Should I Use Facebook Lead Forms?
Join our host, Toby Rosen, and find out if you should use Facebook Lead Forms and Google Lead Forms, or if they suck.
For more, visit https://rosenadvertising.com
Should I use Facebook lead forms? Welcome to Legal Marketing 101. I'm Toby Rosen. Today's title is actually a little bit of a misnomer because we're actually going to be talking about a couple of different types of lead forms, not just Facebook. But we're going to dig into what they are, what the positives of lead forms are, and how to use them, and why I strongly recommend against them. So with that little teaser, what exactly are Google and Facebook lead forms? So think of these Google lead forms as a user-friendly gateway within your Google ads. And it's gonna be similar with Facebook, but I'm gonna address that specifically in a second. When someone clicks on a Google ad, a form will then pop up, prefilled with all their contact information from their Google account. And this means that potential clients who are expressing interest in your services through ads can do that without having to navigate away from the Google search page or without having to manually enter their details. It's all about simplicity and convenience. And similarly, Facebook lead forms are seamlessly integrated into Facebook ads. So when a user is engaging with your ad on Facebook, instead of going to a landing page, A form is just going to appear on their Facebook page there with their information already filled in. And this streamlined process keeps these potential clients on Facebook. That's the whole goal here. But it also is making it much easier for clients to connect with your law firm. So when it comes down to what the real benefits are here, these are the sort of four major areas that I'm looking at with Facebook lead forms, that this is why we like them. So number one is efficiency. Not only are these way easier to set up than an entire landing page and they just require a lot less content. And even when you include the annoyance of integrating CRM systems via things like Zapier or Make, the simplified setup is still going to lead to fewer errors. Number two is that it's cost effective. Facebook likes integrated content. Just like Google likes integrated content, everybody likes, you know, their platforms want to keep them on the platform. And it likes if you pay essentially to keep people on their platform.'Cause when we're doing, let's say, Pay Per Click, we're paying for people to come to our site and they really like it if we'll pay and they can just keep the user on their site. So in general, Facebook or Google will give you a really terrific price for leads that are generated through a lead form compared to sending a user to a landing page. And the conversion rates, because of the simplified system for this, They can be two or three or four times at least higher than what you're going to get with a traditional landing page. Number three, though, is rich data. So in addition to the basic contact information that you're getting in their name, the email, the forms that you can use with lead forms will have options to capture a bunch of other information about potential clients. So you can get more insight into what those clients need or who they are. I mean, we all know that Facebook and Google collect just gobs of information on their users. And with lead forms, you can get a piece of this really easily, you don't have to duplicate it yourself. Number four is customization. So beyond a bunch of options for collecting all of the info, like all of the different fields, Facebook and Google do actually offer a pretty decent amount of customization, which makes us, gives us an opportunity really to tweak things and test and improve conversion rates. And we're not as locked in as you might think. So it's pretty good. It's not as much customization as a landing page, but we can still do a fair amount. But now we bring these lead forms into the fold of our marketing campaign, and we're going to need to have this CRM or email marketing system. And the reality is now there are actually plenty out there that directly integrate with Facebook and Google lead forms. So you may already see this in your CRM system, depending on what you use. You don't have to be using Zapier, but you might be using it somewhere. It's a really good way to connect these things. But either way, it's much, much easier to connect these systems than it was even two or three years ago. But one thing that's not easier is the mapping. So that's sort of the next step after you get that basic integration done. This is how they essentially work. We have to map each piece of information that we're capturing through these lead forms like names and emails, contact phone numbers. We have to figure out where to map it in the CRM system. So during that integration, we need to be able to ensure that the data is flowing accurately. And this is what's going to cut down on those hours of manual data entry or duplicate entry between forms, and it's going to cut down on the risk of errors here. Of course, it is a little bit tedious, obviously, depending on how many data points you're collecting. But this is kind of a one and done setup. So we're going to set up all 20 or 30 of our data points for each customer. Or if we're, you know, however much we can collect, map all of that into our CRM, get everything set up and then we're, we're good to go. Not really. The real magic here is in the automation. Not only can you do all kinds of like sorting and making sure people are in the right lists, have the right tags so that they're labeled correctly. Automation can also play a huge role in follow up and in client experience. So you can create rules that will trigger immediate responses or assign leads to specific team members. And it'll even do things like trigger notifications automatically and then set tasks for the team members to do something. So this is great for intake teams. And the system is really simple. It gets a little more complicated at case management, obviously, but in the marketing and sales side, using these kind of notifications and tasking system, it helps reduce manual labor by making things simpler. But it's also going to make sure that no lead is slipping through the cracks because the system is going to catch it and bother the crap out of the person who's responsible for it. And from there, the limit is really just your imagination. I mean, we talk about automation here a lot. And I would recommend doing some kind of email marketing for these leads. You're going to want to get your sales pipeline connected all the way through to your case management system if you can get all those pieces together. But now we're going to take a little bit of a hard turn. And that was probably obvious when I skipped all the way from automation to just figure out your own email marketing and case management. And that's because I just can't recommend one way to do all of that. It varies drastically from