Tag Archives: facebook ads

My Insights on Paying Facebook for Likes

There has been some interesting thoughts around using Facebook Ads to buy fans, traffic or leads and I thought I'd dig a little into why I don't mind using Facebook Ads. SEJ just posted a larger and more detailed analysis on it that you should read! But I wanted to counter some of the negative points people seem to be making around the topic for the past few months.  I could be wrong but feel many people weighing in on the issue likely fit into a few groups:
  • those that haven't actually ever run any FB ad campaigns
  • those that have only run a few small FB ad campaigns
  • those that ran FB campaigns badly in the past and got burnt
During the second half of December 2013 I decided to run a small Facebook ad campaign for my Travel affiliate page to see how I could try and lift it's audience numbers but also increase engagement on the posts.  I also wanted to see if I could get some improved organic fan growth and post reach due to a larger audience due to targeted Facebook Ads.The purpose of the Travel page is about brand building and sharing great and interesting content so I don't really expect to get much benefit at this point or that this will massively increase the amount of clicks back to my website.  The page had done some sponsored posts on and off over the last year with some success with uplifts in clicks, likes and new fans but a majority of it's growth was from like buttons within my travel sites.How much was spent?I thought it was higher but when I checked FB Ads reports it was actually only US$76.14 that was spent during this trial.  Sure that might sound like a lot to spend on Facebook Ads to some people considering this is just my travel affiliate brand I run but I wanted to have some fun and do some tests to see if it could scale up more. You can see the chart below with the scale to show you on average how many "likes" I got per day, in the end the campaign generated around 150 new fans with a cost-per-fan of $0.51 which I don't think is too bad in such a competitive vertical as travel.In my own tests I've found that often Google AdWords fans often visit, puke and then leave never to be seen again, this is great if you can provide them with the content/information they were needing but if you can't satisfy them you have lost them forever. Also Google AdWords CPC rates in the travel vertical are downright insane based on last time I did some research in that space.Yes I know you can pay far less but this was not a test to get the cheapest fans possible it was about trying to get quality fans.  I have previously managed to pay $0.01-$0.05 per fan in campaigns I've run for clients before but there is a limit to how many of those fans you can attract so you have to increase the amount you are willing to pay for a fan if you want to scale up or want faster fan growth.

Facebook Ads

 How was engagement changed?So why do I prefer Facebook Ads over Google AdWords? Well the biggest thing is I've found that Facebook fans stick around for longer and engage with your content and your community.  So I thought the easiest way to explain why I bothered to use Facebook Ads to attract some new fans is to show what is the longer term impact after you stop your campaigns.In the graph below I have clearly marked where I was running Facebook ads and the engagement "likes" on the posts takes almost a week but then spikes right up.  I know I was experimenting with daily budgets along with CPM/CPC bids which seemed to attract more engagement but maybe it could have been more structured.The upside is that you can see once the Facebook Ads stopped the engagement didn't fall off a cliff as I expected it might. The shifts in engagement are also linked to the types of content I've shared as images and videos typically get far better engagement.  I didn't include Post insights as I noticed the reach and engagement varied a lot depending on day/time and post content theme, also I felt there was enough information in this post but the main reason was Facebook Insights is now be playing up and missing any interaction data before 6th February 2014.

Facebook Likes

What about other actions?An important part of Facebook ads is that they can also offer you far more metrics to track than just clicks and likes. It's important if you want to measure the success of your campaign you look at how some you are often getting bonus clicks along with new fans.  This also highlights the importance of having various types of media used in your posts (photos, videos, text, links) as users like both choice and variety.

Facebook Actions

What about clicks on Links to offsite content?I was able to use BufferApp to easily track the amount of clicks on posts, I recall that there was a small handful of links I shared manually without Buffer but I don't expect they would have got that much better interaction.  The big insight that even with increased audience size and increased engagement on your posts don't always expect your audience to click away from Facebook.Consider Video or Image content that they can interact with via comments, likes or shares and you will fine far better engagement rates and your campaign metrics will actually look decent.  Don't rely on Facebook posts to drive as much CTR on your link posts as Twitter or Google+ will generate.

Facebook Clicks on Links

What do you think about using Facebook Ads to buy Fans?So I've outlined some data points from my own experience do you agree or have you given up on Facebook ads? Before you get too bent out of shape of having to pay for something that is once free think about Google Organic traffic and Google AdWords... do you get bent out of shape if you have to buy traffic from Google?

Facebook Advertising Campaign Widget

I noticed today that Facebook is showing an interactive widget that shows my campaign activity for my Facebook Ads. It shows a top level view of how many adverts you have, how many campaigns and even how many page likes your campaigns are producing.You can click through on the different stats to take you through to the Adverts Manager dashboard. It's a nice simplified reporting platform but possible suited more towards smaller campaigns.

Facebook Offers You to Keep up with The Sun?

Facebook has started pushing out organic messaging to those who engage with shared content in what looks a strong attempt increase the audience of fan pages. Once you like the shared content you are encouraged with a message "Want to see more from The Sun" along with a someone intrusive popup highlighting the "Like Page" button. Looking at the source code it doesn't appear to be an FB ad but is it a new item just for media partners as we haven't seen it on other content we liked.

