Tag: Ads

4 Data-Driven Digital Marketing Tactics to Embrace in 2021

The new year is fast-approaching, so it’s high time that we evaluate our marketing strategy and come up with tactics to shake things up.

Digital marketing is one of the fastest-changing industries out there – is your marketing strategy agile enough to adapt?

There have been multiple marketing innovations introduced in 2020 (driven by both technology and the pandemic that has changed all the aspects of our lives), yet one trend is the most prominent one: Data

Never before have brands had access to so much marketing data that includes:

  • Internal / private data (customers’ emails, buying preferences, etc.)
  • Public data (like competitors’ identifiable marketing tactics, overall shopping trends, etc.)

You don’t need to be a data scientist or invest hundreds of thousands of dollars in data collection agencies to create a data-driven marketing strategy these days. Thanks to the Internet, big and small brands can access more data that they can process.

And it is a beautiful thing because it gives a competitive advantage to smaller brands that are eager to innovate.

Here are a few data-driven tactics anyone can implement, even without technical skills:

Improve Your Data Quality

Data: Brands lose up to 20% of revenue due to poor data quality practices (Source: zdnet/ Data Quality)

Sisense defines data quality as follows:

Data quality measures the condition of your data, using factors such as accuracy, consistency (in all fields across data sources), integrity (whether the fields are complete), and usability.

How to identify poor data quality? There can be a variety of factors including:

  • Is your data consistent? In other words, if it’s coming from different sources (which is usually the case), does it correlate?
  • Is your data relevant? In other words, are you using the data that helps your company’s bottom line? If you are using Facebook likes as the measure of your success, what exactly does this data do to help your revenue grow?
  • Do you collect the data you need? Does your company have the necessary data that would foster growth?

Improving your data quality is not just necessary, it’s also quite doable. There are multiple solutions that collect, organize and blend data to turn it into actionable insights delivered to each of your teams. The two easiest and the most affordable solutions include:

  • Cyfe (create dashboards to consolidate data and deliver most relevant data to each of your teams)
  • SE Ranking (pull lots of data from various sources to monitor your site health, positions, traffic, etc.)
  • Whatagraph (turn data into visualized email reports that are delivered to different teams within your organizations

Whatagraph

Embrace Inclusive Marketing

Data: Over 25% (i.e. one in 4) of US adults have a disability (Source: CDC / Disability & Health Infographics).

Are you including these people in your target audience? Do you create marketing personas that would include a disability?

Inclusive marketing refers to adapting technologies and messaging to enable underrepresented groups to fully connect with and experience brands online.

In web context, inclusive marketing often means making your website accessible to people with all kinds of disabilities and difficulties. These disabilities may prevent web users from being able to see page elements or navigate a site using a mouse or touchpad.

Including these people into your marketing strategy is not only a smart move (otherwise, every fourth user of your site may have hard time navigating it or making a purchase). It’s also a way to show that you care. This means making your marketing philanthropic.

The good news, it is also pretty easy to implement. You don’t have to re-design your site to make it accessible to users with disabilities. You can easily optimize your site for just about any sort of disability by using a solution called accessiBe.

accessiBe

There’s also a DIY way to make your site accessible but it is likely to take you some time.

Use Cross-Channel Marketing

Data: The number of channels consumers are using to make a buying decision is growing. Just over a decade ago the average consumer used two touch-points when buying an item. Four years ago consumers were already using an average of six touch-points with almost 50% regularly using more than four. (Marketing Week / Why marketers are failing to target consumers at key life events)

Many of those touch-points tend to happen on different devices and through different channels. Millennial shoppers shop from mobile devices,

For example, a contemporary consumer will search Google before buying an item after seeing a social media ad. And these two touch-points are very likely to happen on different devices.

What does it mean for businesses?

They need to be everywhere.

You should also be diversifying your content strategy with a wide array of types, in order to reach the highest potential audience, on more channels. This will also help your project build authority, which is critical in retention, churn reduction and overall brand loyalty.

Yes, have a blog. It is a great SEO tool and you should already know how to be targeting keywords by now. But in addition to this, make videos, create infographics, launch a podcast, guest on other podcasts and YouTube channels, embrace newer networks like TikTok and Instagram, and contribute to other blogs. You should be producing diverse content constantly to be able to market to different channels.

Luckily, content re-packaging tools make this process easy and affordable for brands:

  • Venngage: Turn any text into an infographic
  • Haiku Deck: Turn any text into a slideshow
  • InVideo: Turn any text into an engaging video

InVideo

[Invideo allows you to create videos for Instagram and Facebook ads, customize Youtube videos to brand them better, and more!]

Personalize Your Marketing

Data: 80% of people agree that they are much more likely to buy a product or service from a brand that provides personalized experiences (source: Epsilon Marketing / The impact of personalization)

Marketing personalization is one of the most powerful tactics out there, yet many brands don’t really understand it.

Marketing personalization is going far beyond using “the first name in the marketing email” or even “segmenting your email list by previous engagement”.

Marketing personalization is about creating on-site personalized experiences.

You are scrolling through a website and you see a handful of product suggestions on the bottom. It shows a strip of items that you can tell are based around people of your gender and your age, much of it not flattering. Mainly because it is a selection of products that you have never before purchased or needed to purchase, but that someone might assume a person of your target demographic would enjoy.

Or you are going through your email and catch sight of a message that is titled, “[Your Name], I need to speak to you right away!” Upon opening it, it is a generic, uninteresting automail from someone’s newsletter you forgot you had even signed up for. You roll your eyes and hit ‘delete’ without going any further.

The above examples show how you lazily customize to fit a potential customer. Is it any wonder the fish aren’t biting when the bait is so unappetizing?

Now imagine this:

You are on that same website and below is a collection of items you have been searching for price comparisons on all week. Others are items related to what you have purchased on the site in the past, or reviewed highly elsewhere. They are even within a decent price range of your usual budget.

Later, you are going through your email and there is a newsletter you forgot you signed up for. But rather than cheap clickbait, it has a subject line about something that interests you. You take the time to click and read the whole thing and even end up back on the website through a provided coupon for an item you had put in your cart a few days before but hadn’t pulled the trigger on because of the price. Now you are getting it for 15% off and you couldn’t be more thrilled!

Notice how each of the counterexamples totally changes the consumer experience and makes them more willing to engage with your brand. All because you showed them that you were actually paying attention to them as individuals, not a category or demographic. They are people, not walking dollar signs and stat sheets.

That is the true meaning of personalized ecommerce and when done correctly, it is a great way to generate leads that turn to profit and also build a relationship with your customer base.

Marketing personalization is becoming more and more available for smaller brands that lack huge budgets or technical teams. Finteza is a web analytics platform that comes with a powerful re-marketing solution allowing you to customize users’ experiences based on:

  • Source of traffic
  • On-site actions
  • Demographics (gender, age)
  • Location

Finteza

What’s more important, it is extremely easy to set up and very affordable.

What’s the real moral or takeaway here? Marketing innovation is a never-ending process. You can never consider this task done, but it is also what makes digital marketing such an exciting industry. Good luck innovating and reinventing!

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

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The post 4 Data-Driven Digital Marketing Tactics to Embrace in 2021 appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/12/4-data-driven-digital-marketing-tactics-to-embrace-in-2021/

YouTube Music Ads: What Your Brand Should Know

Music has always played a special role in culture but this year particularly people are tuning into more audio content via YouTube and YouTube Music. This is largely in an effort to combat Zoom fatigue and make it easier to absorb content whether tutorials, lectures, classes, meetings while juggling the obstacles of a remote work environment.

In response to this trend and in an effort to help brands efficiently expand reach and grow brand awareness with audio-based creative, the platform dropped several updates to help brands reach these users, with ads specifically designed for non-video consumption.

Elevating your brand’s message with audio

According to YouTube, more than 50 percent of logged-in viewers who consume music content in a day consume more than 10 minutes of music content.

The company also shared that in the early testing phase of the update, more than 75 percent of audio ads yield a significant lift in brand awareness. An ad from Shutterfly, for example, garnered a 14 percent lift in ad recall and a two percent increase in favorability in its target audience.

“Regardless of when and how people are tuning in, we have ways to help advertisers connect, even when they’re consuming music in the background. Now you can complement the moments your consumers are watching, by engaging them in moments when they’re listening, with newly announced audio ads,” YouTube’s Head of Music Lyor Cohen explained in a separate blog post.

Enhanced targeting via dynamic music lineups

Also part of its audio push, YouTube is announcing dynamic music lineups, allowing marketers to target their campaigns at collections of music channels on YouTube.

