Episode 58: A Facebook Ad Funnel You NEED to Have with Bryan Caporicci - Business Bites

A Facebook Ad Funnel You NEED to Have with Bryan Caporicci

Episode 58 on the Business Bites Podcast

The Gist Of This Episode:  Facebook Ads are the way of the…now. You can’t avoid it. You need to learn how to properly use. Join Rachel and Bryan Caporicci as they discuss a step-by-step funnel to get potential consumers into your inbox.

What you will learn:

  • Why we should use Facebook ads
  • How to best utilize the money you spend on FB ads
  • The steps of building a FB ad funnel
  • What a FB Pixel is and how it works
  • Things to avoid in your FB ads
  • and more!

Expand To Read Episode Transcripts

Rachel Brenke: Hey, guys, welcome to this episode of The Business Bites Podcast. I am your host, Rachel Brenke, and, today, I am joined with Bryan Caporicci from Sprout Studio.

Thanks for joining us, Bryan.

Bryan Caporicci: Rachel, thank you for having me. It’s fun to be on this side of the microphone.

Rachel Brenke: Yes, I love Bryan’s podcast. I’ve been on one of his as well. You guys can find that on Apple Podcast as well. He is an award-winning wedding and portrait photographer. We met in the photography industry, and he is based out of Canada, so maybe we’ll hear some fun accent throughout the episode. He has been awarded his master’s of photographic arts designation by the Professional Photographers of Canada and he has been one of the youngest Canadian photographers to ever receive this level of achievement.

Bryan is also the lead content creator at spoutingphotographer.com, and he’s the host of the Sprouting Photographer Podcast. He teaches workshops across North America, including industry leading conventions and conferences such as WPPI, Shutterfest and Canada Photo Convention.

He’s also the CEO and founder of Sprout Studio, which is a studio management software that’s so robust for photographers. I absolutely love it, but, today, we’re going to talk about Facebook marketing, and if you guys are not a photographer and you’re listening, you still need to listen. Bryan knows what he’s talking about.

He also does have a free information for you guys at fbmarketingforphotographers.com. I’ll also link this in the show notes. It’s going to be at rachelbrenke.com/epi58, so now that we’ve got all of that out of the way, a good, little introduction.

Bryan Caporicci: That’s right.

Rachel Brenke: I know. Isn’t it funny when people are giving a bio about you and you’re sitting there and you’re like, “I’m impressed by this person?”

Bryan Caporicci: Yeah, that’s right. It’s like, “Ah, I want, I want to meet that guy. That’s cool.”

Rachel Brenke: He sounds like an awesome person.

Bryan Caporicci: Right.

Rachel Brenke: Yeah. No, Bryan, I wanted you to come on to help and share with Facebook ads because I think we’re at this point in marketing with Facebook and social media that there’s really no choice but to pay to play, and so I guess my first question for you is why do you think that business owners should be utilizing Facebook ads at all?

Bryan Caporicci: It’s funny because I think so often we associate Facebook ads with just the simple idea of clicking that boost post button on our Facebook page and we sort of think that that’s it. There’s a whole world behind the scenes, behind that boost post button, and one of the things that I encourage photographers and entrepreneurs, whether you’re in photography or not, to consider is are your clients on Facebook, are your clients on Instagram?

That’s question number one. If you answered no to that question, I would say you probably can shut the episode off because we’re going to … We’re going to assume that the answer is yes in order for us to talk about Facebook ads, but the reality is that most people are on Facebook and/or Instagram. It’s just where we socialize as a social platform today. The challenge though is that it is completely changing, and so much so that Facebook has even admitted like, “Hey, if you, as a business owner, want to get your stuff in front of your clients, uh, the game is changing.”

This actually came out back in … I think it was February, where they actually announced, saying that, “We’re now going to make personal posts weighted so much more heavy than business posts, and so most photographers who are doing what they’ve always been doing, which is either sharing things on their personal profile using their Facebook business page and they kind of put an update or they share a photo or they’re doing whatever they do and they kind of put it out to the world and hope people will see it, we’re going to start seeing that go down, if it’s not already completely dead.

