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Show Highlights

Today on Social Media week, Derek educates Ashkahn and Graham on what exactly it’s like placing an ad on Facebook.

Facebook, as well as other social media sites, provide a cornucopia of options for targeting your ad based on employment, interests, age range, and lots of others. For float centers, this can become fairly confusing, especially since floating doesn’t have demographics in the traditional sense.

Derek clears things up and explains to Graham, Ashkahn, and the rest of the float community, exactly why these options exist and what might work for a specific center.

Show Resources

Be sure to meet up with Derek at the Marketing Forum this year at The Float Conference Friday Activities. 

If you want to see his handiwork in action,

check out Float Tank Solutions on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

Or check out Float On on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram

Listen to Just the Audio

Transcription of this episode… (in case you prefer reading)

Graham: Okay.

Ashkahn: Alright, welcome, everybody.

Graham: Hey, there. I’m Graham.

Ashkahn: I’m Ashkahn.

Graham: And-

Ashkahn: We have a guest-

Derek: Derek!

Ashkahn: Derek.

Graham: Damn.

Ashkahn: It’s Derek. Boom, bet you didn’t see that coming-

Graham: Unless you’ve tuned in to last four days, which in that case, you definitely saw it.

Ashkahn: It was probably pretty predictable.

Graham: Yep. But he’s still here, still recording with us.

Ashkahn: That’s right.

Graham: Still talking about social media.

Ashkahn: We’re doing a whole week of it. We recommend listening to the other episodes before this if you want, or whatever, you know, you’re your own person. Don’t listen to us.

Graham: I mean, maybe just not about that, or you should listen to us for some things, for certain.  So, anyway. Today’s question is: “how do I know which options to choose when I set up a Facebook ad, cuz there are a lot of them?”

Derek: There are a lot of them.

Ashkahn: And Derek does social media for Float On-

Graham: We didn’t just drag this guy off the street.

Ashkahn: If this is the first episode you’re listening to.

Derek: Look, I just wanted to float for free, and this is what happens. Seven years later.

Ashkahn: So that’s who you’re hearing from now, right now. He does our shop social media does a lot of stuff for float tank solutions, it is the conference, he just been a dear and loving friend of ours for many years now. We hang out.

Derek: Sometimes. Go to Blazer games.

Ashkahn: Sometimes. Yeah.

Graham: And so go on, so there are a lot of options. Those are great, thank you for clarifying.

Ashkahn: Yeah, no, I just wanted to give people some context.

Derek: So you can target by job description no, actually. You can target by interest. Like we just said, the Blazers. And you can target by a lot of things. But the thing you should do is go listen to yesterday’s episode where we rambled on about the Facebook pixel, and try to target as much with that as possible. If you don’t have a large audience, or you’re just starting out, or you don’t even have a website just yet, there’s going to be a lot of decision-making in your future. You’re gonna have to decide who you want to target, and more importantly, I would argue, than who you’re targeting, is “does the message actually fit who you’re targeting?”

So, everybody uses the yogis as an example of you can target. I want to target who are interested in yoga, ages twenty-five to forty-five, and it’s really ambitious to say all of those people are the same people, right? You can alter politically, you can alter a lot of different things within that wide swath of twenty years. Like talk to somebody twenty years older and say they’re just like you. So.

Ashkahn: Yeah, and before we delve into the specifics, I think really the kind of benefit of modern advertising in social media platforms is basically this, the ability to do incredibly precise targeting.

Derek: Right.

Ashkahn: That’s what this has over newspaper. You can’t, with newspaper, you have the demographic of people who read the newspaper, which is probably pretty huge. And you’re just doing a shotgun approach, you know, or maybe you’re trying to get into a very specific publication that meets a certain demographic. But back in the day, with billboards, and a lot of the traditional advertising that existed, it was much more of a like, we’re gonna show this to as many people as possible to hopefully get the people we really want to see it, to see it. And now, with social media, and the ability to just know so much more and specify so much about who’s seeing something, this is basically the benefit, and I think it’s probably one of the big reasons why advertising like this is outperforming a lot more traditional advertising, is just because of this, you know, kind of scalpel precise.

Derek: Hyper-targeted. Yeah.