This will allow advertisers to more easily reach audiences based on specific music genres spanning ‘Latin music‘, ‘K-pop‘, ‘hip-hop‘ and ‘Top 100.’ In addition, brands can leverage these music lineups to focus on particular moods or interests, like ‘fitness.’

Audio ads best practices

To be clear, these new Youtube ads are designed for the viewer who is looking to “squeeze in a living room workout before dinner, catch up on a podcast or listen to a virtual concert on a Friday night.” These are not audio-only ads, rather they are relying on audio to do the majority of the communicating understanding that people may only be glancing at the visual image sporadically or not at all. The visual side of these new ads, therefore, will be limited to “a still image of animation.” Put differently, if the person was to close their eyes, they would still clearly understand the ad’s message.

The future of music marketing and audio conversations

More than 2 billion logged-in viewers are watching at least one music video each month. Over half (60%) of YouTube’s music viewing happens on mobile, where background viewing or listening is disabled.

Stats aside, innovations in social media and shifts in consumer behavior are fundamentally reshaping how music is made, consumed and shared. Brands will need a music strategy to ensure they keep pace with culture and have a powerful opportunity to lead in this intersection and create meaningful partnerships with consumers. With podcasts on the rise over the past few years, it makes sense audio content would be of interest on YouTube, despite being primarily a video service, as well as other platforms.

Over on Twitter, a test of an audio-only virtual meeting room option, which will be built on top of its new Fleets, Stories-like tool, is underway and set to launch by year’s end. Audio Spaces will enable users to start rooms where certain people can lead a discussion and others can then join, either to just listen in or to actively participate. The user who creates the space will have full moderation controls — an attempt by the platform to prioritize safety and prevent misuse and harassment.

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YouTube Advertising: What Your Brand Needs to Know

In lieu of entertainment sources other than in-person events, COVID-19 pushed more people to social platforms as a way to engage with timely and relevant content. YouTube is no exception. Year over year, watch time on YouTube and YouTube on television screens jumped a whopping 80 percent underscoring the accelerating shift from linear to digital video and over 2 billion people globally are gravitating towards these new experiences.

As we continue to spend the bulk of our time at home, brands are making the most of YouTube’s massive reach and deeply relevant content to build brand awareness, and ultimately, drive results at scale. In response to this trend, the platform is adding some notable elements to help brands and marketers further hone their YouTube ad campaigns, including advanced data insights and new category targeting to help them show up in the right contexts for today’s consumers.

Here’s a peek into the updates and how you can start using them to enhance your efforts.

Advanced contextual targeting with dynamic lineups

A new study from YouTube parent company Google in partnership with Ipsos found that video advertising based on consumer interest and intent has significantly more impact than demo—with a 32 percent higher lift in ad recall and 100 percent higher lift in purchase intent.

To help further its ability to drive mass reach, YouTube is introducing dynamic lineups powered by advanced contextual targeting. Put differently, videos are segmented based on their content, with machine learning systems developed to best determine what each video is about and how to feed it to the right people at the right time. This is based on analysis of key elements spanning video imagery, sound, speech and text.

In addition to targeting broader categories like “home” or “lifestyle” or lifestyle, you can find more nuanced choices such as “home and garden” and “home improvement.” What this boils down to is “better access to customers with unique interests and needs—all with the brand suitability controls that are most important for your business,” explained Debbie Weinstein, Vice President, YouTube and Video Global Solution in the official announcement. More specifically, what this translates into is the ability to routinely engage with the right audience segments who are receptive and responsive and having to spend less to reach them. Sounds like a win-win.

An early adopter of dynamic lineups, Chrissie Hanson, Global Chief Strategy Officer at OMD said, “Using lineups powered by advanced contextual targeting delivers a more relevant and empathetic understanding of audiences. This in turn serves to drive more relevant reach and efficiencies for our customers, as part of a broader program that leverages audiences and other tactics across YouTube.”

Driving efficient reach with Nielsen TV data

Last year YouTube unveiled its integration with Nielsen TV data into its Reach Planner with the goal of helping marketers fuel their awareness strategies on YouTube and get a broader view of critical audience trends. Across 21 commissioned Share Shit studies, results showed that on average, advertisers that shifted just 20 percent of spend from TV to YouTube generated a 25 percent increase to the total campaign reach within their target audience, lowering the cost per reach point by almost 20 percent.

As part of its recent push to allow marketers to lean into the rise in YouTube viewership, the platform is expanding its Nielsen’s Total Ad Ratings for advertisers in the UK and Italy, in addition to the US with initial efforts already showing promising results.

“PepsiCo Beverages turned to YouTube to drive scale and extend the reach of Pepsi’s ‘Gift it Forward’ Holiday campaign. The campaign did not disappoint – YouTube drove new brand buyers during the holiday season to the unique audience we wanted to reach.”

Video reach campaigns are a simpler way to buy efficient reach across ad formats and incrementally reach the right audiences at a more optimal frequency. Marion Carpentier, Omni Business Leader at French men’s wear brand, Jules, explained the company was able to achieve this specifically by combining skippable in-stream ads and bumpers into a single campaign and saw higher lifts in brand awareness (4.9%).

Beyond this, to support marketers looking to plan YouTube with other online video partners YouTube is providing new reach planning options within Display & Video 360 including YouTube, auction, and programmatic deals.

Catering your strategies with success stories and trends

Finally, to support marketers as they navigate a post-COVID era, YouTube is unveiling a new awareness collection within its Advertising Solutions Center spotlighting notable trends and case studies from companies that include PepsiCo, Domino’s, and Jules. The goal behind sharing these stories is to offer a more concrete understanding of YouTube’s product innovations and how they can be built to better meet your awareness objectives.

If the pandemic has proven anything, it’s that YouTube is behaving more like traditional TV with time. Those that understand the nuances of the platform as an alternative, will be able to deliver TV-like promotions with a higher degree of targeting but without derailing from their budget plans.

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The post YouTube Advertising: What Your Brand Needs to Know appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/09/youtube-advertising-what-your-brand-needs-to-know/

IGTV Ads: What Brands and Creators Need to Know

For years Instagram creators have leveraged the platform to turn their passions into livelihoods, inspiring their communities, sharing their lives, and building their personal brands from the ground up. Until recently, they’ve had to rely on indirect sources of revenue to fund their goals including branded content and merchandise sales. Now however, the platform is revealing the next stages of monetization including ways for creators to make money from their content on Live and IGTV.

Here’s what’s new and noteworthy:

IGTV Ads

In recent months, creators have embraced Live in fundamentally new ways, leading to a 70 percent increase in views from February to March. Capitalizing on the trend, the platform is introducing IGTV ads, with at least 55 percent of the advertising revenue shared with creators. Per the announcement, ads will initially display when people click to watch an IGTV via preview from the feed. They’ll be mobile-droven and last for up to 15 seconds. Initial brands to run IGTV ads include Sephora, Puma and Ikea.

“Being able to earn money from the content I’m already creating gives me even more motivation to share more of myself with my followers on IGTV,” shared one creator, @avani, supporting the test of badges.

Badges

Especially in this time of crisis, Instagram has seen a surge in users supporting their favorite creators via Live comments, donations, and likes. Whether a fitness instructor, live DJ or chef, Live videos have been core to staying connected during an age of social distancing and continue engaging in the things they love.

Badges will be offered in three different price tiers ranging from 99 cents up to $4.99. Users that purchase them will not only have the badge displayed by their username enabling them to stand out in the crowd of comments, but they’ll also be able to unlock features including placement on a special list of badge holders held by the creator and access to a special heart emoji,

“Providing a variety of monetization tools is crucial in order to support all creators on Instagram, from emerging digital stars to established entertainers and everything in between,” said Instagram COO Justin Osofsky in a statement to Variety. “We’re excited to add these two new revenue streams to the mix of tools for creators to help them generate additional income to fuel their work.”

Enhancing promotion

The platform is also making pushes to improve promotion. In April, for instance, the platform revamped its standalone IGTV and unveiled the ability for users to tease their IGTV content in their Stories with 15 second clips, instead of sharing those videos to Stories via static stickers.

More recently, Instagram introduced Live Shopping allowing for tagged products during a live video. Looking ahead, shopping will expand with broader access to Brand Collabs Manager and creators seeking to sell their own merchandise on the app. On the surface these may seem like small updates but they underlie Instagram’s grand mission to help creators support themselves with its tools and community in authentic and meaningful ways.

