How Facebook’s Instagram integration could rock the industry

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Digital marketers are used to assimilating platform updates and advancements into their ad campaigns, but there could be a sea change on the horizon.

It’s been over two years since Facebook acquired Instagram, and the social giant has finally dropped a big clue about how it might integrate the photo-sharing platform. If a recent test proves to be a precursor to a bigger strategy to come, Facebook could position itself as a marketing ecosystem that will challenge everyone – Google, Twitter, etc. – to catch up.

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Study: Before people shop at a small business, they check Facebook

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According to a new study by G/O Digital, when people want to find out more about a local small business — they check Facebook more than any other social channel.

G/O Digital, a Gannett company, found that when asked which social channel users go to in order to find out about a local business, Facebook led the way at 62 percent. Pinterest was second at 12 percent, and Twitter third at 11 percent.

Jeff Fagel, G/O Digital’s CMO, talked about how the rise of mobile as well as small businesses acquainting themselves with Facebook marketing has played a key part in discovery:

In today’s world, Facebook is essential to daily communication. More than 50 percent of users are engaging with Facebook more than 6 days a week. If you’re looking at it as a small business, there’s a sense of fear and nervousness when it comes to a small business owner deciding to spend $500 or $1,000 on marketing. The fear isn’t about the marketing strategy, but about tossing money down the drain. Offers really provide a proof of success, that if you’re spending $500 or $1,000, then there’s actually a return on it. There’s less room for error with small business.

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What can the Facebook ad platform do for small businesses?

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Facebook has been going around the country, speaking with small business owners about ways to grow through the social network at Facebook Fit events. One of the most important figures, in terms of advertising for small businesses, is Facebook’s Director of Small Business — Dan Levy.

Levy talked with the 350-plus people on hand about what Facebook has to offer as not only an advertising channel, but a direct response option. Last year, Levy talked with Inside Facebook about how the small business segment is rapidly growing. Now that there are 30 million active small businesses with a page on Facebook, we caught up with Levy again to explore what’s next for advertisers.

Inside Facebook: Can you talk about how you feel the Facebook Fit events have gone so far?

Dan Levy: It’s been wonderful. We’ve always worked with lots of clients and small business owners, but to be able to put real human faces behind the numbers and human stories has been really helpful for us and really helpful for the business owners as well — to see that there’s real people at Facebook who care about their business and want them to succeed.

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Facebook to small businesses: Content is still king

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The most influential post that Dan Levy, Facebook’s Director of Small Business, ever saw was an ad for a house in Palo Alto. He said clicking on that ad led him to actually purchase the house pictured.

Levy spoke with roughly 350 small business owners, employees and entrepreneurs Tuesday morning at the final Facebook Fit event at the company’s headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif. This was the finale of the five-city tour, where Facebook spoke with 4,000 business owners across the country about how to find success via the social network.

As reach becomes harder to come by, small business owners on hand to speak said that the most important thing was creating engaging content and utilizing advertising to get that content in front of those who would be most likely to convert or sign up.

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PMD SocialClicks’ newest Facebook oCPM optimization feature: 25 percent lift in conversions

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SocialClicks, a Tel Aviv, Israel-based Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer, shared the success of the addition of automated bid and budget optimization for oCPM ads on Facebook: 33 percent lift in impressions, a 25 percent rise in conversions and 30 percent jump in clicks — when compared to ads run without the auto-optimization.

SocialClicks tested the features of its oCPM auto-optimization via the SocialClicks Advance Suite in nearly 20 global markets with brands of various sizes. The tests were also completed with a 15 percent lower cost.

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MakeMeReach claims crown in Nielsen’s Facebook PMD Challenge

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MakeMeReach, a Paris-based Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer, has won Nielsen’s Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer challenge. PMDs CitizenNet, Unified and Adaptly were honored as finalists.

For the challenge, Nielsen had PMDs integrate its Online Campaign Ratings reporting application programming interface, leading to an easier Facebook ad measurement experience for advertisers. The event involved 12 PMDs from around the world, with two daylong challenges in London and Facebook’s hometown of Menlo Park, Calif.

Nielsen’s Vice President of Product Leadership, David Wong, gave a little more insight into the contest:

Like Nielsen, MakeMeReach and our other participating PMDs have a demonstrated commitment to delivering effective marketing solutions to clients. We were impressed with their innovative approaches to visualizing Nielsen Online Campaign Ratings data and how their submissions highlighted Nielsen’s unique capabilities in providing accurate, granular and timely reach metrics. We look forward to working with these PMDs to deliver even better results for their advertiser clients.

MakeMeReach CEO Pierre-François Chiron talked about the contest with Inside Facebook:

On our side, it’s an amazing opportunity, as we are going to deep dive into reach & frequency measurement, awareness and so on. We’ll try to keep the same way of improving our platform as we have already done on the last two years: proposing specific features that others don’t have, focus on a easy to use solution and provide a top level support for our customer.

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Infographic: How to hit home runs with your Facebook ads

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Are your Facebook ads striking out?

Maybe it’s time to add a call to action in the post or make sure the ads are relevant to the audience.

Ampush, a Facebook Strategic Preferred Marketing Developer, recently published an infographic showing ways that marketers can hit a home run with Facebook advertisements.

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How Royal Purple gets penny interactions on Facebook

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What if you could get 7,284 interactions for only $99.32? That’s one cent per interaction.

Why is Royal Purple’s cost per engagement (CPE) so low? We interviewed Marlena Solomon, “Social Sensei” at Royal Purple (seriously – that’s what’s on her door tag), to understand how.

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Facebook’s end goal: To be the cross-platform platform

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Facebook is making its pitch to games developers: to survive you need to be cross-platform. To be effectively cross-platform, you need to dance with Facebook.

While Facebook celebrated another successful quarter last week, there was a little bit of troubling news about the future of the company’s games economy. Chief Financial Officer Dave Wehner summed up Facebook’s games dilemma in the quarterly earnings call:

Our current games payment revenue comes entirely from desktop usage and we are seeing declines in the number of people using Facebook on desktop, a trend that will make growing this business challenging going forward.

So at Casual Connect in San Francisco, Facebook made its sales pitch to game developers from all over the world: go mobile with us.

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How to navigate the Facebook ad campaign maze: Part II

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In part I of our series on strategies for navigating the Facebook ad campaign maze, we looked at how marketers can successfully launch and manage their Facebook campaigns. Today’s post examines the best ways to get the most out of your Facebook ad creative.

Hint: size does matter!

As I wrote in a previous Inside Facebook post, Facebook has made it clear to marketers that it wants – and its users expect – a compelling, visually appealing reason to engage with a brand’s ad. That requires smart, compelling creative that recognizes the intelligence of the average Facebook user. No more generic ad creative or text-heavy wall posts. Instead, those must be replaced with high-quality ad creative that uses engaging images and limited text.

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