How to Effectively Use Facebook Audience Optimization Tools

In January 2016, Facebook Audience Optimization tools were released as a tool to organically help publishers better reach their target audiences. Facebook Audience Optimization tools help publishers by providing the following features:

  • Publishers are able to add interest tags to their content so Facebook can connect that content with interested parties
  • Publishers can limit post visibility by location, language, and gender
  • Publishers can monitor the performance of each post based on the interest tags specified

Facebook is seeking to help publishers with the ever-shortening attention spans of their followers by providing the tools to build better relationships with their customers. This, coupled with the recent additions to Facebook Messenger for business, and there’s no question why Facebook stays at the top of social media updates all the time.

Why Facebook Audience Optimization Tools Are Important

Facebook has 1.59 billion active users in any given month. The Facebook Audience Optimization tools are aiming to target engagement rather than reach. That is a much more SEO-like approach. So when you hear the experts talk about social media and SEO going hand in hand, it is ringing more true than ever in Facebook news.

Anything that helps you know, focus on, and target your Facebook audience more effectively is worth your attention. You may not always use such tools, but you should stay on top of social media updates for this type of news to see if it is useful to you. When we are talking about being able to target your audience based on filtered criteria like interest, location, language, and gender, that is huge. That means that Facebook is only going to show that specific post to people who meet criteria that you control.

How to Access Facebook Audience Optimization Tools

The only other place I’ve managed to find this information is on Facebook’s blog on this topic, so let’s get to how this whole thing works. They tried the tool initially with a few big media players, like The New York Times and MTV, who actually saw more engagement than normal.

To access the Facebook Audience Optimization tools:

  1. Go to your business Facebook Page.
  2. In the top-right corner, click Settings.
  3. Click the General tab in the left navigation.
  4. Click Edit beside Audience Optimization for Posts.
  5. Click the checkbox and the Save Changes button to being using Facebook Audience Optimization tools.

Now you will see the tool added to the following areas of Facebook:

  • Page post composer
  • Graph API
  • Third party publishing tools
  • Instant Articles

Additional Information On The New Facebook Audience Tools

These new Facebook Audience Optimization tools replace the old Interest Targeting tool from before. In tests, the tool has proven to drive engagement upward while the organic reach of a post stays about the same, so it’s a limited boost to the previous limits on organic results.

When using interest tags with your content, the maximum number is 16, but Facebook suggests only utilizing between 6 and 10. The new Facebook Audience tools aren’t currently available on mobile. They must be accessed using the desktop website. It is also not currently available in languages other than English and Facebook has no plan to expand it linguistically at this time. Should you decide to boost a post where you’ve used the Facebook Audience Optimization Tools, this will work as a regular ad and your settings and interest tags will not affect it.

If you want to learn more about how to best use the Facebook Audience Optimization tools, check out their Best Practices page.

Wrap Up

I really like to hit the source for information about new features like this and Facebook always does a nice job of explaining things and providing customer support. I recommend that you try pretty much anything Facebook puts out to help businesses because it’s usually really great stuff. Let me hear from you in the comments about how you’re using these new Facebook Audience tools with your pages.

 

Improve Your Facebook Ad Performance with Facebook’s New Guide

Is your Facebook ads performance suffering or even nil? Facebook feels your pain. When your ads don’t perform well, it’s a knock to the reputation of their platform. In order to help you succeed, they released a Facebook guide for better ads, video ads to be exact. This is something I’ve noticed about Facebook. They are pretty supportive of their users and if you look around, you will find a ton of free training and more to help you get the most out of Facebook.

All The World’s a Video

100 million hours of video are devoured by users each day on Facebook. That’s a lot of video, so your content better stand out. If it’s an ad, that’s a whole new can of worms. Your Facebook ads need to grab attention quickly as people scroll their News Feeds. You have about a quarter of a second to get the job done.

