Graffiti With Punctuation
There seems to be something in the air at the minute as we’re seeing more and more new clients moving to us after being burnt by their last agency. Frustratingly, more often than not, as we take them on, we’re finding their actual setup is in a complete mess.
For example, we found one new clients page was owned by an agency they used years ago that has since closed shop. That agency setup and claimed the clients Page and Pixel under their own Business Manager (very bad practice). No other agency they’ve taken on since then (until now) had unfortunately done anything about it. Of course, as the offending agency is no more, there is no one to approve the transfer or even access to the Page. Closing the page down and starting again is not an option because of the age and size of the audience they have.
So, if you find yourself in this type of situation, what do you do?
Luckily, there is a way! You can apply to Facebook to regain access to your page. To do this you can contact Facebook directly via either of these two links;
You will also need the following documentation:
i. A copy of a valid government-issued photo ID, such as a current driver’s license or a passport, of the individual signing the statement. You can find the different kinds of IDs they accept in the Help Center: https://www.facebook.com/help/159096464162185?ref=cr
ii. ALL Clients/Partners: A signed statement from a person with sufficient knowledge and authority over this matter that includes all of the below items.
i. A description of your relationship to the Page (including your authority to request a change in the person(s) who manage the Page, as applicable);
ii. The name of the current person(s) who manage the Page, as applicable;
iii. The relationship of the above person(s) to the Page; An explanation of your request, and whether there has been a termination of the employment and/or business relationship with the named person(s), as applicable;
iv. All documentation supporting your request (Business License or certificate of incorporation under the business Page’s name to prove requester’s authority over the business)
v. The Facebook account or email address associated with the Facebook account that you wish to have added as the new admin of the Page;
vi. A declaration that the information you have provided is true and accurate (e.g. “I certify that the information provided is true and accurate”) – your statement must include similar language.
The process should normally take about 72 hours for your application to be reviewed and with any luck, you’ll have rights to your page again.
We’ve seen it all before, a potential client coming to us for help having been burnt by their last agency so badly, they’re still smoking.
Like most industries, you’ll always find bad apples, but unfortunately in this industry, there’s lots of them.
So, whether you’re looking for a social agency to do some work for you for the first time, or you are indeed currently suffering from some recent ‘charring’, how do you fish out the good from the bad when you don’t know much about social in the first place?
Well, we’ve put together a quick and easy checklist for you. This is by no means a complete list, but will arm you with what you need to make an informed decision:
1. Check their Facebook Pixel!
Anyone who has anything to do with Facebook marketing in the slightest, should know what a Facebook Pixel is. Better yet, if they’re claiming to be any good at Facebook marketing, they should have one installed and working correctly on their website.
How do you check this? If you’re a Google Chrome user, you can simply install a little tool called Pixel Helper. Once installed, when you visit the potential agency’s website, you need to look out for this symbol in the top right hand corner of your browser:
This means there isn’t a pixel installed so run away! There is a possibility they have it installed on their Google Tag Manager, but in any case it’s not best practice, so not a good sign all the same. Some of the self-entitled ‘best agencies in…blah blah blah’ are kindly demonstrating this for you.
If there is a Pixel, it will look like this:
That’s great, but then click on it to see something like this:
If so, consider this good news! However, if you see any yellow warning symbols, it means it’s broken, again not a good sign!
2. How big are they? Does size matter?
Sometimes, depending how you look at it. If the agency is quite substantial with multiple services across multiple offices and sporting pictures of loads of staff, it’s normally an indicator that social is an add on not a speciality and they will probably be expensive with so many mouths to feed. Is size a sign of success? Absolutely not! Oddly enough, most of the time it’s quite the opposite. Most of the best agencies out there are small teams of 8 or less.
