Twitter

During the research phase of the user journey, your brand can easily turn off a consumer due to a slow loading page or a pixelated product image that’s not designed for mobile. Trust is an important aspect of any purchase, whether online or offline, and without it, you run the risk of a negative user experience, or worse—a lost sale.

Here are three tips to heighten the effectiveness of your mobile ads.

1. Build Initial Trust and Maintain It


When consumers are on their mobile devices, they’re still tentatively in the m-commerce sphere. At this research stage, trust building and nurturing the consumer relationship are often at the highest point. Create relevant, useful, interactive content to build and maintain your reputation. Also make sure the information you’re delivering is timely and accurate.

2. Make It Easy and Attractive


When you create your ads, place yourself in the shoes—and palm—of the customer, and check your site experience from this perspective to ensure a smooth ride for them. If you’re a social advertiser who’s looking to tackle slow-loading pages, consider Facebook Instant Articles, a simple way to deliver fast, interactive content.

3. Think Beyond the Ad


Make sure your landing page is also designed for ease of use. Use short copy, plus stats and bullets for scalability and to drive more engagement. And, while you have their attention, ensure your payment gateway is completely mobile-compatible, offer a smooth payment path, and don’t let them abandon the cart. If they do, don’t let them get away!

For more great tips geared toward mobile ads on social platforms, download 5 Steps to Better Mobile Advertising: Tips for Social Marketers.

Are you looking for a career in social? Or perhaps you’re already in the crazy world of social media marketing and want to upskill, but aren’t too sure where to start?

01-Search



In this ever-changing world of social, it’s imperative that you keep up with the latest trends. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn have firmly established a foothold in the digital world, with Snapchat and Pinterest starting to gain ground and innovation happening quickly. And, we’re sure to see some newer platforms emerging in 2017.

Social media advertising budgets have doubled worldwide over the past two years—going from $16 billion in the U.S. in 2014 to
$31 billion in 2016. Along with this, hundreds of roles are popping up in social media. How do you get your foot in the door?

Start by building your own community.


02-Community

Create a thriving social media presence of your own, and familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of each. Build up your own personal brand—if you can’t market yourself, how will you do this for others?

Familiarize yourself with different industries, attend conferences and industry events, and contribute where possible. You never know—it could be your awesome skills that get you noticed by a potential employer. Your professional relationships may be your most important asset, so engage with key influencers in the industry that you want to get into.

Don’t limit your knowledge to just social.


To really stand out, you’ll need more advanced skills, since your customers will more than likely manage search, social, and display. Take a 360-degree approach to your learning—to succeed and excel, keep your training up to date, and subscribe to and read as many social and digital marketing blogs as you can manage. (Be sure you’ve subscribed to this one!)

You’ll be required to have a more rounded skill set, as social teams are now being integrated across departments, companies, and agencies alike. In job description parlance, a successful candidate will possess technical, analytical, communication, and digital skills.

It’s not just about posting a few updates on Facebook.


03-Channel

If you pursue a role in social media, be sure to put in great time and effort from the beginning. Become proficient in all social channels and prove your knowledge of each one. Know the full particulars of every existing and new channel, and be expected to wax eloquent about all of them when the opportunity arises.

Know that once you dig into the details, you’ll find a whole new world of advanced features to learn and master (such as creating paid ads, upselling, cross-selling, and much more).

Be professional.

04-Professional


Keep your social channels clean and professional. Remember that potential employers always check! There’s nothing as disappointing as a dormant Twitter account.

A good rule of thumb is to not post anything on your social media channels that you wouldn’t want to see published on the front page of a newspaper. This shows that you’re professional and can write well. (It never hurts to do a spell-check, either.)

You’re always learning.

05-Star


If you’re thinking a quick course in social media will be enough, think again. The world of social is changing constantly, and it’s up to you to keep yourself in the loop.

If you’re just starting out, it’s all about getting that initial experience. Be prepared to help a business free of charge—look specifically for opportunities to help businesses build and grow their social presence. Whether it’s paid or unpaid, take on an internship, as this is by far the best hands-on experience you’ll get. If you decide to pursue a digital course, make sure it’s fully accredited.

Stick with it—social media marketing is a profession where you never stop learning. Be persistent and believe in your abilities. It requires a lot of effort but you’ll get there. To summarize:

  • Build your own community.
  • Don’t limit your knowledge to just social.
  • Gain knowledge in all areas of social and not just Facebook.
  • Be professional.
  • Keep learning.

If you’re a retail advertiser, you have one, overarching goal each holiday season—drive sales. Every ad campaign launched, tracked, and optimized works holistically toward this goal.

Now that fall’s here, it’s time to gear your social campaigns to the rigors of Q4 and this quarter’s particular idiosyncrasies. The October to December timeframe is your most important business period of the year. You have your work cut out for you leveraging insights and audiences from your pre-holiday preparation to maximize sales. For optimal efficiency, retargeting users who’ve demonstrated interest is a key tactic.

Here are some tips to drive sales during the soon-to-be busiest, most competitive time of the year. To sum it all up in a single directive—focus on people familiar with your brand.

  • Audience: Build your campaigns around high-intent customer segments such as recent purchasers, loyalty members, and past holiday purchasers—and try to plan for a specific conversion path for each of them.
  • Targeting: Use Custom and Website Custom Audiences of people who’ve visited your website recently or purchased from you before.
  • Ad formats: Focus on ad formats that’ll allow you to showcase your products and services, such as Video Link Ads, Carousel Ads, and Canvas Ads.
  • Creative: Showcase your best-selling products to your audience segments and highlight USPs. Create urgency with limited-time offers, shipping deadlines, or discounts, and timely promotions such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday %-off.
  • Optimization: Optimize for conversions to maximize the delivery of your ads to people likely to purchase. Once again, make sure your conversion volume is enough for Facebook’s algorithm to be effective (especially if you're selling high-value products with costs above $200).


For more tips to stay ahead this holiday season—plus extra guidance designed specifically for Marin Software customers—download our Social Advertiser’s Holiday Guide.

Online gambling is one of the most profitable digital industries, and it's constantly expanding. Yet, it’s also one of the most challenging markets for digital advertisers. As technologies improve and strategies develop, the competition grows fiercer each day.

At the same time, the rise of social media forms a perfect marriage between a gaming industry that’s exploded and an advertising channel perfectly suited to what online gambling providers want to achieve—an even larger market and more players.

Advertising strategy for online gambling depends on many factors, differs according to specific brand requirements and goals, and requires a lot of testing to determine what works best. The key to success is to have a clear strategy and apply a few general best practices.

In this article, we look at an example of a robust gambling strategy, discuss challenges, and offer recommendations for campaign optimization.

A Four-Pronged Strategy for Online Gambling Providers



You should include four essential phases in your strategy:

  • Branding
  • Acquisition
  • Retargeting
  • Retention


schema-gamblingpost



To make sure you’re staying ahead of the competition, it’s important your strategy covers all phases of the typical online gambler journey, from the branding to retention, and that you use ads and targeting tactics that are the most useful in each phase. Any tweaks to the strategy will depend on your budget and resources, but having a clear structure makes planning easier and your ad campaigns more successful.

Further, there are a few things to note in order to maximize the effectiveness of your campaigns:

  • Facebook provides plenty of options for each step of the user journey. Determine what would be suitable for your core strategy, and consider others as appropriate. Make sure each option has a clear rationale.
  • Prepare the creative assets in advance for each ad type you’re launching and align it to the right steps in the user journey.
  • Define your preparation plan in great detail and always have a plan B. Build your targeting audiences and have a few additional ones built in case the core ones aren’t performing. Your preparation plan should include testing, and that plan should easily and efficiently allow you to determine the best performing demographics, ad types, placements, etc.



