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How to use Facebook Ads in your Live Video Strategy

By Ian Anderson Gray

Confident Live Marketing Podcast

Episode 73

Episode Theme: Content & Marketing

September 25, 2020

EP 73 - Blog Image

Have you looked into using Facebook Ads with Facebook Live Videos? One big obstacle you may have faced is that Facebook doesn’t allow you to promote Facebook Lives in advance. So what do you do?

I caught up with Anne Popolizio, owner of the Social Squib Agency, to talk about how to incorporate live video into your strategy, how to repurpose live videos for Facebook ads, and how to create content for very different audiences.

What you’ll learn

[0:30] A little bit about Anne
[0:30] Why you should consider Facebook ads
[0:05] What to do if you’re just not keen on Facebook
[0:50] Getting around the problems with Facebook ads and live video
[0:15] Whether or not you should use different ads for warm and cold audiences
[0:20] How to cater for a cold audience
[0:15] How to create a buzz around your live video
[0:55] How to strike a balance in your content
[0:10] The role of video in email list growth

Introducing Anne

Anne is the genius behind Social Squib, a digital marketing agency. She has a passion for specificity in storytelling and is obsessed with using data to measure your results. But I first met Anne when she was Glinda the Good Witch…

We first met on a parody of The Wizard of Oz at Social Media Marketing World (I was the Cowardly Lion — make of that what you will!), but it wasn’t Anne’s first foray into the world of the dramatic.

Having acted professionally from the age of 9, Anne feels that the move into marketing wasn’t as disconnected as it may seem.

Your ideal client profile? Well, that’s just a character persona. And lighting, storytelling, composition and all that other stuff you wish you knew about when you started creating videos? It’s all second nature to Anne after years on the stage.

In fact, Anne’s first experience of marketing was a marketing for actors class but it wasn’t long before she started applying what she knew (and learning about what she didn’t) to marketing for business, and she rocked everything from email marketing to social media.

Around 4-5 years ago (Anne couldn’t remember exactly because, you know, COVID. Is it still 2020?!) she struck out on her own and continued to knock it out of the park for her own clients.

She’s now one of the first people I turn to whenever I have Facebook ads woes.

Why You Should Definitely be Considering Facebook Ads
Listen at [11:30]

Anne reckons Facebook ads are,

"your best outreach tool, your best audience growth tool. They’ll help you reach people at the very top of the buying journey. By using social media ads, and Facebook ads in particular, to put yourself on the radar of your client base early in the process, you really increase the chances that ultimately they’ll buy from you."

According to Anne, Facebook ads put you on the radar of your client base early in the process. You really increase the chances that ultimately people will buy from you. @AnnePopolizioClick To Tweet

With organic social media, relying on your existing audience to share your content with their audience, you’ll likely reach people who are only 2-3 degrees of separation from you.

"With Facebook ads, you can hit people you’re not connected to in any way; you can create lookalike audiences and say to Facebook, ‘this is what my audience looks like. Now I want to find the million other people in this country that behave like they do and who don’t know me yet’".

What if You’re Just Not a Fan of Facebook?
Listen at [13:05]

But what about those of you who don’t have much of a following on Facebook, who tend to spend more time on LinkedIn or elsewhere, and who just don’t really spend much time on Facebook — is it still worth exploring Facebook ads?

Anne thinks it is unless your audience is very young;

"if your audience is under 20, they’re probably just not on Facebook."

That said, when Anne talks about Facebook ads, she encompasses Instagram ads too, since they’re both run through Facebook Ad Manager so it’s worth bearing that in mind.

She also points out that Facebook ads aren’t just for B2C interactions.

"It’s definitely a B2B platform. People are people, whether they’re buying for themselves or buying for a company. And the most time people spend on social media is still spent on Facebook, not LinkedIn."

"Facebook is definitely a B2B platform. People are people, whether they’re buying for themselves or buying for a company. And the most time people spend on social media is still spent on Facebook, not LinkedIn."

So while Anne acknowledges that LinkedIn’s organic reach is through the roof, she warns against neglecting Facebook, and especially Facebook ads, even if you are concentrating on B2B.

Live Video and Facebook Ads. What can’t You do?
Listen at [16:50]

If you’re broadcasting a regular live show, you’ve probably already realised that you can’t promote a live video in advance. That little ‘boost’ button remains resolutely unavailable.

And promotion isn’t the only issue.

Anne has identified a problem with the video itself, or rather who’s going to be watching your video:

"The majority of the people you’re serving your video to are a cold audience. They don’t know you yet. And the general rule, regardless of what your video is about, is that you’ve got just one second to stop them scrolling and up to three seconds to establish enough relevancy with the viewer to make them continue watching. That’s the biggest challenge you have around video and specifically in using live video with ads.

The key thing to keep in mind around using that live video, and if you want to throw a few bucks behind it so that people actually see it, is to serve it to a warm audience.

Those are the people who like and engage with your page, your website traffic audience, and the people on your email list. They are the people who will forgive those first three seconds!"

Warm and Cold Audiences: Different Ads for Different Folks?
Listen at [20:15]

Anne goes on to describe the three different types of Facebook audience: saved audiences, lookalike audiences, and custom audiences.

