For most people, there’s no Facebook Ads Marketing Strategy — there’s only trial and error (more error than positive trials). It’s tempting to create Facebook ads and send all the traffic to a landing page with a yellow (or is it red?) shiny button which says “Buy Now”. Asking for the sale way too soon in your marketing actually backfires more than you know.

Eager to get some sales in or to show some ROI for the Facebook (or Google) ad spend, it’s easy to understand why so many business owners and marketers do this.

I even wrote an entire blog post on why you are sucking all the potential out of your campaigns when you aim for making sales with your landing pages.

Note: Not that you can’t, because you can. Leadpages even has direct integration with Stripe to let you make sales straight off landing pages. Even with Unbounce, you can easily add code or use a link (with a button) to push sales or to cross-sell products within a flowing funnel.

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Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. Here’s why:

Asking for a Sale is Too much to Ask

If you went to a bar, saw someone attractive, and if you asked for marriage, would it ever work? No.

Asking for a sale the first time someone sees your ad on Google or Facebook is like asking for marriage on a first date. (Read: It won’t ever work).

How then do you assume that asking for the sale right away (from your first campaign on Facebook or Google) would ever work? What do your customers know about you (or your products and services) that they’d actually sit with their wallets in hand?

Before they buy from you, they need to be sure that you have a solution to their problem.

To get there, they’d need a taste of what you can do (or what you offer), at least a little social proof, and enough time to make these buying decisions (and that’s why you need email marketing autoresponders to keep nurturing your potential customers until they buy, and then some more).

Cold traffic doesn’t buy

How do you think anyone would ever make a purchase when you are shooting ads at completely cold traffic?

Granted that you can choose to target very specific audiences with Facebook ads.

Google allows you several different campaigns (including Google Shopping ads and ads on the Google Display Network). You could implement retargeting as well.

But no matter what you choose to do, remember that there’s no way you can build a sustainable sales strategy out of your marketing efforts by launching campaigns to cold audiences.

You might make a sale or two if you are lucky. It’s not going to be a sustainable or profitable way to launch campaigns on Facebook or Google to actually profit from.

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Without trust, It’s hard to sell

Let’s assume that you were paying attention and that you do realize that you can’t sell (as well as you could) to completely cold traffic. So, you launch Facebook ad campaigns optimized for reach or traffic.

Then, you’d even add a campaign or two for retargeting. If you did that, you are now looking at “warm audiences”. Even then, it’s still hard to sell. You might do relatively better with these secondary campaigns targeting audiences that might already know you (since they visited your landing pages or browsed products on your e-commerce store).

It’s still not the best you can do.

If your target audience (while launching direct sale campaigns on Facebook or Google) doesn’t know you, trust you, or know exactly what you are offering, they aren’t going to buy from you.

At least, not yet.

A great way to build this trust over time is with consistent focus on generating traffic with inbound marketing — blogging, content marketing, videos, social media, and the works.

That inbound marketing part is done to develop trust, to build a community around your brand, products, and services.

Don’t go chasing sales all the time (no matter how counter intuitive it might seem like).

You’ll only have thousands of dollars spent on Facebook ads and Google ads with nothing much to show for.

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