An outreach campaign is a little different from a standard advertising campaign, but when you’re using Facebook as a platform, you’re still limited to Facebook’s tools and Facebook’s insights. Make use of them properly and you’ll end up with a robust, effective campaign. Fail to put them to use and you’ll suffer from Facebook’s naturally low organic reach and a general inability to contact many of the people you want to see.
Step 1: Research the Industry
The first step will take place both on and off Facebook. You’re going to want to perform some detailed research into your industry and niche. As a single marketer, it’s easy to fall into the trap of examining only your local corner of the world. With this step, you’re going to broaden your knowledge and make sure you’re working from a strong foundation.
Use tools such as Facebook’s insights and Google Trends to examine your niche. Your goal here is to identify the sorts of topics, conversations, styles and entities influential to your industry. You don’t necessarily want to focus on the audience you already have; after all, they’re already connected to your marketing stream. You’re looking for ways to access other sectors of the market to broaden your exposure.
Step 2: Define a Goal
Now that you have a broad, general understanding of the current mood and direction of your industry, it’s time to define a goal. This phase of designing an outreach campaign is the most important; it determines where the rest of your campaign will go. There are many different possible goals for an outreach campaign on Facebook. For example:
- Increase awareness and demand for your product.
- Combing through your audience for talent to recruit as employees.
- Gain the attention of industry bloggers and have your content featured.
You should be able to know if your chosen goal has a reasonable chance of success in the industry based on your previous research. For example, if you want to drum up demand for your product, you’re not going to do well when there’s already existing competition with a better product and a stronger audience. One nice aspect of blogger outreach, at least, is that space on a blog is infinite; there’s always room for more featured content, particularly if it’s high quality.
Step 3: Define a Target Group
Once you have your goal, you can use your research from before to identify the types of people who are most likely to be the target of your campaign. For example, if you’re working on blogger outreach, you’re going to want to target blogs in your industry, many of whom you found through your earlier research. If you’re looking to drum up demand for your product, you need to find people who are talking about problems that your product can solve. There’s almost certainly an audience out there, unaware of your company and your product; all you need to do is find them and boil them down to a persona or two.
This is another area where you don’t want overlap with your current audience, unless your goal is to bring a new announcement to your existing audience. If you’re reaching out to new users, you don’t want old users cluttering up your results.
Step 4: More Research
That’s right; time to do more research before you can enact any practical applications of what you’ve learned. In this case, you know about your industry, you have a goal and you have a target audience. This phase of research is to learn what you can about this target audience.
Specifically, you’re researching this audience to determine how best to attract them to your goal. For example, if you’re working on attracting bloggers to feature your content, you’re going to want to identify the bloggers themselves, their audiences and their range of topics. This will allow you to craft content to appeal to them directly. If you’re trying to attract an entire new audience segment, you’re going to want to learn their problems and how to appeal to them.
All of this research will lead you into the next step in your outreach campaign, where you create the initial premise of your advertising and outreach.
Step 5: Create a Hook
On Facebook, you have very limited organic reach. It’s incredibly hard to reach people who are already fans of your page. It’s even harder to reach new users without at least investing some money into the program. Thankfully, a small investment of a few dollars every day is plenty to get you started. That, however, is for the next step.
This step is where you actually create the meat of your campaign. You know your audience, you know your goal and you know what they like. Use this knowledge to create a few variations on an advertisement you can run, a post you can make and various landing page posts you can guide users to on Facebook.
As a note, you can use unpublished posts created through the Power Editor plugin as landing pages, to keep your campaign entirely on Facebook. Alternatively, you can guide users to specific landing pages on your website. Either method works; just make sure you’re able to track the performance of individual ads in your campaign.
Step 6: Implement Outreach
You now have everything you need to get your outreach off the ground. Implement your posts and advertising. Your budget will largely determine the frequency and visibility of your advertising. Keep it small to begin. Run your customized ads for a few days or a couple weeks to start, monitoring their performance as they go. This will be important for the final step.
A large part of success in an outreach campaign will be following up on your leads. If you’re drumming up interest in your product, for example, you will want to guide users through to the conversion pages, preferably in a way that further convinces them your products meet their needs.
Step 7: Monitor and Iterate
The final and most important part of any advertising campaign is iteration and repetition. If you notice one of your ads is failing to bring in the performance you want, cut it. If another one is performing better than anticipated, boost its budget. Split test new iterations on your ads with different text, different images or different targeting options. Be sure to only change one thing at a time, so you know which change brought in the effect you wanted.
This process continues until you achieve your goals or determine they aren’t working. At either point, there’s only one thing left to do; begin at the start again with a new campaign with new goals.