3. Do they have lots of awards but little to no customer testimonials?
This one always makes me smile. You’ll find plenty of agencies or self-proclaimed guru’s that sport lots of random awards or being a ‘finalist’ (meaning they didn’t win). Unfortunately, there’s plenty of awards to win and showcase but there’s very little that actually mean anything. The same goes with social media ‘qualifications’. Speaking as an agency owner and employer, if you really want to know if they’re qualified, find out what results they’ve driven for their clients. That brings me on to;
4. Are they blinding you with meaningless results?
Unfortunately, this is a big one to watch out for. Looking at their websites you’ll probably see such results as “Facebook page views up 278% in the first month” and “Facebook page Likes up 184% in the first month”. Sounds great but that’s meaningless without more information. For example, page views are great but how much budget was spent to achieve that and with what ratio in mind? Did the client start with 200 page views per month and saw an increase to 368? Or 15,000 and saw it increase to 28,350? Did they spend $500 or $5,000? The same goes for the page Likes scenario, but you have to ask why on earth are you targeting a Like increase anyway? A Like increase is a byproduct of enagaging your target audience correctly, it shouldn’t be a key metric of a campaign.
5. Do they promise a certain amount of posts per week/month?
Quite simply, if they do run away! If you’re asking why, the answer is far too long to explain here but in a nutshell, it’s an outdated, prehistoric strategy not relevant today and simply highlights everything they don’t know – which is a lot! Oh, and you’ll achieve next to nothing.
6. Do they promise to boost posts?
We have a saying in our training course that is becoming a bit of a catchphrase “Never boost a post again”. If they’re boosting posts, it again highlights what they don’t know and what little you’ll achieve.
7. Are you contracted in?
Ask yourself, why do you need to be locked in? Any agency confident of their abilities should be month to month with no lock-ins. But, I would expect a 30 days minimum notice period to quit as the nature of the beast demands that they must work ahead of time and of course should be compensated as such.
8. Do they bill you for your Facebook Ad spend?
If so, run away! It means they either don’t know what they’re doing or they are intentionally looking to take a commission from your Ad spend or own the data you generate – or both. Whichever way you look at this – you lose!
9. Have they asked what you want to achieve – are they listening to you or are you listening to them?
So many people get blinded by the pitch the agency gives them in an effort to win the business. Instead, most of the talking should be coming from you, not them. Are they listening to your needs/requirements? Any agency worth their salt should be qualifying you as much as you are them to ascertain if they can truly help or not.
10. How quick is their communication?
When you first enquire, how long does it take for them to reply to a message, email, or phone call? Need we say more!
11. Do they have a dedicated social media manager or a team managing your campaign and are they based in Australia?
Simply put, how can anyone successfully market you or your business, if they don’t know you or it? Also, you should be able to get in contact with the person responsible for your campaign easily. If that means contacting a team, it’s pretty much like contacting Telstra’s customer service. No one person knows everything about your campaign and will spend most of your time catching up with the details than being able to help.
12. Finally, do you really need to outsource in the first place or should you learn it yourself and keep it in house?
Have you considered the prospect of learning what you need and managing your own campaigns? After all, knowledge is power! If you have the time and/or staff available, there are a number of advantages to be had by training yourself or your staff. One big reason is yes you save money and should you get to a point in the future where you have to outsource, you’ll know what to look for in an agency, thus making a blog like this one totally irrelevant because you know it all anyway. When looking for a training company, don’t get caught up in awards, badges or specialist training companies. Instead, if you’re looking for real world experience, choose a company that’s not only teaching it, but indeed doing it every day. That’s imperative.
Well there’s your first mistake! You’re letting your employees post and relying on this content for a “Social Strategy”. LOL!
Yes, you’d like more content, and you’d like to get your employees to assist, but please, for the love of all things sacred, don’t allow them to post ad-hock!
Planning and strategy are imperative for making a social media campaign work. And if you’re spending money on Ads, it’s even more imperative that the content being posted organically, is good, solid quality.
Why do I know this?
I’ve been managing one of my clients pages for 5 years. The quality of the content that goes on “organically” is top. It’s all good quality, high value and very well thought out. Right down to ensuring that the content is relevant to social, political, seasonal and even social trends, but all true to the brand. I have a mix of content, from video to blogs to still images and a good mix of selling product to just conversation. Why is this important? Well, I run ads specifically to people who have engaged with my content. Because I know my content is good, I know the audience created from this engagement is good, which would result in good Ad results. BUT it goes deeper than that, the lookalike audience I am able to create from this is just as solid.
I often get asked how I get the results I do and if I can reproduce this. The answer a lot of time, careful planning and yes, I can reproduce this, but first let me manage your page, get rid of the uninterested page Likers, the people following for the wrong reasons and let me take the time to grow a page/audience that I know will convert. This will all take time, depending on how big your original audience is.
