New Facebook Insights Good for Local Marketers

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Based on the amount of consumer data Facebook gathers, it has always been an incredible tool for local marketers. The advertising platform uses consumer data to make reaching a very specific target audience possible. But once again, Facebook has outdone itself. To become an even more invaluable resource to local marketers and advertisers, Facebook has launched local insights that can tell businesses who is near their stores.

Business page managers now have a new section within the Facebook page insights tool that measures foot traffic around individual store locations. This is now available to any page that is using the page’s location features. In addition to foot traffic trends, brands that advertise on Facebook will be able to see what share of the people passing by have seen their ad within the past 28 days.

All of the information gathered is aggregated and anonymized, so instead of reporting actual people who have been by the store, it will show weekly, monthly, and quarterly trends of when particular groups of people are more or less likely to be near the store. The tool also provides information on what days of the week or times of the day are the busiest in the neighborhood. Information local marketers will be able to see about users includes gender, age groups—18-24, 25-34, etc.—and whether they are from out of town or live within 120 miles of the store’s location.

This information is being gathered through what users provide on their profiles, as well as the location settings within the Facebook mobile application. If people do not want Facebook to gather general location information, they do have the ability to opt out by changing the location settings within Facebook’s mobile app.

Not only will you be able to see who is near the store, but Facebook has also made it possible to customize ads to each store location. These ads will automatically pull information about the nearest store, such as the address with the option to get directions and a phone number that links to call. Local advertisers will be able to layer this in with the other targeting options the ads manager platform provides.

As a local business, do you utilize all of Facebook ‘s capabilities? Robmark Web is a local Savannah web design company that assists businesses of all sizes with social media, social media advertising, and so much more. Please call 912-921-1040 for any inquiries.

Online Ads Are Pushing ‘BUY’ Buttons!

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Automobiles, the Internet, auto-brewing coffee makers; every now and again there is an idea that sweeps the nation—or the world—and changes the fundamental way we live our lives. Though this idea may not change the world as a whole, it has been changing the digital marketing world for the better—the “buy” button.

Facebook started this call-to-action trend last summer, and Twitter soon followed with its call-to-action Twitter cards. Last week, we wrote a blog about Instagram’s new advertising changes, which included call-to-action buttons, and two weeks ago, it was announced that Pinterest was toying around with the buy button, as well. In addition to these top social media platforms, Google has recently confirmed the enabling of buy buttons on search ads. The idea is still in its inception phase, so specific details on how it will work are still mum; however, the general idea is that after clicking the buy button on a mobile search ad, users would be taken to a special Google landing page to complete the transaction.

This is moving Google from a search engine to a marketplace, similar to Amazon, and people are on edge. Some industry influencers feel this change on Google could hinder retailers by decreasing their website traffic and preventing them from obtaining consumer data, since the transactions will be happening through Google and not the retail website. However, Google’s intention is to speed up the mobile buying process in order to strengthen the consumer’s shopping experience, which in turn will increase the retailer’s mobile conversion rates that have stayed low even though mobile usage rates have continued to rise. Only time will tell.

Call-to-action and buy buttons have made it easier for retailers to capture leads and conversions in this social-media-newsfeed-surfing era. Call-to-action buttons, in most cases, will increase traffic and conversions to a retailer’s website by leading consumers directly to what they are interested in, but in some instances, such as on Facebook and Google, transactions will happen in a limbo land between the platform and the retail site, essentially allowing consumers to purchase items without having to leave the site they are on.

Back in September we wrote a blog about this “new idea” of a buy button and wondered if it would take off or not. I guess we have our answer! Have you seen any call-to-action or buy buttons while on your favorite social media network? Have you used them? We would love to hear from you!

Further Reading:

http://searchengineland.com/google-buy-buttons-could-start-showing-on-mobile-shopping-ads-in-a-matter-of-weeks-220997

http://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/251395/the-buy-button-is-coming.html

Facebook Has Changed Its Algorithm… Again

Facebook has been taking notes from Google, and has been changing their algorithm more frequently than usual. On average, Facebook would change their algorithm every two to three months, in attempts to cut down the amount of spammy promotions and deceitful links. However, most recently, there have been four updates in just the past two months, and if you manage a business page, you’re probably not going to like it.

The first update, which we discussed back in March, was when Facebook deleted inactive profiles causing business pages to lose several “likes” from their pages. The next three have been slowly rolling out over the past month, all of which affect the News Feed and subsequently your business page.

It began with Facebook relaxing a previous algorithm change that prevented the News Feed from displaying multiple updates in a row from a single source. This update alone wouldn’t be too bad for business pages if it weren’t for the second change, which reduces the organic reach of posts posted by pages. The change specifically places higher priority to content posted by a user’s friends, and a lower priority on that posted by pages, in turn limiting a pages organic reach to lower than the current 7% reach.

The last algorithm change will adjust the way users see interactions between their friends and other updates. If a user’s friend interacts with a page’s post, and the user is not a fan of that page, their friend’s activity with that page will appear significantly lower on the News Feed, if at all. This will considerably limit a page’s visibility to those users who are not already fans, and also contributes to the reduced organic reach.

By making these updates, Facebook is somewhat forcing pages to pay to boost posts in order to increase their reach. This doesn’t mean that businesses should abandon Facebook; however, these changes do underscore the need, now more than ever, for a thorough social marketing strategy and plans for thoughtful, engaging content.