What are the Benefits of This Strategy?



Here are several great advantages from using this strategy, plus a few more tips for how to get the most out of it.

Branding

  • Facebook video ads: Facebook video ads are approximately 7x cheaper compared to YouTube, and open up an opportunity to reengage users who viewed your video.
  • Reach and frequency: Reach a significant number of people and control message frequency through reach and frequency campaigns, ideal for brand awareness.



Acquisition

  • Ad types and segmentation: Test different ad types to make sure you’re covering all available opportunities, and segment your audience to make sure you’re targeting high-value users. Audience segmentation and exclusion can significantly improve delivery and performance.
  • Instagram ads: Because of the image-driven nature of Instagram and the fact that users are more likely to connect with interactive content, these ads maximize the value of your creative and increase user engagement. This is a great option to leverage your content and increase the number of conversions.
  • Video reengagement: Use this to reengage with users who are familiar with and have shown interest in your brand. This is a good option for increasing the number of conversions and driving more high-value players.



Retargeting

  • Custom audiences: Make use of all ad types and optimize accordingly. Target audiences using Website Custom Audiences. Also create custom audiences of people who’ve registered but haven't made a purchase, and target with an alternative offer.
  • Search intent retargeting: This allows you to improve audience targeting and lower the CPA on your retargeting campaigns. Cross-channel retargeting ensures you’re reaching all of the most relevant, high-value users.
  • Dynamic Ads (DAs): Use Facebook DAs on different games to automate retargeting, and to show the most relevant game to your engaged users, driving them to convert.



Retention

  • Segmentation: Segment your custom audience and make use of ad types and messaging accordingly. Apply a “softer” method of engagement with these users by leveraging blog content, different offers, upgrades, and photo albums from user events. Also use Facebook’s immersive Canvas ads to get users more involved in the life of your brand.



Challenges



Once your strategy’s clear and your campaigns are live, you’ll likely run into a few challenges. Here are a few common ones and how to handle them.

  • Your ad images, text, and targeting affects CTR—the lower the CTR, the higher the CPC: Stop any ads that aren’t meeting targets and have very low CTR.
  • Targeting or product affect CVR—the lower the CVR, the higher the CPA: Review your targeting strategy, your website, and your user funnel.
  • Campaigns have poor delivery: Check audience overlap and make sure to use exclusions. Also make sure you’ve allocated sufficient budget.



For a real-life example of how an online gambling site hit the jackpot with their CTR and saved big on CPAs, read our Leo Vegas case study.

Between the distant frenzy of the Q4 shopping season and the rising calm of midyear, Q2 tends to be the quietest quarter. However, this doesn’t mean there’s nothing happening. Among other things we found in our research, mobile display played a larger role this Q2—but overall, the ubiquitous move to mobile is actually slowing down. And, tablet usage continues to drop.

To create our quarterly benchmark reports, we sample the Marin Global Online Advertising Index, composed of advertisers who invest more than $7 billion in annualized ad spend on the Marin platform. We analyze data from around the world to create our report. For Q2 2016, key findings include:

  • The move to mobile is slowing down. Across search and social, the shift away from desktop has been slowing for the last two quarters. Device share is decelerating and seems to be approaching a stability point. Display is the only channel that’s still seeing strong shifts toward mobile over the past quarter for both advertisers and users.
  • Smartphone and desktop are the devices of choice. The tablet revolution never took off and continues to shrink. Instead, it was co-opted by its sibling device, the smartphone. For the foreseeable future, smartphone and desktop are the two largest winners.
  • Advertisers should continue to prioritize cross-channel, cross-device targeting. In order for advertisers to employ a robust cross-channel, cross-device marketing approach, they should continue to learn the strengths and weaknesses of these channels and devices.


For detailed information on Q2 2016 search, social, and display mobile performance and strategy recommendations, download our Performance Marketer’s Benchmark Report Q3 2016 – Vital Search, Social, and Display Performance Data by Device.

This is a guest post from Daniel Rohsler, Digital Marketing Account Manager at 3Q Digital.

Brands are finally investing heavily in videos for social platforms. Although the attention is now there, clients often ask about best practices for making a “good” video for social.

Facebook has been making a slow but steady switch to showing more videos in users’ News Feeds—I just did a quick count on my personal page, and 10 out of the first 18 posts (55.5%) were videos. With this switch, it‘s essential to incorporate video into your brand’s creative strategy. And, it’s even more important to make sure your videos are “right” for the platform they’ll be served on.

For this post, I’ll stick to Facebook best practices, but most of these guidelines will work nicely for Twitter, too. Here are common questions clients often ask regarding video—and some answers.

How long should it be?


The ideal length of a video ad should be somewhere between 30 seconds and a minute. Ideally, the video should provide the necessary context to the user with or without sound—taking advantage of the auto-play feature in Facebook’s News Feed.

If the message or purpose can’t be shown with a 1-minute video, it’s okay to make it a bit longer. Just make sure the message is still concise and engaging enough to keep users interested (short attention spans and all).

Can we use our TV commercial?


You can, but you shouldn’t. If your TV commercial has run its course, it likely won’t be well-received on social platforms. Diversity is often as important as frequency when it comes to reaching your audience, so try not to serve the exact same asset across different channels.

However, a social video that shares the same theme or feel as your commercial can be incredibly beneficial. Building familiarity across channels by using the same actors, music, or visuals is a good way to grab attention, but be sure that the videos are differentiated enough to keep users engaged and interested.

Does it need actors? A voiceover?


Your video doesn’t “need” actors or a voiceover—but if you’re going to have either one, it’s important to caption the video or use large image text throughout. Remember, videos will auto-play in users’ News Feeds, so the first few seconds will likely be seen but not heard. This is where image text and captioning are essential.

It’s always recommended that the video have lots of large image text, taking up a good portion of the screen so that the text is easily readable regardless of whether the user is viewing the video on mobile or desktop. Image text is particularly important in the first 3-5 seconds of the video—good text can make users more inclined to click for sound or expand the video.

Can you show us some examples?


Here are a couple videos I often share with clients when they ask for some good examples…

Facebook Tips: When Facebook unveils a new feature, they’ll often promote how-to videos like this one for Facebook Stickers.



While the subject matter itself isn’t particularly exciting, it does execute on the essentials well—image text that matches the voiceover, branded logos throughout, and artistic visuals. This is just one video in a series of how-tos that all have the same look and feel. You can view the series here.

Dear Sophie: A personal favorite for what makes a great social video is Google’s Dear Sophie. It’s a little bit longer than the recommended 30 seconds to a minute, but it does a great job of providing all the necessary context with and without sound, by using large image text and visually engaging imagery throughout.

WARNING: You might cry, even with the sound off!



Have fun creating your videos, and may you discover more best practices that work for you.

This is a guest post from Brionna Lewis, Marketing and Public Relations Assistant at Kiip.

All trends are leaning towards mobile first. Americans are spending 51% of their time consuming online media through a mobile device. In the years to come, everything will have to be mobile first, including your marketing strategy.

Chances are you’ve at least started thinking about how your brand is going to leverage the mobile space, if you’re not already doing so. But are you doing it right? Here are 5 telltale signs you’re not and, in fact, dropping the ball completely.

1. You think all impressions are created equal.


This is the key to mobile advertising placements. Too many brands are striving for mass brand awareness instead of focusing on strategic ways to reach their target audience. It’ll always be quality over quantity in mobile. One thousand impressions from your target demographic are better than one million from an audience that isn’t interested in your brand at all.

