Building a consistent flow of pre-qualified residential repaint leads can be a challenging task, especially if your painting business relies on word-of-mouth advertising. But where do you start?
If you’re searching for the best source of quality painting leads at a reasonable price point, look no further than Meta Ads (Formally Instagram and Facebook Ads).
Yes, Social Media Ads have been drilled into our minds as a low-quality lead source, but this is a fallacy due to a lack of understanding of what ad types and demographics produce the best results on this medium.
So I’m giving away our secret sauce to building a high-volume residential repaint lead generation system using social media advertising.
Before we dive into the weeds, let’s start with a simple question…
Do Facebook Ads Work For Painters?
Yes! But it requires a little more effort and knowledge compared to running ads on Google. Ad types, content, and images will all determine how your ads will preform on social media.
Now let’s jump in!
Social Media Marketing: Facebook Ads 101 for Painting Contractors
According to Statista, Facebook is still the dominant social media network, with approximately 2.93 billion active users every month. Facebook is also the platform on which Americans spend the most time with an average of 33 minutes per day 🤯
As a residential painting contractor, you probably know what your ideal customer profile (ICP) looks like.
For instance: A dual-income household earning over $250k per year with a home valued over $500k.
If you haven’t developed an ICP yet, start here — Ask yourself what characteristics do the customers that are easiest to close all have in common? Build a persona around these demographics, and stick to them.
Now let’s review how do you use this information.
How Do Facebook Ads for Painters Work?
Since the majority of users on Facebook or Instagram are not actively looking for your painting services, you have to get creative to capture buyer intent.
Buyer Intent (or Purchase Intent): The probability of how close a consumer is to completing a purchase of a product or service.
While we don’t have a search query to target as we do on paid search (Google Ads/PPC) we do have user data.
Have you ever seen an ad and felt like your phone must be monitored by Facebook? Hint: It’s not, Meta’s algorithm is just REALLY good at leveraging your user data and social interactions. This is ultimately why Meta has run into so many privacy issues — your data is essentially sold to the highest bidder.
Consequently, Instagram and Facebook Ads for painters are actually among the most effective ways to generate new residential painting business on a budget.
The short answer: It depends, but $30-$60 per lead is a good target.
We recommend a daily budget between $40-50 (roughly $1200-$1500/month). The primary factor that determines your CPA (cost-per-acquisition) is your cost-per-click (CPC). Factors that can impact your CPC include:
Target Audience Size: The larger your target service area the cheaper the leads will be.
Competition: If you’re in a saturated market you can expect a higher CPC (cost-per-click).
Target Services: Costly services such as Cabinet Painting tend to have a lower conversion rate compared to the standard interior repaint project.
PPC Comparison: Facebook Ads vs. Google Ads for Painters
Like most painting business owners, you’re probably wondering whether you should focus your ad spend on Facebook or Google.
While they both have their time and place, here are the pros and cons of each:
Facebook Ads: Pros and Cons
Meta (Facebook and Instagram) has the best platforms for generating residential repaint leads at a low price point. Since the average CPC for a painting lead on social media is around $1 (compared to $20 on Google) it’s hard to beat the cost for an exclusive lead.
A downside of Meta Ads is the time involved to close a lead. Unlike Google Ads, which sends traffic to a landing page to book an estimate, it’s best to keep users on the Meta platform to maintain a low CPL (cost-per-lead).
At the time of writing this article there is currently no way to book an estimate directly on the Meta platform. Therefore it will require outreach to book an estimate from a new lead generated via Facebook Ads.
Additionally, since we have no search queries to target on social media you will need to build a custom audience to target, and this can take time (generally around 30-60 days).
Given the lack of buyer intent on social media you can expect a healthy close ratio to range between 35-45%.
Google Ads: Pros and Cons
Conversely, using a well-optimized landing page Google Ads offers the best quality leads, but at a higher price point.
You can expect to spend between $100-$200 per booked estimate using Google Ads, but since you’re able to skip the outreach step required by social ads the higher price point might be worth the cost — Ask yourself, what is the value of your time?
Google is also the best medium for commercial painting leads as B2B leads can be difficult to acquire on social media.
Since we have established buyer intent using targeted search queries on this medium you can expect a healthy close ratio to range between 40-60%.
How to Build a Successful Social Media Advertising Campaign
Now that we reviewed why and how social ads work, let’s discuss how to build a successful campaign to attract new painting leads by advertising your painting business on Facebook and Instagram.
1. Claim Your Meta Profiles
First, if you don’t have Facebook and Instagram profiles created for your business yet, you will need to set those up.
Here are a few helpful tips to setup these profiles effectively:
Use the same slug for your Facebook Page name and your Instagram username. This will ensure your customers can easily find you on both platforms.
Fulfill as much information as possible on each profile. Items like your service areas, website, and phone number play an important role here.
Now that we have the framework for your advertising campaign created, let’s get on with the main event!
Meta has a number of various ad types you can select from. While you may think it’s best to send traffic from Facebook and Instagram directly to your website, like Google Ads, it’s actually just a great way to waste your ad spend.
Demographics — This is targeting information you provide Meta such as location, age, and gender.
Custom Audience — Build an audience around those who interact with your website/business.
Lookalike Audience — Build an audience that is similar to those who have already interacted with your business in the past.
For Custom Audiences and Lookalike Audiences we recommend targeting the following sources:
Website — Add a pixel to your website to retarget traffic on Facebook and Instagram.
Customer list — Build an audience from a list of your past customers.
Video — Create a “Video View” campaign to build an audience from those who play a video you’ve created.
Lead form — Build an audience from those who submit your lead generation forms.
Instagram account — Target those who like and interact with your Instagram Profile.
Facebook page — Target those who like and interact with your Facebook Business Page.
As for Demographics, we find the best results with the following targets:
Location — Your services areas + 20 mile radius
Age — 25-65+
Gender — Women
5. Monitor Your Campaigns
A successful social media advertising campaign can be built and managed by just about anyone with enough time and money, but most successful campaigns come from experience.
If you’re just getting started we recommend monitoring your campaigns closely. Your ads will be in a “learning” phase for approximately the first 30 days, or 30 conversions.
Once your ads are optimized check in at least once a week to ensure your CPC and CPL costs fit your budget and margins, then adjust as needed!
Skip the Headache and Hire The Best!
Implementing the social media marketing guide as defined above will produce results for your business, however, those tasks take time and energy.
Realistically, most painting business owners don’t have the time to learn, develop, and refine a successful social media marketing campaign.
This is where the team at Base Coat Marketing comes in. As a professional digital marketing agency exclusive to painting contractors, we can have your business up and running with social ads in as little as one week! BUT we are exclusive to only one painting company in each region so lock down your market before your competition does…