If we got a quarter for every time someone looked at us funny when we told them that Facebook was a perfect channel to use for generating B2B sales — we’d be at least thousandaires.

But in our experience, Facebook is crushing LinkedIn. We recently picked up a new manufacturer client that provides security portals and hadn’t done much marketing. For the most part, all of their sales have come from word of mouth and primarily from government projects. When we told him we were going to use Facebook to generate leads for him, he scratched his head and said, “Well you guys are the experts; I trust you.” 

So we set up his Facebook page, imported a database of dealers, integrators and government security contractors, and literally within two days he received his first lead via the Facebook lead ad forms from a government worker.

You might be reading this right now saying no way. But the reality is more people are interacting with Facebook over LinkedIn. If you have a LinkedIn account, do you find yourself browsing it three-to-five times a day or while you’re in the waiting room at the doctor’s or dentist office? How about when you’re at dinner and you want to show off that beautiful piece of steak to all your friends? Probably not, right?

Our article is too short to get into deep details on comparing Facebook to LinkedIn, but overall, Facebook is cheaper, gets more impressions, gets more interaction with potential customers asking questions or adding comments, and it generates results.

We believe that educating readers and revealing how to do the things we do for our clients will only educate and improve the entire industry. 

So rip out this article and staple it to your wall for a step-by-step play on how to set up Facebook lead form ads to generate results.

The first step is to create your visuals. We typically like to test two or three ads. If you want to attract Fantastic Sams or hair salons, create ads that show a salon or hair stylist in the graphic. Now Facebook only allows 20 percent of text within the graphic itself, which is 1200 by 628 pixels. So when you choose that perfect image, put something captivating, such as “80 percent of theft comes from employees,” or something relating to the industry/vertical you’re targeting.

You can create a Facebook lead ad within Facebook and use their targeting tool that will allow you to choose your zip code of your service area and select a radius. But more importantly when you’re setting up your parameters and you set your daily budget ($15-20 a day is good) and scroll down to detailed targeting, you’ll want to type in “business owner” and the industry you’re interested in targeting — e.g., “salon business owner” — this way your ad will show to only Facebook users who have set their profile as a salon owner. That’s one way of doing it; the other is to purchase a database of business/salon owners within your area. Do a simple Google search and you’ll come across a bunch of list companies to purchase from. And as we’ve mentioned in past articles, you can import that database into Facebook, and if the user has used the email or phone number you’re importing, your ads will be shown to them.

After you’ve gone through those steps, it’s time to set up the form that potential customers will fill out when they see the ad. First thing you should do is uncheck the default settings, such as “name,” “number” and “email.” We have found that sometimes people use fake names or aliases, so you don’t want that information auto populated. Next, click on the button that will allow you to add a text field and name it “full name.” Then, add three others named “email,” “phone number,” and “best time to contact.” This way, when the Facebook user clicks on your ad, it will require them to type the info in, making the lead a little bit better qualified. Ask too many questions like company name, city, etc., and they’re less likely to fill it out.

You can also split test two images on the same ad. We typically like to duplicate the ad described above and just insert another graphic with different text to do our testing.

So if you have $15-$30 a day to advertise to a laser targeted audience, test it out, go fishing and see the results by using Facebook to generate business-to-business leads for commercial end users.