Robmark Web offers social media services and is happy to assist in developing your new Facebook strategy. Call 912-921-1040 to find out more about our social media and web services in Savannah.

Decrease in Facebook Likes, Increase In Engagement Ratio

Whether it’s managing a billion dollar company’s Facebook Page or a Page set up to sell Younique mascara, social media managers constantly track Page activity, especially the number of likes a brand has earned.

Well, Page managers have probably noticed over the last two weeks that Page likes have decreased—in some cases significantly. Don’t worry. Fans didn’t unlike the Page due to any reason a manager could control. Facebook took the liberty of removing Page likes from deactivated Facebook accounts in order to keep the Page like count more accurate.

According to Quintly, Pages lost 3% to 4% of their likes due to this adjustment. We have seen a range of decreased likes in the Pages we manage, from losing 7 likes to losing close to 45. Now that’s enough to make any Page manager freak out!

All in all, this is a positive adjustment when it comes to analyzing data. Figures will be more accurate and reliable in the future. When it comes to using Facebook as a business tool, it’s all about the engagement ratio. User engagement with Page content increases that Page’s organic reach. If you have a million likes and only 10 people engage with posted content—a.001% engagement rate—then the Page cannot be considered a successful business tool. However, if you have 150 Page likes and 10 fans engage regularly—a 6.7% engagement rate—now that is a success. So by clearing out these inactive accounts, which are obviously not engaging, this in turn increases the Page’s engagement ratio.

Never truer has been the adage “quality over quantity.”

Recent Facebook Changes

Facebook is known for always being in beta, meaning they are frequently and continually making changes and adjustments to the site. In addition to recent algorithm changes, here are some other recent updates Facebook has introduced.

Searching for posts:
Functionality launched just this past week, you are now able to search and sift through past posts when using Facebook Graph Search. Facebook states that after receiving feedback on the Graph Search feature, which launched in 2012, they narrowed down what is important to the user—post search-ability. With a quick search, you can get back to that fun video from college, a news article you’ve been meaning to read or photos from your friend’s wedding.

Facebook Post Search

Saved posts:
This happens all the time—you stumble across an article on Facebook you would like to read but don’t quite have the time to read it at that moment. Well, now you can save posts! Similar to bookmarking sites such as Evernote, Facebook will let you easily save and recall content. If you find a post you would like to save for later, just click the drop-down menu and select “Save.” Once you have saved the post, a saved file will appear on the left-hand side of your newsfeed, allowing you to access all of your saved posts. 

Facebook Saved Post

Rooms for interest:
Channeling back to the chat room days of the Internet, Facebook has introduced a product called Rooms. Rooms lets users create a place for things that they are into and invite other people with the same interests. The room is essentially a feed of text, photos and videos—whatever users in the room post—pertaining to a topic determined by the room creator.  It’s a customizable app that allows you to use “nicknames” instead of real names, which is very unlike Facebook.

When you join Rooms, other rooms will be recommended to you. It is assumed that the Room recommendations are based off of the interests you have shown on Facebook; however, there is currently no way to search for a room. You can get into a room by snapping a photo of the Room’s QR code.

Though this is the most intriguing addition to Facebook, there are a lot of factors that may cause this to be a short-lived feature. It seems to be a mix of Facebook Groups and Facebook Messenger, with a twist of ambiguity.

Facebook Rooms

Facebook Groups app:
If you’re not a fan of the anonymity of the Rooms feature, the Facebook Groups app could be the thing for you. Facebook Groups are a great way to stay in touch with people with shared interests (sounds familiar). Within the groups, you can post updates, links, photos, start new discussions, find new groups to join and even create a new group through the app. The app will show all of your groups in one location, and the groups you use most frequently will be at the top.

FB Groups

The Buy button:
The Buy button has been a talked-about feature for a while now, but finally started testing back in July and is starting to roll out in select areas. The Buy button allows users to purchase items from ads or posts—without leaving Facebook. If rolled out widely, this could change social e-commerce and really help businesses drive sales through Facebook.

Since Facebook makes frequent changes, we can look forward to more features and apps from the powerhouse social site in a short matter of time. With rapid changes, it’s hard to stay on top of it all and that is why you can call us. Robertson & Markowitz Advertising & PR’s Web department, Robmark Web, specializes in social media—along with SEO and website development.

 

Facebook adds ‘Safety Check’

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In the wake of disasters, such as the tsunami in Japan, Hurricane Sandy, earthquakes, wildfires, and floods; Facebook employees have observed how people communicate during natural disasters. Many people tend to turn to Facebook to see if their friends and loved ones are safe. The social network introduced a tool Thursday to simplify that process – Safety Check.

Safety Check’s main goal is to allow you to provide your friends and family with a status update that you are in fact safe. It also allows you to check on the well-being of others in affected areas and to mark friends as safe. Once activated, the tool uses the location you have listed on your profile, your last location (if you have opted in to the Nearby Friends product) and the city where you are using the Internet. If you are in fact in an affected area, a notification will pop up on your phone where you can select “I’m Safe”, and an update is posted so your loved ones know you are okay.

Facebook isn’t the first or only company to consider such a feature. Google launched Public Alerts for natural disasters in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Do you think this is a beneficial addition to Facebook? We’d love to hear your opinion.

Further Reading:

http://allfacebook.com/safety-check_b135353