That is not working anymore, so if you want to have success getting clients on Facebook, which we can all agree is where most of our clients probably are, we need to think of using Facebook in a different way. What we’ve been doing is no longer going to work, and, yeah, you kind of said it, Rachel, it’s a pay to play now, and a lot of photographers, a lot of entrepreneurs and Internet marketers get their nose out of joint about that because they’re saying, “Oh, we have to pay to use Facebook now?” and it’s like, “Well, yeah. Where else can you go and get in front of the number of people you can get in front of with the kind of targeting you can get in front of, with the kind of measurement and analytics that you can get access to through Facebook advertising and not pay for it?”

I mean, that’s just the way that business goes. It sort of makes sense, and so I think if you use it in a way that’s smart and intelligent and planned and intentional, I think we can see great results out of Facebook ads.

Rachel Brenke: I get it that it’s frustrating that we had the social media platform’s availability and accessibility for so long that we got to just post and we could get our clients, and now it’s like this 180 and we have to pay, but, to be honest, before social media came around, everyone had to pay to market. Like why should it be a free marketing gig? That’s kind of my deal now. Like I’m totally in the camp of paying to play at this point and I’m a huge proponent of Facebook ads, but why do you think that so many photographers and just business owners in general are holding back from using the Facebook ads?

Bryan Caporicci: It’s sort of like a black box, isn’t it? I mean, it’s cool, right? I mean, Facebook ads, and the ads manager itself, it is a tool that, on the surface, might seem like it’s easy to use and powerful, but as soon as you start getting into it, it’s kind of like the first time you opened up Photoshop.

I mean, we open up Photoshop and we’re like, “Oh, my goodness, like where do I even start? There’s layers and there’s brushes and there’s all these tools on the left-hand side, and what’s an adjustment layers, and what’s this, and I don’t know where to start,” and so it’s so easy to become overwhelmed with it that we almost just shut down, but if you think about back when you first open Photoshop, if you’re a photographer, and you start going through these things, eventually, you figure out, “Hey, there’s only certain things within Photoshop that, as a photographer, I need to be using.” Right? You’re saying, “Okay, I need to know where the lasso tool is. I need to know where the brush tool is. I need to know what the layers are, and then 90% of everything else I don’t need to worry about.”

Once you figure what those things are, it becomes a much simpler tool to use, and then you can use everything else and you can learn everything else as time goes on. I’d argue Facebook ads are kind of the same way. There’s a small subset of tools and a small way to use those tools that you need to be aware of and, once you can understand where the lasso tool is of Facebook ads, where the clone brush is in Facebook ads, once you figure those things out, the tool becomes a lot simpler to use, and so that’s why, in the free course that I have, I walk through a way and a proven system to build a Facebook ad funnel. It’s this sort of one, two, three, four “do these things” and you are pretty much guaranteed to get positive return on investment out of that Facebook ad campaign.

Rachel Brenke: Just to clarify, we’ve already said this earlier in the episode, but we are talking about the actual use of this ads manager, that robust, crazy-looking dashboard thing that you have to go into and use, not just the little boost button on … Giving Facebook a little credit, they’re getting better with the boosting as far as what it used to be when they first rolled out the boost button, when I should have just been throwing window out the door at Mark Zuckerberg. Like I felt like it wasn’t doing anything.

Now, I can target, and, really, the overwhelming aspect, like Bryan was just talking about, and definitely dig into the facebookmarketingforphotographers.com and that free course, but I just … When I look at all the tools, I also think about who is it that I’m talking to and what is the end information that I want out of this ad, which is going to be different if it’s a sales ad versus just a freebie ad, and I even have some engagement once where I just target people based on their birthday and I say, “Happy birthday,” and I have different goals for each of those.

For me, that helped me cut through all the different rows and columns and reporting that Facebook has and completely overwhelms me, because it is a big learning curve and they can become quite expensive if you don’t know how to do it, properly set it up and then maintain it, and that’s the biggest thing. I always hear the big pushback is, “Well, I don’t know how to set them up,” and that’s not even where the cost is. The cost is in the actual maintaining and keeping them cost-effective, so what tips do you have for entrepreneurs and, particularly, photographers how they can make ads cost-effective for them so they’re not just dumping money into the Facebook pockets?

