By Susan Saldibar

“We’re getting nothing out of our Facebook Dynamic Ads. They aren’t effective.” 

Why is that? Do your ads suck? Is your sales team that bad? Probably not. More likely it’s because you’re treating top of funnel leads like they are bottom of the funnel, according to Debra Gawet, Social and Digital Content Strategist Supervisor for SageAge Strategies (a Senior Living Foresight partner). And it makes a big difference.

Debra tells me that she sees too many eager sales counselors jumping all over a prospective resident and turning them off in the process. “It’s time to think about this marketing and sales tactic from a different perspective so you can maximize the return on your investment,” she urges marketers.

That means building a better understanding how Facebook Dynamic Ads work. “People like Dynamic Leads campaigns because of how easy it is for prospects to provide their contact information. Unlike other ads which send the prospect directly to a landing page with a form to fill out, they are able to provide relevant contact information within the form without ever having to leave the ad,” she explains. And this makes it easier to gather those details.

But therein lies the problem. “Sales gets excited when they receive the form and just pick up the phone,” Debra says. “Then, when the prospect reacts negatively and pushes back, they hang up and enter ‘not qualified’ into their CRMs. In reality, it was rushing a viable prospect towards a move-in that turned the lead cold.”

So, What Should They Do Instead?

Here are four things Debra recommends to those using Facebook Dynamic Ads leads:

  1. Remind yourself of this time-tested rule: Marketing (attract) > Sales (engage) > Customers (delight). You will be attracting your target audience in the early stages of the journey and need to treat them as such.
  2. Because this is an early “awareness” stage, people are looking for answers, resources, education, research data, opinions, and insight. 
  3. Actions to be taken include nurturing the lead from awareness (problem aware) to consideration (solution aware) to the decision stage (provider aware).
  4. Thanks to digital marketing, nurturing can be achieved through a multi-channel approach: email, social, PPC (pay-per-click), etc.

Debra also reminds marketing/sales pros that, according to HubSpot, it can take up to ten “touches” from the time a prospect becomes aware of your community until they convert. And, while you need to exercise restraint in your approach, timeliness is still key. Debra says, “The likelihood that they will progress is higher if you respond quicker than if you wait. Otherwise, they may not remember completing the form.”

It’s Important to Be Human

Finally, as many of us have found out the hard way, Facebook is all about authenticity. They can shut down ads and other communications if they sense they are otherwise. “Above all remember to be ‘human’,” Debra says. “Social selling is about human-to-human connection and providing a solution to each prospect’s problem. This means being warm, friendly, and genuine. Not pushy!”

And that means making sure your sales team is properly trained to interact appropriately. “Our GROW Sales Training Program was designed to do this,” Debra tells me. “It helps change the culture by equipping sales teams with the expertise to nurture leads in ways that build a stronger relationship and therefore greater potential to convert to move-ins.”

These are tough times for senior living sales and marketing teams. Occupancy is suffering and the inclination for sales is to jump all over any lead coming in. Taking Debra’s advice will help you make sure you don’t trample them in the process.

For more information about SageAge Strategies, please visit their website.