How to Grow a Facebook Audience for (Almost) Free
Here’s a hint: Facebook Groups. Really! We’re going to show you how they can provide real value through curation. Yes, curation. Curation sometimes get a bad rap, but this method can set you up for extremely targeted leads in your Facebook Ads Audience that you’ll be able to advertise to for just pennies.
PART A – Content Curation
Step 1 – Who is your ideal lead? Write it down.
This part is as simple as asking yourself, “Who needs/wants my product/service?”. As an example, for a dog training niche, we would want people in local “dog owners/training” groups.
Step 2 – Find Content
Search online and find a decent quality “ultimate/master/complete” guide to what your ideal lead cares about. Regardless of how much you know about your niche, you can identify a guide that outlines some major activity that your niche does. In dog training, we would want something like an “ultimate guide to training your dog”.
Step 3 – Parse Content
Read the guide through and make a list of all the topics it covers. Most guides are split up by topic/header and so it should be pretty straightforward making this list. For our dog example, we might get topics like “teaching dogs to sit,” or “teaching dogs to walk without a leash,” or even “teaching dog to pee outside”.
Step 4 – Ask Questions
Open up a spreadsheet and make a list of questions about each topic that someone might ask. Use Who/What/When/Where/Why/How to generate as many questions you can about your topic. If you were your ideal lead, what might you be asking? Perhaps questions like “How do I teach my dog to walk without a leash?” or “When should I start training a dog?” or “Why is dog training important?”.
Step 5 – Google Fest
Really. Literally Google each question and find a good website/link with the answer. Record that link in your spreadsheet. Google already has the answers to all of your questions. Your job and value in all of this is to find the best answers. Ask yourself: “If I were my audience, would I be happy that I was linked to this page? Does this page answer my question well? Is this page enjoyable to read?” This is what will separate quality content and spam, so pick wisely.
PART B – Distribution
(This assumes you already have a Facebook account for advertising and are able to create a Facebook tracking pixel.)
Step 6 – Get Personal
On your personal Facebook account, join as many groups as you can where your ideal lead is involved. You will later post your links to these groups. This does need to be your personal Facebook account and/or an account that isn’t associated with a business. You want to look like a contributing group member, not a business posting spam.
Step 7 – Link Retargeting
Set up an account with a link retargeting company. A link retargeting company will let you make short links that have a Facebook tracking pixel attached. Usually, you have to embed tracking pixels into a website. Because the link is being retargeted, we can add small pieces of code to the pages we link to by using a link retargeting company. This is what will build our audience for nearly free. Rocketlink is one; PixelMe is another. There are several around; do a small bit of research and choose the one with the best price. Just make sure you can embed a Facebook tracking pixel. Try them out to test that load times are fast between clicks on the short link and redirection to the page. Most offer a trial subscription to help you choose.
Step 8 – Tracking
Create a Facebook tracking pixel associated with whatever Facebook page you want to run your ads from. The retargeting companies usually have tutorials on how to set up the Facebook tracking pixel, so we won’t touch upon that. Just in case you don’t know, though, a Facebook tracking pixel will keep track of each person via Facebook account that goes to a specific link or performs a specific action (like making a purchase). Usually, this is your own website with its own tracking pixel—usually used to build an audience from people who visit.
Step 9 – Post
Write an extremely short, honest description of a link. Post it to all of the groups you joined in step 6. Don’t get too fancy or high concept. A simple description followed by the link is what you want. What you don’t want is to venture into SPAM territory with language like “TOP 10 WAYS TO TRAIN YOUR DOG THAT YOU WON’T BELIEVE”. Really just stay away from all caps in general. Much better is something simple like “How to train your dog: [link]”.
Step 10 – Watch the Growth
You should see your audience grow for basically free. Now that people are clicking on your valuable shared content, you are slowly building your Facebook ad audience through the associated tracking pixel. Remember to post regularly. How big your targeted audience gets is limited to how much good content you can find.
Step 11 – Advertise
It’s finally time to send Facebook ads to your newly assembled audience and reap the rewards. This audience is incredibly targeted. Since you aren’t competing with everyone else using Interest-Based targeting like “People interested in dog training”, ads will be much cheaper to run, with a much higher conversion rate.
Some Closing Notes
Don’t feel bad in taking advantage of people’s interests. That’s really just advertising. If done properly, you are literally improving the Facebook groups you are a member of by posting quality content that members truly care about.
Do use your personal account to post the links so it doesn’t look like you are trying to profit from sharing content. If you don’t, you will be called out and likely banned from the group and your efforts will all be for naught.
Find content/links that have great images and headlines. People will click through much more often if there is a nice image and they know what they are clicking on.
Use only the Facebook tracking pixel options. Do not use any Call To Action (CTA) options available with link retargeting services. They can technically insert your ads into the pages you link to, but we won’t do this because we want the content to be a genuine share, not just another ad platform.
Do not post too often. Once, maybe twice a day is ideal. The more you post, the closer your content might look to spam and may get taken down.
You might even get likes and comments thanking you for sharing content. The result of this method is that you’ll be posting genuinely valuable content in Facebook groups that matter to your target audience. Since there is no front end monetization, what you are sharing is actually free value for group members. On the back end, you will be activating your Facebook pixel every time someone clicks on your link and building an audience that you can advertise to.
This method is essentially the same as using a lead magnet to collect emails, but instead we are using other people’s content (which is much better and highly ranked on Google) to provide even more value, with an even more seamless experience for our leads—they don’t even have to put in their email.
This article was sourced and updated from a post on Reddit, which you can check out here:
Photo by Cookie the Pom