Creating Quality Facebook Ads: A Quick How-To Guide

If you’ve ever logged into Facebook, you’ve seen a Facebook ad. But, you may not know what you’re looking at or why it’s being shown to you. Those ads are paid advertisements that target you based on your Facebook usage meaning that those companies are paying Facebook either every time you see it or every time you click it. Some ads are done really well and reach a highly targeted audience, others are not. But, using Facebook ads can be a great way to grow your Facebook audience and online community. Â Let’s look at some examples. The three ads on the right are ads that appeared on my Facebook profile. Here’s why (most likely) I am being shown these particular ads.

  • 8 Bit Apparel they have “Who Dat” in the body copy so they are most likely targeting Saints fans and I would guess in the New Orleans area.
  • HDNet Concerts Gregg Allman is in all caps and his picture is the creative. They are most likely targeting Allman Brothers fans, Gregg Allman fans maybe even a few other bands that are similar.
  • Birchbox Most likely targeting fans of Birchbox or people who have it in their profile.

All three of these ads are highly targeted and are reaching me because I have expressed interest in the topics being covered. I am, in fact, a fan of The New Orleans Saints, Gregg Allman, The Allman Brothers Band and Birchbox. I also have those topics in my interests and scattered through content on my Facebook wall. Well done, advertisers - these are great. But, not all ads are good ads. You have to have a goal, know your audience and understand how to target people through Facebook. Need help? Don’t worry! Download our Facebook Advertising How-To Guide!

What You Need to Know About the New Facebook Admin Roles

Originally posted for FSC Interactive

Have you heard? Facebook recently changed Admin Roles on Facebook Pages. Now, before you get all hostile on Facebook (a la the image to the left) because this is one more change, take a look at what this means for brand pages everywhere.

For starters, this is an awesome change and I applaud Facebook. As someone who works across multiple Facebook pages, it’s cool to FINALLY have some varying degrees of access as an administrator. What this change means is that as a Facebook page owner, you can add multiple administrators to your page with multiple access rights. As of now, there are five different admin roles: Manager, Content Creator, Moderator, Advertiser, and Insights Analyst. The further down the line you get, the less access that role has. The Facebook Help Center has a great breakdown, which you can see below.

New Facebook Administrator Roles

The five levels of Facebook admin roles

This gives any Facebook page owner more control than ever over who has access to what on their Facebook page. Let’s say you have an intern who you want to be able to help pull Insights information but maybe you don’t want them to have access to posting on your wall – you can make them an “Insights Analyst.” That way, that one particular person can pull Insights reports from your page without ever being able to post or engage as your page.

If you haven’t already seen the change, it’s in the back-end part of any Facebook page under “Admin Roles” and getting to it is as easy as 1-2-3. To start, simply click “Edit Page” at the top of your Admin Console and choose “Admin Roles” once you’re in. From there, you’ll be able to change any current admin’s role however you see fit.

Facebook Administrator Roles

So there you have it, the quick and dirty when it comes to the new Facebook administrator roles.

a close up of that beautiful cake from EMM & MWD’s wedding!

a close up of that beautiful cake from EMM & MWD’s wedding!

my friends got married. Check out the GORGEOUS cake!

my friends got married. Check out the GORGEOUS cake!

Every week the team at FSC puts together a playlist. They’re all pretty awesome, check it out!

Understanding Viral: It’s Not That Easy

Originally posted on FSC Interactive

One thing I can’t stand to hear as an online marketing professional is “we’re going to make a viral video” or “we just launched a “viral marketing campaign” or really any combination of complete and utter pretension and arrogance with the words viral, marketing and video. You can’t simply make a viral video. You don’t just launch a viral campaign. Sure, those things can be goals but you don’t just create “viral.” What you can create is better content.

I recently did a presentation with some members from Rebuilding Together during their national conference in New Orleans and I spoke about understanding what viral means in terms of marketing. Here is my clearest and most concise definition:Viral content (usually referring to videos) is anything that gains significant popularity, which is typically spread through online shares and views, within a short period of time.

Call me crazy but I just don’t think there is any way to guarantee viral. I cannot guarantee any client that the video we just shot will garner thousands of views and spread through the interwebs like wildfire and that’s what viral content is. Viral is truly a perfect storm of situation and content. Your content has to hit the right people at the right time and send the right message. You can’t predict or plan that.

