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How To Use Facebook Lead Ads to Increase Webinar Registrations

March 18, 2016 Allison Gibbs

Webinars are an awesome component of a healthy inbound marketing program. Webinars make it easy to get in front of your prospects and clients and help them solve problems while giving them a taste of your personality. People want to buy from people they know, like and trust and if they hear you speak in real time, it goes a long way toward helping them get to know you.

One challenge that some of our clients have is how to increase registrations for their webinars. They have a great presentation prepared and a great message to share but they have not yet built a large email list. This is where Facebook Lead Ads can be a powerful tool.

A Lead Ad is a type of sponsored campaign on Facebook that allows you to collect a lead or registration from Facebook users in the most friction-free way possible. They can register for your webinar without even leaving Facebook. Even better, you can use Facebook's advanced demographic targeting or custom audiences to pinpoint the right people for your webinar.

Here's how it works:

  • Prospect sees your webinar campaign in their Facebook news feed
  • Prospect clicks the "Sign Up" button
  • A small window pops up that pre-fills the prospects name and email address (because Facebook already has this)
  • Prospect confirms with one more click
  • Prospect is now registered for your webinar without even leaving Facebook

Sounds dreamy, right? You, too, can enjoy this utopia of high conversion. Here is how to set up a Lead Ad to promote your next webinar.

Getting Started

To set up a Lead Ad, you'll need the following:

  • Facebook Business Manager account
  • Zapier account
  • GoToWebinar account (or a compatible webinar system)

You can use another webinar system if you want (I think WebEx works fine) but I use GoToWebinar, so for the purposes of this article, we will assume that you will as well.

If you don't have your Facebook Business Manager account set up yet, be sure to do that, too.

Finally, make sure you have a Zapier account set up. Zapier is a service that helps you sync applications together and in this case, send your Facebook lead over to GoToWebinar.

Setting Up Your Lead Ad

Step one is to set up your Lead Ad. Well, actually step one is to set up your webinar in GoToWebinar but we'll assume you've done that.

To set up your Lead Ad, go to your Facebook Ad Account from within the Business Manager and start a new sponsored campaign. Choose "Collect lead for your business."

Next, you'll choose your Page that aligns with your business. You may only have one business page, but if you manage multiple accounts like we do at SpinWeb, you'll have a bunch.

Choose the appropriate page and then give your campaign a name.

As you can see, I gave it a descriptive name that specifies a lot of information. I'm specifying that it's a webinar promotion, that it's a Lead Ad and also the full name of the webinar. I'm a stickler for naming because as you start to do more of these, it becomes really important to be able to see what's what at a glance as your looking at all your campaigns.

Next, you'll set up your targeting. You'll want to decide who is going to receive this webinar announcement. You can use any audience you want including website custom audiences or demographic targeting. In this case, we'll use a saved audience made up of our buyer personas.

Next, decide on your budget and time frame, just like any other Facebook campaign. Note that I tend to use the same name for the ad set as I did for the campaign name because this is just a simple webinar promotion.

Next, you'll set up your ad copy and image just like any other. For the call to action button I choose "Sign Up" because it's the most logical choice for a webinar. I also like to enter in my website address in the "Display Link" section so that it looks well-branded.

Here is where it gets a little different. In order to capture webinar registrations you will need a lead form. If you have never run a Lead Ad before, you will need to create a form. If you already have lead forms created you can select one of those, but we'll assume this is your first Lead Ad so you'll need to create a new form.

As you name the form, I would recommend making it generic so that you can use it over and over again. In this case, I'm calling mine "Webinar Registration Form" so that any time I run a webinar I can use this form instead of creating a new one. This works for us because we only do one webinar at a time. If you have multiple webinars being promoted at the same time you may want to create specific forms for specific webinars.

Next you'll configure your form. This part is important. Facebook defaults to just email and "full name." This means it treats the name as one field. This will cause a problem since GoToWebinar (and most other systems) will treat the name as two fields: first and last name. To fix this, you'll want to select more options, de-select "full name" and then select first and last name as separate fields.

As you can see, there are a lot of fields you can include. If you want the highest conversion rate I would stop at first name, last name and email. You can certainly ask for more, but keep in mind that as people start to see that more of their personal information is being sent, some of them will decide to stop and not finish the registration.

Next, it will ask you for a link to your privacy policy (you do have one, right?).

Then it will ask you to fill in your website address so the ad can prompt people to visit your website after they've completed the form.

Now you'll be taken to a screen that asks you if you want to "Add a Context Card to your form." The answer is yes! This is a good thing. While you can skip it, I do recommend using it. A context card is a screen that tells the Facebook user what they will get by signing up for your webinar. It's great because it reinforces the benefits of registering and can be useful in getting people over the hump of deciding to confirm their registration.

So go ahead and add that Context Card. In my card, I chose the paragraph format and filled in some basic summarized information about the webinar.

Your topic might work better with bullet points so feel free to choose that format if it works better for you.

Once your form is finished you can save it and place the order for your campaign. Now you're done with the Facebook portion of the campaign (almost).

Before moving on, be sure to go view a preview of your ad and complete the signup process.

This is important in the next phase of the setup because you need to have at least one registration recorded in the correct format for Zapier to pick up the lead and correctly map the fields to GoToWebinar.

GoToWebinar Integration

Now on to the last phase! We need to integrate our Lead Ad with GoToWebinar. Log into your Zapier account (you'll need a paid plan) and make a new zap starting with a Lead Ad as the trigger.

Continue with the default of a new lead triggering the action.

Connect your Facebook account, choose the right page and form and ad account and then test the connection.

Once you test the connection and view the data, you should see your test lead show up with first and last name properly segmented.

Save this step and then choose GoToWebinar as your action app.

Follow the prompts to connect your GoToWebinar account and then choose the upcoming webinar that goes with this Lead Ad.

Next you'll need to map the first name, last name and email fields from the Lead Ad to GoToWebinar.

Run through the remaining confirmation and do a test and you should see a success message. View your data to be sure, but if you see this, do a happy dance because it worked.

Assuming all is well, give your zap a name and save it. I like to give my zaps names that describe what they do.

At this point, your setup work is complete... can you believe it? Now that everything is configured, your Lead Ad can do what it does best: generate leads. Any time someone signs up through your lead ad they will automatically be registered for your webinar just as if they had signed up directly on your landing page. The email confirmation will be sent instantly and they will be registered right away.


While it may seem like a lot of work to set up a Lead Ad, it's a really effective way to get registrants for your webinar.

The nice thing about Facebook Lead Ads is that it reduces so much friction from the process. While we would love to assume that everyone would go through all the steps to register for your webinar directly, sometimes people just don't want to go through all the steps. A Lead Ad removes those barriers because they can stay directly on Facebook and register without having to type anything (because Facebook auto-fills their contact information).

We're seeing outstanding results as we use Facebook Lead Ads to help our clients increase registrations for their webinars. Give Lead Ads a try. I think you will quickly fall in love as much as I have.

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Allison Gibbs

Allison Gibbs

Allison found her love for marketing while studying business alongside her theatre degree at Indiana University. She loves offering simple solutions to complex problems (and tacos). In her down time, she loves a good run and staying involved in theatre (which landed her in a SuperBowl halftime show alongside Madonna)

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