And while I’m at it – stop worrying about how many people follow your page. Who cares? Personally, I’m more interested in how many people buy/enquire/sign up (or whatever it is you want them to do).
Stop getting staff to “come up with content”. Start planning your content, have a content calendar and stick to it. Don’t post for the sake of posting (take it from me, sometimes my page will go more than a week without a post – because there is nothing relevant to post about!) and make sure the posts you are creating are to brand, make sense and provide value to your audience.
By all means, get your staff involved, but give them specific tasks, ensure the quality of content they are producing is good and make sure all posting is done by one central, adequately trained, person (or team).
Oh and if they need training… check this out: https://www.blueflamesocialmedia.training
Scruples, it shouldn’t be hard, should it? Maybe just know your job, how about that?
It seems for some (or evidently quite a lot), that scruples and/or knowledge is optional when it comes to their agency. Time and time again, we are witnessing new customers moving over to us with years of Pixel data lost forever because their previous agency or ‘guru’ is either evil or ignorant. Sounds a little harsh I agree, but that’s the only thing we can assume. I’ll paint the picture of what happened this week in particular as an example.
For reference, we’ll call the unethical agency in question “Agent Scam” and our new client we’ll call “Poor Client”.
Agent Scam had installed their own Facebook Pixel onto Poor Clients website (instead of Poor Clients own Pixel). “So what’s the big deal?”, I hear you say. The big deal is, Agent Scam are using that same pixel on all of their clients’ websites. This means they are collecting data from not only Poor Client, but all their other clients (including potential competitors of Poor Client) and SHARING that info across them all.
This means Poor Client is paying big $$$$ and their potential competitors are reaping the benefit of that data! Also, when Poor Client left Agency Scam, they lost all access to the data they’ve spent time and money on growing which is rightfully theirs.
But wait, surely Agent Scam would be happy to create an audience with the pixel data and then share that audience across to Poor Clients Business Manager? Well, you would think so if scruples were a thing for them, but no. So not only has Agent Scam stolen their customers data, they are now refusing to give it back!
Surely, as an agency, if you didn’t know how to correctly set up a Business Manager, you would find out? Alternatively, if you do know and you’re still pulling this skulduggery over your clients, maybe it’s time to get a soul!
As a client working with any digital agency, social agency or indeed ‘guru’, please, please, please make sure they know how to and will set up your Pixel correctly and ethically BEFORE spending big money on them. The data is yours and you’re paying for it, so make sure you own it!
Have you noticed the “Learning Limited” symbol appearing on your Ads? ⚠️ While the symbol may be something new, the concept isn’t. The learning phase occurs when you create a new Ad or Ad set or make a significant edit to an existing one.
Every time that Ad is shown in someone’s newsfeed, the Facebook Ads delivery system learns more about the best people and places to show the Ad to. Of course, the more it is shown, the better the delivery system becomes at optimizing the Ad’s performance.
The learning phase is the period of time when the delivery system still has a lot to learn about an Ad set. During this time, while the delivery system is exploring the best way to deliver your Ad set, you’ll find performance is less stable and cost per action (CPA) is not that great.
Generally speaking, you can expect your Ad set to exit the learning phase after about 50 event triggers are registered. Failing this, you’ll receive the “Learning Limited” warning.
Why wouldn’t your Ads exit the learning phase?
Generally, an Ad set becomes Learning Limited when it is limited by:
- Small audience size
- Low budget
- Low bid or cost control
- An infrequent optimization event
- Running too many Ads at the same time
If an Ad set is limited by a low bid or cost control, a tooltip will appear when you hover over the Learning Limited status.
How do you know which issue is causing the ‘Learning Limited’ ⚠ warning?
I’ll walk you through the steps I would take if I saw this warning:
Step 1: The first thing to check is the number of Ads turned on within one Campaign. Yes, Ads actually ‘blue toggle on’, even those in an Ad set that may be turned off, complete or scheduled to run in the future. Also check the number of active Ads within active Ad sets. Use 6 or fewer active creatives per Ad set if possible. The delivery system favours Ads with more delivery because conversion predictions are more accurate.
