Lookalike Audiences: A New Way to Reach Potential Customers

For marketers, getting the right messages in front of the right people is key. Today we’re announcing the global rollout of lookalike audiences, a targeting feature that helps advertisers reach new customers and grow their businesses.

Lookalike audiences helps advertisers to reach potential customers who share similar characteristics with their current ones. Both online and offline, lookalike targeting has worked well for businesses so we are excited to launch it as a targeting option on Facebook.  This feature will be available in power editor starting this week.
 
Lookalike audiences builds off of a targeting feature we launched last fall called custom audiences. Custom audiences lets marketers take their current customer lists and show ads to those people on Facebook. Now with lookalike audiences, Facebook can use attributes like interests or demographics and show ads to people who share common attributes as their existing customers.  Advertisers can serve any type of Facebook ad to these new groups of people potential customers. 
 
We've seen this new type of targeting drive a wide range of success metrics for direct response companies like Fab, including lower cost per checkout, lower cost per acquisition, larger purchase size, and faster and increased return on investment.
 
 
 
 

Tags: brand/agency,   custom audiences,   E-commerce,   product news,   small business,  

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Announcing the Winners of the PMD Innovation Competition

Announcing the Winners of the PMD Innovation Competition

Today, the Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer (PMD) Program is pleased to announce the winners of the PMD Innovation Competition, which was announced in November at the PMD Fall Summit. The competition was themed "The Era Of News Feed" and invited all PMDs to build and present an innovative product. After a three-month building period, the applicants demoed their product for a Facebook jury.

We’re excited to recognize seven winning companies below. The winners each demonstrated excellence in building technology that bridges marketer needs across the four dimensions of the PMD Program: Pages, Ads, Apps and Insights.
 
  • Ampush (Jury Grand Prize): Ampush’s YOGA platform facilitates hyper-personalized consumer engagement and generates authentic ‘voice-of-user’ stories through seamless integration with News Feed and Open Graph.
  • KRDS: KRDS’ Feedizr helps businesses automatically deliver content to News Feed based on personalized user experience.
  • Moontoast: The Moontoast Social Advertising Platform empowers brands and agencies with the ability to easily create, amplify, and measure social rich media ads in the Facebook News Feed.
  • Optimal: Optimal automates the creation, targeting, and optimization of News Feed promotions to help brands achieve their overall marketing objectives.
  • SocialCode: SocialCode’s Message Optics Live monitors a brand's Facebook page and reports on the organic and viral performance of Page posts to drive smarter content posting and paid media.
  • SocialFlow: SocialFlow automates the publication of the right message at right time, quickly determining best candidates for promotion, and optimizing targeting for best performance.
  • Unified: Unified’s Minilytics was upgraded to support News Feed optimization and the organic and paid opportunities it represents for reaching consumers.
You can find additional details about the winners and what they’ve built on Facebook Developers.

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A New Look for News Feed

A New Look for News Feed

Today we're announcing a new layout of Facebook designed to reduce clutter and focus more on stories from the people and Pages you care about. You'll still see all the stories you saw in your News Feed before, but with a fresh new look: photos, news articles, maps, and events all stand out even more. And with this new design, News Feed now has the same look and feel on mobile, tablet, and web.
 
This change is a visual redesign of News Feed only and does not change how we surface the most interesting stories to people.
 
With this new layout, all content is becoming more vibrant, including stories from Pages and brands. As a marketer on Facebook, here’s what you need to know about News Feed’s new look:
  • Think about your visuals: We’ve seen that more visual stories in News Feed – from both people and Pages – increase user engagement.  Now businesses have an even more visually rich way to showcase content and get people engaged. In the example below, a restaurant can get people hungry for lunch by showcasing today’s special right before lunchtime.

  • Get discovered with “Following”: Thanks to a new “Following” feed on the right-hand side of the home page, people will be able to discover more content from the Pages they like and the people they follow. Stories on “Following” are shown in chronological order.

  • Make sure your cover photo tells your story: For both organic and paid Page Like stories, the photo that we’ll now display is the Page’s cover photo. This change is designed to provide more context about the Page. All the more reason to make sure your cover photo is eye-catching and visually representative of your Page.
We'll be rolling out the new design very slowly over the coming weeks on web and mobile. If you'd like to get it early, visit www.facebook.com/newsfeed and add yourself to the waiting list. 
 

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Tips from "The Facebook Guide to Small Business Marketing"

Tips from "The Facebook Guide to Small Business Marketing"

Small business owners are constantly looking for new customers and engaging with the ones they already have to foster loyalty. In a recently published book, "The Facebook Guide to Small Business Marketing," author Ramon Ray of Smallbiztechnology.com shares his insights into how small business owners can use Facebook to achieve their goals and grow their sales. 

