a ton a people in that gap. So we learned to make sign-up instant.

WHO WE TARGETED

Facebook has so many targeting options, it can be overwhelming to test small interest groups. Interest targeting is an extremely powerful feature that can be misused, as we did. There are two options when it comes to interest targeting: broad categories and precise interests.

Broad Categories

Broad categories include topics like music, marketing, and food. These categories expand to a much larger audience, resulting in users who are willing to spend less even though they tend to cost more.

Precise Interests

Precise interests gave us users based on profile interests, pages they liked, and apps they use. Initially, this group gave us our best ROI. We used competitor pages (Hootsuite and Sprout Social) and tools with similar customers (Google Analytics) to find our low cost conversions.

Our mistake was targeting broad category terms for our niche, such as “Digital Marketing” or “Social Media” instead of targeting specific interests like the blogs our targets read, products they buy, and pages they engage with. Immediately, we were reaching people interested in Talu, willing to sign up and give us feedback.

Don’t judge a book by its cover. Just because you’re marketing B2B doesn’t mean you belong on Twitter.
 

After we had 300 beta users, we started using Facebook’s Lookalike audience targeting, which as most marketers know gives you low-cost, engaged users. Facebook matches these lookalikes with our email user list by interests, profile, job history, and more. As we continue growing our beta list, we are adding to our Lookalike audience to attract more qualified users.

COOL POINTS TO CONSIDER

  • Don’t judge a book by its cover. Just because you’re marketing B2B doesn’t mean you belong on Twitter.
  • Testing takes time and just because Facebook ads were our best paid channel for beta sign-ups, it may not be for paid sign-ups.
  • After 1-2 weeks of learning what worked for us, we generated a steady source of conversions via Facebook.

We'll continue to share our story, and we’d love to hear yours. Leave a comment below or drop us a line via email at hello@talu.io.