Bryan Caporicci: Yeah, I think when you’re looking at the way that you want to spend your money in really any endeavor, obviously, we’re talking about Facebook ads specifically right now, but we want to start looking at what are we trying to get out of it? Like what are the results we’re looking for?

I believe that, when it comes to budgeting, when it comes to spending money, when it comes to adding a line item to your ledger as an expense, if we can show that $1 in equals $2 out, I would argue that there really isn’t any point in even assigning a budget in the first place because if I can give you a dollar, or if you give me a dollar and I give you $2 back, you’re probably go try and find as many dollars to give me so I can give you double that back every time, right?

I think that when you start looking at what your goal is out of the ads and, again, out of any technique that you deploy your business, when you try to look at what your goal is, only once you define that goal and define some measuring points from that goal, some KPIs, only then can you actually see whether something is worth pursuing or not, and so when it comes to-

Rachel Brenke: Can you give an example?

Bryan Caporicci: When it comes to Facebook … Sorry?

Rachel Brenke: I was going to say, “Can you give an example of kind of what like maybe a primary goal for photographers would be to give them a little context for that?”

Bryan Caporicci: Totally. Yeah. I mean, in fact, if you want, I’ll just walk through this funnel as sort of high level overview to kind of help photographers understand that.

The idea here is that I would probably think that most photographers and most entrepreneurs listening is what do they … When I ask the question, “What do you want out of your ads?” the, probably, simplest answer is to say, “I want to book more clients from my ads. I want to get more people paying me money,” and so if we look at that as the big goal, as the hope and the dream that we achieve out of our Facebook ads, let’s start working ourselves backwards from there. Let’s look at what is the anatomy of someone booking us? What needs to happen? What are the steps that need to happen before then?

Obviously, from before someone booking you, they need to have to inquire with you. Before them inquiring with you, they have to have trust in you. Before them having trust in you, they need to have gotten some level of value from you, and before them getting value from you, they have to know who the heck you are.

When we build out this Facebook ads funnel, we actually just go the reverse order of that and we say, “The first step of the funnel is to generate awareness,” so that’s when we’re going to actually say, “Hi. I’m Bryan. I’m a photographer. This is who I am,” and build that familiarity, so we have a whole ad campaign around that, and then from there, once someone knows who you are, you want to add value to them, so you’re going to start to create a relationship. You’re going to build that relationship and add value into their lives. That’s the next step in the funnel.

After that, we want to start building some trust. We want some social proof. We want to start compounding that trust and that value that we’ve already started to build to them in the second step, and so we do that in the third step, building trust and increasing that awareness in that audience and, from there, once they have had enough exposure to you, once they have enough trust in you, once they’ve seen enough value in the relationship that you’re offering them, we can ask them for the inquiry. We can ask them for the business. We can ask them to buy from us, and that will be the fourth step in the funnel.

It’s this idea of so many photographers who start doing Facebook ads and they think that all they have to do is put a Facebook ad saying, “Hi. I’m a photographer. Book me,” right? They put it out there to a cold audience and people are like, A, “Who the heck are you?” B, “Why should I hire you?” C, “I don’t know who you are. Why would I hire you in the first place?” and, C, “You’re completely new to me, so I’m not going to all of a sudden give you my credit card from a cold Facebook ad,” and so using a funnel like this to warm them up, to build some value, to add trust to the relationship and then, eventually, generate the lead, you’ve got to do it in this intentional way, and that is how you get a guaranteed return on investment from your Facebook ads.

Rachel Brenke: Adding on to the funnel that Bryan has talked about, this can be mirrored for any type of business really. I use a lot of this trying to advertise the podcast and my different niche sites, as well as my local co-working spaces and such.

We may have calls to action to buy or book or whatever your call is that you want them to buy into you, but my first line touchpoint with these people is for them to get to know who I am and what I have to offer, and one of the best ways that I have found to lead them down through this funnel is through the use of Facebook Pixel and what’s called re-targeted or remarketing. Some people have shortened it. I don’t know if that’s accurate, but we’ll go with it, and with … I mean, this is very simple.

