The Anatomy of an Effective Facebook Ad

In today’s world of online marketing, Facebook is still a great resource for new LASIK leads.  

That is, if you know how to pull cold traffic from Facebook and funnel them into your practice.  

And it all starts with a Facebook ad.  

After spending tens of thousands of dollars and testing different images, headlines, and copy we’ve made some interesting findings that I’d like to share with you today.  

Below is what I’m calling the ‘anatomy of an effective Facebook ad.’   

I’ve boiled it down to three key elements.  

Before we get into those elements, let’s first define what success looks like on Facebook.  

We at Patient Pipeline determine an ad’s success by how much we’ve spent on that ad and how many leads it generates.  This is referred to as the cost per lead, or CPL.  As an ROI-focused marketer, I could care less about how many impressions or views my ads get.  Those are nice for branding purposes but I want my doctors to know that for every $1 they spend in ads they’ll receive back $5.  Or even more.  

So when we’re judging the effectiveness of a Facebook ad, we’re primarily looking at the CPL of that ad.  

Now that we know success, here are the three elements of an effective LASIK Facebook ad:  

Your image

The image you use for your Facebook ad is wildly important.  The number one job of the ad image is to do one thing, and one thing only.  

Stop the scroll.  

Your ad image must break people out of the never ending newsfeed scroll and stand out among photos of cute kids and funny cat videos.  

When we first launched Facebook ads, much like agencies, we used a lot of stock photography and beautiful looking photos from sites such as, Unsplash.com.  

Below is a fun quiz we created to see if you can spot which ad performed best:  

 


Wild, right?  

Now that we have proved better performance with lower quality photos, these are the only ad images we use now.  

Photos in the lane of a doctor and patient shot on an iPhone.  Great.  

Bad lighting?  Even better. 

Photos of a team member sitting at your front desk smiling with your logo behind them?  Perfect.  

A photo of the outside of your building?  Instant winner.  

Side note:  One of our clients didn’t have a photo of the outside of their building, so we just went to Google Maps and took a screenshot.  Now, that’s now the control ad that we cannot beat.  

So, why are low quality images ads more effective?  

It’s such an interesting concept, and I have a few ideas as to why this is.  

First off, that low quality image is stopping the scroll.   We’re stopping the scroll because:  

1-  When people see a Facebook ad with a beautiful stock photo, they instantly recognize it’s an ad.  We are bombarded with ads on a daily basis.  Our brains are now programmed to ignore anything that looks like an ad.  So potential LASIK marketing leads have almost unconsciously trained their mind to ignore all ads.  Therefore, it’s easy for them to just keep scrolling.  

I’ve studied under marketing greats of the 1930’s.  Claude Hopkins, Eugene Swartz, later on Dan Kennedy and Gary Halbert.  They cemented in my mind that to be effective in any kind of advertising, make the ad not look like an ad.  

Savvy marketers would take out full page ads to essentially write their own story in the publication.  They followed the same look and feel as the other articles, so when people were reading their ad, they just assumed it was part of the journal.  

Once the publication caught on, they were forced to add the word “advertisement” at the top.  Thus, the birth of the ‘advertorial’ was born.  

We follow this same thesis with our Facebook ads.  These photos look like a friend would be posting with their doctor.  To make them stop and question if they know this person or not.  

Or if they see the photo of the person at the front desk, it looks like a small, local business they may want to support.  With all the talk of giant corporations taking over the economy, people have a heart to work with small businesses.  

Lastly, maybe they’ve recognized your building in the community.  And again, want to do business with local.  

At the core, people want to do business with people.  

2 – PASC Conversational Copy

Because we’re on social media, when you’re writing the copy for your ad, it has to be social.  What I mean by that is, you’ll want to write your copy in a conversational story form.  The natural way people use social media, updating their network with life milestones in story form.  

We follow a format we call PASC.  

  • Problem
  • Agitate the problem
  • Solution (present the solution)
  • Call-to-action

Here’s a quick and easy example of this format:  

Problem:  Life with glasses and masks on the daily isn’t fun.  You walk outside with your glasses and mask and your glasses immediately fog up.  

Agitate the problem:  You’re at the grocery store trying to find the right produce, your mask moves then too deep of a breath and you can’t see the orange in your hand.  Trying to inhale just as hard to take away the fog, sounding like Trader Joe’s very own Darth Vader.  

Solution:  Maybe it’s time to look into LASIK?  Millions of people have gone before you with amazing results.  

CTA:  Here’s the kicker.  Not everyone who wants LASIK can have it.  You have to qualify as a good candidate.  Take this quiz where you can get a good idea if you may be a good candidate.  Click here to take the quiz now:  LINK

3 – Put them in a pipeline

The last element of an effective Facebook ad is to put them in a pipeline.  

There’s way too much to unpack here but the high level process is:  

Facebook ad > Landing page > Quiz > Offer for consultation > Text & email nurture sequence

Now that you know the 3 elements for Facebook advertising success, head on over to Facebook ads manager and publish your new ads!

NS

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