A 2013 study showed that only 2.8% of mobile users thought the ads in apps and mobile websites ads were relevant to them. So, if you’re still investing in mass display advertising, stop. Contextual advertising, based on relevance to the content of the app or web page, location, or time of day and are much more effective.

The Brand Aid survey found that when people view brand ads alongside relevant content, they’re 10% more likely to pick up new information, nearly 20% more likely to feel more positive about the advertiser and, crucially, 23% more likely to think that the ad is relevant to them.

An excellent example is a mobile campaign ran by Samsung on the mobile site for TV.com. TV.com is a website people visit to see what’s on TV, read up on television industry news, and catch up on what’s happening on their favorite shows. An oh-so-fitting place for a Samsung TV ad.

admob_example-1


2. You’re marketing to “millennials”.


If you’re claiming “millennials” as your target audience, you’re effectively saying “everyone.” Using stereotypes to target 80 million Americans is not an effective marketing strategy. It’s like saying everything living in the ocean is a fish—it’s entirely false.

Millennials are a large group of people within a 20-year age range of varying genders, ethnicities, nationalities, interests, and lifestyles. Instead of looking for easy ways to clump people together, focus on the ways that separate them. The more specific you can be about who your target audience is, the more tailored and effective your brand strategy can be.

3. You’re not reaching email inboxes.


Even in 2016, email is still king when it comes to effective marketing. A study found that 91% of consumers check their email every day, and 48% say it’s their preferred channel of communication with brands.

So, if you don’t have a means of collecting email addresses from your potential customers and a strategy for maintaining contact through email, you’re missing out on a lot of potential business.

The trouble with collecting emails is that most consumers try to avoid giving their email out, so that they don’t have an inbox full of spam. The only way to combat this is to offer your customers something in return for access to their inbox. Many companies offer discounts and other member perks to customers who provide their email address.

An example of this is The Barista Bar’s Coffee Club, which they promoted through a Twitter ad placement.

Twitter_Lead_Generation_Card


4. You’re not offering value to your customer.


No one loves banner ads and intrusive pop-up videos, but you know what people do love? Free stuff—discounts, trials, and useful content. If you’re going to ask for someone’s time, attention and ultimately, money, be prepared to offer them something of value in return. The key to both customer acquisition and retention is to offer something that people actually want when advertising.

Through Kiip, Smartwater was able to give Runkeeper, a fitness app, users a coupon for a free bottle of Smartwater for after they complete their workout. This is an excellent way for brands to surprise and delight their potential customers by letting them try their product for free.

smartwater


5. You’re not establishing loyalty.


Loyalty is more than complicated point systems and exclusive sales. Loyalty is building a relationship with your customers. The best ways to establish that relationship is to hear them out and respond. Social media is a great opportunity to do that. If you’re not responding to comments and tweets, you’re missing out on the opportunity to build a relationship.

rs-jetblue-tweet



Another way to establish loyalty is to offer customers something for their mobile wallets. Apple Pay and Google Wallets are a place where consumers store virtual coupons that they can redeem IRL (in real life). A coupon from your brand in their mobile wallet keeps you front of mind and with them as often as their phone is (all the time).

You can also build loyalty with mobile customers by creating an app where users can get more perks, find out about sales, and interact with your brand seamlessly. One company that executes this amazingly is Target, through their app Cartwheel. Customers can check for sales, clip virtual coupons, scan items to see if they are on sale and simply scan their barcode at check-out to get all the saving. Target killed it.

target



So, if you’re currently dropping the ball on mobile, it’s not too late to turn it around. With this new insight, you can develop a winning mobile marketing strategy in no time.

Global mobile trends all point to the same conclusion – operating in channel-specific silos no longer works, and now’s the time for marketers to implement a strong cross-channel marketing strategy.

If you subscribe to this blog (and if you don’t, see that second little box on the right), you already know we’ve been evangelizing the message of “cross-device, cross-channel.” There’s a good reason for that.

Data Are Fundamental to Consumer Engagement


As we approach the halfway point of 2016, it’s more important than ever that marketers not only use data to understand customer behavior, but also to act on that behavior to deliver engaging, personalized experiences.

On May 25, Nitin Rabadia – our Director of Audience Marketing EMEA, APAC – will explain how to use data to win the online battle for attention and revenue. Gleaning insights from our 2016 Global Mobile Report (available with webinar registration), Nitin will field your questions and discuss:

  • How consumer behavior is affecting desktop and mobile spend
  • Recommendations for optimizing advertising across channels
  • Tactics to take advantage of customer signals
  • How to improve budgeting, bidding, and targeting decisions with full transparency


Register for the webinar today.

When we looked at performance marketing data from the first quarter of 2016, one thing became clear: cross-channel, cross-device targeting remains the most powerful differentiator for profitable marketing strategies.

To create our quarterly benchmark reports, we sample the Marin Global Online Advertising Index, composed of advertisers who invest more than $7 billion in annualized ad spend on the Marin platform. We analyze data from around the world to create our report. For Q1 2016, key findings include:

  • All mobile, all the time. Advertisers and consumers are continuing to shift towards a more mobile ecosystem.
  • Cross-channel and cross device remain important. It’s important for marketers to adopt and maintain a more holistic and complete approach to digital marketing that targets across all channels and devices.
  • Every channel has its strengths and weaknesses. Not only should marketers become adept at recognizing each channel’s weaknesses, but even more importantly, they should start using all three channels and devices to their best strengths.


For detailed information on Q1 2016 search, social, and display mobile performance – including detailed data charts with YoY performance and up-to-date recommendations – download our Performance Marketer’s Benchmark Report Q2 2016 – Vital Search, Social, and Display Performance Data by Device.

Mother’s Day is almost here! With flowers, cards, and family visits close at hand, many brick and mortar retailers are gearing up for the shopping spike. The season of maternal appreciation extends to online retailers, who are also gussying up their search, social, and display campaigns to attract consumers around the world.

How did online retailers do in 2015, and what to expect this year?

Mother’s Day 2015 – Clicks, Spend, and Conversions



In the week leading up to Mother’s Day 2015 (May 10th), clicks increased an average of 15% across retailers as click-through rates rose 6%. In addition, spend increased 9% during the same time period, peaking a few days before Mother’s Day.

Most notably, conversions saw a bump of 12%, peaking on the 5th at 18% above the monthly average. This noticeable bump for all retailers was more pronounced among those specialty retailers that Mother’s Day particularly impacts.

CPCs actually dropped slightly during this period, except for two days where they spiked, the 4th and 5th. The 5th proved to be a particularly important day for consumers and advertisers, showing abnormal surges along all metrics.

Perhaps consumers took account delivery times and the looming holiday date into account, giving themselves a few buffer days in case of delays in delivery and arrival.

These numbers dropped dramatically on Mother’s Day itself, and returned slowly to roughly average afterwards. Click-through rates remained elevated for Mother’s Day and a few days afterwards before returning to seasonal norms.

Recommendations for 2016



For retailers looking to maximize their Mother’s Day sales, here are a few key takeaways:

  • Start campaigns at least a week before Mother’s Day to capture the online shopping market, especially those looking to have a gift arrive in time for the occasion.
  • In particular, focus attention on five or six days beforehand, as this is when consumer interest peaked last year.
  • Expect similar trends to 2015, as people power down for the actual day to celebrate a mom!

2015 was a banner year for mobile.

Continuing its ascent into the status of omnipresent being, global smartphone adoption reached an all-time high last year and shows no signs of slowing down. Thanks to this rapid expansion of smartphone usage around the world, advertisers now have an opportunity to reach consumers even more easily.