Ashkahn: So it’s good. If you’re doing social media advertising, and you’re not using this, you’re probably not getting one of the biggest benefits out of the advertising platform.

Derek: You can go hyper-targeted and get down to all the specifics about where they live within a certain mile radius, and what language they speak, and what level of college or not that they had attended. Test all of the stuff. So whatever your audience you’re going to select, do some variations and find the ones that actually do respond to what you’re doing more than anything else. And here’s why, you gotta monitor a lot of things on Facebook ads, and one of them is, “is the money I’m putting in, what I’m making back”, right?

So, some audiences, you could be pumping hundreds of dollars into, but if it never equates to a single float, then you’re actually wasting money. But if you’re, let’s say, put a hundred dollars of ads in, and you made four hundred dollars, that’s a pretty good return on ad spend. So, let’s say, for every dollar you put out, you made four dollars, you could just do that all day long. And you won’t know that unless you just start playing around with different audiences.

So find those that are close to you that you can actually speak to. If you’re a big Crossfitter, and you understand crossfit lingo, you could say hey, after today’s WOD, you can actually go ahead and relax in this tank and relieve all the tension, a la da la da la. And it actually will speak to the people in that Crossfit community better than, you know, everybody uses that, was it Steve Buscemi meme, where it’s like, “hey young people, I’m just a young person too”. And it sounds disjointed from what you’re actually trying to attract.

So start with audiences you’re familiar with, that you’re close to, and make sure, again, the messaging supports that.

Ashkahn: Is there really something called a WOD?

Derek: Yeah. It’s workout of the day.

Ashkahn: Okay.

Graham: And I will say, it’s good advice. It’s so much I tell people for target markets in general, not just on social media, too, is floating is kind of like the old saying about a hat store, where it’s like, “what’s the target market of a hat store? Anyone with a head”. You know, and with social media especially, I think that when you’re looking at demographics, it’s easy to just kind of choose out, “oh, I’m gonna go for yoga people”, or oh, “I’m gonna go for this wellness group”, or oh, “I’m gonna go for Joe Rogan”, because these are all really obvious tie-ins we think about.

But, in fact, often who ends up being really happy clients are the people who are part of groups that you’re interested in, and you could just as easily go after marathon runners, or even MMA fighters, or even firefighters, or police fighters, depending on what your other campaigns are doing.

Ashkahn: Musicians, artists, there’s a lot of different approaches.

Graham: Yeah, so don’t feel constrained by what you think is the appropriate wellness group, or those people who would already be interested in floating. Often, you’re kind of limiting yourself by constraining yourself to that.

Derek: Mm-hmm, exactly. And it builds rapport, so if you start attracting your people into your center, you start striking up these conversations, you’re gonna hit it off better if you have something in common. And so that’s where a lot of “which target market should I pick?”, pick the one that you’re going to wanna work with.

Graham: We have a lot of death metal bands who come through Float On, and that’s specifically because we have a couple employees who really like death metal. And when they pass through town, they always invite the bands out to play, and that wouldn’t be a target market you’d necessarily assume for float tanks. But in our case, totally is. That, again, comes just out of a love that our staff has for that specific interest.

Ashkahn: And especially with floating, when there’s such a huge, diverse range of benefits that you could list on there, like being able to target, and being able to adjust your copy, and what your messaging is, appropriate to the group that you’re targeting, is also really powerful. You know, it’s another tough part about having a billboard or something. It’s like, what do you say about floating in a billboard that doesn’t try to list fifty different benefits that might reach out to different people who are seeing it?

Derek: Make it look like snake oil. “This thing cures all!”

Ashkahn: Right.

Derek: Yeah, you want to avoid that, for sure.

Graham: So, we haven’t really talked about geographic targeting, or limiting, yet. Say a little about that.

Derek: I think every float center needs to do that with every one of their ads. There are ads I’ve seen on Facebook, and I try to give the float center owners a nudge when I say, let’s say, all the way across the country ads to come to our float center when I’m in Portland, OR, means you’re spending money to reach, I don’t know, I looked, because you could click on Facebook and find out, why am I seeing this ad, and they just said, twenty-five to forty-five year old male who liked Joe Rogan. Guess what? That’s a lot of people, and it probably should say within ten miles of your center if you want to attract the people you are actually trying to reach.

