Small business owners face the challenge of being found in a highly competitive market crowded with many similar products and services. Consumers’ easy access to an enormous amount of information makes it even more difficult for companies to reach and convert leads into lasting customers. Facebook offers a way to initially attract potential customers through advertising and then interact with them through ongoing, personal engagement tactics inherent to the platform.

Many small and medium-sized businesses, especially those in the service sector, may consider LinkedIn to be the only social network able to deliver B2B leads. However, marketers are finding that Facebook also has the potential to generate results through solid tools and targeted markets for lead acquisition.

The reason is in the numbers. Facebook’s user base is up to 1.3 billion, with people accessing their accounts three-to-five times daily. And of those 1.3 billion, 70 percent have a profile, giving advertisers more ways to target them. Plus, according to the DigitasLBi Connected Commission study, Facebook influences 52 percent of online and offline purchases. And that’s why as of June 2018, 50 million small businesses are marketing on the platform.

For companies interested in giving Facebook a try, the platform offers a range of parameters to create and deploy targeted ads. It can also be a little less costly compared to LinkedIn. Facebook’s minimum required daily budget is $1, while LinkedIn starts at $2 for noncompetitive keywords and often necessitates up to $5 per click for competitive keywords. So the trick is to create successful ads targeted to the right audiences.

For B2B ads this means setting up a Facebook lead form ad. We’ll cover some of the basic tactics businesses need to follow, however, understand that social media advertising requires a laser focus and significant time commitment. You may want professional advice and MMP can help effectively produce, test, and track your results to leverage the power of a targeted social media program.

Now, here’s a quick outline to getting started, so you have an idea of what it takes to develop a Facebook lead ad.

Create your visual & message. The image or images you choose are a key component of your ad and must captivate and target who you want to attract. Facebook only allows the graphic to contain 20 percent of text, so once you find the perfect image you need to choose your message carefully. Write something compelling, relating to the industry or vertical you are targeting.

Target, target, target. Facebook allows you to choose the zip codes and surrounding radius you want to service. You’ll set your daily budget, which will probably require a commitment of at least $15-$20 a day to see some results. Next, in the detailed targeting section you can choose to target business owners of a specific industry. This is where the information that Facebook users include in their profile helps businesses accurately reach them.

Develop the form. Forms offer companies a way to generate a higher quality lead. However, you don’t want people to use fake names or aliases so during the creation process uncheck the default settings such as name, number, email, etc. so it can’t be auto populated. Now you can choose each field that you want to capture. Don’t ask for too much information. You want Facebook users when they click on your ad to be able to quickly type in the info so they don’t get frustrated and leave. Asking for their name, email, and phone number may need to suffice.

That’s it to a certain extent. It’s worthwhile to do some testing to find the best combination of images and text, if possible. You also may have to adjust your daily spend depending on how saturated your market is. Ultimately though, you should see the results you want based on the ability to laser target your audience, which makes Facebook ideal for B2B lead generation.