We sampled the Marin Global Online Advertising Index, composed of advertisers who invest more than $7 billion in annualized ad spend on the Marin platform, to analyze data from around the world to create our latest annual benchmark report.

We uncovered three key findings:

  • Clicks and spend have gone mobile. In 2015, mobile devices represented the majority of consumer online usage for the first time. Consumers are now spending more time and attention on mobile devices than desktop – as a result, advertisers have been shifting spend away from desktop towards smartphones and tablets to catch consumer attention and generate clicks. We predict this trend will continue.
  • Desktop is becoming more like mobile. As the mobile format gains traction with consumers and advertisers, publishers are innovating. While mobile ad formats formerly took cues from desktop, publishers are now swapping the formula, making desktop ad formats and pages more similar to mobile.
  • Mobile conversion is gaining traction. Desktops are still the primary conversion-driving device; however, within the past year, conversion rates have been growing on mobile devices. While mobile devices have historically been used for product research or upper-funnel activities, this is changing, as better mobile attribution and ad formats are released. Expect this trend to continue.


For detailed information on 2015 search, social, and display mobile performance – including detailed data charts with YoY performance and further recommendations for 2016 – download our Mobile Advertising Around the Globe: 2016 Annual Report.

2016-mobile-report_cover

This is a guest post from Sarah Burns, Content Manager
at
Boost Media.

With more than 2 billion active social media users worldwide, the influence of social on brand perception, customer relationships, and purchase decisions is indisputable. But, there’s a major shift happening in the way people interact socially, and it’s a trend marketers need to stay on top of.

Social media is becoming more visual


Social media is becoming more visual, with image and video-focused platforms seeing hockey stick growth. In fact, Snapchat had a purported 100 million daily active users only two years after
its launch.

Users are also voting for more image and video content with their clicks. Posts that include images produce 650% higher engagement rates than text-only posts and simply using the word “video” in an email subject line boosts open rates by 19%.

The influence of image and video content is expected to continue. An estimated 84% of communication will be visual by 2018, and by 2019, 80-90% of global consumer Internet traffic will be video.

There are long-term returns on investing in image and video production


Figuring out how to get more images and videos in your repertoire is a “today” problem and there are immediate, compelling gains to be realized from investing in visual content. Marketers can expect several positive results:

  • A boost in SEO performance
  • More social engagement and audience growth
  • Amplified paid media performance
  • A stronger connection with existing customers who may be more likely to make repeat purchases and talk about your brand


Establishing a system for how your brand produces images and videos will also pay off in the long run, put you ahead of the competition curve, and help your brand build and grow profitable customer relationships now and in the future.

Putting it all together


Marketers used to say “brands are the new publishers,” but perhaps now it’s time to think about brands as the new creative shops. To engage with customers, you’ll need great image and video content, and a lot of it. Don’t wait to ramp up your image and video production and distribution efforts. Now is the time to invest in solutions to scale visual content production and create an effective system for your brand.

About the Author


sarah

Sarah manages Content Marketing at Boost Media and leads a team of marketing professionals to drive revenue through complex B2B marketing campaigns in the ad tech industry. Prior to joining Boost, Sarah developed marketing and sales strategy at BNY Mellon, a top 10 private wealth management firm. In a former life, Sarah worked in journalism writing for magazines including Boston Magazine, The Improper Bostonian, and Luxury Travel. When she’s not writing engaging content, Sarah enjoys cooking, running, and yoga.

About Boost Media


Boost Media increases advertiser profitability by using a combination of humans and a proprietary software platform to drive increased ad relevance at scale. The Boost marketplace comprises over 1,000 expert copywriters and image optimizers who compete to provide a diverse array of perspectives. Boost’s proprietary software identifies opportunities for creative optimization and drives performance using a combination of workflow tools and algorithms. Headquartered in San Francisco, the Boost Media optimization platform provides fresh, performance-driven creative in 12 localized languages worldwide.

The world of social advertising changes every day, and it can be a lot to keep up with! There are new ad types, forming partnerships, emerging tech, financial announcements, and the list goes on.

If you’re feeling a little behind on the latest, need-to-know news, grab a cup of coffee and take five minutes to catch up with this
quick recap.

1. Twitter Launches Algorithmically Sorted Timeline


https://blog.twitter.com/2016/never-miss-important-tweets-from-people-you-follow

Quick recap: Twitter announced a new algorithmically sorted way to view the timeline, although it’s not yet turned on by default. Consider it the “while you were away” feature on steroids.

What it means for advertisers: Advertisers have come to expect lower Facebook engagement on organic content, so the same fears may come into play here. Twitter representatives have said that ads will appear in the newly sorted timeline, but that the best content will rise to the top regardless of whether or not it’s paid. Expect Twitter to continue evolving in its quest to revive shareholder value.

2. Instagram Rolls Out 60-Second Video Ads


https://www.instagram.com/p/BBVMFOsS0Dc/

Quick recap: Instagram rolled out support for 60-second video ads, a big change from the previous limit of 30 seconds. T-Mobile (did you catch the Drake commercial?) and Warner Bros. were among the first brands to test the extended video ad type.

What it means for advertisers: Instagram video ads can now be anywhere from three to 60 seconds, giving advertisers lots of room to creatively tell a story. Support is already available on Marin Social for advertisers who want to get started right away.

3. Facebook Soars in Q4 2015 Earnings Report


http://investor.fb.com/results.cfm

Quick recap: It was a great quarter for Facebook! The network beat estimates, announced $5.8 billion in revenue, and revealed it now has more than 1.59 billion monthly active users.

What it means for advertisers: The earnings call results are worth a read. To align with Facebook, advertisers should place extra focus on their mobile, video, and Instagram strategies.

4. Snapchat Teams Up with Viacom


http://www.viacom.com/news/Pages/newsdetails.aspx?RID=953935

Quick recap: Viacom and Snapchat announced a major partnership deal, which will give Viacom exclusive rights to sell Snapchat advertising.

What it means for advertisers: Viacom’s core investment in broadcasting and cable, combined with this new focus on social, hints at just how important cross-channel advertising is becoming. If Snapchat’s not your cup of tea, consider other tactics such as triggering social ads based on TV commercials, or running similar video content across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TV.

5. Facebook Shuts Down Free Basics in India


http://www.theverge.com/2016/2/8/10913398/free-basics-india-regulator-ruling


Quick recap: Free Basics by Facebook is a free, zero-rated platform that provides access to basic Internet services (news, health, education, sports, etc.) in developing parts of the world. Net neutrality concerns have made it controversial, and India recently passed legislation that caused Facebook to shutter Free Basics in the country.

What it means for advertisers: Free Basics will still exist in over 30 other countries, and Facebook plans to continue efforts to connect people in India. There are no ads in the Free Basics version of Facebook. However, international advertisers should consider taking advantage of new Facebook ad types (like Slideshow Ads) to reach users with slow connections in high-growth areas.

6. Facebook Adds Caption Tool for Video Ads


https://www.facebook.com/business/news/updated-features-for-video-ads

Quick recap: Facebook announced plans to roll out an automated video caption tool, coming soon.

What it means for advertisers: Once the feature is rolled out, advertisers will no longer need to embed captions or upload their own caption files. Facebook’s internal tests show that video ads with captions increase video view times by about 12%!

7. Twitter Introduces First View Video Ads


https://blog.twitter.com/2016/introducing-first-view

Quick recap: Twitter announced a new ad product called First View. It will allow advertisers to do a 24-hour takeover of the top ad slot in the timeline with a Promoted Video ad.