While monetization tools for Instagram have been a long time coming, the news is likely to be worth the wait for its top creators and incentive them to post more often, enabling IGTV to showcase more IGTV content to a broader audience and build the offering even further allowing to better compete with the likes of YouTube and other players.

“For it to work, the Facebook-owned photo- and video-sharing network will have to establish itself as a ‘must-watch channel’ to disrupt what is already on the market, including Facebook Watch, said Mary Keane-Dawson, CEO of influencer marketing agency Takumi Group.

For more insights from Mary on the state of influencer marketing and why authenticity should remain core to your strategies to secure long-term audience relationships, check out our recap of her recent session at #SMWONE here.

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http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/06/igtv-ads-what-brands-and-creators-need-to-know/

What Marketers Need to Know About LinkedIn’s New Conversation Ads

Today, mobile messaging apps are used more than three hours per day by over 2.5 billion users (35 percent) across the world. This number is expected to grow to nearly 40 percent by 2023.

Meeting people where they spend their time, at the right moment and on the right platforms is equally important as the creative itself. Messaging allows brands to connect with people at multiple touchpoints across the customer experience. This is especially critical for those in the B2B space where buying cycles steer longer and multiple stakeholders are involved in purchasing decisions. These one-on-one interactions are integral to establishing trustworthy relationships and loyalty.

LINKEDIN CONVERSATION ADS

In this spirit, LinkedIn is introducing Conversation Ads, an extension of its Messaging Ads, to deliver a more personal way to interact with marketers. Specifically, Conversation Ads feature a “choose your own path” experience allowing for full-funnel campaigns with customized calls to action spanning product education, webinar signs, and ebook downloads.

Brands can directly add CTA buttons into their Sponsored InMails — or “Message Ads,” as the company now refers to them. By including a variety of options, brands can serve more personalized content catered to the customers’ unique position in the purchase journey translating onto higher-quality engagement.

CAMPAIGN SET UP & ESTABLISHING RELEVANCE IN REAL-TIME

To begin, start with a clear sense of your campaign objective. Are you more interested in driving website visits or lead generation? If answering this presents a challenge, look broader at the larger goals of your business to identify which is a better fit. Once you’ve decided on the objective, you’ll gain access to detailed click and demographic reporting specific to the advertisement type.

Conversation ads can also be paired with features such as Lead Gen Forms and Conversion tracking making it more efficient to turn conversations into conversions. They’re designed for real-time engagement. Put another way, messages won’t be sent unless the prospect is active on LinkedIn and “in the right mindset.”

Objectives aside, when growing an audience for messaging and designing creative conversations don’t overlook who you’re attempting to connect with at the end of the day: humans. They want to be known, respected, and part of meaningful moments.

BRAND USE CASES

Job search marketplace Hired was one of the companies selected for beta testing of the new offering and reported positive results. Specifically, the company pointed to a 5x higher clickthrough rate driven by the simple pivot to allowing customres to choose their own path based on the most relevant CTA to them.

“The level of engagement is pretty wild when you’re able to provide multiple opportunities to click,” said Chase Gladden, Hired’s Growth Marketing Manager.

LinkedIn reports that messages sent on its platform have quadrupled over the last five years. Given this, the update not only makes sense for the platform in catering to this messaging growth, but in the broader context of a fundamental industry shift towards more personal, one-on-one conversations.

The relevancy of personalized messaging

Now more than ever conversations count with regards to top-of-mind awareness. Brands that are anticipating different friction points are better equipped to drive people to make genuine purchasing decisions more quickly. As advertisers battle to cover more digital ground amidst COVID-19, having an easy way to deliver a customized experience for each user is critical and can propel them into years of growth long after the pandemic is behind us.

For more insights, the platform has curated a list of tips and practices on how to create a successful Conversation Ad campaign here. LinkedIn is also running a webinar focusing on the new option and its benefits next month (April 9) titled, “Messaging Strategies for the Modern Marketer: Turning Conversations into Conversions.” Beyond the new ad offering, the session will cover top messaging market trends the industry is experiencing today and how customers are using messaging as part of their larger LinkedIn marketing strategies.

If you attend and are ready to get started, you can browse this collection of templates to help you formulate your overall campaign.

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The post What Marketers Need to Know About LinkedIn’s New Conversation Ads appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/03/what-marketers-need-to-know-about-linkedins-new-conversation-ads/

3 Tools to Improve Your LinkedIn Ad Targeting Efforts

Boasting 645 million members worldwide, it’s no secret that LinkedIn has become a hub for powerful data around professional and career insights.

From lookalike audiences, interest targeting with Bing search insights, and audience templates, the company has heavily invested in helping businesses navigate their campaigns and is increasing its efforts with new tools targeted to help marketers improve their reach and harness actionable insights to improve their strategies.

Let’s take a look at what’s new:

Improved campaign forecasting and audience intelligence

LinkedIn has revamped its campaign forecasting panel in Campaign Manager so advertisers can have more easy access to the general make-up of its target audience without having to venture from the main dashboard. There is also the new ability to customize the panel to filter by top industry, years of experience, or company sizes for your audience. Here’s a quick visual illustrating how it works:

The major benefit here is two-fold: not only can you be ascertained you’re serving ads to the people you’re wanting to target, but you’ll have added insight into how to refine your content on an ongoing basis so it can better resonate and align with the interests of your audiences.

“Since we gained access to this feature, we have been able to assess the makeup of our targeting and ensure our ads would get in front of decision-makers,” claimed Tanner Stolte, account executive and media buyer at Elite Digital Group and an early user of the tool.

Greater outreach precision with boolean logic

Separately, to help advertisers refine their target lists, the platform is introducing ‘and/or’ qualifiers to ultimately combine profile facets in a single campaign.

“‘And/Or’ targeting enables you to reach more of the right audiences through more sophisticated combinations of profile facets like job function, seniority, and titles — all in a single campaign,” explained Director of Product Management, Abhishek Shirvastav, in the official announcement.

He then offered the example of a target people using a combination of both director seniority and the finance job function. Originally, this was only achievable through browsing for directors in finance roles. Now, however, you can use one campaign to cast your net to directors at any job function in addition to people sitting in finance positions of any seniority. Put simply, you get the convenience of added flexibility when determining the types of professionals that are seeing your ads.

For additional guidance, you can refer to this how-to tutorial:

Demographic reporting insights

In a third notable update, LinkedIn is adjusting its demographic reporting options to account for more specifics into who is responding to your campaigns. More specifically, which audiences are watching your video ads, filling out your Lead Gen Forms, and opening your Sponsored InMail messages.

“Demographic reporting has been one of our most popular features because it helps you see the types of audiences clicking and converting on your ads, based on professional characteristics like company name and job seniority, Shirvastav underscored.

With these details, you can have a more meaningful understanding and a picture of the value that is resulting from your efforts and where strategic adjustments are needed. In conversations with internal teams including executives and Sales colleagues, you can directly point to who your quality leads are and how they need to be communicated with in order to retain them.

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http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/10/3-tools-to-improve-your-linkedin-ad-targeting-efforts/

How Facebook’s New Ad Bundle is Helping You Bring Immersive Experiences to Your Brand Stories

Sixty percent of businesses on Instagram use an interactive element including @mention, hashtag or poll sticker, in Stories every month. Building off of this trend, Facebook is introducing a new suite of ad options including video poll ads, augmented reality ads, and playable ads to its platform targeted to encourage “a playful experience between people and businesses.”

“People want to be included in your next big idea and are using new innovative ways to do it — less words, more GIFs, Lives, Reactions, emojis, face filters, and stickers. In turn, brands and people are becoming more intertwined and it’s changing digital advertising from a one-way push communication to an ongoing dialogue powered by creativity,” the company shared in a recent post published to its Business Blog.

Let’s break down what each of these looks like:

Video poll ads

On the heels of the introduction of poll stickers for Instagram Stories earlier this year, Facebook made the move to bringing polling capabilities to its video ads. “In 5 out of 9 brand lift studies, we observed poll ads increased brand awareness compared to video ads,” the company reported.

Advertisers can choose from three different variations of poll ads depending on their specific campaign needs: poll only, poll plus watch and browse, and poll plus watch and install.

For some concrete examples of these in action, Warner Bros used video poll ads to boost application downloads for its Game of Thrones: Conquest game and saw that app installs were 87.5 percent higher compared to a traditional video ad.

Cable network E! used the feature to increase viewership of the show Total Bellas, and saw brand awareness rise by 1.6x.

AR Ads Enter Open Beta

Sixty-three percent of internet users surveyed say they’ve tried an AR experience created by a brand. As of this fall, Facebook is opening beta globally for AR ads giving the opportunity to more advertisers to connect with their audiences.

