Social Media Lead Ads Explained

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Hey Folks! The article below, Social Media Lead Ads Explained, is the first entry of our Advanced Social Media Advertising Series. The goal of the series is to peel back the curtain on lesser known but highly effective social media advertising techniques that marketers and business owners can use to yield big results for their business. If you dig what we’re preaching, be sure to sign up below to be notified when we post new entries. Enjoy!



As marketers, we must constantly search for new ways to improve the speed and ease in which we capture leads. Over the years, elements such as landing pages, AMP pages, click-to-call buttons and live chat software have all played major roles in making it easy for users to contact your business through your web properties.

Notice I said web properties. Up until a few months ago, the only properties to capture online leads were websites and landing pages. That’s all changed thanks to Facebook/Instagram launching Lead Ads and LinkedIn launching Lead Gen Forms. To avoid confusion, I’ll be using the phrase “social media lead ads” when referring to Facebook and LinkedIn’s platforms together.


What are Social Media Lead Ads?

Social Media Lead Ads are ads that collect user information directly within a social media platform. When a user clicks on one of these ads, they are NOT directed to a destination URL. Instead, they will be able to submit their contact information directly on the social platform within the same browser window.

By removing websites and landing pages from the process, you improve the speed and ease of capturing a conversion.

This is a game changer. It’s also a fantastic option for those of you with a poorly-designed website that fails to produce opportunities for your business.


Traditional Online Advertising Conversion Flow:


Lead Ads Conversion Flow:


What Social Media Lead Ads Look Like

Social Media Lead Ads look like your typical sponsored Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn ads. Once a user clicks on a lead ad, a contact form will pop up in your browser or drop down below your ads. Again, you will NOT go to a destination URL. The forms are straightforward with no distractions, which is how you want them to be.


How To Set Up Your Social Media Lead Ads

Facebook & Instagram Lead Ads

  1. Select your Ad Account when logged into Facebook’s Business Manager.
  2. Click the Create Campaign button.
  3. Select Lead Generation as your marketing objective.
  4. On the Ads Set page, you’ll see a blue box that says “please read and accept Facebook’s Lead Ads terms before creating your ad for this page.” Click on “view terms” and select “I agree.”
  5. Build out the rest of your ad set and click Continue.
  6. At the bottom of the ads page, you’ll see Lead Form. Click the “New Form” button.
  7. Begin to build your form and be sure to link your privacy policy.
  8. Complete and click the “Place Order” button at the bottom.

LinkedIn Lead Gen Forms

  1. Go to your LinkedIn Campaign Manager and choose your business account.
  2. Click “Create Campaign.”
  3. Click “Sponsored Content” for your campaign option.
  4. On the Create Sponsored Content page, select the option “Collect leads using LinkedIn Lead Gen Forms.”
  5. Choose the post that you’d like to sponsor (advertise) and click the “Sponsor Selected” button.
  6. Create your form template (offer headline, offer text, form cells, etc) and click next.
  7. Continue to build your audience just like you would for other generic LinkedIn ad campaigns and click continue.
  8. Set your budget and place the order.


Collecting Social Media Lead Ads

This is where things get a little wonky. Unfortunately, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn do NOT send you an email notification when a lead is captured. You must manually log in to your campaign dashboards to see if you’ve received any leads. If leads have been captured, you can download a CSV file containing the contact info. The fact that these BILLION dollar companies can’t develop an email notification system for leads is mind-boggling! However, there is a company out there that claims they can send email notifications for Facebook ads, but we’ve yet to test them. The company is Leadsync. Give it a try and let us know!



As mentioned, Social Media Lead Ads are the fastest and easiest way to capture leads through social media advertising. Businesses of all sizes should be using this form of advertising, especially if your websites and landing pages aren’t producing quality leads. Get crackin’ on building your lead ads and make sure to check your campaign dashboards often for new leads. Good luck!

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