What it means for advertisers: Brand advertisers, rejoice! First View will offer a high-impact way to drive awareness at scale and gain maximum exposure for your brand.

8. Account Switching Now Available for Instagram


http://blog.instagram.com/post/138938416772/160208-accountswitching

Quick recap: Instagram users will now be able to quickly switch between multiple accounts, without having to log out.

What it means for advertisers: This is an exciting change for social media managers who run multiple Instagram accounts. However, larger advertisers who use a tool to manage their accounts won’t see much of an impact.

Super Bowl 50 is here, and the cost to advertise is heating up faster than the Broncos/Panthers rivalry. In fact, CBS is charging up to
$5 million for a 30-second ad spot during the big game. According to eMarketer, the top five Super Bowl advertisers have spent a total of $745.1 million for the privilege over the past 10 years.

While the Super Bowl is a great time to drive awareness with cute Budweiser puppies and ridiculous Doritos commercials, most advertisers can’t afford to shell out that kind of money. Here are four strategies to help marketers of all sizes take advantage of the Super Bowl without breaking the bank.

1. Start with a good content strategy



Make sure you have a cohesive plan in advance of the big day that includes organic and paid teams, and all marketing channels where you have a presence (search, social, display, etc.). With a solid strategy in place, you’ll have a good foundation to help you capitalize on any spontaneous moments that may occur, such as Oreo’s quick “dunk in the dark” reaction in 2013.

Here are a few recommended tactics:

  • Plan your gameday creative and messaging in advance
  • Use a tool like Marin Social’s Message Booster to improve coordination between organic and paid teams, and to ease the workload by automatically promoting top-performing content according to pre-defined rules
  • Make sure your social media team is at the ready with immediate, relevant, branded content, in case a big and unexpected moment occurs



2. Take a mobile-first approach



During the Super Bowl, millions of Americans are watching more than just the TV screen. They’re grabbing recipes from Pinterest, posting photos of their gameday garb on Facebook, and sharing their real-time reactions on Twitter. Advertisers who understand this second-screen behavior are in the best position to take advantage using a mobile-first approach.

  • Use mobile device and carrier targeting to maximize ad relevance
  • Make sure your website or landing page is optimized for mobile viewing
  • Consider extending your ads beyond the publishers and into mobile apps, via the Facebook Audience Network and the Twitter Audience Platform



3. Run your commercial without the hefty price tag



Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter all offer top-notch video advertising formats, so you can run your commercial without dropping $5 million. Captivating video formats provide an exciting way to engage with users who skim through their phones while watching the game. Other things to consider:

  • Use Reach & Frequency targeting with your Facebook video ads to generate awareness at scale
  • Make sure your creative attracts attention with autoplay and no sound
  • Run video that’s specifically relevant to Super Bowl viewers, and consider unveiling fresh, never-seen-before content



4. Up the ante with TV Sync technology



If you already have a good baseline social advertising strategy, take things to the next level using TV Sync technology. TV Sync allows you to automatically activate your social ads based on customizable offline events like television flight schedules, live programming, weather changes, or sporting events – all in real time. It’s a powerful way to amplify your reach and drive engagement across screens.

TV Sync allows you to:

  • Trigger your social ads whenever your competitor’s commercial airs
  • Launch social ads automatically based on weather status or key sporting events such as touchdowns and timing
  • Push social ads live during other related TV events (Pro Bowl, Puppy Bowl, etc.)



Last but not least, consider using these strategies beyond Super Bowl Sunday. Every day is a great chance to extend your advertising beyond TV, onto the second screen and into the virtual living room.

Consider applying these ideas during primetime TV shows, live awards events, college or national sporting events, the World Cup, the Lumberjack World Championships, or any time at all.

By now, you’ve likely seen or heard about buy buttons, which are a quick way for customers to purchase directly from search, social, and video platforms. How should digital marketers work with buy buttons this holiday season?

First, let’s review the statistics.

202%. The year-over-year lift in social media-referred orders that Shopify reported.

60 million. The number of shoppable pins on Pinterest.

84%. The percent of Pinterest buyable pin-referred orders coming from new customers, according to one advertiser case study.

What it means for you


These data points indicate a growing trend toward social as a shopping discovery tool. One thing missing from the statistics is the success of buy buttons from a revenue standpoint. Since buy buttons are relatively new, it’s still too early to tell how successful they’ll be in generating sales, making it uncertain whether to prioritize them over other tests this holiday season.

Still, it’s worth it for brands to begin preparing now, given the investment being made in buy buttons across the digital ecosystem. It’s easy to imagine that customers will quickly become accustomed to social discovery-fueled shopping, facilitated by buy buttons.

Let’s take a moment to recap some of the major networks with buy buttons, many of which still have the ad units in beta, with a select group of advertisers:

Instagram

As part of its action-oriented suite of ads released in June, Instagram has an ad unit with several call-to-action options including “shop now,” which allows users to make a purchase while staying within Instagram.

Pinterest

Pinterest has made Buyable Pins available to advertisers on select e-commerce platforms since late June.

Google

In mid-July, Google announced it’s beta testing its own version of the buy button in mobile paid search results.

YouTube

In late September, YouTube launched Shopping Ads, which include a click-to-buy option within partner videos.

Twitter

In late September, Twitter announced U.S. advertisers on select e-commerce platforms have access to buy buttons in tweets.

Facebook

Facebook, which has tested a buy button for over a year, in October announced it’s testing a shopping tab, enabling users to shop directly in the platform without visiting a brand’s site.

Where to go from here


With so many major networks supplying buy button-infused ad inventory, customer shopping behavior will be influenced—it’s just not clear yet how and to what extent. At this phase, it’s worth testing buy buttons on a small scale to establish a benchmark and to begin collecting intelligence to inform next year’s holiday buy button strategy.

About the Author


sarah

Sarah manages Content Marketing at Boost Media and leads a team of marketing professionals to drive revenue through complex B2B marketing campaigns in the ad tech industry. Prior to joining Boost, Sarah developed marketing and sales strategy at BNY Mellon, a top 10 private wealth management firm. In a former life, Sarah worked in journalism writing for magazines including Boston Magazine, The Improper Bostonian, and Luxury Travel. When she’s not writing engaging content, Sarah enjoys cooking, running, and yoga.

About Boost Media


Boost Media increases advertiser profitability by using a combination of humans and a proprietary software platform to drive increased ad relevance at scale. The Boost marketplace comprises over 1,000 expert copywriters and image optimizers who compete to provide a diverse array of perspectives. Boost’s proprietary software identifies opportunities for creative optimization and drives performance using a combination of workflow tools and algorithms. Headquartered in San Francisco, the Boost Media optimization platform provides fresh, performance-driven creative in 12 localized languages worldwide.

The beauty of direct response is that it’s specific, measurable, and trackable. And since it’s meant to drive people to immediate action, it pairs extremely well with the real-time nature of Twitter. So to all the direct response marketers out there, here are eight ways to improve your Twitter ad campaigns in 140 characters or less. (Copy and paste into Twitter to share with your network!)