Don’t be caught out thinking that your Ad sets are independent of each other – they are all using the Ad budget set at the Campaign level, so they are all linked!
Wait a few hours. If your Ads are still in the learning phase or there were not any Ads to turn off in the first place, go to step two.
Step 2: If you are getting the warning on your retargeting campaigns, then there is a very real possibility that your audience size is the issue. Facebook likes BIG audiences and your Ads will optimise quickly and accurately the bigger your audience is. If your audience is too small, your Ads may not feed out at all or will never exit the learning phase.
If you’re using a customer list, ensure the audience is marked as ‘ready’ under Audiences and ensure you’ve Added enough information for Facebook to get accurate matches. Go and check your pixel to ensure that enough traffic is coming through to your website to populate your custom audiences to warrant retargeting.
What you should do if your audience is too small: Make this audience bigger… before you eye roll at me, let me explain how. You can do this by increasing the number of people you are sending to your retargeting Ads, by either increasing your budget on your prospecting (cold) Ads, or you can increase your retargeted audience by increasing the length of time your audience is defined by (target 30 days instead of 7 days).
Step 3: Your active Ad amount is good, your audience is big enough and you’re still getting the warning? Next step is to check your results and compare them to your budget. As an example: If you’re running a Traffic campaign and your Cost-Per-Landing Page is $3.00 but you’re only spending $5 a day… there simply isn’t enough budget to ensure that your Ad set is going to get out of the learning phase for quite some time. Remember you need 50 events triggered to get out of this phase. Solution: increase budget or decrease your cost per landing page view.
Step 4: Check your optimisation. If you’re running a conversion campaign and you’re optimising for ‘Purchases’… are you actually receiving enough purchases (through these Ads) to hit the 50 events? If not, you may want to duplicate your Ad set and change your optimisation to the earlier event i.e.: optimise for ‘Add to Cart’ or ‘Initiate Payment’ instead. But what if you’re already on the earliest event? Should you switch from a conversion campaign to a traffic campaign? Generally speaking, no. A partially optimised conversion campaign will usually always perform better than a traffic campaign (audience size pending).
During the learning phase, Ad sets are less stable and usually have a higher CPA. To avoid behaviours that prevent Ad sets from exiting the learning phase, Facebook recommends you:
- Wait to edit your Ad set until it’s out of the learning phase. During the learning phase, performance is less stable, so your results aren’t always indicative of future performance. By editing an Ad, Ad set or campaign during the learning phase, you reset learning and delay our delivery system’s ability to optimize.
- Avoid unnecessary edits that cause Ad sets to re-enter the learning phase. Edits that meaningfully change how your Ad set might perform in the future can cause an Ad set to re-enter the learning phase. Only edit your Ads or Ad set when you have reason to believe that doing so should improve performance. (Handy Hint) InsteAd of editing your Ads within your Ad set, duplicate your Ad set and make the changes there.
- Avoid high Ad volumes. When you create many Ads and Ad sets, the delivery system learns less about each Ad and Ad set than when you create fewer Ads and Ad sets. By combining Ad sets, you also combine learnings.
- Use realistic budgets. If you set a very small or inflated budget, the delivery system has an inaccurate indicator of the people for whom the delivery system should optimize. Set a budget large enough to get at least 50 total optimization events and avoid frequent budget changes (which can cause an Ad set to re-enter the learning phase).
The most important rule of thumb in FB Advertising = DON’T TOUCH WHAT’S NOT BROKEN!
If you are getting a decent amount of leads and have healthy ROAs, it’s best to just continue managing your campaign as you were. By all means duplicate Ad sets and make Adjustments to these – but never change or edit your current converting Ads. If your Adjustments don’t give you the results you are hoping for, you can always turn them off and turn on the original Ads and keep going as is.
Great news, the second round of the Small Business COVID-19 Adaption Grant Program been extended by The Queensland Government.
So, if you’ve been looking to get some one-to-one Facebook Training with Desré, access her online Facebook Marketing and Management video training course or indeed get some professional Facebook Marketing or Management for your business, the Queensland Government is offering to foot the bill for you!
The available grant amount is a minimum of $2,000 and up to a maximum of $10,000 per eligible small or micro business.
But what happened to Round 1?
If you have submitted a round 1 application but haven’t heard back yet, you are eligible to apply for round 2.