You can, however, create better content, and better means more potential. The following are our five simple guidelines for producing better content:

1. Make it funny. Everyone loves a good laugh. I can all but guarantee that no one read the Best Roommate Ever Craigslist post because they thought the guy would actually be the best roommate ever. Whoever wrote that listing was so completely ridiculous you couldn’t help but laugh. I’m sure the author didn’t plan for it to get picked up by Huffington Post and the like, but it did. And it garnered a ton of views and impressions (over 2,000 Likes and 1,000 Shares of the HuffPost reprint alone). Congrats, 25 year-old professional marketing agent with experience at badass companies – your post went viral.

2. Make it Unique/Amazing. Did you ever think you’d see an average Joe dancing like an idiot with children in Timbuktu and 30 seconds later you’d see the same guy dancing in Lisbon? Doesn’t sound that impressive or exciting, does it? But it is. In the 2008 video Where the Hell is Matt? a young man from Connecticut named Matt (obviously) traveled to 42 different countries. In each and every place he visited, he danced. The video starts with him doing an incredibly silly jig but by about the 0:54 mark he’s dancing in huge groups with people from all over the world. It says so much about human nature and the way we interact with each other without actually saying one word. It literally gives me goosebumps every time I watch it and I’m clearly not only considering the video has been viewed 40,000,000+ times.

3. Make it Heartwarming. If you can’t feel good watching a heartwarming video about animals or babies or baby animals, you probably don’t have a soul. Seriously, you should get that checked out ’cause it’s just not normal. Everyone loves a feel-good story that tugs at our emotions. We all have some understanding of loss and appreciate those stories with happy endings. For example, the Animal Odd Couple feature from CBS News is a story about an unlikely friendship between Tara, an elephant and Bella, a dog. During the course of the story, the reporter talks about a horrific spinal cord injury Bella suffered and that Tara for three weeks stood by her side. I’m basically tearing up writing about it. This video has over 4 million views on YouTube alone which is clearly indicative of our obsession with heartwarming tales. Want another example (No? Too bad, I’m going to give you one). How about the kid who learned to ride a bike and gave a speech that ended with “Thumbs Up…For Rock N Roll!” Yeah, that video is so cute it garnered over 3 million views.

4. Be Controversial. This is perhaps the most difficult for people – particularly when developing videos for their brands – to swallow. Being controversial can be hard, it can also be genius. During the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards, Lady Gaga appeared on stage in full drag. She also had an incredibly awkward almost-kiss encounter with the often controversial Britney Spears. There was a lot of chatter surrounding her getup including a whopping 237,000 mentions on Twitter (second only to Beyonce’s baby bump). But did this controversial appearance in any way cause damage to Lady Gaga’s reputation? Don’t make laugh. Lady G has made a living out of being controversial and it’s clearly working for her.

5. Make it Helpful. People, for lack of a better word, are lazy. And if I can go to YouTube and watch someone else figure out how to do something instead of figuring it out myself, I will. We live in the Google age and if you’re looking for direction or instructions, chances are there’s a video about it. You want to learn how to put on makeup like a typical high school girl? There’s a video for that with over 1,000,000 views. You read that right. Congrats lady who wears too much make up. You’re cyber famous! All kidding aside, helpful videos for everyday things like applying makeup and styling hair are some of the most popular content on YouTube. So even though I joke, it’s cool that I can learn things like how to remove scratches from DVDs without leaving the interwebs.

Here’s my final piece of advice: keep it interesting. If you’re bored reading or watching it, why will anyone else want to? And remember, just because your content doesn’t get a million views and a thousand shares doesn’t mean you’re not successful. Not everyone can be Lady Gaga in Drag or Matt from Connecticut, but no one else can be you either, so keep your content genuine and interesting and you’re bound to see success.

Measuring Success on Pinterest: PinReach.com

Originally posted for FSC Interactive

My biggest problem with Pinterest when it became the new, shiny (albeit AMAZING) object in the Social Media world, was that there was no way of tracking your growth, engagement, reach and ultimate success. I have to admit that despite the inability to track our success, I still wildly recommended Pinterest to our clients and spent countless hours devising plans on how we could best use it. I knew one day there’d be tracking, and sure enough, that day finally arrived.

About a month or so ago (why I didn’t write about it then, I don’t know) Brooke Neal, one of our fabulous account execs, showed me PinReach. It seemed that she had found the solution to our many problems because Pinreach allows you to track our three main KPI’s – Growth, Engagement and Reach. Hallelujah!