With the onslaught of services like Periscope, Facebook Live, and others, you better on your video-making game. The days of being camera-shy are over. If you don’t like to be in front of the camera, you better be a good cartoonist or something that will translate over to eye-catching video. If you are creative, then you know you don’t always have to be in front of the camera. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with screen capture.

Facebook Does The Research on Facebook Ads

Facebook began a study in the 4th quarter of 2014 and ran it for 1 year through the 4th quarter of 2015. They selected 850 English language video ads. Then they recruited their control group of people without a creative or advertising background to evaluate each of the Facebook ads.

The study was quite thorough. Each of the Facebook ads were evaluated twice using 19 questions grouped under the following 4 dimensions:

  • First impressions
  • Branding
  • Messaging
  • Video features

Facebook was then able to develop a Facebook guide for better ads to help advertisers improve Facebook ads performance.

Information I Learned From the Facebook Ad Guide

First and foremost, your Facebook ads need to bring your brand to the front. Your brand message should be clear at the very start of your video ad without the benefit of sound. From personal experience, I’ve noticed a lot of people caption their videos since even if the video autoplays, the sound is always muted. This is exactly Facebook’s first suggestion based on their study: include captions. 46% of the ads evaluated didn’t have a clear brand message.

Adapt your Facebook ads for News Feed viewing so that they get results:

  • Showcase – Make your service or product visible for the majority of the 30-second Facebook ad
  • Conversation – Don’t rely on conversation to convey your brand message
  • Brand Link – Is the brand easy to identify? Is there a link?
  • Sound – Again, the brand message should be apparent even without sound
  • Message – Should be concise and memorable, but not too long or detailed

Overall, for marketers, the Facebook performance guide had some great stats, information, and suggestions. There is an industry-wide demand for video that compliments other aspects of online marketing. The days of throwing together some text and links and slapping them everywhere possible are over, my friends.

Facebook suggests that you design your Facebook ads with the screen in mind while understanding how people interact with content on different devices. Don’t be afraid to cater to the scrolling News Feed environment. It does have its advantages. Then, be ready to adjust for better Facebook ads performance.

Wrap Up

So, if your Facebook ads that contain video have disappointed you, you now have a guide direct from the source to help you optimize your Facebook ads performance. No one said online business was easy! I’d love to hear about your ads in the comments. Do you use video?

 

 

 

Twitter Campaign Management Gets New Addition With Ad Groups

Twitter launched their ads editor last year to help advertisers with their Twitter campaign management. The editor allowed users to create and manage multiple Twitter ads at once. They have now expanded the editor by adding ad groups where users can split up their audience and message them separately. This is something we’ve been doing with our email lists as well, so it’s a great concept.

How Do Twitter Ad Groups Work

Basically, Twitter ad groups add another level in the hierarchy of the ad editor. Advertisers are then able to measure the success of their Twitter campaigns using more criteria. This allows them to assess which Twitter ads work the best and which ones need tweaking. Ultimately, the new Twitter ad groups help cut down on the time spent on Twitter campaign management.

Simplify Your Twitter Campaigns with Twitter Ad Groups

The main focus of the ad editor is ultimately to simplify things for advertisers. This new tool carries this another step by giving advertisers the ability to categorize their ads and audiences to further diversify their Twitter campaigns. So when an advertiser has multiple Twitter campaigns running, they can view and edit them sorted by ad groups.

Both the Twitter ad editor and the new ad groups allow for an insane number of variables, so you can test and tweak as little or as much as you like. Inside the Twitter ad editor dashboard, the new ad groups are specified by a blue badge. When you click it, you can then view the performance of your Twitter ads by ad group.

The feature is obviously designed for brands who run a lot of Twitter campaigns, but ease of use means smaller users could give it a try to help with their Twitter campaign management as well. This is an interesting offering coming from Twitter when you consider all of the negative Twitter news over the last couple of years. The company really has a tough time with funding and getting the public to see the utilitarian value in the platform. I hope to see Twitter stick around for a long time to come.

