The one marketing tactic that consumers say will bring them BACK to your bricks-and-mortar store… Instagram is thinking about letting links in captions be tappable — for a price… Facebook’s quick new ad format has one potentially big tradeoff… and I have the proof, friends, that humanity is going to hell.
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Today: The one marketing tactic that consumers say will bring them BACK to your bricks-and-mortar store… Instagram is thinking about letting links in captions be tappable — for a price… Facebook’s quick new ad format has one potentially big tradeoff… and I have the proof, friends, that humanity is going to hell.
It’s Tue, Sep 15th, 2020.
Happy Independence Day Costa Rica
I’m Tod Maffin from engageQ digital. And here is what you missed, today in digital marketing.
If there’s one thing we digital marketers like to do — it’s test. Test everything. Test web site designs. Test email subject lines. Test ad campaign creatives.
But one big gap in the multivariate testing world has always been organic posts. There’s never really been a way to test those on Faceook. Sure, you could post two different versions of the post and see which does better, but that’s NOT a real test, because it’s quite likely that BOTH posts will be shown to the same person.
Well now, Facebook is rolling out that exact feature. It’ll be found in the Creator Studio, and when you click the Create Post button, there’ll be a new option called Create Post Tests. You’ll be able to test up to four post variations, which will get shown to a portion of your audience. You can set the duration of the test, and even what defines success. And then, when Facebook determines a winner, only the winning post will get distributed to your full audience.
Well, the 1% who’ll see your stuff because organic reach sucks.
No word on whether this will make it into the API — which is more valuable for us, since that would integrate with the tools we use. And it’s still rolling out, so you may not have it quite yet.
A new study from Podsights of more than 530 podcast ad campaigns has found the average ROAS (that’s Return on Ad Spend) is $2 dollars and 42 cents.
It’s one of the first and largest studies of its kind; the campaigns that were monitored generated two billion impressions over a media spend of $28 million dollars.
You might wonder how they tracked ROAS — after all, there’s not as direct a connection between impression and conversion as, say, a link in an email newsletter. They used a combination of pixel data custom branded URL links, and discount codes.
There were also some standout verticals that got even higher ROAS — healthy living, insurance, and meal delivery.
The study also found that running ads across multiple different podcasts converted nearly two and a half times better than those who heard the ads on only one or two podcasts.
Here it is… your regular reminder that Facebook is mostly being run by AI bots these days. Bots that will shut off access to your personal account or block you from doing any advertising for your brand or clients… with no warning. And no functioning appeal process.
David Herrmann, probably one of the most active Facebook ad consultants who has many clients with big budgets has once again been shut out. Quoting his tweet today: “FB won’t let us spend money. They closed our support ticket saying I’m blocked from running FB ads?? No way for me to respond. Open new ticket. Support then says, “things look fine, turn the ads on and they should spend.” So I do, then FB turns off again. I’m preferred partner with FB. I am not getting anywhere. Our launch is in two days. No, I have no FB rules running. And I’m verified to run social issue ads.”
This happens a lot. There’s one poor person in this podcast’s Slack community who’s been shut out of her personal Facebook account. Which means she can’t get into ad accounts. Or business manager. Or her brand’s Facebook page. Nothing. It’s been weeks.
I don’t have a lot of advice here, but I’ll tell you what I’VE done, and that’s to just straight-up stop using Facebook or Instagram account for anything personal. It’s not a boycott thing; I just live in fear of having an AI bot mistake my kidding around with a friend as a hate crime, or whatever it’s triggering on these days.
Here at the agency, we’ve also been steering client budgets away from Facebook — and finding some surprisingly good channels.
Whatever you do, tread carefully, friend. Very carefully.
It’s been a lousy few months for bricks and mortar stores. The pandemic lockdowns kept people away, and now fear continues to keep foot traffic low.
But there is a shining star in the forecast — coupons.
A study from CodeBroker of 1,400 American consumers found that — yes, more than half are shopping less often and three-quarters are spending less at their favorite stores — BUT put coupons in the mix? And they’ll come back.