#1 Custom Audiences

The custom audience is made up of your people – people who have engaged with you in some way, have given you their email address, communicated with you over social, interacted with your website. These are the guys that’ll appreciate your live video, as is.

#2 Lookalike Audiences

The lookalike audience is the one with behavioural similarities to your custom audience. They don’t know you yet but have lots in common with the people who engage with you on social or make up part of your website traffic.

#3 Saved Audiences

And the saved audience is the one that most people will be familiar with if they’re using the boosted post button.

"This is where you can choose your target audience based on their different interests, their age, their location, the languages they speak… And you can take a custom audience or a lookalike audience and put parameters on them to make a saved audience.

The lookalike audience is your cold audience. And those are the people you don’t want to straight-up promote a live video to. Three seconds just isn’t going to be enough to establish relevance from a live video when they don’t already know you."


How to Cater to a Cold Audience
Listen at [25:20]

So how should you get your live video in front of a cold audience, without scaring them off?

In terms of the content itself, there are two key things you can do.

One is to use a tool like InVideo and use it to edit down small clips of 30 seconds to one minute. So try to find a good little content-rich nugget that’s concise enough to fit into the short timeframe — you may have to do some internal editing — and use that to create some social media posts that you can put some money behind.

The other thing you can do, Anne says, is to use the original video as a starting point for a second, much shorter video, which you can then use for an ad.

Creating a Buzz Around Your Live Video
Listen at [27:15]

Obviously, you can’t promote a scheduled live video, but what does Anne recommend you do to create a bit of a buzz before you go live?

"There are a few workarounds here and the one that most people will be familiar with is the 5-day challenge, a standard live video marketing tool that encourages people to register for your live event.

So the structure of the funnel: you’re going to have a landing page to let people know what the challenge is about, a super simple form to capture names and email addresses, and that will take you to a thank you/confirmation page.

On the thank you page, you’re going to put a link to the pre-scheduled live event. Then you’ll send a confirmation email that will also have a link to the live video. On the morning of, you’ll send a reminder email that says, ‘hey, we’re going live at noon’ and another reminder at 11.45 am with a link that says ‘click here to watch’.

You can create a similar funnel through messenger too, though we’ve found the landing page email opt-in funnel encourages a higher number of registrations. Of course, that depends on your audience — if they’re already used to opting into things via messenger, it can work really well.

If in doubt, test it to see what works better for your audience."

On Striking a Balance in Your Content
Listen at [32:55]

Anne reckons there are two things to consider when creating your content: who you’re creating it for and what you want to say;

"You’re going to have a different conversation with your cold audience than your warm audience. You have to look at it from their perspective and think about how much information they already have and how much context they need. And that’s one of the tricky things about live video: things can be out of context."

With that in mind, she advises providing additional text or fleshing the video out a little when you come to repurpose it, to make it more relevant to a cold audience.
Whereas for a warm audience, you might want to focus instead on a really strong call-to-action whether you want them to comment, opt into something, or register for your next live video.

She’s also keen to remind us that you don’t necessarily need to focus on getting a strong commitment from a cold audience straight away — if this is their first contact with you, watching your video is enough.

It’ll be a few more videos down the line before you ask them to opt-in or to take more decisive action.

"You don’t have to go for the jugular right away! Just build trust and let them get to know you."

That said, it’s important that you don’t wait too long before making an offer or to feel like you’re being too intrusive by sending your audience plenty of reminders. Most new small business owners are terrified of over-marketing, Anne says, but she reckons 99.9% of them are nowhere close to being too pushy. She likes to look at it this way:

"I’m very busy, and I have the memory of a peanut…if there’s something I really want to do and you don’t set up the structure to give me the 15 reminders I’m going to need to actually show up, guess what? I’m not gonna show up!"

So don’t be afraid of creating opt-ins and sending reminders so you don’t end up losing the people who really do want to attend.

And if you’re really concerned about over-marketing, you can always tell people up front what they can expect when they opt in to your marketing communications, whether that’s a weekly newsletter, regular reminders or whatever your chosen frequency might be.

The Role of Live Video in Email List Growth
Listen at [41:10]

Anne’s final words of wisdom?

Don’t forget to focus on your email list:

"Every single thing you do should ultimately drive your email list growth. And that includes promoting your show, whether you add opt-ins for your lead magnets in the comments or in the transcription of your video or whether you create messenger/landing page funnels to encourage people to register for your event.

Remember the old adage: you don’t own your social media following."

This episode is sponsored by Content10X, StreamYard & InVideo

This Episode's Sponsors

This episode is sponsored by Content10X, StreamYard & InVideo

Watch Episode 73


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Who is Anne Popolizio?

Anne is the owner of Social Squib, a digital marketing agency. She has a passion for specificity in storytelling, but she’s obsessed with data so you can measure your results.


Connect with me

About Ian

Ian Anderson GrayIan is the founder of the Confident Live® Marketing Academy and helps entrepreneurs to level up their impact, authority and profits by using live video confidently. Seriously Social is a blog focussed on live video and social media tools. He’s an international speaker, trainer, teacher and consultant.

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