It seems their downfall has always been because of where they fall in the scheme of things as a social network. They often suffer in comparison to giant, Facebook, and that’s not really fair given their smaller stature on all fronts. They have proven that they are here to stay and innovate and offerings like the ad editor and now Twitter ad groups confirm that notion.

A Better Enhancement To A Still-New Twitter Ad Management Tool

The Twitter ad editor hasn’t even been out a year. It launched just last August 2015. For an update to come out so soon is phenomenal to those using the platform. Ad groups really is a great enhancement because while it targets larger brands, it’s also viable for the little guys. The biggest take-away though is definitely the ease of use and the ability to really zero in on the performance of your Twitter campaigns.

Diversify Your Pay-Per-Click Portfolio

You know if you want to get anything done online quickly, PPC is the way to boost your efforts. The new Twitter ad groups can help you diversity your PPC experience. I like social media PPC because it’s easy to make it effective and it’s cheap.

Just imagine being able to laser focus your Twitter campaigns toward ad groups sorted by:

  • Location
  • Gender
  • Device
  • Language
  • Interests
  • Keywords

That is just to name a few! Then you are also able to measure the results with improved Twitter ads tools as well. You just can’t beat it.

Wrap Up

I’d love to hear how your Twitter campaigns are doing. Do you think that Twitter can benefit businesses, brands, and consumers alike? I feel there is so much value in sending those little 140-character text messages to the world. After all, the Library of Congress feels they are important as well.

 

Video Marketing Round-Up: May 2016 Edition

Video marketing gets bigger all the time. Every time I turn around, there is something new happening in this space. It’s so innovative that if you blink, you will miss something. There’s no way I can catch or cover all the video marketing news coming out of the pipeline, but I can try. Let’s round up that video marketing news!

Did Someone Say 360-degree Videos?

This is the biggest piece of news this month in video marketing and it’s not just isolated to one update. There are a few stories out about 360-degree videos, some them are videos for business. Things are starting to heat up! It brings so many questions to the table. How does one even shoot 360-degree video? Let’s explore a bit. First, a well-known insurance company put out a 360-degree video ad that has garnered millions of views. They filmed the video with one camera and it tells 4 different stories at once.  It is currently only visible on Facebook. As you know, Facebook has been making a play for some of YouTube’s piece of the video market. In mid-April, YouTube released 360-degree video streaming. The ability has been available for the last year for brands, musicians, and athletes. This will be huge for video marketing and is one more step toward exactly where we know video marketing is going: virtual reality. They also launched spatial sound on their on-demand videos and the first execution of both was the live streaming of Coachella. Finally, one last piece of video marketing news concerning 360-degree video: Wistia, video for business platform has added support for 360-degree video. I’m telling you, if you want to jump to the cutting edge of video marketing, become an expert in 360-degree video and virtual reality because it is the next big thing for video marketing platforms.

Clever Video Marketing Is Tasty

The odds are favorable that you have seen one of those Tasty recipe videos in your Facebook News Feed. The concept was developed by the content giant, Buzzfeed. Watch and learn. You won’t catch Tasty or any of it’s spin-offs like Proper Tasty or Nifty on YouTube. Their widely successful video marketing campaigns are designed for and executed on Facebook only. Things to pay attention to with the Tasty approach to video marketing:

  • The numbers. They are getting millions and millions of views and racking up Facebook Likes on their Page left and right
  • The execution. The videos are bright, have lively music, and are usually under a minute in length
  • The spin-off. Tasty has generated enough buzz to launch several new channels including a parody on YouTube called Nasty which is not affiliated with Buzzfeed
  • The platform. It’s no oversight that Tasty is using Facebook for all of it’s video marketing. It’s a case in point of choosing one platform and dominating it. Sure, they could create on YouTube and then just share it on Facebook, but Facebook will always favor its own native video
  • The niche. Tasty has dominated a couple niches already: recipes and DIY
  • The gamble. They have taken a significant gamble here by putting a lot of resources into the Tasty video marketing campaigns when one change to Facebook’s algorithm could knock their content from the web. Still, it’s working and who’s to say they can put the content on a new platform at a later time?