So, as far as geo-targeting, every audience you should set up should have whatever range works for the commuting ability in your city. So if it takes an hour to go ten miles. Right, you probably shouldn’t do ten miles. You might have enough population density where a five mile radius is sufficient, and Facebook will actually show you kind of the neighbors and everything, and you can put your float center’s specific address, it will drop a pin right on top of your float center. And then you just do the little slider to ten miles out and see how far out it goes, maybe twelve miles, fifteen miles, until you get to that point where you feel comfortable knowing your community, and reaching the best population for what you’re wanting to spend.

Graham: And the closer, the better, right? I mean, running an ad within just a couple miles is going to produce pretty good hits, but may cost more, maybe?

Derek: Yeah, so-

Graham: Is there a balance there between geographical specificity and actual cost of the ads?

Derek: When you go hyper-targeted, Facebook’s gonna make you pay for that, right?

Graham: Sure, sure.

Derek: Right, so if you go, “I want to hit all these people, including people within a mile radius, and college-educated, make over seventy-five thousand a year”, and la la la, Facebook’s like, oh, you know exactly who you’re trying to target. Well, now your leads just went from two dollars a click to seven dollars a click, because this is a very important person to you, and we’re gonna make you pay for it. So, I try to do a little bit wider swath, and I don’t just do everyone in Portland for the twelve-mile radius. What I probably start doing is picking those audiences plus geographic.

So demographics plus geographic is gonna be a lot better result than just one without geo for sure, and then geo without any kind of granular drill-down.

Graham: Cool. And, I mean, so that’s a definitely for certain one, is the geographical targeting. Are there any other options that you consider to be essential, that you pretty much do for everyone, or even just certain groups that you found, for us, to be especially helpful?

Derek: I like to play around with things. I’m a tinkerer, I understand the platform a little more. People call it testing, and I call it tinkering, but sometimes I go against the opposite grain, right? If we’re trying to attract people who are already into meditation, and yoga, and all this stuff, maybe they don’t need floating. Maybe they can get into that state without the benefit of the tank, and it’s a harder sell. Oh, “I can meditate, I’m fine”. But maybe you go to that super stressed out person, and you go to corporate executive. I try to sometimes go against the traditional float audience sometimes, and I might pay a little bit more for those, and I might not get as good of a crossover. But the people who do crossover are now infiltrating back at their corporate offices and talking to their employees, and their coworkers about what they just did, and it could have larger effects that you don’t necessarily see on Facebook immediately.

So, that’s one thing, it’s just try to do the opposite of what you think sometimes is intuitive and test that out as well, too.

Ashkahn: Yeah, I mean, I think that is definitely one of the harder to think of benefits of targeting is like, well, maybe you should be trying to expand the group of people who might even know about float tanks or have heard about it.

Derek: And it’s a balance, too. You know, the best Facebook targeting is going to be the people you’ve already warmed up. That’s your Facebook pixel we talked about in the last episode. That’s the email list you uploaded, we talked about in the last episode. The second best is gonna be, of course, people you feel are going to naturally adopt and warm up a little bit quicker, go from cold lead to a warmer lead. Sometimes, you gotta lay the foundation for those harder to get people, because some cities are only so big, and you sometimes, if you’re a town of ten thousand people, you’re gonna have to try and get in front of those ten thousand people one way, shape, or form.

And again, if you’re in a city of ten thousand people, it’s not gonna cost you that much to reach them, because it’s only ten thousand people. Whereas like Portland, when there’s two million people we’re trying to reach, it’s gonna cost a lot of money to reach those two million people. So you’re actually at an advantage with Facebook ads, I believe, when you’re in a smaller town.

Graham: And I have another question, actually, which is, once you find good demographics for you, or once you find these options to select on Facebook that work well for the ads you’re running, is that kind of it? You find the things that work in your area, and then you stick with those, or is there always some playing around, and trying new audiences, and stuff like that, to do?

Derek: I always play around, because you don’t want to fatigue the audiences. If you find a gold mine of an audience, and then you show ads to them, you show more ads to them, and the results start going down, you probably want to ease off of that audience. They’ve seen your ads enough, they know about you enough, you might want to move on to a different audience.