In an early testing phase, WeMakeUp developed an ad where users could try on its latest shade of lipstick. The result? A 27.6 point lift in purchase and a 53 percent higher click-through rate compared to non-AR video ads.

Similarly, Bobbi Brown Cosmetics built a campaign around its Luxe Matte Lip Color which, in turn, drove an average engagement time of 61 seconds and three-times the CTR and two-times the website purchases compared to their non-AR ads.

Playable ads

In the same vein of collaborative formats that encourage participation, Facebook is also opening up playable ads to its global advertiser base. The ad units specifically allow users to play a game as a means of driving downloads, conversations and brand objectives.

Vans recently worked with Facebook’s Creative Shop to create a playable game where players guide the company’s Vice President of events and promotion, Steve Van Doren, down a mountain while collecting gifts. The user experience ultimately translated into a 4.4 point lift in ad recall and a 2.4 point lift in favorability.

“Advertising needs to work harder than ever to be more relevant and rewarding for the people we’re making it for,” Facebook Vice President of Global Business Marketing and Chief Creative Officer, Mark D’Arcy, shared in a statement about the launch.

Setting aside the specifics of the new ad options, the larger takeaway to pocket here is that creativity will only continue to be integral to our storytelling efforts. In today’s landscape, vying for attention is no small feat and to break through the noise we as marketers must go above and beyond to not only communicate with our audiences, but do so in a way that excites and inspires meaningful action.

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http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/09/how-facebooks-new-ad-bundle-is-helping-you-bring-immersive-experiences-to-your-brand-stories/

YouTube’s Dropping Its Paywall for Originals – Here’s What It Means for Marketers

With just over 30 days notice, YouTube Premium subscribers got an email from the company: when it came to Originals, they’d no longer be alone.

Delivering upon the promise they made to consumers at Brandcast in May, YouTube shared their plans to drop the paywall on YouTube Original programming beginning on September 24th. On that date, YouTube’s original shows, movies, and exclusive live events will become available to all YouTube users—regardless of subscription status. While this move has been viewed by many as a capitulation to the pressure of the highly competitive streaming wars, YouTube Chief Brand Officer Robert Kyncl views it another way: it aligns their Originals with the rest of YouTube’s strategy. “Everything is available free, and everything is available behind a paywall if there are certain features that you value in order to pay a subscription.”

For marketers, this is an opportunity to take advantage of ad support to target fans of these programs who previously may not have been paying for them. Fans of content creators like Liza Koshy and Gigi Gorgeous—who were creating both free and paywalled content for the site—will likely flock to these “new to them” series and films. Already popular offerings like Cobra Kai and Step Up: High Water can garner new viewers (and potential buyers, for you) with less of a commitment to the platform. And especially in light of many marketers’ voiced desire to increase their ad spends on YouTube, the fact that a new audience segment is opening should the decision even more attractive.

With that said, although Kyncl says that the strategy with Originals has “gone from being focused on driving subscriptions to aligning with our core business,” there are still perks to Premium access for these shows. When new shows are dropped, Premium viewers will have access to a full season at once, while ad-supported users will have to wait for weekly releases. Additionally, any director’s cut and other bonus content that shows opt to release, will be exclusive to Premium subscribers. But for those who elect to access these new shows with ads, the move confirms YouTube’s prevailing model…and, in the process, clarifies a new segment of prospective customers for marketers.

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The post YouTube’s Dropping Its Paywall for Originals – Here’s What It Means for Marketers appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/08/youtubes-dropping-its-paywall-for-originals-heres-what-it-means-for-marketers/

3 Steps to “Instant” Ad Placement on Snapchat

In the last couple of years, Snapchat has gone to great lengths to recapture its onetime dominance…and its efforts are finally paying off. Their next step? Bringing advertisers back in full force, and their latest tactic wants to make their return as easy as possible.

Instant Create ads (available at this time only for Snap Ads) are designed to “make Snapchat advertisers accessible to smaller advertisers who may not have the time or resources to try to understand new ad formats.” Those wanting to do more elaborate work can use “Advanced Create,” but this streamlined format aims to capture those looking for a low barrier to entry.

What will you need to take advantage of this new format?

A Defined Objective

What do you want users to do as a result of seeing your ad? For an Instant Create ad, you have three choices: web visits (traffic directed to your website), app installs, or app visits. Users can select which one is the most appropriate goal for the ad they’re building, and the tool will adjust accordingly.

This initial definition not only guides Snap on how to position later parts of the ad building process, but it forces the ideal user of this Instant Create tool—smaller, overtaxed, or inexperienced social media managers—to think through the objective of their campaigns. Once you know what the ad is supposed to do, the rest of the process (copy crafting, calls to action, targeting, and even design) becomes considerably easier.

Your Desired URL

For web visits, you’ll only need to submit the URL you want to drive users to. App installs and app visits are only slightly more complicated, requiring you to include an app icon and links to where the app can be found in the App Store or on Google Play. Along with this, you can include a headline, call to action, caption, or logo.

A benefit of designating these URLs upfront is that images can be pulled from your site. In the event that an advertiser didn’t have the time or capacity to create graphics, Instant Create would pull from where these assets already exist on the Web. Want to add your own assets? This is easy to do at this stage, and will populate an ad with more sophistication than the plug-and-play version.

Targeting Goals

Instant Create requires you to define, at a minimum, your target demographic, location, budget, and duration of visibility. If you’d like to break your prospective audience down further, Advanced Targeting lets you define a smaller goal winnowed by interests, custom audiences, or type of device.

Given Snapchat’s resurgence in the market, the audience you’d be targeting is now considerably larger than many doomsayers would have you believe. After three consecutive quarters of negative growth, they grew their user base by 4 million people earlier this year, and are even raising a new $1 billion to address debt and eye additional acquisitions. So if you moved away from the platform when its base started to atrophy, or have never explored it as a space for promotion before, there’s no better time to explore the platform.

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The post 3 Steps to “Instant” Ad Placement on Snapchat appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/08/3-steps-to-instant-ad-placement-on-snapchat/

YouTube Promises “Blunt Actions” to Secure Child Safety and Soothe Advertisers

A 2018 Cheq and IPG Media survey revealed that most consumers believe that ad placement is intentional; further, they are 2.8 times less willing to associate with a brand when its ads are displayed in environments that are unsafe or unsavory. Given that tidbit, it’s no surprise to see the exodus of advertisers from YouTube in the wake of parallel scandals over sexually inappropriate and anti-vaccination content.

This week, the platform hastened a number of measures in the works to combat this content, and addressed its advertisers in the most comprehensive way yet.

A copy of the letter obtained by AdWeek revealed a combination of contrition and concentration, as the company works to crack down on offenders and demonetize content that presents danger to their users. “Because of the importance of getting child safety right,” they wrote, “we announced a series of blunt actions to sharpen our ability to act more precisely.

Among the measures swiftly undertaken this week:

  • The disabling of comments on “tens of millions of videos” that could attract predatory behavior
  • “Reducing the discoverability” of content that has been flagged (a strategy that Pinterest has used with some success)
  • Terminating offending accounts
  • “Increasing accountability” within the community of creators on the site, a community that uploads a staggering 400 hours of video to the site each second
  • “A more unforgiving stance” for creators who post inappropriate children’s content
  • The hastening of development on a machine learning powered “comments classifier,” which will ultimately be able to flag and remove twice as many comments as the existing system, a combination of algorithms and manual reviewers.

These measures have been deployed in hopes of stopping YouTube’s proverbial bleeding of advertisers, which in recent days has included AT&T, Disney, Nestle, McDonalds, Epic Games, and several others. AT&T reportedly told the New York Times, “until Google (YouTube’s parent company) can protect our brand from offensive content of any kind, we are removing all advertising from YouTube.” A similar exodus of advertisers took place back in 2017, when AT&T ads, along with those of Johnson & Johnson and Verizon were placed alongside racist content and videos posted by terrorist groups. This time, the company’s countermeasures have been swift and public.

The problem is a complicated one, as one executive (speaking anonymously) shared with FastCompany.

“There is no such thing as 100% safety when it comes to user-generated content, and marketers need to know that although there can be a zero-tolerance effort, there’s no such thing as 100% brand safety or 0% risk.”

The measures above, along with demonetizing videos in certain categories, can move a platform toward being a safer place. The 10,000 content reviewers that YouTube brought on in the wake of their 2017 scandal can also make a dent in the problem. But it still may not be enough.

