Tag Archive | "industry"

The often overlooked reason why Facebook converts so well

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See what’s immediately above this sponsored post? It shows that Joe Chernov, Jill Rowley, Robert Scoble, and a number of my friends like this company.

Kapost is a content marketing software company, so they’ve managed to attract the industry’s top influencers as fans. It had nothing to do with ipad giveaways or buying fans to fluff their fan count. Just building real trust over time.

It had nothing to do with how they tested elements of their landing page. No amount of changing button placement, color, or size substitutes for trusted endorsements from friends.

Four years ago, we called this the “most powerful secret” in Facebook ads. And shy of making it sound like snake oil, wouldn’t you agree that the most powerful marketing is what raving fans say?

You can’t exactly buy these endorsements. But if you have kick-butt content marketing to truly educate and entertain, Jason Miller style, then you can.

And that’s just what social has always been about, even before there were computers.

So don’t fret about Facebook’s latest algorithmic change to slap down people who are shamelessly shilling. If your content is truly interesting, you have no fear from Facebook’s algorithm.

Even if you’re in a “boring” industry, you can find an angle other than your product. And your competitors have the same limitation, anyway. Your guy doing SEO probably has some thoughts here, if they’re doing it the right way (not buying links).

Because social endorsement is increasingly necessary to stand out in the newsfeed and then to assist in conversion once you reach the user, several things are true:

  • The only practitioners in Facebook marketing should be product-using customers themselves. Cue the death of the social media consultant, who knows about Facebook in general, but nothing about your product.
  • Content marketing and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) are the same thing. I got news for you. If you think you do SEO but can’t write content, go talk to the social media consultants who don’t know your products. This will anger a lot of SEOs who will argue blue in the face that their tactics work or that on-site SEO is enough. They view Facebook like the yellow pages guys view Google.
  • You need to embrace marketing automation. That means nurturing your users with pinpoint personalized content based on who they are and where they are in your journey with you.  The only way to do that is via paid tools (no surprise), since custom audiences require that you pay to deliver this level of targeting. But you pay for your email program to send mail, so why not social?

Sherly Sandberg used to refer to Facebook marketing as “word of mouth at scale.” They aren’t using that phrase so often anymore, but we still believe it to be true and always will be.

Article courtesy of Inside Facebook

Coinbase Launches Bitcoin-Based Tips, Micropayments

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Managing Talent In A Networked Age, Part 2

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Through AutoLiFT, automotive brands may start looking to Facebook for extra ad horsepower

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Courting automotive brands has been a major focus for Facebook. When General Motors pulled its $10 million ad campaign from Facebook in 2012, many industry leaders took it as a sign that there’s not enough ROI from Facebook advertising. However, a lot has changed in 2 years.

Facebook’s pitch got a significant boost in November 2013 when the company hired Google’s Michelle Morris to lead automotive marketing.

Now, as Facebook has built a robust advertising platform, Menlo Park and Detroit are working together quite well. Facebook Marketing Partner BLiNQ Media, a G/O Digital company, recently announced AutoLiFT, an ad targeting solution for auto brands.

Morris, in a press release, discussed AutoLiFT:

It’s great to see our developer community begin to specialize their platforms to meet the needs of specific industries. Automotive marketers are heavy users of programmatic technologies, and BLiNQ has built an intelligent and dynamic, cross-device platform for tier 2 and tier 3 marketing programs on Facebook.

So how well are car makers working with Facebook and what can AutoLiFT do for the industry?

Raj Choudhury, the CEO of BLiNQ Media, told Inside Facebook recently that Facebook adoption rates within the industry have been touch-and-go, but trending upward as the platform matures:

The auto industry is one of the more complex industries to tackle. It’s been somewhat slower among the verticals to really get on board, because of the complexity. … The adoption rate within the industry, among tier 1, tier 2, tier 3, has been very sporadic and different. Facebook has a challenge to try to educate those verticals across those three tiers, each requiring different levels of touch.

Seeing a chance to bridge the divide between Facebook and automotive brands, BLiNQ Media developed AutoLiFT, which utilizes Facebook, Cars.com and Datalogix data to provide ad targeting more tailored to industry needs.

One of the biggest hurdles Facebook has to clear with auto brands, Choudhury said, is proving that Facebook can deliver adequate scale and reach. Many dealerships and brands have been content with TV, display and traditional media buying, but now more brands are considering allocating more money to digital advertising. Facebook plays a huge part in that, Choudhury told Inside Facebook:

Still, the automotive industry is somewhat stuck. They’ll talk that they want to spend more on digital, but you see the ad dollars still in TV, still in print, and so forth. The shift in mentality is there, and I think there’s a big change there. It’s about educating and enabling these OEMs to take that leap of faith.

BLiNQ has already been winning some companies over with AutoLiFT, which aims to make Facebook a more attractive option for ad buying.

RPA, a Honda agency, used AutoLiFT in beta. Mike Margolin, Sr. V.P., Director of Audience Strategy at RPA, discussed the platform in a press release:

At RPA, we pride ourselves on embracing innovative technology to reach multiple audiences on behalf of our clients. By enabling us to deliver the most targeted messages to highly segmented audiences, AutoLiFT will allow us to optimize our Facebook ad campaigns for maximum efficiency, thus streamlining the selling cycle and improving the buying experience for our Honda and Acura Dealer Association clients.

Readers: How else could the auto industry utilize Facebook?