Here's an excerpt from what you'll find inside featuring three quick tips on how to get the most out of your Facebook Page:
  1. Stop trying to make a quick sellInstead of focusing on getting new fan likes, post content that will increase the engagement of your target audiences (photos, polls, questions). Use Page post targeting to refine your message to the segments that would want to hear from you most regarding that posted content.
  2. Bring your Page's Timeline to lifePost frequently relevant content to your Facebook Page's Timeline and make it a social destination for your audience. Pin important tips to the top of your Page; change your cover photo out regularly; and make your customers your experts by getting them to weigh in on the questions you post.
  3. Promote those "must-see" postsFor those posts that are getting really good fan interaction, consider promoting them (click "promote" underneath the post) to your fans and friends of your fans. Since you know the post's content is engaging, why not spread the word even more about your business?
Check out the book at http://www.smallbiztechnology.com/facebookmarketing and visit facebook.com/business to learn how to get your business set up for success.

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Important Updates to PMD Badge Applications and Requirements

Important Updates to PMD Badge Applications and Requirements

Today we are re-opening applications to the Preferred Marketing Developer (PMD) Program with two key updates.
 
First, we are moving to a referral-based system where companies that have proven success working with our internal teams or ads-qualified PMDs will be prioritized.
       
Throughout the history of the PMD Program, we've learned that companies referred to us by a trusted, credible and informed source were much more likely to ultimately join the program as they had proven to be successful on our platform and with marketers.
 
Additionally, the intrinsic link between paid, earned, and owned media on Facebook means that all PMDs must have a deep knowledge and understanding across all badged areas to ensure marketer success. Many of the most successful PMDs offer comprehensive Facebook marketing solutions, through creative partnerships with other PMDs or by offering multifaceted tools.
 
We are also announcing new requirements for the PMD badge, encouraging candidates and members to focus on deeper integrations across the four qualification areas: Pages, Ads, Apps and Insights.
 
These new requirements will facilitate the implementation of features such as boosting Page content in news feed, accessing Open Graph insights for app developers or taking a holistic view on pages insights across owned, paid and earned media.
 
We are excited about both updates and can't wait to see the program grow with outstanding new companies. You can search for current PMDs using the PMD Center.

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New Ways to Reach The Right Audience

In September we released our custom audiences tool, which lets marketers reach their current customers with relevant ads on Facebook. We know that many businesses also work with third party partners to enhance their online and offline marketing in order to show more relevant ads. 

Today, we're expanding custom audiences to allow businesses to use Datalogix, Epsilon, Acxiom, and BlueKai to further enhance the ads they run on Facebook.
 
Businesses can do this in two ways:
  • Businesses that already work with these select third parties can now use the same information they have used elsewhere to create campaigns on Facebook.
  • We will work with these select third parties to create pre-defined or custom first-party targeting categories on Facebook. Businesses of all sizes will now be able to target categories like "soda drinkers" or "people who browsed for a specific make/model on my website."
For example, an auto dealer may want to customize an offer to people who are looking to buy a new car. To do this today, many businesses work with third parties to better understand how to identify and reach that audience. With today's updates businesses can now do this same thing by showing ads to people on Facebook who may be in the market for a new car.  
 
As with the existing custom audiences tool, these select partners use a privacy and data-protective matching process. This process is specifically designed so that we don’t share private information about individuals with marketers. People will still have the same control over the ads they see on Facebook. They can learn more about the ads they see, give feedback, or opt-out using the controls we provide in the ads themselves or in the Help Center. To learn more visit our Privacy Page.
 
We know that more relevant ads are better for people and businesses. By showing the right ads to the right people, businesses have been able to increase the effectiveness of their Facebook campaigns. For example:
  • Castle Auto Group, a car dealership in Chicago, saw a 24x return on their ad spend combining Facebook offers with custom audiences to their existing target customers
  • Kingnet, a Hong Kong-based game developer, saw a more than 40% decrease in cost-per-installs of its action role-playing game by using custom audiences
We believe the extension of custom audiences to include select third parties will further improve marketers' ability to reach the right customers on Facebook and will lead to more relevant ads. We will be rolling out these enhancements over the coming weeks, starting with marketers in the U.S. 

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Join Us: Driving App Installs on Facebook Mobile

Join Us: Driving App Installs on Facebook Mobile

What’s the best way to get more installations for your mobile application within the crowded app landscape?

Join us tomorrow, Tuesday, February 26th, as Facebook’s Susan Buckner, Nicolas Franchet, and Neil Hiltz discuss mobile marketing opportunities on Facebook and present our latest mobile advertising product, the Mobile App Install ad.

The panel discussion will be broadcast live on the Marketing Talks Live app on the Facebook Studio Page:

  • Option A: Tuesday, February 26th at 8am PT (11am ET, 4pm GMT) | Click to RSVP
  • Option B: Tuesday, February 26th at 10am PT (1pm ET, 6pm GMT) | Click to RSVP

The discussion will be followed by a live Q&A with questions from our audience. Please share the event with your friends and colleagues, and post questions in advance on the event wall for your preferred time. (Option A – 4pm GMT Option B – 10am PT)

Tags: Facebook Ads,  

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Important Update to Page Insights Reporting

Important Update to Page Insights Reporting

As part of our ongoing investment in Page Insights, we recently completed a comprehensive engineering audit of the product.  During this audit we uncovered bugs that impacted impression and reach reporting.  We have confirmed that these issues impacted reporting only and not delivery.  Ad Insights were not impacted by these bugs.