In a statement, YouTube acknowledged, “there’s more to be done, and we continue to work to improve and catch abuse more quickly.” With any luck, this aggressive and comprehensive attention to addressing these concerns – for the sake of advertisers, and the viewing public using the platform – will continue long after the media firestorm dies down.

Join 100,000+ fellow marketers who advance their skills and knowledge by subscribing to our weekly newsletter.

WATCH OUR 2019 PROMO

The post YouTube Promises “Blunt Actions” to Secure Child Safety and Soothe Advertisers appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/03/youtube-promises-blunt-actions-to-secure-child-safety-and-soothe-advertisers/

YouTube Promises “Blunt Actions” to Secure Child Safety and Soothe Advertisers

A 2018 Cheq and IPG Media survey revealed that most consumers believe that ad placement is intentional; further, they are 2.8 times less willing to associate with a brand when its ads are displayed in environments that are unsafe or unsavory. Given that tidbit, it’s no surprise to see the exodus of advertisers from YouTube in the wake of parallel scandals over sexually inappropriate and anti-vaccination content.

This week, the platform hastened a number of measures in the works to combat this content, and addressed its advertisers in the most comprehensive way yet.

A copy of the letter obtained by AdWeek revealed a combination of contrition and concentration, as the company works to crack down on offenders and demonetize content that presents danger to their users. “Because of the importance of getting child safety right,” they wrote, “we announced a series of blunt actions to sharpen our ability to act more precisely.

Among the measures swiftly undertaken this week:

  • The disabling of comments on “tens of millions of videos” that could attract predatory behavior
  • “Reducing the discoverability” of content that has been flagged (a strategy that Pinterest has used with some success)
  • Terminating offending accounts
  • “Increasing accountability” within the community of creators on the site, a community that uploads a staggering 400 hours of video to the site each second
  • “A more unforgiving stance” for creators who post inappropriate children’s content
  • The hastening of development on a machine learning powered “comments classifier,” which will ultimately be able to flag and remove twice as many comments as the existing system, a combination of algorithms and manual reviewers.

These measures have been deployed in hopes of stopping YouTube’s proverbial bleeding of advertisers, which in recent days has included AT&T, Disney, Nestle, McDonalds, Epic Games, and several others. AT&T reportedly told the New York Times, “until Google (YouTube’s parent company) can protect our brand from offensive content of any kind, we are removing all advertising from YouTube.” A similar exodus of advertisers took place back in 2017, when AT&T ads, along with those of Johnson & Johnson and Verizon were placed alongside racist content and videos posted by terrorist groups. This time, the company’s countermeasures have been swift and public.

The problem is a complicated one, as one executive (speaking anonymously) shared with FastCompany.

“There is no such thing as 100% safety when it comes to user-generated content, and marketers need to know that although there can be a zero-tolerance effort, there’s no such thing as 100% brand safety or 0% risk.”

The measures above, along with demonetizing videos in certain categories, can move a platform toward being a safer place. The 10,000 content reviewers that YouTube brought on in the wake of their 2017 scandal can also make a dent in the problem. But it still may not be enough.

In a statement, YouTube acknowledged, “there’s more to be done, and we continue to work to improve and catch abuse more quickly.” With any luck, this aggressive and comprehensive attention to addressing these concerns – for the sake of advertisers, and the viewing public using the platform – will continue long after the media firestorm dies down.

Join 100,000+ fellow marketers who advance their skills and knowledge by subscribing to our weekly newsletter.

WATCH OUR 2019 PROMO

The post YouTube Promises “Blunt Actions” to Secure Child Safety and Soothe Advertisers appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/03/youtube-promises-blunt-actions-to-secure-child-safety-and-soothe-advertisers/

YouTube Promises “Blunt Actions” to Secure Child Safety and Soothe Advertisers

A 2018 Cheq and IPG Media survey revealed that most consumers believe that ad placement is intentional; further, they are 2.8 times less willing to associate with a brand when its ads are displayed in environments that are unsafe or unsavory. Given that tidbit, it’s no surprise to see the exodus of advertisers from YouTube in the wake of parallel scandals over sexually inappropriate and anti-vaccination content.

This week, the platform hastened a number of measures in the works to combat this content, and addressed its advertisers in the most comprehensive way yet.

A copy of the letter obtained by AdWeek revealed a combination of contrition and concentration, as the company works to crack down on offenders and demonetize content that presents danger to their users. “Because of the importance of getting child safety right,” they wrote, “we announced a series of blunt actions to sharpen our ability to act more precisely.

Among the measures swiftly undertaken this week:

  • The disabling of comments on “tens of millions of videos” that could attract predatory behavior
  • “Reducing the discoverability” of content that has been flagged (a strategy that Pinterest has used with some success)
  • Terminating offending accounts
  • “Increasing accountability” within the community of creators on the site, a community that uploads a staggering 400 hours of video to the site each second
  • “A more unforgiving stance” for creators who post inappropriate children’s content
  • The hastening of development on a machine learning powered “comments classifier,” which will ultimately be able to flag and remove twice as many comments as the existing system, a combination of algorithms and manual reviewers.

These measures have been deployed in hopes of stopping YouTube’s proverbial bleeding of advertisers, which in recent days has included AT&T, Disney, Nestle, McDonalds, Epic Games, and several others. AT&T reportedly told the New York Times, “until Google (YouTube’s parent company) can protect our brand from offensive content of any kind, we are removing all advertising from YouTube.” A similar exodus of advertisers took place back in 2017, when AT&T ads, along with those of Johnson & Johnson and Verizon were placed alongside racist content and videos posted by terrorist groups. This time, the company’s countermeasures have been swift and public.

The problem is a complicated one, as one executive (speaking anonymously) shared with FastCompany.

“There is no such thing as 100% safety when it comes to user-generated content, and marketers need to know that although there can be a zero-tolerance effort, there’s no such thing as 100% brand safety or 0% risk.”

The measures above, along with demonetizing videos in certain categories, can move a platform toward being a safer place. The 10,000 content reviewers that YouTube brought on in the wake of their 2017 scandal can also make a dent in the problem. But it still may not be enough.

In a statement, YouTube acknowledged, “there’s more to be done, and we continue to work to improve and catch abuse more quickly.” With any luck, this aggressive and comprehensive attention to addressing these concerns – for the sake of advertisers, and the viewing public using the platform – will continue long after the media firestorm dies down.

Join 100,000+ fellow marketers who advance their skills and knowledge by subscribing to our weekly newsletter.

WATCH OUR 2019 PROMO

The post YouTube Promises “Blunt Actions” to Secure Child Safety and Soothe Advertisers appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/03/youtube-promises-blunt-actions-to-secure-child-safety-and-soothe-advertisers/

YouTube Doubles Up on Pre-Roll Ads for Long-Form Content

As video length has expanded on YouTube, the platform has been challenged to find an effective ad display solution that doesn’t mimic the inconvenience of commercial interruptions. This week’s announcement—doubling up on pre-roll advertising spots—sounds like more ad content, but the results appear promising so far. Brands and agencies who host long-form content on their YouTube channels stand to see benefits from this latest change; however, a need to be compelling and attention-grabbing from the start will be all the more necessary.

In the coming weeks, desktop YouTube viewing will afford viewers the option to skip ads (which won’t preclude ads from appearing later in their viewing experience) or to watch two ads at the start of a video. Free and ad-supported Hulu subscriptions presently do something similar; Mashable rightfully calls it a “TV-inspired solution.” Otherwise known at YouTube as “ad pods,” a brief explanation will come up as they decide: “choose when you see ads; watch two ads now for fewer interruptions later.” The option will then gradually deploy for mobile viewers, and then those watching on smart TV sets.

Khushbu Rathi, YouTube’s product manager for video ads, noted on the company blog that the early tests on the feature had increased staying power on long-form content. “Fewer interruptions is correlated with better user metrics, including less abandonment of content and higher rates of ad viewing,” Rathi wrote. Users who opt to watch both ads ahead of a video will see up to 40% fewer ad interruptions, and tested videos saw an 8-11% increase in unique user reach. For advertisers, there will be a 5-10% increase in ad frequency.

In some ways, this seems like the evolution of an announced introduction of non-skippable ads for creators this past August. At that time, YouTube announced, “any channel that can monetize its videos will soon be able to implement non-skippable ads” of 15-20 seconds in length. Previously, only a select number of creative accounts could deploy ads in this fashion. But a number of creators quickly voiced a prospective challenge: audiences might click away from unskippable ads altogether, therefore preventing any ad revenue from coming in. By offering more ads but presenting the details for users to make informed decisions about their viewing experience, YouTube seems to be retaining more viewers on longer videos.