Top image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Article courtesy of Inside Facebook

Calling All Angels, Executives, VCs And Everyone Else To Write Guest Columns For TechCrunch

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Deleting your Facebook page is foolish

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You know the saying, “You get what you pay for.” That’s often true. In the case of businesses with Facebook pages, you’re actually getting more than what you pay for, since – it’s free! So why would you not only look a gift horse in the mouth, but shoot it?

Yet some businesses are doing just that. It’s become the latest brag, trailing closely behind that fantastically annoying “I don’t even have a TV, never mind watch the drivel!”

Let’s lay it out: deleting your Facebook page is foolish.

Despite occasional kinks and glitches, as well as controversial overhauls, “upgrades” and policy changes (like the recent “naming” debacle), Facebook remains by far the most popular social site on the internet.

Unless you’re paying a little extra for special promoted posts and increased visibility in your audience’s News Feed (still a tough bargain to beat), you’re still given access to a platform where you can promote your brand without being forced to fork over a cent. This is what’s known in the industry – any industry – as “cost effective advertising.”

Despite the exodus of some disgruntled companies disappointed in their Facebook page’s statistical performance and authenticity of fans, Facebook is still the best deal in the social media universe – even better than Twitter, where the average user’s attention span is even shorter than the 140 character limit (and the lifespan of a tweet a few minutes – and that’s being generous).

Facebook is not only more-user friendly, it’s more audience-accessible. Almost everyone you know, in nearly any age group or demographic, has a Facebook account that they check at least once in a while. It’s become the easiest way for everyone to keep in touch with not just friends and family, but the world at large, including their favorite brands (and bands!).

Chances are, if a consumer is aware of your company, they found you on Facebook while surfing for the services you offer. If they can’t find your page (because it’s gone or was never there), they’ll definitely find someone else providing the same product, and you lose a customer to an easier-to-locate, tech-savvier competitor. If your business can’t be bothered to maintain a Facebook page, most potential clients won’t think you’re cool or smart or anything positive – they just won’t consider you. At all.

And let’s talk about the main reason why some businesses are ditching The Book – fake fans. Sure, some of your Facebook followers may be phony accounts set up as a spam screen – but they may also be legit consumers protecting their own personal identities. Not really your call to make. And why do you care if they’re converting? How silly.

As a business, you can’t really measure the “success” of your Facebook page by the number of likes, comments or other graphs that consultants often reference when deciding the validity of this ridiculously obvious option. You know it works when it works – and it always does. Big claim to make with no data? It’s intuitive, folks.

If you REALLY think no potential client will EVER find you (either on purpose or not) on Facebook and result in a sale of some sort, then by all means – cut and run. But I promise you, you’re making a mistake.

It costs you absolutely nothing to create and maintain a Facebook page – the time commitment to curate remotely interesting content is minimal to do yourself and extremely manageable for even small businesses to outsource – and not being there can pointlessly limit awareness of your existence. How short-sighted of you.

Facebook is the new phone book, spanning Generations “B” (for Boomer) to “Z” (and where do we go from there now that we’ve exhausted the alphabet, by the way?).  If you’re not “listed” on Facebook, you may not be discovered at all, alternate forms of advertising aside. Facebook is the first – and oftentimes ONLY – social stop for many online participants. Good luck brewing that juice elsewhere.

Two final points:

Yes, your blog drives lots of traffic (way more than Facebook) – from people who already know about your blog/business and your mom’s friends. That referral pool is pretty small when compared to the potential on Facebook. Don’t need people to purposely or suddenly discover you on Facebook? Swell. Buh-bye.

Do I care if my fans are organic, engaged and fully fluffed or whatever? Nope! I care that people can easily find me – if only to scope out my business as part of their vetting process (and potential clients DO look for you there – ask them!). And for me, that’s A-ok!

Bottom line: those who delete can’t compete. And have smelly feet.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Article courtesy of Inside Facebook

Mobile Games Need Their Artists

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Introducing The 14 Companies Participating In Disrupt London: Startup Battlefield

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Who To Follow On Twitter, According To Marc Andreessen

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Adobe Q3 2014 report: Organic impressions down 50 percent YoY

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Adobe, a Facebook Strategic Preferred Marketing Developer, studied the Facebook performance of its clients in Q3, finding that the News Feed is increasingly becoming pay-to-play.

Adobe found that organic impressions are down 50 percent from last year, but paid impressions only rose 5 percent year-over-year.

Joe Martin, a Senior Analyst at Adobe Digital index, noted that these figures would likely change in Q4, as brands up their budget for the holiday shopping season:

We expect brands to invest more in social during the holiday season as well. As social becomes a bigger part of the holiday commerce experience, brands and retailers are going to want to make sure their messaging is being seen.

Adobe predicts that paid impressions for retail will grow 10 percent to 20 percent during Q4.

ADI_DA_Q3_6Among different verticals, posts from media publishers are up 100 percent from last year, with the financial vertical also showing growth.

ADI_DA_Q3_7In terms of interaction, it was a down year for media, tech and travel brands, through retail pages saw a 13 percent year-over-year hike in post interaction rate.

Screen Shot 2014-10-17 at 9.46.04 AMWhile Google is still the predominant referral site, Facebook is becoming a solid portal for media sites. Adobe found that Facebook refers triple the amount of visits to media sites than Yahoo Bing. However, retail referral visits were down 3 percent YoY.

Adobe also noted that revenue per visit (RPV) from Facebook is growing faster than the industry leaders, Yahoo Bing and Google.

Screen Shot 2014-10-17 at 9.50.32 AMTop image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Article courtesy of Inside Facebook

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