As soon as we found the bugs our engineering team began work to resolve them as quickly as possible.  We're rolling out fixes beginning this morning and over the weekend.
 
The actual impact of the bugs will vary from Page to Page and day to day based on a number of factors such as when and how frequently you post.  To see the overall impact, if any, on your individual Pages, we recommend looking at your organic, paid and viral reach and impressions for your Page and for your posts over the next few weeks, starting on Monday, February 25. Because these bugs impacted our logging systems we won't be able to backfill Page Insights with historical data.
 
Overall, we expect most Pages to see:
  • Total reach to  stay the same or increase for most Pages
  • An increase in paid reach if you ran News Feed ads
  • An increase or decrease in organic reach, depending on many factors such as the composition of your fan base, when and how often you post and your spending patterns
  • A change in metrics computed from reach and impressions, such as engagement rate and virality
  • We know that accurate data is fundamental to building and improving your Facebook presence. We are taking this very seriously.  We have already put a number of additional quality and verification measures in place to prevent future bugs and resolve them quickly if they arise.
We appreciate your patience and we are committed to constantly improving and investing in the quality of Page Insights.
 

 
 
 

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Steps to Successful Performance Marketing on Facebook

Steps to Successful Performance Marketing on Facebook

Looking to drive high-value prospects to your website? Facebook can help drive conversion and lower cost per acquisition (CPA) for your campaigns.

We recently hosted a panel discussion with Facebook experts discussing best practices for performance marketing. During the discussion, we identified four levers of successful performance marketing on Facebook—placement, ad format, targeting, and optimization—and discussed measurement techniques to guide your overall strategy.

Here are some of the discussion’s top takeaways:

  • Go beyond the basics: Performance marketers have traditionally used standard domain ads on the right-hand side of Facebook. However, Facebook offers a variety of placements and ad formats that can drive results. The news feed is premier real estate on Facebook: we see over eight times the engagement for ads in the news feed versus the right-hand side. So how can your brand get into the news feed? We recommend photo Page post ads, link Page post ads, Offers, and mobile app install ads to create rich experiences that enable engagement.
  • Start with photo Page post ads: Photo Page post ads are an excellent choice across industries and marketing objectives. Use a shortened URL in the ad text to link offsite. An independent study by Nanigans of almost a billion Facebook ad impressions found that photo Page post ads in the news feed drove 14% higher ROI and 48% lower CPA than domain ads on the right-hand side. Advertisers report strong performance, too. Yepme, an Indian e-commerce company, reported a 125% increase in conversion rate using photo Page post ads compared to domain ads and PeixeUrbano, a Brazilian daily deals site, reported a 5x higher ROI using photo Page post ads compared to the average of previous campaigns.
  • Use Optimized cost per impression to reach the right audience: While bidded cost per click (CPC) and cost per impression (CPM) are standard, we recommend a powerful bidding option unique to Facebook: Optimized CPM. Optimized CPM delivers your ads to people most likely to convert. To maximize results, combine Optimized CPM bidding with conversion measurement tags, which count relevant conversion actions on your website, such as registrations and shopping cart checkouts, driven by people seeing an ad on Facebook. Beta tests show that this combination reduces the cost per conversion by 40% when compared to CPC ads using the same budget.
  • Take a "test and iterate" approach: Testing multiple campaign factors before allocating spend is nothing new for performance marketersand Facebook is no different. We encourage you to run test campaigns, and track and measure the results to determine what works best for your brand. The first step is to prepare your performance marketing plan: identify key performance indicators, set up click tags and view tags, and ensure a process for delivering enough creative combinations. Once you are operationally ready to execute these campaigns, conduct low-cost tests and iterate. Our community of Preferred Marketing Developers can help you optimize your campaigns at scale.

For more details and tips, check out the full discussion here.

Tags: Facebook Ads,  

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Facebook Studio Awards: Call for Entries Closes Thursday

Facebook Studio Awards: Call for Entries Closes Thursday

Make sure to submit your work before midnight this Thursday, January 31, 2013, to be considered for this year’s Facebook Studio Awards.

Submitting is easy—select "Submit Work" on any page of Facebook Studio. All work published to the site between January 15, 2012 and January 31, 2013 will be in the running. Original work can be in any language but submissions must be in English. While not required, including a video case study is highly recommended for awards consideration.

The industry leaders on Facebook's Creative Council will serve as the jury and winners will be announced later this year. Find more information, including the judging criteria, here.

Best of luck, and may the best work win!

Tags: Facebook Studio Awards,  

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