It’s so funny. My mom the other night at the table was like, “I was searching something on Amazon and, now, Facebook won’t leave me alone about it,” and it was because of re-target marketing, and she’s like, “They’re watching everywhere,” and I’m like, “Oh, my gosh, mom, I love you, but, you know, it really simply works like this,” and, it’s true, it’s being able to put, once they get to know you through that first line of this funnel about you, then you can start giving them more information and trying to creep them closer to the line of them giving you their money through the use of the pixel.

Actually, I kind of jumped ahead a little, but you can explain for those that are tech-challenged what this pixel is and does and all of that?

Bryan Caporicci: Yeah, totally, so the pixel basically means that when someone goes to a page on your website, if you have this Facebook Pixel installed, and it’s just a simple line of code that you put into your website, your website or Facebook will basically identify, “Hey, that person has been to this page on your website,” so, now, you can use that pixel in your remarketing or in your ad targeting to say, “Hey, I want to serve this ad only to people who have been to this specific page.” You could get super complex and say, “Hey, I want to send this ad to people who have been to this page, but not this page,” or, ‘Hey, I want to sent this ad to people who have been to this page three times.”

You can get super specific and really detailed, and, again, I’d walk through all that in the course to understand exactly when and how and where and why to use these pixels, but it’s basically just a way to identify a group of people or a person and the behavior they’ve done and then give them a targeted message based on that behavior.

Rachel Brenke: The thing about using this, using this pixel and this remarketing that is really important is we talk about walking people through a funnel and, really, what you’re creating is how many touchpoints, how many times you get in the path of the person that you’re trying to get to buy into you, so, like Bryan explained, you’re going to explain who you are and what you do and set yourself apart without … before you ever asked them to buy from you.

You wouldn’t just walk up to someone on the street and say, “Hey, can I take your picture? Pay me a hundred bucks.” You’re going to introduce yourself first, and through marketing, the more remarketing, like what Bryan was just outlining, identifying what pages they went to, what, where they didn’t go, really helps for you to invest your money way more wisely, so if you’re looking at having a bootstrapped budget and you want to try to make it go as far as you can, then you can invest your money in really almost qualified leads.

I mean, we’re getting them warmer and warmer the more touchpoints and times that they see you, and this will keep you from just throwing money into this intrinsic audience or to everyone in your local ZIP code, because not everyone in your local ZIP code is going to be, A, interested in you or, B, really giving care about your call to action in the first place.

Bryan Caporicci: Yeah, I think the interesting thing here in the mindset shift for a lot of photographers and entrepreneurs is that, typically, we might think about waiting for someone to be ready to get in touch with us, then to start talking about photography, and that works and that’s great and everything, but that’s a very passive approach. It’s a very reactive approach.

Rachel Brenke: Yes.

Bryan Caporicci: I believe that through techniques like funnels, like Facebook advertising, like email marketing, like modern marketing techniques like that, we can actually start to create that desire. We can start to create that interest. We can actually warm people up and get them prepped and ready to actually buy from us. In that way, when they are ready and we can accelerate that process, we’re the obvious choice, and so it’s almost like when someone starts searching Google for photographer in Niagara Falls, they’re in active search mode, but how many people are in that active search mode and, even at that, they now have a whole bunch of biases that they’re coming into the relationship with. What if you could get them before they started searching, warm them up and then you become the obvious only choice because you’ve been there with them the whole journey?

Rachel Brenke: I love that, and I love to take what you just said and level it up also with existing clients and referrals. I like to create specific pages and incentivize my existing clients to share that link, have that pixel so that I’m able to remarket specific to the friends that they’ve sent because if that friend or that client was an ideal client that I wanted, had, it was a really good, successful relationship, more than likely, birds of a feather flock together, their friends and the people in their social circles that they’re willing to share that link with are going to be very similar, and so, like you said, it’s a modern way of being able to market.

To me, it’s really not much different than hand-jamming out or doing follow-up phone calls to people, except now we have more of an in … into people’s home. You guys are able to put these advertisements into people’s homes without first waiting for them to come to you to give their information first. If you’re not having the pixel installed and you’re not taking these steps and going through a funnel, just like what Bryan talked about, you need to get these under control.