If you have not yet heard anything further, applications are still being processed and they will be in touch to notify you if you have been successful or unsuccessful.
Successful applicants from round 1 of this program cannot apply for funding under round 2.
What will be funded?
In recognition of the significant impacts of COVID-19 on small businesses, the funding can be used towards the following:
• financial, legal or other professional advice to support business sustainability and diversification
• continuing to meet business operational costs including utilities, council rates, rent, telecommunication charges, insurance fees, licensing or franchise fees
• strategic planning, financial counselling or business coaching aligned to business development and diversification
• building the business through marketing and communications activities (e.g. content development – web pages, mobile apps, visual and audio media etc.)
• digital/technological strategy development
• digital training or re-training and up-skilling employees to adapt to new business models
• capital costs associated with meeting COVID-19 safety requirements
• specialised digital equipment or business specific software to move business operations online (e.g. logistics program for online ordering).
Regional and SEQ funding available
The program is available to eligible businesses throughout Queensland. For round 2, funding is being equally divided between regional Queensland and South East Queensland (SEQ).
South East Queensland businesses
When applying for round 2, you are a South East Queensland (SEQ) business if your principal place of business is located in 1 of the following local government areas:
• Brisbane City Council
• City of Gold Coast
• Ipswich City Council
• Lockyer Valley Regional Council
• Logan City Council
• Moreton Bay Regional Council
• Noosa Shire Council
• Redlands City Council
• Scenic Rim Regional Council
• Somerset Regional Council
• Sunshine Coast Council
• Toowoomba Regional Council
You are a ‘regional business’ if your principal place of business is any other local government areas within Queensland that is not identified as a SEQ location.
Need help with your application?
If you are looking to apply for the grant for any of our services, call us now on 1300 306 109 and tell us what services you wish to include. We have prepared relevant details and pricing required in support of your application.
For more information check out: https://www.business.qld.gov.au/starting-business/advice-support/grants/adaption
When you approach your digital agency about results on Facebook, unfortunately most will tell you about your impressions, clicks and even how many more likes you got.
All sounds great, but aren’t you more concerned about how much money they generated for you? You’re obviously paying them for their ‘expertise’ and Facebook for the ad space, so with all that money going out the door, isn’t it important to know what’s coming back in?
There’s lots of terms they could also throw at you like Cost Per Acquisition (CPA) or Cost per Conversion (CPC) but whilst that all sounds impressive and may make them look good, the only one you should really be bothered about is Return On Ad Spend (ROAS).
ROAS doesn’t care about the margins like Return On Investment (ROI), it concentrates exclusively on ad spend. Your ROAS, calculation is simply the profit from advertising divided by the cost of advertising i.e. money in / money out. We look at it like a vending machine; for every dollar I put in, how many dollars came out the other end?
For example, let’s say, you ran a campaign that generated $2,000 in sales and $1,000 in ad spend.
2000/1000 = 2
Therefore, an ROAS of 1:2 is a 200% return or for every $1 you put in, you got $2 back.
So, what’s a good ROAS? Generally, we see most agencies happily boasting an ROAS between 2 – 4. Hey, doubling, tripling or even quadrupling your money isn’t bad! Bear in mind, you still need to cover costs not included in this calculation so generally aim for 1:4. What your true target ROAS is of course depends on your revenue, margins, operating costs etc.
Take a look at a screenshot taken from a campaign we ran earlier this year (2020). We were put up directly against another agency by a client for their e-commerce contract. Looking at the results, whilst we generally did better across the board, the key points to note are the Spend, Purchase Conversion Value and the ROA.
Our competition spent a total of $929.46 on ads and generated $8,451.07 in sales giving them an ROAS of 1:9 or 900% return or for every $1 they spent, they got back $9. Bravo! That is undeniably a good ROAS.
In comparison, we spent marginally less on ads by just $3.96, but generated $47,189.00 in sales giving them an ROAS of 1:51 or 5,100% return or for every $1 we spent, we got back $51.
So, whilst Impressions, Clicks and Likes are all well and good, don’t get distracted by them. Make sure you’re across what the bottom line is regards income and expenditure of your Facebook campaigns, because you can’t take Likes to the bank.