There’s a frequency rate that you can check in Facebook, where if you run one ad, I try to keep it under three, if somebody has seen the same ad more than three times, probably want to turn that campaign off. Switch the ad up. Target them again, or just ease off of that audience for a little bit and move to a different audience.

Graham: And you’ve kind of said this before for some of our other episodes too, just for other things, which is kind of the social media changes so much, and even like you said, I mean, these are people out there that are seeing the ads. You can fatigue them. And there’s this sense of do what works until it doesn’t, and then switch things up. Do you think that’s kind of just good advice for social media in general? Like you’re getting results from posting these images inside your shop, great, run with it, do an ad based on those images, wait until it doesn’t work anymore, and then try something else.

Derek: You can have a lot longer lifespan mixing it up, so if you’re just posting pictures all the time of in the center, and that gets old, and now what, now do you go to articles? Picture, then wait a little bit, then do an article, then wait a little bit, then do a video, and then go back to picture. I wouldn’t do picture, picture, picture, picture, until picture fatigued out, because that type of media is very valuable, so.

Graham: And is that just for organic, and would you say vary it up for ads, too? Like sometimes do video ads, sometimes do picture ads.

Derek: It depends on the audience responsiveness. Sometimes, if it’s a really good video, and it’s a short enough video, I would try video ads, especially if you can get that video ad under thirty seconds. Because you gotta think, again, nobody’s gonna interrupt their Facebook viewing to watch a six minute video. So, I would, again, mix it all up and try to honestly just be observant of what’s working and what’s not.

Graham: Cool. That makes sense. Alright.

Ashkahn: Great.

Graham: And any last things to add over there?

Ashkahn: So, I mean, this is-

Graham: Yeah, let me settle down over here, we’re just getting started.

Derek: All of this is a very big topic to cover in a short amount of time, and there are a lot of resources. If this is something you as a float center owner can’t afford to hire somebody to do for you, and you’re gonna learn, there are a lot of great resources that will walk you through it. Just be afraid to sit back and do nothing. You really should be doing something on Facebook ads. You can’t really go wrong, because as long as you’re not offending people, you’re reaching people. So the worst thing you could do is nothing.

Graham: Yeah, and look at the industry report too if you haven’t downloaded the most recent 2017 industry report. It’s actually true across the board for all of the industry reports, but if you look at the drivers of traffic to float centers, it’s number one, word of mouth, and then just slightly behind that, Facebook ads. And then the next tier of things, way below that, by far, is the two biggest things bringing people into float centers is just word of mouth, which is something that happens naturally. So if you’re gonna spend money on something, at least the stats, according to the industry, are spend that money on Facebook ads. It is paying people off more than any other venue.

Ashkahn: Mm-hmm.

Derek: And to wrap up a couple of the previous episodes, don’t get wrapped up in vanity metrics, right? Don’t get wrapped up in, “I spent a bunch of money, I got a bunch of likes.” Make sure that pixel is set up, so you can actually track your conversions, because if you throw five hundred dollars at an ad, and you’ve got all this reach, and all these likes, but not a single person bought a float, you just wasted five hundred dollars.

But also, you know, if you did a hundred dollars, and you made a thousand dollars off the deal, do more of those types of ads, right? So make sure, and the only way you can do that is putting all the pieces together, set up the Facebook Pixel and just know what is actually a real metric you should be shooting for.

Ashkahn: It’s all starting to come together. It’s good.

Derek: It’s media week.

Graham: Two more episodes, we’re gonna have a pretty nice bow tied on this package.

Ashkahn: Who knows what’s gonna happen in those. Alright, well, we’ll stop here so we can get you to those ones even faster. So if you guys have more questions you want to ask us that we’ll answer in the future, you can go to FloatTankSolutions.com/podcast, and stay tuned here tomorrow for the next installment of our social media week with Mr. Dubbington over here.

Graham: Yeah, and you know, in addition to sending us questions, which you should totally do, take a second to let us know how you like this social media week, too. We’re thinking about having a few more just targeted, cover a topic for a week’s worth of episodes, so, you know, if you hate it, definitely let us know. And if you like it, send us flowers, chocolate, we like just small trinkets and gifts, so.

Derek: Popcorn for Ashkahn.

Ashkahn: Yes, that would be great.

Graham: Alright, thanks everybody.

Ashkahn: See ya.

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