Whether you’re a photographer or not, this introductory get-to-know-one-another, like this dance is … has to be done. It’s you. It’s very difficult to sell any sort of product without any buyer’s confidence. You guys know. I’ve talked a lot about confidence and the building of that and how pricing isn’t the issue. Money and value isn’t really the issue as to why people buy. It’s because they may have so many objections or they’re just not comfortable, and all of it boils down to because you haven’t provided them enough information for them to build up the confidence for them to throw their dollars at you.

Now, we can sit here and spin this and go, “Hurrah, hurrah, Facebook ad,” but there are tips for what not to do with the Facebook ad. Bryan, what are some of those that you have for them listening?

Bryan Caporicci: I think one of the main things that we have to think about, and again a lot of these principles when it comes to Facebook ads can be applied even outside of Facebook ads, but the main thing that I want to say is always remember WIIFM, W-I-I-F-M. What’s in it for me? At the end of the day, our clients only care about what’s in it for them, and so often I see photographers in their marketing, in their Facebook ads, in everything they do, they’re talking about themselves.

If you think about how people interact on Facebook, someone’s not going to be scrolling through their news feed, see a photographer kind of pumping up their chest and talking all about themselves and, “I’ve won this award, and I’ve won this, and I have this, done this, and that’s why, you know, it’s should be a privilege for you to hire me as your photographer,” I mean people are going to skip through that ad. That’s never going to work, and so if you can start talking to people about them and think about WIIFM, then it’s going to be a much higher likelihood that you’re going to get people converting on that.

I think the other side of that, which is sort of like an extension of that, is people want to feel like you’re talking to them and about them. They want to feel like you know them, and Facebook advertising is a really, really effective way to do that. If you’re serving up Facebook ads to, hey, anyone in this ZIP code, like you said, Rachel, it’s going to be difficult for you to talk directly to somebody, but even as soon as you start saying, “Hey, anyone in this ZIP code who’s engaged?” and you say, “Hey, congratulations on your engagement. Are you planning your wedding now?” blah, blah, blah, blah, and you can go on and on and on and on, if someone’s engaged and sees that ad, all of a sudden, they’re like, “Hah, that’s kind of cool. They get me,” right?

You can get infinitely more targeted than that, but at the very simple example is that you need to start talking to people about them and stop talking at people about yourself.

Rachel Brenke: It’s so funny because I used to be afraid to do that birthday ad because I was so worried I was going to get all these criticisms of, “How did you know it’s birthday? You’re mining my data. You and Facebook are conspiring against me,” and I was so worried that that felt so intrusive, but you would not believe the way that it’s simply a picture of a cake with candles and it says, “Happy birthday, May birthdays,” or whatever month that we’re in at the time, and people just respond and go, “Oh, my God, my birthday is on the 9th. Thank you so much,” and I’m thinking do they … They feel like it’s a personally served up advertisement.

Even though they don’t know it is, they still get the intrinsic feelings that it is, and it’s led to some really good relationships and clients out of that, and that has absolutely nothing to do with me, nothing with my product or my service, and it may sound like wasted money, but it’s really not. It’s building and creating this warmth, and I’m also at the same time capturing more of an audience because, then, one of the things you can target through the Facebook ads manager is people who have engaged with your certain pages and engaged with certain posts, so there’s always … Always, every action that you take, look for how many benefits that you can get out of it, and Facebook ads has so many options, so Bryan we kind of just gave them a nice little crash course on the use of Facebook ads.

My entire goal with this was to really overcome some of the objections that I’m hearing from entrepreneurs, particularly, photographers, who are really missing out by not using Facebook ads.

If you guys are not doing it, please take … go check out … I’m sorry. I just forgot the link for a second, Facebook marketing-

Bryan Caporicci: Yeah, it’s fb- There you go.

Rachel Brenke: Oh, f-

Bryan Caporicci: Fbmarketingforphotographers.com.

Rachel Brenke: Yep, fbmarketingforphotographers.com, and then, Bryan, leave us with like one last tip for someone who may be new to Facebook ads that will give them some encouragement and a boost.

