If you’ve followed the media lately, you would think Facebook has crashed and burned. You’d be under the assumption that millions of users have run for the hills by deleting Facebook, and that advertisers are questioning how they are going to continue to reach their customers. Surprisingly, that isn’t the case and, honestly, Facebook has even strengthened its position and remains at the top of every advertiser's list.
Leverage purchase behavior to shift the risk to Facebook customers.
Facebook isn’t removing the ability to target by using purchase behavior; they are just putting the risk of using other people’s data onto you, the advertiser. Facebook knows how they collect their first-party data by keeping track of what users do on Facebook. But, they cannot control the data they purchase. Instead, they transfer the risk to you through the purchasing process.
Facebook will soon launch a custom audience verification tool that allows advertisers to use purchase behavior from another third party, But, if you upload it as a custom audience, Facebook just wants you to say, “Yes, I purchased this data legally and in good faith. If not, you can say it’s my fault, not yours.” I see this type of data getting more competitive and, as an advertiser, third-party companies are going to try to lure us in to use their data.
The user base is still on Facebook.
Facebook released a stellar Q1 earnings report with revenue from advertising up 50% YoY and daily active users up 13% YoY. When asked about advertisers being weary of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg, said they have not seen a meaningful trend in advertisers leaving. Per Facebook, one in every four minutes on mobile is spent on Facebook. Even if there were to be a small drop, the efforts Facebook has made in regaining trust will be evident as the users and the advertisers will come back, maybe even twofold.
So with the competitive landscape increasing, how do you continue to differentiate? We have found that by using influencer content while leveraging paid targeting we can place highly relevant, highly clickable content in a user’s feed at CTRs 2-3x Facebook’s average of .9-1.00 percent CTR. This content is genuine and much less “ady” than your traditional ads.
You can still create custom audiences despite the changes.
Another major change to Facebook’s structure is custom audiences. As mentioned, you can still get access to user purchase data either through owned data or purchasing from a third party and uploading via custom audiences. But one thing that was briefly mentioned is the ability to share custom audiences across business accounts.
This is a common practice among media agencies — sharing lookalikes to other media companies that are focused on different parts of the funnel. Company A is for brand awareness and Company B is for direct response “click here to buy now.” How do these two work together? Since the sharing of audiences has changed, the workaround would result in multiple pixels on your page owned by each company. We’re still waiting for Facebook for further instructions, so stay tuned.
Finally, this is an opportunity to look at how you collect your own data.
Tis the season to look inward. Since Facebook is shifting the risk to its user base, everyone has taken a deep look at how they collect their data. As everyone is walking on eggshells at the moment, it’s best to make sure your audience trusts you.