Warning! Incoming, unadulterated self-promotion: If you would like to learn how to achieve these results for yourself, check out our Facebook Marketing and Management Training Course: https://www.blueflamesocialmedia.training
We’ve had a growing number of businesses of late asking for help, after finding their Facebook ad account and even Business Manager suspended or completely shut down.
So, we thought we would offer a basic guide to why this may happen and how to prevent it.
Things to be aware of:
1. Repeated Declined Payments
If you’re running ads and your credit card consistently declines, Facebook will ‘red flag’ your account and may suspend it if the pattern continues.
2. Repeatedly violating community guidelines on your Facebook page
This will result in a low page quality score that can put your ability to advertise at risk. Posting misleading content or inciting antisocial behavior can make your page look like a troublemaker and result in your ad account being banned.
3. Low Quality Ranking Scores for Facebook and Instagram Ads
Your ads will be scored for their accuracy and relevance for the targeted audience. Ads that get approved but are still considered to be low quality can also lead to your account being banned or taking longer in the future to get your ads approved. Ad quality is affected by things like:
• Using clickbait – using copy that doesn’t show all of the information or baits people to interact (“you won’t believe what happened next”)
• Too much text over an image (Ads with text covering more than 20% of the image), can reduce the reach and ad quality score. If you feel you’re not smart enough to work this out for yourself, Facebook has a tool for that: https://www.facebook.com/ads/tools/text_overlay
• Ads that get hidden or trigger users to “Hide All Ads From This Advertiser” will affect your ad quality score.
4. Poor Quality Landing Page
Facebook screens any links to websites or downloads to ensure they follow the same set of ad rules. Facebook will scan your landing page and apply their same screening tools to it. A low-quality experience on a landing page includes:
• Too many pop-ups or distractions
• Not enough information or a higher volume of advertising
• Misleading content or not relevant to the ad
• Crappy build such as broken links, low-quality images, videos that don’t play etc
Again, if you need help, Facebook has a tool for that! Go to https://developers.facebook.com/tools/debug and paste your URL into the search box. Then click Debug. Facebook’s Sharing Debugger allows you to see what information Facebook is pulling through from your link or landing page. If you have a landing page that looks like it should be compliant with Facebook’s policies but still gets disapproved when used with your ad, use the debugging tool to make sure the information being pulled through is correct and no flagged terms or policy violations are hiding in the page description or metadata.
This process will also force Facebook to clear their cached version of your content if you’ve made changes to align your landing page with Facebook’s ad policies.
5. Repeated Facebook Ads Policy Violations
Everyone gets flagged for an ad breaking Facebooks policy every now and again (yes even us LOL) but if you consistently break the rules and get your ads disapproved, you’re running the risk of having your Facebook ad account shut down.
Does Facebook have a tool for that? Of course it does! This allows you to review your previously disapproved ads to see which policies you’ve broken and why your ads weren’t approved. You can also check the history of your ad account and monitor any ads that are under review or appeal.
To do this, open Facebook Business Manager and select Account Quality in the Create & Manage section and choose the date range you want to review from the calendar at the top right of the resulting page.
There are of course a load of rules to abide by when creating ads and we’ll cover that in our next blog post.
Facebook has announced that it will be limiting the number of ads a single Facebook page can run at the same time. The new changes plan to be implemented in mid 2020 but “will only affect a small percentage of advertisers”.
Why would Facebook actively limit its revenue earning potential you ask? Quite simple, they’re not! If big advertisers complain about the effectiveness of their ads, they may start looking at spending their marketing budget elsewhere.
Facebook said “We’re implementing ad limits because very high ad volume can hinder an advertiser’s performance. With too many ads running at the same time, fewer ads exit the learning phase and more budget is spent before the delivery system can optimise an ad’s performance.”
Just how many they are limiting it to is yet to be determined – keep watching this space.
Other Facebook News you may have missed:
Facebook is phasing out the 10-second video view metric and the 10 second video views optimisation, both metrics are now being depreciated and replaced with Video Views and ThruPlay optimisation. Video Views are classified as any video play (exceeding 2 seconds) ThruPlay is classified as a video watched for 15 seconds or through it’s entirety – whichever comes first.
Facebook reminded marketers using the Marketing API that, beginning March 31, 2020, they must identify whether or not new and edited campaigns belong to a Special Ad Category(ads promoting housing, employment or credit services and products).