While a few questions remain as this strategy rolls out—the timeline for deployment, if creators can select ad categories, and most notably: what runtime constitutes a “long video”?—Rathi and his team seem committed to evolving the ad experience for advertisers and viewers alike: “we’ll continue working to build the ideal video viewing experience, and keep thinking up ways to deliver value for our advertiser partners.”

Learn the latest trends, insights and best practices from the brightest minds in media and technology. Sign up for SMW Insider to watch full-length sessions from official Social Media Week conferences live and on-demand.

The post YouTube Doubles Up on Pre-Roll Ads for Long-Form Content appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2018/11/youtube-doubles-up-on-pre-roll-ads-for-long-form-content/

How Facebook Improves Communities and Drives Business Growth

For a platform that has gathered 2.6 real people online, what impact is it making, and what responsibilities come with that power?

It all comes down to having an attitude and an ambition that asks how do we maximize the good while minimizing the bad, according to Ian Edwards, Facebook’s Planning Director.

At Social Media Week London 2018, Edwards reflected on the challenges and opportunities technological innovations brings to our industry and discussed Facebook’s and Instagram’s role in enabling communities and driving business growth.

The power and belief in building a community

Birthday Fundraiser, a recently launched new Facebook feature, together with Facebook Group, continue to be tools that Facebook takes pride in. According to Edwards, these are the tools that can help community drive huge value at a broad level.

Take Birthday Fundraiser as an example. This year, Facebook launched this tool so that users can, on their birthdays, ask friends and family to donate to a charity or a course that matter to them. So far, the tool has raised more than 250 million pounds for various charities, according to Edwards.

He also cited research showing that interacting with your community, either online or offline, in a meaningful way, has many benefits, and Facebook Groups has made that a core mission since its founding days.

“You can find a group in pretty much every single interest you can imagine,” said Edwards.

A year of making technological progress

Edwards also highlighted in this session the progress that Facebook has made in four areas.

Brand safety

Facebook is now working closely with brand safety management partners, like DoubleVerify, to provide transparency in the area.

Minimizing bad content

“Removing content that does not meet our community standard has been a huge focus for 2018,” said Edwards. In May, Facebook published their enforcement number for the very first time.

In Q1 alone they took down 837 million pieces of spam, and nearly 100 percent of that was identified by themselves before they were flagged by users, according to Edwards.

Increasing accountability and transparency in advertising

In August, Facebook announced that they were giving users more information about every business that runs an ad on the platform. Now, when users click on “Why am I seeing this ad,” they will see the reason why they were being targeted for a specific ad and how Facebook was using their data.

“I think this is right at the forefront of ad transparency,” said Edwards.

Election integrity

This is a time when tech giants like Facebook are taking up the responsibility they share in political integrity. According to Edwards, Facebook is sharing with users information of each and every campaign ad and who is paying for that. They’ve also created an online archive for all the ads that’s been run.

“The majority of ad works at a glance”

Mr. Edwards brought forward the idea of “two-second advertising” during the session.

“As an industry, I believe we are often found guilty of making a fundamental mistake — we kind of intuitively believe that advertising works at a much deeper level than it really is,” said Edwards. “But this is not how advertising works. The majority of ad works at a glance.”

However, he thinks that this short attention length shouldn’t be preventing businesses from having ambitious ideas. One of the examples that he brought up was NIKE’s Just Do It campaign ad with Colin Kaepernick, with a short line, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.” This ad has attracted anger alongside cheers on social media, but following that was a huge marketing success — NIKE’s sales went up to the highest level it has ever been, according to Edwards.

“When you have a big idea, it can be delivered quickly. It will travel and it will have impact,” said Edwards.

At the end of the session, Edwards encouraged social media professionals to stay motivated and believe in what they do.

“I want people to be proud of working in social media,” said Edwards. “It is and it continues to be a force of our time, and will continue to be a place to build meaningful connection with customers.”

Learn the latest trends, insights and best practices from the brightest minds in media and technology. Sign up for SMW Insider to watch full-length sessions from official Social Media Week conferences live and on-demand.

The post How Facebook Improves Communities and Drives Business Growth appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2018/11/how-facebook-improves-communities-and-drives-business-growth/

Why Social Media Analytics Aren’t Just for the Top of Funnel

Know your audience.” It’s something drilled into most marketers’ heads from the first day of work. Understanding your audience is key to knowing what your target customers want, like, and think at every stage of the buyer’s journey. And that’s how you convert people into customers, rather than simply collecting a large audience of social media fans.

But most marketers also don’t have the necessary insights and data to understand their audiences well enough for marketing campaigns to reach their full conversion potential. It’s easy to track followers or sales, the start and end of the funnel, but there’s often not much measurement going on in between. And even the final numbers you do measure might not have proper attribution set up to fully grasp your result.

Only tracking sign-ups or sales conversions will never give you the information you need.

What you need is quantitative data and answers about your target customer at every stage of the sales funnel. Instead of just tracking when someone becomes a customer, follow them on the path to getting there. Once you can follow engagement patterns from touchpoint to touchpoint, you can learn specifically where to improve, down to the specific asset or call-to-action.

And you can get all of this information from measuring your social media marketing more effectively. Here’s why you might want to ensure your analytics program is set up as well as it can be to optimize your marketing.

Optimize and improve active campaigns

As the customer journey continues to get less and less linear, and your audience increasingly interacts with you in multiple places at once, social will become more closely integrated with other channels in marketing promotions and campaigns.

In the past, social media was viewed as a brand awareness and top-of-funnel strategy for building an audience to be moved elsewhere for conversion. But now, as customer touchpoints spread to more and more platforms and formats, social media plays a larger role further down the sales funnel in multichannel marketing.

Take the three questions Single Grain’s Eric Siu recommends asking for each stage of your marketing funnel, particularly the ones around how customers find you and what they need from you to move to the next stage. Increasingly, that answer will be found on social media, whether it being how someone found you, or interaction and connection helping guide them to the next stage.

As social media continues to seep throughout the marketing funnel, not measuring it will create wider and wider gaps in your understanding of your effectiveness.

Find focus in your messaging

Social media analytics can help you hone in on your marketing messaging to better appeal to your target audience. You can do this in multiple ways with multiple types of data.

For example, when creating a new marketing campaign or promotion for any channel (or more likely, multiple channels), you can create different content topics and versions of copy based on what social content tends to perform well and what you learn from social media insights. But that’s the least of what you can do.

For messaging targeted at a warmer, familiar audience, you might want to test content with your company’s social audience. But with a colder campaign, you can leverage employee advocacy and your team’s personal networks. Smarp has found the average employee advocate can reach at least 300 people per social channel and drive nearly 13 clicks per Facebook share, so this can be a powerful, low friction way to put test ideas in front of cold audiences.

Social media marketing and measurement also lets you quickly test different marketing and messaging ideas, see how they engage different audiences, then optimize and iterate on them for a full funnel or campaign. You can even customize this process based on what type of audience you would like to test.

Add insights and context to the bottom of your funnel

In addition to measuring your organic and paid activity performance, you can use data available from social media to better understand the bottom of your funnel, even when social media isn’t directly involved. Thanks to the information made available from social platforms on your target audience and people engaging with you already, you can get the information you otherwise wouldn’t have access to with your own numbers.

For example, think about how your strategy and funnel can benefit from Facebook Audience Insights and custom audiences based on what stage of the sales funnel someone is in.

You can use your pixels to track activity on different pages, building ad targeting audiences of new leads, warm prospects at the bottom of the funnel, those who found you through a certain source, and more. There are tons of segmentation possibilities.

The background data you can get from things like that are completely different from what you might get from measuring email or sales page clicks and conversions. So when you track everything from social profiles to email behavior and look at it all together, you can add more context and understanding to the stages of the buyer’s journey that are lacking in demographic insights.

Convert with social

As social media becomes even more closely integrated with the rest of conversion marketing, incomplete measurement will become even more detrimental to your other marketing channels like paid ads and email.

Improve your tracking today to not only prevent that gap but also add new strength to your entire marketing strategy.

Learn the latest trends, insights and best practices from the brightest minds in media and technology. Sign up for SMW Insider to watch full-length sessions from official Social Media Week conferences live and on-demand.

The post Why Social Media Analytics Aren’t Just for the Top of Funnel appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2018/11/why-social-media-analytics-arent-just-for-the-top-of-funnel/

5 Facebook Ad Tools That Will Make Your Content Stand Out

The rumors of Facebook’s death have been greatly exaggerated.