market to market, from client, from practice area to practice area. It varies a lot. Should you automate your responses to your contacts from lead forms? Absolutely. I can say that with complete certainty for every law firm. But should you send them a six-week auto responder sequence? Well, that really depends on who you're talking about. But I can tell you a couple things about lead forms that are going to help you maximize the number of conversions you get and they're going to help you increase the number of data points you can collect from those leads. The last one is really simple. We're going to go through some strategies here. Right at the top of the list here, my favorite strategy probably because it's my favorite thing to talk about. And like with everything else in advertising, we need to be A/B testing our lead forms. We've talked about A/B testing on the podcast before, go back and look for those episodes. But these lead forms, they live inside the platforms that your ads run on. And in reality, they're really much more an extension of our ads than the landing pages that we have are or the phone calls we receive are. Those are kind of separated. And for the user, the experience is completely seamless. So the line between the platform and the advertisement is blurred. There's no line. So our job is to look at this like an advertisement and we need to test different images, different content, different combinations of fields and figure out what works the best. We're testing every element of the form to get the best result. And I've run so many lead ads that I'd never be able to count. But there was always one common thread between the lead form ads that we ran that were successful. And it was that they all offered some sort of immediate gratification for the user. Whether that was something like an ebook or usually webinars weren't even that good on Facebook, but something like a checklist, a download, something that the user gets immediately that's just given to that user in exchange for their info, that always worked at least five times better than the alternative. And that's a soft five times better. I could track down the actual number, but it was at least 500%. The alternative would be that we're asking for someone to just give us their information so they can have a meeting with them, especially when we're talking about law firms, it's sign up for a consultation. That's not a great lead magnet. Not a lot of people want to do that right away. But of course, I'd always follow up whatever it is we were doing with some automated emails that are going to provide more information and then start moving us towards a sale because we do want the immediacy of getting a lead in and making a sale, but the reality is most people aren't in that bucket yet, they're not ready. Now the hard part of lead forms, or at least the hard part for me, is increasing the number of data points we're getting from users. And of course, that's the part I want to do best at because I'm a data nerd. But when we're running a Google Ads to a landing page, we're only collecting names and emails, for example. That's all we're gonna collect, nothing else. If we add a phone number, my data is going to tell you your conversion rate will drop by at least 20%. It's probably going to be more. That's a trend that's been really consistent for me for over a decade. But when lead forms came along, I saw an opportunity. So despite what you read in the news, people still trust Google and Facebook infinitely more than they do pretty much any other company on earth. They may not realize that they trust Google and Facebook so much, but we all do. Everybody messages on WhatsApp. They DM on Instagram. They post pictures. What is the alternative to Google, Apple Maps? No, thank you. I'd actually like to get where I'm going at some point. For better or for worse, we as marketers have an opportunity to leverage this trust to gain more insight about our potential clients, but it's not as simple as just asking for more fields in your new lead form on Facebook. The strategy that I use is to start small and to build. I'll start with the bare minimum that we need. Maybe it's just email, or maybe it's just name and email, and then I'll start running ads. As our ads start to build some statistical significance and I can actually see what's going on, maybe I'll add a phone number, or I'll add a comment section, or make a field mandatory that was once optional. Again, like with so much of testing, There's just no specific formula here. But if you start small and you build up, you'll find out where the resistance is. You'll find out where it gets difficult or what you'll see is that your conversion rate will drop off or your click-through rate will drop off. You'll see that data start to dip. You're going to find out what your potential clients are willing to give you. If you isolate each test, you'll be able to figure out which piece of data it is where they say, nope, I'm not giving you that. Okay, now we have to do a hard turn again. Because while all of what I have said here is true, and the benefits of lead forms that I have described are real, there's something that I didn't tell you. Lead forms suck. Consistently, lead generation ads that I have run converted at 2 to 5 times the rate of typical search or display ads. This means we're sometimes paying one fifth of the cost that it would normally require to generate a lead. So you're asking, normally you'd be ecstatic. Why would I say this? And when LeadForms first launched, I was completely ecstatic. But it quickly became apparent to me that something was off. And it became apparent to my clients at about the same time. So it wasn't good for me. Some clients noticed it a little bit faster and most of them were very helpful and they helped me figure out the issue. And the issue was the leads just sucked. It's hard to say if they were somehow fake or if there are bots or if there was just, I don't know what was going on. The leads seemed real. We audited every lead we got and we weren't seeing these obvious indicators you would normally see when you're getting a spam lead through a contact form. There's some clear indicators and certain types of pills that spam leads tend to try to sell you. But consistently, these leads from Facebook, they did not become clients or if they did become clients, it was at a very minimal rate compared to any other type of advertising we were doing. And I can absolutely produce plenty of anecdotal evidence of successful lead form campaigns, but I cannot give you a single example of a campaign that did all of these three things, that achieved a strong conversion rate, that maintained that conversion rate over a significant period of time, and also consistently produced retainers. It seems like every now and then we'd have a win or we'd have two out of three, but for today let's just say, "Lead forms suck." That's it for Legal Marketing 101. Check out rosenadvertising.com for more. Thanks.[MUSIC]