Will 2016 Be The Year of Video Marketing?

I know I don’t have to tell you all that this stuff is huge and that video for business is the one thing I know of that could really skyrocket your efforts if you do it right. There’s no question as to whether or not you should be doing video marketing for your business, no matter what industry you’re in. You should be, but why? Check it out:

  1. Video will help you meet your marketing goals. Just having a video on your website can increase your chances of being on the first page of Google 53 times.
  2. Video can move people throughout your sales funnels, top, middle, and bottom.
  3. Video builds credibility like no other digital medium.
  4. Your competitors are using video. In the past, you could churn out a video, it didn’t even have to be good, and it would help you blow past your competition. Now, video is the new sparring floor of marketing.

Wrap Up

I think this round-up expresses that video marketing is pretty much a requirement these days quite well. Stay with me, as I’ll be putting out these round-ups on a monthly basis to keep you informed. Subscribe to make sure you don’t miss any. I’d love to hear in the comments how your video marketing campaigns are going. Let us know how video has helped your business!

Free Facebook Content Tools to Help Simplify Your Curated Content

If you use Facebook for everything including content curation, then this post has the free Facebook content tools you need in your life. In recent years, content curation has become a huge part of having an online presence. As if creating your own content weren’t enough, now you have to to disseminate for the masses all the best content you see online to make sure no one misses anything! Content curation has become its own animal, and luckily for us, there are free Facebook tools to help us out.

Content Curation Apps and Free Facebook Content Tools

I’m really excited about this because I’m about to share some really powerful free tools for content organization with you. First, I’m going to list some applications that you can use on both your computer and smartphone to save interesting content. Then I’m going to tie everything together with a great free tool that will send that content to Facebook automatically! So, we are accomplishing two things at once:

  1. Saving the content we love and sharing it with Facebook content tools
  2. Automating the process

Free Content Curation Apps

Pocket – Pocket is a free content organization tool. Once you install it on your smartphone, it will appear under the sharing options when you browse and use your other apps. It also works great as an in-browser application with their Chrome extension or bookmarklet. When you begin saving content to Pocket, you can organize it using tags. Pocket saves the content based on type using these 3 options articles, videos, and images.

Feedly – Feedly gained popularity when Google Reader was discontinued. It works much like Pocket as a content organization tool. However, rather than you add the content you want to save manually, Feedly works a little different. You add the RSS feed of the sites you visit regularly, and it then “feeds” you the content daily starting with the most popular first. You then have the option of saving and sharing the content you enjoy most.

Evernote – You may use Evernote for other things, but it can accomplish content curation quite nicely! It’s already known for it’s content organization skills. Simply create a notebook designed specifically to be a free Facebook content tool, and you’re ready to go. If you’re not familiar with Evernote, it will be added to the sharing menu on your Smartphone. You can use a Chrome extension or their website when using your computer.

All of these applications are free, but have premium account options as well in case you really love them. I’ve also chosen these specific content organization tools because:

  1. They are simple to use
  2. They all integrate with the powerhouse of this post

If This Then That

I’m not being smart, this is the content curation powerhouse (and more) that brings everything together. I’m talking about IFTTT.com. It stands for “If This Then That”.  Now, this can seem complicated to some people, but it’s a simple concept. Once you create your account, this is the tool that combines the 3 apps I listed above with your Facebook Page automatically.

It takes a little bit of set up, but it’s a one-time thing and then you’re up and running until you tell it to stop. For example, you can set IFTTT up to post to your Facebook Page each time you add a note to a certain notebook in Evernote. You accomplish this though an “if this then that” statement called a recipe. For example, If new note in ______ notebook, then create a link post message on my Facebook Page.

This application does so much more than join the ranks of free Facebook content tools. You can use it to automate your home, your phone, and much, much more. Grab a good guide and really learn the power of it.

Wrap Up

Let me know in the comments about your content curation efforts and what kinds of recipes you are using with IFTTT!