PinReach.com is a great way to track success on Pinterest

Signing up is free and easy on PinReach.com

Using PinReach has completely changed our lives here at FSC Interactive. The tool, which is completely free, allows you to track the likes, repins and comments you got. It also charts your most popular boards and can break down your influential followers. This is like the holy grail of social media metrics. If only there were more free tools out there like this for Instagram (I’m looking at you, developers!).

PinReach measures all kinds of analytics on Pinterest

Most Popular Pins, Far Reaching Boards, Top Boards and Influential Followers. Just some of what PinReach measures

If you’re using Pinterest for your company, business or brand then it’s about time you get on board with PinReach!

Facebook Timeline for Pages

Originally posted for FSC Interactive

I know it was announced a while back that the Timeline app would eventually be available to pages. But, like many things with Facebook, I wasn’t sure when this would happen or even if it would happen. Imagine my surprise yesterday when I opened one of my Facebook pages and had a big blue box notifying me that as of March 30, 2012 Facebook pages would get a new look. FINALLY, I thought, Timeline for Facebook pages is here!

If you’re the administrator of any Facebook page you may have noticed this blue notification

I am really excited about this. I was thrilled when Timeline rolled out for profiles (we all were, actually. See what our favorite things about Timeline are). But the fact of the matter is that there are a lot of bells and whistles that the current Facebook Page layout offers that will be affected by the change. I’ve had clients already ask a million questions about what this means for them — here are the top 5 questions and their answers to help guide you through using Timeline for your Facebook Page.

1. What Happens to Tabs?

Where Tabs are on the new Facebook LayoutThis was probably the question I was asked the most when clients found out about the new Facebook Timeline feature for pages. Don’t worry! Tabs are safe and sound. Kind of. In the new format, tabs live at the very top of the page next to the Page Info. There is a tiny box with a drop-down arrow that will tell how many tabs you have. When you click the drop-down, a full page of tabs will open.

My Advice: Many of the tabs that exist do not have a custom icon to go with them, in fact, a lot of the tabs I see have little cogs or widgets and are U-G-L-Y. With the new layout, you’re going to want to make sure every tab has a square icon that can be previewed when people are looking through your tabs.

2. Where Does the “Like” Button go?

The Like button didn’t disappear, it’s just further down the page than you are used to. With the introduction of the Timeline app comes the Cover Photo (my personal favorite feature of Timeline). The Like button will appear just under the cover photo.

My Advice: Remember that lander you built 6 months ago with a giant arrow pointing directly up saying “LIKE OUR PAGE”? Yeah…you’re going to want to delete that now….

3. Do Default Landers Still Exist?

No. That’s the long and the short of it.

My Advice: Get over it. Some are saying that the disappearance of Default Landers is killing Facebook for Marketing. To be honest, I don’t know how many people actually like a page because of a pretty default lander. Yes, there are fan-gates but if someone is REALLY interested in your Brand they’ll fan you. Maybe you won’t get as many tab browsers but this is an opportunity for Fans to connect with brands because of what they are posting not because of their default tabs.

4. What Happened to My Admin Options?

The admin options have moved from the right of the wall to above the cover photo. In the new Admin Panel, you’ll see recent notifications, Recent Likes, Quick Insights and, something new; Messages. With the new Timeline feature people will be able to send your page a message. Think of what this could do for customer service! There are also options to “Manage” “Build Audience” and “Help.”

My Advice: Check all of these different features out before you hide the Admin Panel. And definitely, definitely take the tour when you change your settings. This is a great snapshot of what has been happening on your page but don’t forget to review insights (thoroughly) on a regular basis.

5. Can I Customize the Four Boxes at the Top?

Yes, phew! The four boxes at the top can be customized and like I mentioned earlier every tab you have, especially the four that are visible, should have customized icons. To switch the Tabs around you simply click on the pencil icon on the Tab and choose which Tab you want to switch places with.

My Advice: Change those icons TODAY!

Additional  Information:

If you go to your page one day and see it has been permanently changed, don’t worry! You’ll be notified who changed it.

If you click to preview the new layout you can go back to the old layout. Timeline won’t be a must-do thing until the end of March.

The Cover Photo can be anything and Facebook will allow you to drag around to get exactly what you’re looking for but don’t forget to click “save.” The photo should be about 850px wide and 315px tall.

Those custom icons for tabs I keep talking about, those specs are: 111 x 74px.