1. Convey urgency. Encourage users to take action right away with
phrases: hurry, act fast, while supplies last, & limited time.
#TweetSmarter

2. Highlight new items. Users look to Twitter to discover something
new, so showcase new trends, products, or services.
#TweetSmarter

3. Don't be distracting. Avoid caps lock, @mentions, and
hashtags. While good for branding, these can be too distracting
for DR. #TweetSmarter

4. Keep things concise. Try some tweets as short as 40-60
characters. Research shows that’s a sweet spot for many
advertisers. #TweetSmarter

5. Test different CTAs. Twitter provides lots to choose from
including visit now, try now, view now, shop now, etc.
#TweetSmarter

6. Experiment with different creative. Test product images,
lifestyle images, or images that depict the product in-use.
#TweetSmarter

7. Segment by audience. Target existing & potential customers in
separate campaigns, then tailor images and creatives
accordingly. #TweetSmarter

8. Target by location. Use geo-targeting combined with location-
specific copy to increase relevance and drive engagement.
#TweetSmarter

Bonus Marin Social Tips



9. Organize by objective. Take advantage of Marin Social’s unique
management hierarchy to group your campaigns by similar
characteristics, such as business objective. This works regardless
of social publisher (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram) so you can
work toward a single goal.

10. Try dayparting. Strategically schedule the times you want to
engage with your audience, and use Marin Social to
automatically pause and unpause your ads accordingly.

These tips were inspired by Twitter’s recent webinar, Winning Tweets for Direct Response. For more ideas, download their handy guide or follow #TweetSmarter.

With the recent release of Google’s Customer Match, the ability to target users through their email address has finally come to search advertising. This type of targeting has been available in social since Facebook announced Custom Audiences in 2013, and is accessible to display through data onboarding. Now, because of Google’s new feature, advertisers can target users using this data across search, social, and display, and across multiple devices.

This opens up many new possibilities for cross-channel, cross-device advertising. As it stands, a large percentage of marketing CRM emails are never opened. Advertisers can’t depend on email alone to connect with high-value customers in a CRM. We recommend using your CRM data to serve ads across search, social, and the web.

How do publishers match emails or user IDs to users across the web?


First, some background. The deterministic matching method relies on personally identifiable information commonly stored in CRM systems. With this method, a linkage is made when a user in your CRM uses the same email address or social media user IDs to log into an app and a website – across browsers and devices.

As long as a user is logged in across devices and targeting is set up across channels, advertisers and publishers can use this unique identifier to target those users cross-channel, on multiple devices.

Advantages over cookie-based remarketing


Google, Facebook, Twitter, and Display Networks already allow you to serve ads to previous site visitors with remarketing lists. This is traditionally done with cookie pools. Customer Match, Custom Audiences, and display customer targeting all allow you to advertise to recognized, signed-in users wherever they are – whether it’s mobile, tablet, laptop, or desktop.

This cross-channel path is difficult for cookies to traverse. It’s also hard for cookies to move across different browsers, and users can easily delete most cookies.

The other main advantage is that CRM data can be collected from multiple offline sources. For example, retailers can ask for a customer’s email address after an in-store purchase, or a travel agent can ask for an email address after a phone booking is made.

The Best Uses of CRM Data to Amplify Cross-Channel Reach


1. Do the Right Thing for the Right Channel

When it comes to matching CRM data with users for targeting, each online advertising channel has slightly different options. Be sure to make the most of each channel’s unique possibilities.

Search
Email addresses

Google’s Customer Match is a new product designed to help you reach your highest-value customers on Google Search, YouTube, and Gmail. Customer Match allows you to upload of a list of email addresses, which can be matched to signed-in users on Google in a secure and privacy-safe way. From there, you can build campaigns in Marin with highly relevant targeting and specifically tailored messaging for your audience.

Social
Email lists, phone numbers, Facebook user IDs, Twitter IDs, mobile advertisers IDs

Custom Audiences (Facebook) and Tailored Audiences (Twitter) make it easy to target specific customers or prospects at scale. It allows you to match your customer list against Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter users in a secure and privacy-safe way. Advertisers can use Marin to target users across social platforms and devices.

Display
Email addresses, CRM, point of sale, and mobile advertisers IDs

Through uploading emails, CRM data, point of sale, and mobile advertisers IDs, data onboarding technology (such as LiveRamp) can match your anonymized data to online devices and digital IDs, and segment audiences. These audience segments can then be sent to Marin for display targeting.

CRM-workflow



2. Be Sure to Segment

Segmentation is key to the success of CRM targeting for search, social, and display. Users can be segmented by value, actions, loyalty, recency, and satisfaction, among many other options – the segmenting possibilities of your customer database are virtually unlimited. You can use all of these segments for innovative advertising, such as enhancing your strategy, target audiences, and creative based on fresh and reliable data.

3. Go Cross-Channel

Using CRM data for targeting can produce fantastic results in single-channel siloes. However, when it’s used as part of a cross channel marketing strategy, the number of creative marketing tactics becomes almost limitless.

One common example of using CRM data across channels is targeting users with tailored messages across search, social, and display, depending on whether or not they’re existing customers.

Channel exclusion lists are just as important as positive targeting lists. In addition to reaching specific audiences with your ads, you can exclude unprofitable channels but still reach the same audiences.

For example, suppose an advertiser is in an industry where search keywords are particularly expensive. But, they want to update existing customers about a new product in a more cost-effective way. They could exclude the existing users from search targeting but still advertise to them on social and display.

CRM targeting strategies also open up new customer care and support avenues outside of phone, email, or direct mail. If a customer has a specific issue, it can be resolved at the level of a search query. Using CRM data, you could automatically deliver the most relevant information and links based on the products or services your customers are using, even if they use the exact same search query to search for information.

Using CRM data and user matching addresses a number of the challenges of cookie-based remarketing. It also helps bridge the gap between offline and online marketing activities. With Google’s new Customer Match, CRM data can now be used to actively target across search, social and display. This paves the way for innovative cross-channel, cross-device advertising strategies.

According to Time Warner, 65% of people with a smartphone and tablet are likely to use social media while watching TV. From tweeting along during The Voice, to posting game-day Facebook statuses while watching our favorite teams, social media is now a virtual living room.

So what can digital advertisers do to capitalize on these multi-screen habits?

We’re excited to announce TV Sync, a powerful solution that allows advertisers to automatically activate their social ads based on customizable offline events including television flight schedules, live programming, weather changes, or sporting events – all in real-time. By synchronizing social media and TV advertising efforts, marketers can amplify reach and drive consumer engagement across screens.

TY Sync is made possible through Marin’s premier social partnership with TVTY, the leading provider of real-time contextual data. As TVTY’s preferred social advertising platform, Marin can now help advertisers run contextually targeted advertising campaigns on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter using television signals from over 400 national and local channels, across 25 countries in North America, EMEA, and Australia.

TV Sync unleashes a multitude of possibilities for social advertisers. Consider some examples.

Extend your advertising message across screens



Running TV commercials? Use TV Sync to trigger your social ads immediately as your commercials air, reinforcing the message and increasing your impact with a multi-screen presence.

Counter your competitor’s TV commercials



As soon as your competitor’s commercials appear on TV, counter them by launching social ads in real-time. This is a great way to stay top of mind and boost mindshare.

Improve targeting and relevance with weather and sports



Trigger your social ads according to weather status or key sporting events for a timely, optimized, and personalized campaign that strikes a chord with your audience. For example, during snow-filled winters, travel advertisers can target users with ads to tropical locations.

Drive engagement during live or scheduled TV programs



TV Sync can help you advertise your auto brand during an episode of Top Gear, or launch social ads for your beauty brand during the red carpet at the Oscars. Aligning your ads with specific programming in this way creates a highly targeted and relevant ad experience.

TV Sync is immediately available for Marin Social customers, and we’ve already seen some exciting use cases and positive results. If you’re interested, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Twitter continues to enable real-time, highly personalized information to the tune of 500 million tweets a day. But how can you use this information to target specific audience segments? Here are a few tips to help you better understand, identify, and target high-value audiences on Twitter.

