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Did you know that Facebook has a whopping 27 different types of ads? Confusing as it sounds, this sure might land a marketer visiting Facebook for the first time in a dilemma. But, fret not, Facebook has decided to simplify its ads and the changes will be rolled out over the next few months.

In the previous post, I had discussed about Advertising on Facebook and how each ad type can be used for specific marketing goals. In this article, I will discuss how Facebook Simplifies Advertising Options to make things simpler for marketers and business owners.

Why did Facebook take this decision?

Cutting out on ad options will see an increase in the inflow of ads from small businesses who are:

a. Still new to Facebook and would like to take a step at a time to create their ad campaigns.

b. Have less time to create ads.

This drive may not in a way affect big players though who already have enough knowledge about the different types of Facebook ads and know how to tackle problems related to advertising when they arise.

Earlier, when marketers wanted to post ads, Facebook would flood them with several options. At a first glance, it is very difficult to differentiate between a sponsored ad, page like ad or a promoted post. Keeping all these bedlam aside, Facebook has come up with the plan of asking one simple question to marketers,

What is your objective?

Based on this, marketers can set their advertising goals for:

1. Increasing page likes
2. Gain more views for a video/ad
3. Get more installs for an application
4. Get more footfall on their website

What faces the axe?        

Questions:  Why need a specific ‘Questions’ segment when marketers can simply ask the question in a status update and get their answers in comments?

Offers:  Marketers can post a Page Post ad with an offer and drive sales to their website/physical store location instead of creating a new ad under ‘Offer’.

Sponsored stories:  Earlier, when marketers bought Marketplace ads, it did not give them social content – likes, comments, shares from friends. They would then be obligated to buy a Sponsored ad in order to get noticed. Not anymore!

What will be added?

Social Context Ads:  Sponsored ads will not be axed completely, but will be replaced with ‘Social Context Ads’ . These ads will be a combination of Marketplace Ads and Sponsored ads (‘sponsored’ ad + social content from friends). This will enhance performance of the ad, eliminate the extra effort of creating a sponsored ad and prevent bombarding a users’ news feed with unnecessary updates.

FBX:  Millions of users spend millions of hours daily on Facebook. Using Facebook Exchange (the retargeting tool), marketers can easily re-target users on Facebook who have left their websites without converting or taking an action. These ads will be seen on the right hand side bar of the home page and also in your news feed. FBX is currently in the beta testing mode and will soon be rolled out officially. Stay tuned for a post on FBX.

Partner Categories:  Partner categories OR third party sources are external online advertising tools to help marketers target audiences better. Data (collected online and offline) from third party sources like Datalogix and Epsilon will be used by marketers to know the interests of users’ better such as shopping behavior,  people who buy children’s cereals etc.

Till now marketers have been able to show ads to people based on their expressed interest on Facebook, but, now, with Partner Categories, they can show their ads to people based on the products they buy on mobile and desktop.

Here’s an example:

1A user uses a customer loyalty data card to buy perfume at a physical store namely ABC.
2Third party sources match the contact details of the membership card with details already present on Facebook.
3Third party sources inform Facebook about the potential perfume buyer.
4Facebook targets the user with a competitive company, namely XYZ’s perfume ad. 
5When the user clicks on the ad and buys, the third party source informs Facebook that a purchase worth XXX Rs has been made.
6Third party user lets Facebook know that the user has purchased for XXX Rs while the advertiser spent only YY Rs on the ad. This shows a ROI of Rs ZZ.
7Facebook tells XYZ company that by advertising with them, they can get Rs ZZ ROI.
8This lets XYZ place more ads with Facebook.

Ads on Mobiles: More and more consumers are using Facebook on mobile phones. Facebook will soon be rolling out various ad options specifically for mobile phones.

Video Advertising Platform: Talks are ripe that Facebook will soon be launching its very own video advertising which will occupy the left and right sides of the Facebook newsfeed. But be prepared to shell out loads for the same. According an executive, Facebook is expected to charge $1 million per video ad.

“Facebook is currently selling four daily summer “slots,” each targeting a relatively large demographic: women over 30; women under 30; men over 30; and men over 30. The ads will be capped at 15 seconds and frequency capped to ensure that no user sees more than three per day, with an asking price of upwards of $1 million.” 

Here is a table to sum things up for you:

Will be removedWill be added
QuestionsSocial Context Ads
OffersPartner Categories
Sponsored StoriesFBX
 Mobile Ads
 Video Advertising

Do you think these updates will make it easier for marketers to reach the right groups of people with the right message and drive results? What do do think of these changes in Facebook. Refreshing or not so much? Do leave us a comment and share.

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