Time to take Facebook seriously

Posted: May 12, 2013 in Marketing
Tags: , , ,


Facebook currently has over 1,000,000,000 registered users along with free access to their explicit data for targeting. Saying this, many key stakeholders across ad agencies and within brands are still not taking Facebook seriously.

Due to the sheer scale and completely free explicit data available for Facebook, it should not only be viewed as a separate media channel but one of the most important for the majority of businesses – serving a few ASUs and creating a brand page and updating the status once a year is no longer acceptable and those brands who embrace social media and Facebook will be rewarded.

To recap on the key ad offerings for Facebook:

1. The classic ASU where you can attach an external click tracker which is a pure DR ad placement

2. Facebook brand / product fan page – it is now deemed the norm for customers to communicate via social media and having a robust customer support and product team strategy across Facebook is essential

3. Having a Facebook fan pages means that another channel has opened up to CRM giving the CRM team the option to extend the reach on page posts as well as upload customer email addresses for CRM via the classic ASU format

4. Facebook launched their own conversion pixel tracking a few weeks ago which although very simple technology to implement, is one of the most useful ad features they’ve launched for years which now answers questions such as ‘what is the value of a like?’, ‘when new customers engage with the social ads, do they go onsite to convert?’.

5. FBX – fantastic that Facebook has opened its gates to DSPs but we need to be realistic about what you can do and try to ignore the hype at this stage because when comparing prospecting campaigns across FBX vs marketplace, clearly marketplace is always going to win due to the extensive range of free explicit data which is available via marketplace only (worth around £1 CPM for the data alone) and not FBX as of yet. This means that FBX should only be used when it comes to pixel remarketing campaigns.

6. Mobile app install ads – Facebook were under pressure from shareholders to generate incremental revenue from Facebook and they certainly have not disappointed with the install ads from an advertiser or shareholder perspective. Although the ad is frequency capped to one ad per user per day, the ads across both tablet and phone take up pretty much the entire screen. When it comes to ROI, most brands would find this option the most cost efficient way at driving high volume conversions. They do supply a very basic SDK for tracking but they have allowed API access to the data which most mobile tracking tools have already integrated with.

With the new Facebook conversion tracking option you can expect the CPA across social ads such as the like ad and page posts to be at least 50% lower than the classic ASUs especially when served within the news feed.

Just because you can’t serve flashy banners through Facebook it doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be taken seriously. Facebook brought in ASUs to replace flash banners years ago because they found that “Flash banners are a bad user experience and they didn’t work”.

To manage all of the ad options which are now available, I’d recommend deploying a Facebook bid management tool such as Glow Machine.

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