1. Incorporate User-Based Signals



Twitter users provide a wealth of information based on the things they tweet about and the accounts they follow. So, whether you’re looking to target people who enjoy movies, or people who can’t get enough of Japanese horror films, Twitter will help you find and reach them. Consider these simple but effective options:

  • Interest targeting helps you reach people whose interests align with your business. Select from broad interest categories or custom segments.
  • Keyword targeting allows you to connect with users based on what they tweet about and search for on Twitter.
  • Follower targeting lets you target people who follow specific usernames. Consider targeting the followers of industry leaders or even your competition.



2. Adapt Your Strategy Throughout the Funnel



Regardless of where your customers are in the sales funnel, Twitter can help you find and reach them in a way that fits their current level of consideration. Mix and match these strategies for a full-funnel solution:

  • Top of the Funnel – Opt for interest, keyword, and follower targeting to reach a broad yet relevant audience. Showcase your business or brand and drive engagement.
  • Middle of the Funnel – Narrow your focus with tailored audiences to reach more high-value users. Also try partner audiences to reach users who’ve demonstrated high intent across other channels.
  • Bottom of the Funnel – Use retargeting strategies to reach users who are most likely to convert. Start by leveraging Twitter’s website tag to build high-value audience lists.



3. Make the Most of Your Data



Tailored Audiences help you make the most of your 1st-party data by targeting existing customers with highly relevant campaigns. Twitter provides a lot of flexibility so that you can use multiple sources and combinations:

  • Lists – Create audiences based on CRM data, newsletter distribution lists, people you’ve targeted in the past, etc.
  • Web Visits – Target users who’ve visited your website, and re-engage them with highly targeted and personalized campaigns.
  • Mobile App Data – Reach people who’ve downloaded or engaged with your mobile app, prompting them to use it again or adopt more features.



Do you have any targeting tips of your own? Share them using #TweetSmarter.

Do you spend your days creating and optimizing social marketing campaigns? Are you focused on ROI, CPC, CPM, CVR, CPLC, and a million other acronyms? Do you regularly find yourself on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Instagram - all for work?

If so, you could be the 2015 Biggest Social Geek!

We’re looking for somebody who lives and breathes social media advertising. Test your social savvy by challenging yourself to our 20-question quiz, which launches today. You could win an all-expense-paid trip to SocialPro in Las Vegas, plus your choice of an Apple iPad Mini, Xbox One, or Sony PlayStation 4.

Ready to get started? Play Biggest Social Geek now!

If you're running Twitter Ads and wondering why your cost per action is high, this post will show you how to use Twitter's campaign reporting and analytics to deep dive, optimize, and refine your campaigns.

In order to take advantage of these actionable insights, you must have Twitter's conversion pixel installed. If you don't, log into Twitter Ads and navigate over to Tools > Conversion tracking to get set up.

Let's take a look at a few of the reports available that can be used to improve your campaign’s performance. To begin, click into a campaign you're interested in optimizing and navigate to the left side where you'll see this:

1


Optimizing Tweets


Like any other advertising channel, you'll want to test out different variations of copy to see which one drives the most conversions. You can see the results of how each tweet performs in the Tweets tab. The test below shows three different tweets, one standard promoted tweet and two website cards.

For this campaign, you can clearly see that website cards are more effective than a standard promoted tweet in driving whitepaper downloads. From a simple calculation, we can see that the conversion from site visit to download is 22% for website card versus 17.5% for standard promoted tweet. Even looking at the first two tweets, which are identical in copy, the website card performs better.

There is a belief that website cards perform better because it's more visually appealing and takes up more real estate in the timeline, but that's not always the case for all our campaigns. Each audience is different and should be treated as such.

Recommendation: Pause the lower performing ad so spend gets allocated to the better performing ads. Test a variety of different ads and see what the audience resonates with best.

2


Optimizing Platforms


Keeping in mind that 80% of Twitter's active users are on mobile, it's crucial to understand how your mobile landing page experience is on multiple devices. If you take a look at the campaign below, desktop and laptop users are much likely to convert in comparison to mobile.

Recommendation: Build campaigns to target only one device each. By doing so, you will be able to clearly see and optimize the experience for each device closely and use your budgets more wisely.

3


Optimizing Locations


When you add in all of your locations into one bucket, you lose control of how that spend gets allocated and you are unable to control or tailor ads specific to that location. Take a look at the distribution below and you'll see that New Zealand barely gets any love. Even when increasing budgets, United States and Canada will eat that spend up because it's likely that there are more users in those locations that are engaging quicker than those in other regions.

Recommendation: Build campaigns to target only one country each to have better control of budget allocation and to scale more in the desired geography.

4


Optimizing Handles


If you're running campaigns where you're targeting specific Twitter handles, this report is extremely crucial to your campaign success. The Handles tab will allow you to see how much spend is allocated towards different handles and how each of those handle segments performs. It is likely that more spend will shift towards popular handles with a lot of followers, assuming they are engaging with your tweet.

Recommendation: This report should be pulled often and monitored closely to reduce spend on irrelevant handle targeting. Keep targeting the handles that are performing successfully and remove handles that are generating too much spend with low conversions.

If you are finding a number of handles eating up too much of your spend, there are two course of action: [1] if they are performing successfully in the existing campaign, keep them in the existing campaign, remove the lower spending handles and move them into a new campaign or [2] if they are not performing successfully but you want to try to continue optimizing, remove the popular handles and move them into a new campaign. The rule of thumb is when something performs well, don't touch it.

5



By using all of these different reports, you'll be able to quickly understand how your spend is allocated and see what tweets, platforms, locations and handles are driving to your desired goals.

Social publishers grow up so fast...
Check out this infographic of Twitter milestones.

twitter-info



Ever since its inception, through to its IPO in November 2013, the challenge for Twitter has been to balance the need to monetize its platform with ads without alienating its loyal user base. So how is it doing?

Overall Twitter ad revenue increased 97% (Feb ’14-Feb ’15). This is because Twitter has become a highly attractive advertising medium for savvy advertisers. Twitter has worked hard to attract marketers by broadening its advertising options, opening up more audience data and launching new capabilities to reach users, such as pinned tweets and Vines. In the US it’s even testing a ‘buy’ button. These moves have been important for brands, who might otherwise fear their message could be drowned out by the sheer volume of noise on the platform - over 9,000 tweets are posted every second.

Twitter has also been quick to embrace mobile, something Facebook admits it took longer to do. Smartphone adoption is a key reason Twitter will continue to grow in the years ahead; mobile already accounts for 85% of Twitter usage and 85% of all its ad revenue.

All of this appears to have been achieved without upsetting existing users - it’s hard find any evidence that ads are creating Twitter quitters. Growth of new users has slowed, but Twitter is still on course to hit 400m users this month, that is an astoundingly large audience.

The bottom line is that Twitter will continue to attract advertisers if the advertising continues to work and if users are kept happy; keeping this balance in check will be critical. The signs are positive, Twitter is a here to stay for at least another 9 years and will continue to grow as an important channel for digital marketers.

Advertisers can use the Marin Social platform to manage Twitter ads alongside Facebook. Request a demo today.

Did you know that there are 2.1 billion searches on Twitter every day? There are millions of people who use Twitter search to understand what's happening right now and to stay updated on the latest news and trends. On Twitter Ads, advertisers have the ability to run different types of ad campaigns, but if you're looking for a way to drive relevant engagement then targeting keywords are your best bet.

In general, we all know that search and social channels both serve very different purposes along the consumer’s path to conversion. However, research shows that marketer's who integrate their search and social advertising programs find more consumers who are likely to convert and spend more.