Quoting StreetFightMag.com: “Among those who said they were not planning to shop at their favorite stores’ locations, 61% said they would change their mind if they received a high-value mobile/digital coupon for a product in which they were interested. Another opportunity: pandemic fatigue. As stay-at-home restrictions are easing in many states around the country, and with many retail stores opening their doors, consumers are craving the kind of interaction only in-store retail can provide. While Amazon offers unquestionable variety and convenience, real-life onsite experiences are gaining ground because consumers find it appealing.
By a 3:1 margin, consumers indicate that they prefer mobile over paper coupons (77% to 23%). And that preference is on the rise. In just one year, the percentage of consumers who prefer mobile over paper coupons has grown from 67 to 77%.
It might be biggest thing that digital marketers have been begging Instagram to add: Tappable links in captions. As I’m sure you know, links aren’t tappable right now, they just render as plain text. This has led to a small industry of link-in-bio providers.
Are tappable links coming soon? Maybe! A new patent application filed by Facebook, which owns Instagram, shows this functionality in operation. That’s the good news. The bad news is that the patent also shows a popup window where you have to pay Instagram for the privilege.
It sort of acts like a promoted post on Facebook. Once you hit Publish on an Instagram post, if you’ve got a link there, it’ll offer to make it tappable for a price. The price on the patent app is $2, but that’s obviously just placeholder text for the filing.
Facebook has not confirmed this publicly, and — let’s not forget — there are many, many patent applications that go nowhere. So this might not ever happen. But at least they’re thinking about it.
One thing Facebook IS adding are enhancements to automotive ads.
Quoting the company: "When a shopper clicks on an auto dealer’s ad, they’ll land on a dynamic Vehicle Detail Page (VDP) on Facebook that’s created using information from the dealer’s auto catalog. From this VDP, shoppers can research vehicles, discover additional inventory and connect directly with dealers via Facebook Messenger, lead form, phone call or by visiting a dealership in person."
The important part here is that the vehicle product pages are hosted by Facebook, on mobile-accellerated pages. Much like Instant Articles.
For its part, Facebook claims in testing the new format reduced cost-per-lead by 82% and cost-per-content view by 17% versus a website destination.
An update, now, on a story I covered last week — people are making exact copies of podcast series, then re-uploading them to the Spotify-owned Anchor podcast platform, and turning on monetization. So people looking for a specific show might accidentally listen to one of these copycats, and those copycats would get some money, rather than the actual producer.
People have found copycats of Serial, Nice White Parents, and The Ezra Klein Show, among others.
Anchor has now commented. They say they found “a few dozen” examples out of the more than 650,000 shows on their platform. And they’re working to knock them out of the catalog.
Couple of nice improvements to the tools you might be using.
First, Google Analytics now has a Change History report, so you can review past actions in your GA account and find out who did what and when. It goes back two years.
Sprout Social has a new export feature that lets you get a CSV file of inbox activity across any date range you select. This means if, for compliance reasons, or your boss or clients wants it, you can get an external file of every incoming message that’s ever hit the social channels in your Sprout account.
And Facebook has added Lookalike Expansion. This works similar to the old audience expansion, where it would reach out slightly beyond the limits you’d set up — if it could find better results. Now, that can apply to your lookalike audiences as well. Also, your ads can appear in Marketplace search results on desktop devices now when you select the Facebook Search Results placement or use automatic placements.
Finally, just in case you need a reminder that humanity is going to hell...
So far this year, there have been 591 million Google searches for the word Google. Yes, that’s people on Google googling Google. In fact, the top five search terms are all sites that if the person had just put .com at the end of their search, they’d have gone directly to the site they were looking for: Facebook, YouTube, Gmail, and Amazon.
This from some new data from SEMrush. But remember — you can’t equate search popularity with product popularity. In thisstudy, Amazon Prime gets more searches than Netflix. That doesn’t mean Amazon’s streaming video service is more popular, only that people need more help finding it. After all, with Netflix, most people know it’s just Netflix.com. But Prime? Is it Amazon.com/prime? Or AmazonPrime.com. Actually it’s neither. It’s PrimeVideo.com. So sometimes these are more a measure of poor web presence brand awareness than anything.
Also, the 8th most popular question asked of Google: Where am I?
Indeed, friend. Where are any of us?
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I’m TM. More news from the world of digital marketing tomorrow — on a special anniversary episode. Talk to you then.