Facebook Advertising Lessons

From New York Times
From New York Times

Facebook is one of the largest origins of traffic to your site for race registration, so it is important to learn how to maximize this important tool.

Facebook continues to evolve rapidly. We read this article about selling fish oil on Facebook from the New York Times this weekend and thought it was worthwhile sharing with anyone trying to leverage Facebook. It is really a wake up call to how Facebook advertisers use the social networking tool and how Facebook continues to evolve.

Some of the useful excerpts for races trying to leverage their Facebook Page and Likes as a way to build a community and engage other

  • “Each ad had to be so compelling that it would get people to stop scrolling through their news feeds — what Facebook calls a thumbstopper.”
  • “Using sophisticated analytics, it could help him find people who were already buying fish oil or other products that suggested they were concerned about the health of their hearts, and perhaps persuade them to switch to his brand.”
  • “Facebook executives argue, it can help advertisers reach exactly the right audience and measure the impact of their ads”
  • “In June, the social network accounted for about one of every six minutes that Americans spent online, and one of every five minutes on mobile phones
  • “Marketers are starting to become believers in the value of Facebook, shifting more of their budgets to the service”
  • “Facebook has changed its pitch and the products it offers advertisers so often that many marketing executives are wary. A few years ago, the company was telling brands to increase the number of people following their pages. Now it says fans are largely irrelevant. Until late last year, it was promoting the power of ads in which people’s likes and comments about a brand were turned into endorsements sent to their friends. After legions of user complaints — and a class-action lawsuit — Facebook switched gears again. Now it boasts about its ability to pinpoint potential customers on their cellphones and Facebook.com based on its data about them. The company’s newest offering uses those profiles to serve targeted ads inside other companies’ mobile apps. Facebook is also pushing new video ads that would compete with TV for marketing big events, like movie openings.”
  • “advertising on Facebook (is) like firing a shotgun. And you are firing that buckshot knowing where every splinter of that bullet is landing”
  • “A home run would be a message that people liked enough to share with their friends and family — giving a free boost to the campaign.”
  • “Figuring out the ad content was the fun part. The tension between Facebook and R.B. emerged when it came time to figure out how MegaRed should spend its money.”
  • “Facebook itself generally aims to show one ad for every 20 items in a person’s news feed”
  • “About one out of every 84 Facebook users who saw the ads liked, commented on or shared them — triple the rate of engagement with MegaRed’s previous ads.”

As we have pointed out before, having a Facebook Page and having people “Like” it will not necessarily get your messages into their Facebook newsfeeds, let alone create a “thumbstopper”.

It is obvious that Facebook can provide a high level of visibility for your race and bring runners to expand your race. But you have to be increasingly clever about using it, and willing to spend money to get your message out. Take a look at our previous posts on Facebook Ads and Facebook Offers and Facebook Mobile Targeting to learn more about the types of targeting that Facebook provides. Also, make sure you have set up Facebook Ad Tracking in RunSignUp because you want to make sure that your Facebook ad spending is getting an appropriate level of return. And of course allow people to sign up for your race right in Facebook. Also, take advantage of our new Google Analytics Traffic tool to see where your registration traffic is coming from.

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