Nearly every year someone predicts that Facebook is dying, soon to be replaced by the next shiny new social media platform, yet it continues to grow and thrive with over 2.2 billion monthly active users as of January 2018. However, with Facebook’s recent emphasis shift from page-to-person to person-to-person interactions, many businesses are struggling to adjust.

Under this new system, posts have less reach than before and many businesses have responded by posting more content, hoping something will get through to their target audience. Unfortunately, recent studies have found that the additional posts have actually resulted in lower engagement but this doesn’t mean that Facebook is not a great marketing and sales platform. Instead, stand out from the crowd and find sales success using these great Facebook tools.

Facebook Ads Manager

If you’re new to the platform, Facebook ads manager is a great place to start because it’s free and easy to set up and you can establish your marketing budget for any amount you choose. To get started go to the Ads page and follow the instructions which will walk you through setting up and activating your campaign

You can skim the surface of this tool or drill deeper to improve your reach by tailoring who views these ads by location, gender, age, and more. For some businesses, this tool is all they need to increase sales and for others, it’s a piece of a larger campaign, but every company advertising on Facebook should take advantage of this resource.

Hootsuite Ads

Hootsuite began as a free scheduling platform that allowed you could create posts and schedule them to be uploaded on to your social media platforms on a specified date and time. They still offer this service, which makes managing your content calendar a breeze, but now offer Hootsuite Ads service that brings more traffic to your website so you can generate additional leads and sales.

This tool comes with traffic and analytics reports, ad filters to narrow the reach and increase the effectiveness of your ads, and Facebook ad support. If you’re nervous about wading into Facebook ads alone, this is a great solution. There are two program levels for this service, $9.99 per month and $14.99 per month.

AdEspresso by Hootsuite

In February of 2017, Hootsuite acquired AdEspresso, a full-service ad creation, and management program.  AdEspresso is a Facebook Marketing Partner that removes the learning curve many businesses experience with Facebook ads so they can achieve a faster ROI. It is also Instagram and Google Partners, which allows you to create and manage all of these campaigns from one location. This system integrates with Canva, a popular graphics program, and allows you to upload images and videos, create carousel ads, and add headlines.

With AdEspresso you can broadly or narrowly define your target engagements and track the success of your campaigns with ease. This allows for great A/B testing so you to try new approaches on different groups and tweak the best ones to achieve better outcomes. Costs for this service range from $49/month for the base plan and up to $499/month for their Diamond plan, with others in between.

Buzzsumo

If you have experience advertising on Facebook, you may want to up your game by using services such as Buzzmo. Beyond simply running ads, influencer marketing is important to engage certain market segments, especially millennials, and this program helps you identify and utilize the right influencers for your products and services.

This service helps you identify industry trends, tracks competitor content and identify appropriate influencers based on data that determines the range of their reach. Buzzmo also identifies which topics are of interest to your target audience so you can create content that engages this key demographic and delivers the analytics you need to track your success. This service takes the guesswork out of knowing what everyone is talking about and who is influencing them, so you can use this information to promote your products and service. Plans start at $79/month.

Heyo

A great way to engage your audience is through direct Facebook interactions such as contests, giveaways, quizzes and coupons, and Heyo makes it easy. If you can click, drag and drop, you can create mobile-optimized Facebook campaigns, complete with a countdown, and track your results.

With this service, your campaigns can run on a minimum of three and up to 50 Facebook brand pages so you don’t need to worry about coordinating the process over multiple pages. There are three plan levels, from $25/month to $199/month, and all are Facebook-focused with other social media and third-party integrations included.

Bottom Line

Facebook is alive and well and offers multiple opportunities for businesses to engage their consumer base. Whether you are a newbie or experienced Facebook advertiser, these tools can help take your campaigns to new levels.

Learn the latest trends, insights and best practices from the brightest minds in media and technology. Sign up for SMW Insider to watch full-length sessions from official Social Media Week conferences live and on-demand.

The post 5 Facebook Ad Tools That Will Make Your Content Stand Out appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2018/11/5-facebook-ad-tools-that-will-make-your-content-stand-out/

Facebook Portal Use May Affect Your Ads After All

As Facebook announced its entry to the smart speaker market, The Facebook Portal, last week, questions quickly and rightfully arose about the device’s privacy measures. Among the safeguards cited: a camera that wouldn’t record unless engaged, an Amazon-powered Alexa assistant that wouldn’t listen unless summoned, a manual shut-off option for each feature of the device, and the promise that calls made wouldn’t affect ad targeting on any of Facebook platforms.

Now, after clarification by spokespeople from the company, it would seem some of that information is incorrect. Specifically, the Portal’s connection to ad targeting are less airtight than first reported. According to an email sent to press after initial announcements, “Portal voice calling is built on the Messenger infrastructure, so when you make a video call on Portal, we collect the same types of information (i.e. usage data such as length of calls, frequency of calls) that we collect on other Messenger-enabled devices. We may use this information to inform the ads we show you across our platforms.”

Evidently, some of the confusion arose because of questions about if Portal would run or display ads; it will not. But now, it has the potential to impact that revenue stream with the information it collects.

The word “potential” is used intentionally here; Rafa Camargo, the product VP overseeing Portal, went on to say while this means Facebook could “potentially” use that information, there ultimately has been no final decision on the topic—it has not yet been determined whether they will. But this ambiguity, combined with other seeming ambiguity in the realm of privacy (shifting privacy settings, adjustments of affected parties in their recent breach), further legitimizes the worries that have been presented by consumers wary to invest in Facebook hardware.

This rollout misstep feels careless and tone-deaf to legitimate privacy concerns of Facebook’s users and the industry alike. Put another way, Engadget notes, “when you’re already under the microscope for being careless with people’s data, as Facebook is, you simply can’t afford to launch a product with this much confusion.”

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The post Facebook Portal Use May Affect Your Ads After All appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2018/10/facebook-portal-use-may-affect-your-ads-after-all/

How Apple Dominated Twitter Without Tweeting

This past week, Apple has conducted a master class in how to take over Twitter—and they did it without a single organic tweet.

If you visit @Apple on Twitter, you’ll notice that despite over 2.2 million followers, the company has not tweeted even once.

And yet during the #AppleEvent, when the company unveiled their new line of products, including the iPhone XS and Apple Watch 4, not only were people’s timelines packed with updates from journalists and thought leaders dishing and delving into the devices, but the company spent what some call “a significant amount” on ads.

Why would a company that doesn’t deign to tweet from its own account spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on paid posts?

Well, they’re trillion-dollar Apple—they can do whatever they want. But there’s more to it than that.

Here’s how Apple dominated Twitter for the #AppleEvent

Digiday had a rundown of the prices Apple likely paid for all their advertising on Sept. 12, including:

  • A promoted trend: $200,000/day
  • A custom “like for reminder” build: $250,000 for several days
  • Promoted tweets in 12+ languages (ranging from $0.50 to $8)
  • A “hashflag” (custom Twitter emoji) and a livestream of the event (likely free)

And indeed, no matter where you went on Twitter on Sept. 12, you couldn’t avoid the #AppleEvent hashtag and hashflag. The feed was flooded with tweets about what Apple was unveiling, which was the product of both Apple’s paid efforts and tweets from writers and journalists (more on that in a second).

Apple wasn’t running any ads on Facebook. Why is that? Isn’t Facebook the biggest social media platform, with the most reach? How could Apple avoid it on Apple Event day?

Twitter is where conversations start

Perhaps the biggest draw of Twitter is that it’s built to get conversations started. Journalists, early adopters, and other people who make a living covering and have a passion for Apple products know that Twitter is better for breaking news than Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, or any other major platform.

Apple recognizes this. By meeting users on Twitter—supplying them with a livestream (that’s where this writer watched the event), creating a rare “like for reminder” tweet that helped users remember when the event would take place, and tweeting in languages used all around the world—Apple was actively encouraging and helping those users to have more informed and productive conversations about their products.

For whatever reason, tweeting doesn’t fit Apple’s brand. Tweets from other people do, however. So by pouring money into the platform at the right moment, Apple found a way to boost those tweets, to make them more visible and engaging. Again, that’s without sending a single tweet from their own account.

While Apple has plenty of money, they’re not in the business of wasting it. This was a showcase in how to pick your spots on social media and use each platform—even platforms you don’t engage in yourself—to maximize value.