Should you be doing the same? Possibly. But why, you ask?
Back in the old days (2010), the only thing any business with a Facebook page thought about was Likes. How many Likes do we have? How many Likes can I get $100? How quickly can I get another 1,000 Likes?
Growing your social community was critically important. The more Likes your Facebook business page had, the more people would see your content, and hopefully engage with it. The more people engaged, the more people beyond that initial group were also exposed to your posts. This is the basic concept of organic reach. Well, that just proves that you need lots of Likers right? Wrong!
Page Likes and Organic Reach
We remember when we first started posting on Business Pages, organic reach was sitting at approximately 16%, this dropped to 6% in 2014. 2016 saw it sitting at 3% and today? Well today its below 1%, yes BELOW 1%.
If the audience that is exposed to your post interacts with it in some way, Facebook thinks “wow, this must be good content” and will feed your post out to a little more of your audience. But what if the 1 person that saw that post was a “bought” Like or someone who only liked your page because of that “Like our page to go into the draw to win an iPad” competition you ran last year? Well, they probably won’t interact with the post, ergo, the post reach is stunted by the algorithm and your content doesn’t get out there, even if it’s the best, most amazing content your business has produced! With the continued tweaks to the newsfeed algorithm, users who Like your page might never actually see your content organically.
But there is an even more important reason why the quality of Likes is more important than the quantity… and that’s audience purity.
What is Audience Purity and why does it matter?
With the organic reach of Facebook sitting as low as it is, businesses are being forced to turn to paid advertising to get their message or content out there. In order to do this you need to create an audience to send your content out to. The most obvious of these: your current Like base. Of course! But what if more than half of them are “Zombie Likes”. And by Zombies I don’t mean the walking dead (or maybe I do?), I mean non genuine followers. People who are not actively wanting to know more about your business. You are about to spend money pushing your wares to people who don’t want to know. Money that could be spend reaching people who do!
And let’s not forget the most powerful audience tool that we have right at our fingertips, the Lookalike Audience. When you create a lookalike audience, Facebook looks for users with the same demographic and interests etc as your existing audience. You then pay to advertise to them. Before creating a lookalike audience with your Like base, you need to ask yourself’ “What kind of audience am I pulling into my funnel?” This is also true of lookalike audiences from old email lists, event databases etc. The more diluted these audiences are to start, the less robust your lookalike audience is going to be. And that means one thing: your ads are going to be doomed to produce little, or what it does produce is at high cost!
But what about Social Proofing?
At the most basic level, ‘social proof’ refers to the basis that people are (sadly) sheep and follow the flock. People allow their purchase decisions to be influenced by the demonstrated actions of others. To put it another way, when people see other people buying or endorsing a product, they will want it too – ergo a purchase validator.
By now you know that Facebooks is removing Like counts from posts. Their reason? “To emphasise the quality of content users share and take away the popularity aspect, which has associated mental-health implications for teens.” Great, I’m happy to see that vanity metric vanish. But what does this mean for your posts? Even though the Likes can’t be seen, it’s still very important your content is engaging (in particular getting people to comment or share). Remember the organic engagement formula? The more people engage, the more people will be shown your content. And it has an effect on the cost of your ads. Yes, the more “social proof” your ads have, the less it costs you to get the post out to your audience.
Coming back to us, in our case, we’ve been around since 2011. Recently we ran a series of posts through the ad account specifically targeting our Facebook Like base and found the quality of return to be poor. Why? The business we were in 2011 is unrecognisable to the one we are now and the original Likers from 8 years ago are not necessarily relevant to our audience target market today.
So, what does this mean? We could be wasting our money and poisoning our marketing funnel! Why? Quite simply, we could be advertising to an audience (both our original and lookalike) that are irrelevant and not interested in our services. This means our top of funnel is polluted which filters all the way down, our social proofing is poor and the cost of advertising is much higher than it should be.
I’ll leave you with this…
An interesting little side fact: According to one study, only 1% of users who Like a brand on Facebook will actually visit that brand’s Facebook Page.
The moral of the story: the number of Likes your page has isn’t important…. The quality of the Likes is important.
Time to revisit your audience and possibly rethink your Like count?