Time and time again pundits have forecasted the death of email marketing.This time, they said, Facebook Pages or Twitter profiles will kill email marketing. Page Likes are better than email addresses, they said. But today, Facebook announced Lead Adsthat let businesses and marketers run ads on Facebook to collect email addresses from users. This makes the whole process of collecting leads faster and simpler because people don’t even have to type their email address to subscribe. Facebook already has all their information and they can subscribe with one tap.

How It Works

You can get a lead in just two taps.

1. User sees your lead ad on Facebook and taps the “Subscribe” button.
Facebook Lead Ad Step 1

2. User confirms what personal information is being sent and has the ability to change it.
Facebook Lead Ad Step 2

3. That’s it. You have a lead. The user can now choose to visit your site or continue browsing Facebook.
Facebook Lead Ad Step 3

With Lead Ads, advertisers can have Facebook auto-fill any of the following information:

  • Full Name
  • Email
  • Street Address
  • Phone
  • Zip
  • City
  • State
  • Country
  • Company Name
  • Job Title

Makes Landing Pages Less Useful

The current process for advertisers is:

  1. Create a landing page
  2. Run a Facebook ad to get traffic to that landing page
  3. Hope that the user likes the content and completes the subscription form

With Lead Ads, there is no real need of creating a landing page because the user can subscribe right from Facebook.

What’s the Catch?

While this makes the whole process of subscribing so much easier, there are some potential issues that are yet to be answered.

Lead Quality
If users have to make such decisions without going through a well-thought out landing page, these leads maybe colder than the kind of leads we currently get on a landing page. But if this method is significantly cheaper, some drop in qualitymay be absorbable.

Cost and Conversion
If these ads convert well, demand may be high. As a result, Facebook may charge more to use Lead Ads. On the other hand, if people start seeing a lot of these ads and start getting more email then they usually do, will they still want to subscribe or will the conversion rates go down?

Data Integration
Another unanswered question is that how we’ll get the email address data from Facebook? Will it be a CSV or will it actually integrate with email marketing providers like MailChimp, Constant Contact, AWeber, etc.

Conclusion

Facebook lead adsmay or may not be a great lead generation tool. We’ll find that out in the coming days. But one thing is for sure, email marketing is alive and kicking! If you want to invest in online marketing for your business, it’s better toinvest on growing your email list instead of getting more Facebook likes or Twitter followers. Email open rates are also higher than views you get from social media.

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