This post will help you leverage your search data to guide you in your process of selecting keywords to target. Keep in mind that users search differently on Google versus Twitter, so you do not want to dump your entire search keywords list directly into Twitter Ads. However, it's worthy as a test and it can be a useful resource to determine what keywords you want to use.

Before we get to that, there are the two types of keyword targeting that you need to get familiar with:

1. Users' Timeline: You will be able to reach users at the right moment and context with your ad displayed directly into their timeline based on words and phrases they’ve recently Tweeted or searched for or that appear in Tweets with which they’ve recently engaged.

2. Search: Your ads will appear in the search results for terms and phrases related to your keyword list.

Quick Tip: By default, campaigns will appear in both search and timeline, but you have an option to focus on one or the other. I would advise on separating the two targets into two separate campaigns, using same keywords and ad creatives, then evaluating performance side by side.


How to Use Search Data for Twitter Ads


1. Log into Marin Software or your search management platform and navigate to the Keywords tab and select your preferred date range. You will want to sort by Clicks to see which keywords are driving the most volume.

2. If you have the typical search setup, here are some ideas on how to group your keywords for testing on Twitter:

  • Brand Terms: If people are searching for your brand on Twitter, you'll want to stay top of mind.
  • Competitor Terms: If someone is searching for your competitors, why not stay ahead of your competition?
  • Terms Related to Business/Service/Assets: Carefully scan through the list of keywords you have and choose which keywords relate the most to the asset you will be promoting on Twitter and only select keywords with a one to two word count.


Note: The maximum # of keywords is 1,000, but our account rep from Twitter suggests 20-30 keywords with no more than 2+ word phrases is adequate.


3. When you have this keyword list segmented and ready, you'll want to also create hash tag variations of your chosen keywords. For instance, if digital marketing is a keyword in your list, you will want to test out #digitalmarketing.

4. Now that you have your list ready, you're ready to load that into your Twitter Ads campaign by using "Import multiple keywords".

1

5. When you're done importing in your list of keywords, click on "Expand your reach" to get recommendations from Twitter on related keywords that you can use.

2
3

6. Lastly, adjust the match-types you want applied to your keywords. Here's a quick overview from Twitter: https://support.twitter.com/articles/20170403-keyword-targeting

Happy Tweeting!

Twitter recently rolled out an update to their ad platform to allow advertisers to layer on lookalike targeting to custom tailored audiences. Twitter's tailored audience feature enables you to connect with users based on email addresses, mobile advertising IDs, mobile phone numbers, or lists of Twitter IDs (user IDs or usernames). When you add in the ability to target lookalikes, you are essentially targeting users who are similar to the list you've provided, which can be very valuable because it's likely that these new prospects are relevant to your business.

The audience lists are all managed and created within "Tools > Audience Manager", located at the top navigation. When the list is ready for use in campaign creation, be sure to checkmark "Expand reach by targeting similar users" as shown in the screenshot below to enable lookalike targeting.



Now that we have the basics covered, here are three creative ways to target lookalikes that are less traditional than simply using your website's cookied visitors:

  1. 1. Target Lookalikes of Your High-Performing Twitter Handles: For the campaigns you've created in the past that involve targeting Twitter handles, extract a list of the best performing users in terms of conversions (as of October this is available) or by engagement. You can do this by clicking on your specific campaign and navigating to the left side "@ Handles" and "Export" the report. This will allow you to test and target audiences that are similar to those who have brought you conversions or engagement success in the past.
  2. 2. Target Lookalikes of Your Competitor's Twitter Followers: Your competitors have followers that you may not, so why not target them, as well as users who may look like them? The chances are that these users are relevant because they are following a competitor that offers a similar product or service to yours and they may be interested in what you're promoting. To begin, you must first figure out a way to extract the list of followers for the Twitter handle you're interested in. If you have a lot of time on your hands, you could navigate to the "Followers" tab of that account, using my personal account as an example https://twitter.com/nerb/followers, and copy and paste each @ handle into a CSV file. Be warned that it's going to take a lot of effort to do it this way and you may not quickly reach the proper audience size manually. I suggest using a Twitter list extractor service, such as Moz's Followerwonk, where you can extract a report of handles with the click of a button.
  3. 3. Target Lookalikes of Your Internal Customer or Prospect Database: Your internal database is the most valuable source you have and because you already have access to customers or prospects at your fingertips, not only can you use this list to upsell but you can also create lookalikes based on the email addresses you have on file.


When creating these lookalike campaigns, you may want to exclude the custom tailored audience list you are using to create that lookalike. You can exclude audiences in the section shown below. It is always best to separate different types of campaigns. For instance, you can create two campaigns and track the performance individually, one to target just the custom tailored audience list and one to target the lookalikes segment.



We’d love to hear your feedback! If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below to continue the conversation. Happy Tweeting!

As an online marketer, one of my biggest challenges is expanding my reach into new channels without exceeding my ad budget. About a year ago, we were approached by the folks at Twitter to consider an ad buy. While I personally love Twitter as a way to promote brands, offers and news, it did not seem economical for me to invest a sizable monthly budget on an unproven lead generation channel. Fast forward to May 2012 when Twitter invited us to participate in Twitter Ads, a pay-as-you-go advertising model similar to AdWords. This new program offers a great low-risk channel to reach millions of new, potential customers. In this post, I’ll be sharing my first impressions of Twitter Ads and what other online marketers can expect to see.

Twitter Logo















Promoted Accounts is a great tool for finding new followers at a relatively low cost. Promoted accounts show up in the “Who to follow” box on the left-hand menu. Twitter will promote your account to users that are similar to your existing followers or that may be interested in certain keywords associated with your business or industry. To get started, I simply set a maximum bid and daily budget. Since I only pay per follower, I’ve found Promoted Accounts to be fairly cost effective. I definitely started on the conservative side when setting my bids, but have gotten more aggressive as I’ve become more comfortable with a weekly volume and cost-per-follower that makes sense for my business goals.

Promoted Tweets allows you to expand your tweet’s reach past just your followers. You can select up to 5 of your previous tweets and promote them in 2 different ways. The first option, which also drives more volume, is promoting tweets to users who share similar characteristics with your followers. The second option allows you to promote tweets by targeting specific keywords that users are searching on within Twitter. Like Promoted Accounts, you set a maximum bid, daily budget and only pay each time someone clicks or engages with your tweet. Let’s say your original tweet went out to your 5,000 followers. With promoted tweets, you have the ability to deliver your message to 50,000+ users over the course of a few weeks. In addition to the added impressions, you can expect to see a bump in followers and re-tweets, further expanding your reach. I’ve been changing up my promoted tweets on a regular basis to keep the content fresh and playing around with my bids to find the right balance between volume and daily budget.

Setup and reporting is a cinch. It only took a credit card and approximately 10 minutes to select the appropriate tweets, keywords and budgets to get my account live. Over time, I’d like to see new targeting features and recommendation tools built in to help grow and scale my account for reaching new, potential customers. On the reporting side, Twitter provides some insightful metrics. I can report on the impressions, clicks and re-tweets my campaigns are receiving and dissect analytics data collected about my followers, including: common interests, location, gender and other companies they tend to follow. I’m sure Twitter will include additional metrics in the future, such as devices and points of engagement, to give marketers a greater understand of what’s working and what’s not.

While still in its infancy, Twitter Ads already provide a cost effective channel for expanding my reach towards new, potential customers. However, I expect costs to rise as more advertisers enter this emerging market. Over time, I imagine Twitter will offer additional ad formats and tools for making smarter business decisions, faster. But for now, this easy-to-use, low maintenance marketing vehicle provides great value towards expanding my online marketing reach.

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