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Yahoo Clues for SEO

Yahoo Clues LogoYahoo has today rolled out an updated to their Buzz platform that put's it far ahead of Google Trends and Google Real-time and the usability places it in the grasp of being useful to everyone who is able to operate a mouse.  I really love the potential power of the platform combined with its pure simplicity with huge vaults of almost real-time demographic data and is large enough that I can see what users in Queensland, Australia are looking putting it on par with many enterprise social media platforms.The platform is very much pitched around what celebrities get the most buzz but I see the platform has some very powerful features outside the paparazzi knowing who to stalk online for the next high of traffic to their fashion blogs.  If you are involved in marketing or search you should be testing some of your primary keywords to see what insights you can learn and measure this against your Facebook fan page analytic data to gauge the variance in the data, but I can tell you damn it's cool!What it Yahoo Clues tells you
  • what other popular queries relate to your term
  • what is the previous search query before your term
  • what is the next likely query after your term
What can I do with Top Trends?
This platform is very cool because it offers the ability to quickly filter through data to find most popular search queries and then drill down by time period, gender, age range, location and even category of interest.  If you were a Melbourne based travel site looking for content ideas of what to write about you could see what are the current top search queries but also where you should considering buying PPC traffic or adding to your weekly email newsletter.
Melbourne Most Popular City Search Queries

Melbourne Most Popular City Search Queries

There are some limitations currently around the depth of categories but this will hopefully increase as more data is added to the platform, so best you look at using "trends" to find specific keywords or terms in more detail.
What can I do with Trends Analysis?
I have run two quick sample queries to show you if you were looking to understand the demographics of people who are searching for SEO online and even where you might be targeting your Facebook Ads you can do in an instant.
Yahoo SEO Trends

Yahoo SEO Trends

SEO versus PPC Traffic

SEO versus PPC Traffic

See Yahoo Clues in Action!I did a video review of the platform and how you can use Top Trends & Trends Analysis for your keyword or article research, but also so you know more about your Facebook demographic before you start targeting them via Facebook Ads, please check it out below and then go and play with it for yourself.

New Facebook Ads Manager

likes-ad-managerToday I noticed while looking at the data from some current Facebook ad campaigns that there was a notification at the top of the page but also a new link to a feature called "creative library". The notification was an update to Facebook Ads Manager interface with new enhanced visuals and new campaign performance data, my account had been upgraded to take advantage of the new advanced metrics and graphs to better understand my Facebook Ads.There was a link to a pdf document to learn more about the new Facebook Ad Manager that offered a brief tour of the new features including
  • improved campaign performance graphs
  • new real-time measurements
  • inline ad management
Click to view the PDF Guide to the New Facebook Ads ManagerThe new updates highlighted that you can see an audience performance graph that show you how many people your Facebook ads do reach compared to the total audience you can target over the last 28 days.  This is important as it can show what elements of your campaign are under delivering and guides on where you can improve your campaign to reach more of your audience including more social reach or increasing your CPC bids or campaign budgets.new facebook ads dashboardThe new metrics are also constantly updated so offer almost real-time results of your campaign providing you campaign metrics to understand how Facebook users are responding to your campaigns, and adjust them constantly.  The metrics have almost been simplified as there is now clicks and connections (conversions) which enable advertisers to understand if they are failing to target the right audience by not getting any new fans, app installations, or RSVPs to your events. You can quickly also divide the number of connections into number of clicks to get the campaign conversion rate which helps spot potential failing campaigns quickly.The new Facebook ad campaign metrics are
  • campaign reach - the number of individual people who saw your ads in this campaign during the date period selected, this is different to impressions which includes people seeing your ad multiple times
  • frequency - the average number of times each person saw your campaign ad
  • social reach - the people who saw your ad with the names of their friends who liked your page, RSVPed to your event or used your app
  • connections - the number of people who liked your page, RSVPed to your event or installed your application within 24 hours of seeing your ad
  • clicks - the number of clicks this campaign has received
  • CTR - the campaign click thru rate
  • spent - the amount of money you spent on Facebook ads
The new Facebook audience metrics are
  • targeted - the approximate number of people seeing your ads based on the targeting options you have selected
  • reach - the individual number of people who saw your Facebook ads
  • social reach - the number of people who saw your Facebook ads because their friends like your page, RSVPed to your event or use your app
Facebook introduces inline ad managementOne of the issues with the previous interface was the time wasted loading when clicking back and forward to manage your individual Facebook ads.  Now you can quickly click one of the ad rows in your Ad Manager screen and the ad will drop down allowing you to quickly preview the ad and click-through the various elements of its individual performance without leaving the Ad manager.Facebook inline adsFacebook offers Creative librarySimilar to a number of bid management and ad serving platforms Facebook has created a central database of all your campaign creatives allowing for scalable campaigns and also the re-use of previous ads in your new campaigns.  The platform allows you to view all campaigns creatives, by campaign but also those campaigns with no adverts yet created, and you can also search via keyword to quickly find that perfect ad. There is 3 options you can edit that creative, preview how it will look on your profile page and click to use that creative in a new or existing campaign.Facebook Ad Creative LibraryFacebook will be releasing the new Ads Manager to all advertisers by the 25th May 2011, so keep an eye out in your account for the new dashboard.

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