Your Tab space is bigger now. The new sizing for that is: 810px wide.

Additional Resources:

While I’d like to think that you all got everything you needed from my one post about Facebook Timeline for pages, I’m not quite that naive. Here are some of my favorite resources for learning more about Timeline for Facebook Pages.

From Mashable: Facebook brand Timelines: 6 Big Changes Every Marketer Needs to Understand

From Facebook: Introducing New Facebook Pages

From AllFacebook.com: 7 Crucial Things to Know About Timeline for Facebook Pages

Super Bowl Social Media Command Center: One of the Greatest Ideas EVER

Originally posted for FSC Interactive

I was in Miami when the Saints won the Superbowl in 2010 and I remember thinking to myself that it would be nice if there was some kind of official Miami Super Bowl Twitter Handle to answer my questions like “what restaurants, if any, will be open after the game?” and “where can I get official Super Bowl souvenirs?” But, alas, my tweets went unanswered.

This year, there will be a Social Media Command Center in Indianapolis aimed at helping Super Bowl fans and answering those kinds of questions. As a Social Media nerd, an account executive on the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corp. account  and as a sports fan, I think this is the greatest idea since the modification of the overtime rule during playoff games (although, had that rule been in place in 2010 the Saints may not have gone to Miami. Let’s not talk about that).

From ESPN

The Command Center will be staffed by 16 full-time employees and 30 volunteers all of whom will be working around the clock to ensure that any questions asked about the Super Bowl are answered. They’ll be managing the @superbowl2012 Twitter account as well as a Super Bowl 2012 Facebook Page, Flickr Account (although they haven’t added ANY pictures yet. Com’n, guys!), YouTube Channel (again, no videos. There HAS to be some kind of pre-Super Bowl videos you can use) and Foursquare accounts.

Can we talk about how awesome this is? Think about it for just one minute.

It’s a GREAT Idea. One that I find to be cutting edge and innovative. An idea that I think, if properly executed, will deeply affect and influence how media covers and how cities host the Super Bowl and any other major sporting events (Hi, March Madness) moving forward.

If you haven’t already come to this conclusion, consider this scenario: You’re going to Indianapolis for the weekend and you need to know (a) is there a hotel available (b) how much is it going to cost and (c) is there going to be parking?  You tweet or post on the Super Bowl Facebook page asking those questions and – BOOM – you get an answer in a matter of minutes. It’s so simple  and so easy and that’s what makes it great.

Have I made my point? No? Ok, what if you’re in Indianapolis for the weekend but you couldn’t get tickets to the game. You want to know where the best place to watch the game with other Patriots fans is. Tweet, tweet – they can give you an answer.

Why hasn’t anyone thought of doing this for a sporting event before?!

I do have one problem with the concept (it’s a small one). Here’s my hang-up:

Staffers at the social media command center will be monitoring the social sphere on a geotargeted basis and responding to make sure questions don’t disappear into the Twitterverse.

To me, this means that those people – staffers and volunteers – engaging on behalf of those official Super Bowl channels will only be engaging with people who are in Indy for the game. And, while I get that  the primary audience for the Command Center are SBXLVI attendees, what about all of the questions and conversations that are taking place outside of that area? Let’s say they’re geotargeting by region and they’re going to focus on the Northeast (Ok, I get that. Both teams are from there) but what about the conversations taking place in New Orleans? Or California?

What if we have questions, too?

“Where can I order the official Super Bowl XLVI Program?” “Where can I get one of the Official Indianapolis Super Bowl Scarves? Are they even available?”

In reality, there will probably be over 400,000 tweets about the Super Bowl ads alone (see the 2011 analysis of Tweets during Super Bowl Ads) not to mention the number of Tweets that will fly out into the Twitterverse leading up to, during and after the game on Sunday. I understand the desire to focus on responding to those in the geographical area first, but I encourage (if they’re reading this) those actively working in the Command Center to monitor the total Super Bowl conversation. After all, you’re engaging on behalf of the Super Bowl, not just Indy.

I’m very excited to see how this concept unfolds and influences the conversation and engagement this weekend, not just because I have a freakish obsession with anything sports and social media related but because in 2013, New Orleans will be hosting the Super Bowl and I’d love to see this idea grow and become a part of what our city does next year.

With the bride & groom #wedding (Taken with picplz.)

With the bride & groom #wedding (Taken with picplz.)