Bryan Caporicci: Nice. No boost. Haha

Rachel Brenke: I was hoping you were going to get that joke.

Bryan Caporicci: I would say, and this is something I talk a lot about in the course, and, again, as a quick sort of TLDR, if you’re feeling overwhelmed about any of these stuff, if you’re like, “Oh, my gosh, like, Bryan, Rachel, like pixels and this and that and like all these things sound confusing for me,” in this course, I literally go back to the 101. I break it down. I say, “Let’s walk through the Facebook ads interface and understand exactly what’s what. Like here’s what the pixel is. Here’s what it’s used for. Here’s how you can track things in Google Analytics. Here’s how you can use all of these more advanced functionalities, and I break it down and help you understand it,” but what I would say as the final tip is let’s stop looking at Facebook ads in a bubble.

That would be my number one encouragement is that Facebook ads are a tool. Facebook ads are a vehicle to communicate a message and they in and of themselves will not give you results. You have to, A, have a strategy that you’re putting into your Facebook ad system, but, B, Facebook ads only are an interface with everything else that you do, which means your Facebook page has to be in good working order. Your Instagram page has to be in good working order. You’ve got to have a good website. You have to understand your messaging. You’ve got to have good lead magnets. You’ve got to have good testimonials.

There’s so much more that goes into running a successful photography business. Facebook ads are either going to highlight that and accelerate your business if you have everything else in good working order. If you don’t and you think Facebook ads are a magic bullet and you don’t have everything else working properly, it’s going to only show that out even more, so don’t look at Facebook ads in a bubble. Understand that Facebook ads interface with everything else you have going on in your business.

Rachel Brenke: I’m so glad you said that because I think, if you guys are struggling in other marketing areas, do not start here. You need to get back to the very basics, identifying who your ideal client is, who … what exactly you want to serve to them. Like Bryan talked about, talk about them, with them, not at them about you, so this is a really good time for you guys to put a pause, check your marketing, see what else is or is not working. Facebook ads should just be one component of the entire marketing strategy, and don’t forget that personal recommendations from your existing clients are even a part of this as well. I mean, like the way that I mentioned, I utilize it.

Bryan Caporicci: If I can, I actually have an entire section in that course all about preparing the foundation for massive Facebook ad results where I basically handpick what I think or at least the MVP or the minimum viable changes that you have to make or things that you have to get working before you do Facebook ads, and testimonials is one of them.

In fact, in that video, I walk through exactly how to get the best testimonials from your clients that are going to be an incredible sales tool for you in your business because if testimonials aren’t being treated as a sales tool in your business, there is no point in having them, so, yeah, definitely make sure that you focus on the foundation before you get into the tactic of Facebook advertising.

Rachel Brenke: I love that. Bryan, thank you so much for being on today.

You guys can find him at getsproutstudio.com. That’s the studio management software that’s amazing, or you can check out the course at fbmarketingforphotographers.com, and, as always, you can find all the show notes over at rachelbrenke.com, and don’t forget to jump into our Facebook group, The Business Bites. We have a bunch of different industry professionals in there chit-chatting about podcast episodes and top issues that you guys are facing in your businesses and finding solutions.

Featured Guest & Resources

Bryan Caporicci is an award-winning wedding and portrait photographer based out of Fonthill, Canada. In 2014, he was awarded his Masters of Photographic Arts (MPA) designation by the Professional Photographers of Canada (PPOC), making him one of the youngest Canadian photographers to receive this level of achievement.

Bryan is the lead content creator at SproutingPhotographer.com and the host of the Sprouting Photographer Podcast. He teaches at workshops across North America, including industry-leading conventions and conferences such as WPPI, Shutterfest and Canada Photo Convention. Bryan is also the CEO and Founder of Sprout Studio.

Find Bryan and his resources here:

Facebook Ads for Photographers (Free Course)

Website:  Sprout Studio  and  Sprouting Photographer

About the author

Rachel Brenke is a lawyer, author and business consultant. She is currently helping professionals all over the world initiate, strategize and implement strategic business and marketing plans through various mediums of consulting resources and legal direction.

Hi, I’m Rachel Brenke

Rachel Brenke

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