Images via Apple

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The post How Apple Dominated Twitter Without Tweeting appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2018/09/how-apple-dominated-twitter-without-tweeting/

4 Incredible Image Hacks to Improve Your Facebook Ad Campaigns

Five years ago, a colleague of mine began promoting her e-commerce business on Facebook. After spending two years promoting it on AdWords, she believed that split-testing ad copy was the path to building successful Facebook campaigns. After a year of struggling, she started testing images instead. She soon discovered that testing images was the key to success. Today, she is one of the most successful Facebook e-commerce marketers I know. She told me that applying several image hacks increased her average ROI by over 400%!

Facebook Image Hacks Can Boost Your ROI by 400% or Higher

Facebook is the second most popular advertising platform after Google. Around 93% of marketers use Facebook to reach their audience, because it has such a vast base of users. While Facebook is a powerful advertising medium, it takes a tremendous amount of testing and a dedicated strategy to reach your target customers effectively.

My colleague, Jacob Erdei told me that Facebook advertising campaigns will go much more smoothly when you prioritize the right variables for your testing. He tells new Facebook marketers that 80% of the performance of a Facebook ad is attributed to its image.

Unfortunately, choosing the right image is easier said than done. Any campaign requires extensive testing to find the right marketing creative. However, there are a number of great image hacks that increase the probability of success and minimize the resources that you need to allocate to testing images. Here are some great image hacks to test with your Facebook ads.

Segment by age and find images that help users reminisce about their youth

Gabriel Ciordias, the CEO of BannerSnack, says that the biggest mistake that new Facebook advertisers make is testing the same images for every target segmented audience. This drastically limits the likelihood that you will find images that appeal to any of your target users. It takes a large budget and a lot of time to test more than four ads at a time. It is better to choose unique images that are likely to appeal to every segmented demographic.

One effective way to do this is by finding images that bring people back to their youth. In my own campaigns, I have found that people have a strange subconscious fixation with colors and themes that relate to the period of their life when they were in middle school to college.

For example, if you are promoting an offer to baby boomers, you may want to consider using the same colors from the most popular Beatles albums of that era.

Don’t rule out testing darker background colors

A surprising Number of marketers insist that you need flashy images with bright colors to run a successful campaign on any advertising platform. These guidelines don’t align with split tests conducted by Nadya Khoja.

Khoja found that images with darker backgrounds had a 136% higher click-through rate and 18% lower CPC. The conversion rate on this campaign was 87%.

What is the reason for this shocking difference in performance between images with brighter and darker colors? Khoja believes it is because darker colors demonstrate more power and authority.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that images with darker background colors will necessarily perform better for your specific campaign. However, it does show that it is definitely worth a test.

Use avatars that relate to your target audience

In the blog post that he shared with me, Jacob states that using avatars that appeal to your target audience is a great way to boost the performance of your campaigns.

“Really it’s all a matter of testing and segmenting out your groups by interests, age, and any other factors you can think of.  You need to uncover and create multiple customer Avatars.  From there you will be able to select images that closely align with the target group,” Jacob writes.

While this is good advice, I feel it is necessary to qualify it by saying that you should do more research about your target audience before choosing an avatar. The best performing avatar may not be someone that matches their exact demographic. For example, my own tests show that men between the ages of 35 and 48 tend to respond best to images of females that are 5 to 8 years younger than they are.

Try Using Instagram-like Filters

Instagram has changed the expectations of users on all social media sites. Facebook is no exception.

Using Instagram-like filters can be a good way to make your images more engaging. However, there is a caveat – you need to make sure they don’t come across as offensive or too bizarre. Otherwise, they may not get approved by the editorial team.

Try testing different filters and see what works. The simplest and most effective is to simply add a solid, red border to the outside of your image. Luke Kling did a case study on using these effects on PoF ads and found this can increase your click-through-rate by 600%. The same results wouldn’t be surprising on Facebook, especially with the right targeting.

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The post 4 Incredible Image Hacks to Improve Your Facebook Ad Campaigns appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2018/08/4-incredible-image-hacks-to-improve-your-facebook-ad-campaigns/

8 Ways To Use Facebook Engagement To Boost Sales

In 2008, Facebook was first ranked as the most used social network on a worldwide basis and still holds that position today in terms of active users. Still, its popularity is waning, especially among teens, but don’t count this social media giant out just yet. Facebook provides many opportunities to engage your target audience and boost sales.

Post the Right Information at the Right Time

Rather than share the same information across all platforms, understand which types of posts do best on each. Facebook is the best platform for blogs, curated content, videos and live chats. Also, posting between 1 pm to 3 pm results in optimal engagement.

Deliver High Engagement Content

Svetlana Ustinova created iGotOffer as a safe place for people to receive a fair price for their old phones, computers, and pads. To engage the target audience and drive business to the website, he delivers blog content that includes reviews of new phones, fixes for common tech problems, industry updates and more. “We found that by providing content about the latest phones and computers, then posting it on Facebook, we drew people to our site. Nearly everyone has old technology lying around and once the hook gets them to the site, it converts to a sale.”

Be Ready for Your Close-up

Go Live on Facebook to share specific experiences, demonstrations, discussions and more. This opportunity takes engagement to a new level. First, you step out from behind your logo and show yourself as the face of your brand. You can share how your products are made, used, and even recycled, or show the impact that your company’s philanthropic efforts have made on a specific community or area. Second, you should follow the live stream and answer questions, respond to comments, and further connect with your audience.

Boost Your Posts

Many Facebook ad experts pooh-pooh the “boost your post” option as being ineffective. The truth is that for small and/or local businesses, boosting your post results in more sales, and increases the number of page likes. For those on a tight budget, ignore the experts and boost the post. You can achieve a great ROI.

Share the Love

Or, more accurately, make it easy for others to share your content. Always include Facebook’s “like” plugin and share button on every blog, sales announcement, and other relevant content on your site. As you grow more followers, they become an extension of your sales team by sharing pieces about your products and services. Also, when posting information on Facebook, add a caption encouraging them to share it with someone who would be interested in what you have to say and/or sell.

Leverage Facebook Remarketing

This powerful tool has three specific aspects. First, customer lists which function like email marketing using personalized messages instead. Second, website traffic serves ads to people who meet specific filters you’ve established, including people who have visited your site during a specified timeframe. Third, app activity helps businesses with apps boost sales by reminding people to complete a purchase, offer special discount codes, and more.

Take Facebook Ads to a New Level

Facebook Ads have been around for a while so people think they have a pretty good handle on what to do, but let’s kick it up a notch. First, don’t settle for Facebook’s CPM model. Set your own CPM bids and switch to CPC pricing under the advance pricing model. Second, use a multi-product carousel and theme it to tell a story, outfit, or use. You can even use all of the panes to display one compelling image to really capture someone’s attention and imagination. Third, use a video advert because Facebook’s algorithm prioritizes video content. So not only is a video more engaging, it is more likely to be seen by others.

Incorporate Reviews

According to Search Engine Land, almost 90% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. When posting on Facebook, incorporate positive reviews in your ads to establish an element of trust. Also, when you’ve had a run of great reviews, shout-outs or other special acknowledgments, share a brief post such as, “Wow are we blushing about all of the great reviews our (name) product has recently received, including…” Don’t forget to link to the product page so readers can experience it for themselves.

Bottom Line

Facebook is still at the top of social media pyramid in terms of active users and provides significant marketing opportunities for the foreseeable future. Use this platform to post the right things at the right time, looking beyond the obvious opportunities to truly engage your target audience. Sales opportunities are alive and well on Facebook if you’re willing to make the effort.

Learn the latest trends, insights and best practices from the brightest minds in media and technology. Sign up for SMW Insider to watch full-length sessions from official Social Media Week conferences live and on-demand.

The post 8 Ways To Use Facebook Engagement To Boost Sales appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2018/07/8-ways-to-use-facebook-engagement-to-boost-sales/

Snapchat’s Two New Hires Will Help It Show Its True Value to Marketers

Snapchat might be every teenager’s favorite app for silly selfies, but the company is taking its business very seriously. The Venice, Calif. startup has hired two marketing measurement veterans to better show marketers how their money can show returns from Snapchat ads, the Wall Street Journal reported and Snapchat confirmed to Fortune. Though Snapchat has…

http://fortune.com/2016/03/22/snapchat-hires-marketing-measurement/

Watch LinkedIn’s First-Ever TV Commercial

LinkedIn is heading for Hollywood. The social media platform for the career-oriented is launching its first-ever television commercial to air during Sunday’s Academy Awards, according to Re/code. The ad comes with the title, “You’re closer than you think.” The 30-second spot features an astronaut in space and suggests viewers can one day join the profession.…

http://fortune.com/2016/02/26/linkedin-television-ad/