Facebook Master Series & Updates

Facebook 3-part "Master Series" of eBooks with major updates and changes post publishing dates detailed with blog posts here. See also our professional writing services.

Facebook Advertising

Facebook Advertising

"Strategies, Tactics, Tools and Tracking". Master Facebook advertising strategies abs tactics.
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Facebook Privacy

Facebook Privacy

Make Facebook what YOU want it to be. Master Facebook privacy and security settings.
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Facebook Pages and Apps

Facebook Pages and Apps

This eBook is currently being revised and updated. It will be re-published on Amazon Kindle shortly.
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Writing Services

Writing Services

Visit our website dedicated to the writing services. We write eBooks, manuals, reports, and articles.
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Retargeting with Facebook Advertising

Retargeting (also called remarketing) is a relatively new advertising tactic that aims to show ads to people based on their browsing or purchasing behavior. Let’s explore how to use it, particularly in Facebook advertising.

Did you realize that retargeting is a very viable alternative for list building and, quite possible, a smarter way to go about it than the traditional opt-in form embedded on a squeeze or landing page.

>Let’s unveil what retargeting is all about.

Ad fatigue or ad blindness is now a fact of life for marketers and retargeting is a tactic you can use, not only to show more relevant ads to people who have visited your website but also to build a list.

Retargeting involves capturing browsing data from people who visit your website and then show Facebook ads to these people when they log in to Facebook. Once you know which particular pages on your website a visitor has viewed, you can then display ads relevant to their search intent provided they visited your site looking for some specific information.

So, what type of ads do you show these people? Here are a few suggestions:

  • Similar products or services in case the visitor did not find exactly what they were looking for on your website.
  • Ads that display additional product information.
  • Ads that offer a discount or special promotion.

There are two separate means of retargeting website audiences:

  • Creating Website Custom Audiences. Ads targeted to a Website Custom Audience (WCA) can be placed both on the Desktop News Feed as Page Post Link ads aimed at driving visitors to your website. They can also be placed on a user’s Mobile News Feed.
  • Using the Facebook Exchange (FBX). These ads can only be targeted to desktop users, with placement either in the News Feed or in the sidebar.

A recent study conducted by AdRoll showed that the advertising cost per thousand views (CPM) for Mobile News Feed placement is 57% cheaper than similar ads placed the Desktop News Feed and they have a 10% higher click-through-rate (CTR).

If you wish to use FBX, you need to work with an ad agent who partners with FBX. Personally, I have never done this myself so I can provide no recommendation or cost estimate for you. You could explore by visiting sites like Adroll, PerfectAudience or Optimalsocial.

You can do retargeting yourself by creating a Facebook Website Custom Audience. This is a pre-requisite for retargeting. You create such an audience using the Facebook Power Editor or the Ad Creation tool. In essence, you create a pixel code which is activated every time somebody visits a webpage where the code is installed.

This triggers an event on Facebook’s servers. If this event matches an audience rule that you created while setting up your criteria for a custom audience, the person who visited the webpage will be added to your Custom Website Audience. Audience rules may include a specific page on you site, a time period during which you wish to capture your audience, or an audience from a specific source such as your website or a mobile app.

For this to work in the best possible manner, you  should divide your website content into categories. Each category should correspond to the last part of the access URL for the particular content. This way, you can create different website custom audiences for different content categories.

Here’s a link to a Facebook video that explains how to set up and implement retargeting. Custom Audience from your Website

If you would like to find out more about Facebook Advertising, including detailed step-by-step instructions how to create a website custom audience, consider my comprehensive eBook titled Facebook Advertising: “Strategies, Tactics, Tools & Tracking” available as a Kindle book at amazon.com 

The “Native Ads” Controversy

What are “native ads”?
Let me start by defining the term “native ad” which, you will agree, is a fairly esoteric in nature.  Apparently, half of consumers have no idea what native advertising is all about.

The universally accepted definition states it is “a form of paid media where the ad experience follows the natural form and function of the user experience in which it is placed”.

Still confused? Let me quote a more intelligible definition provided by Sharethrough, a prominent advertising agency. They separate the meaning of form and function in the previous definition.

Form. Native ads match the visual design of the experience they live within, and look & feel like natural content?”
Function. “Native ads must behave consistently with the native user experience, and function just like natural content.”

If this still does not make sense, consider native ads as “sponsored or branded” content, somewhat like the familiar advertorials we have all seen in printed magazines.

As we are all inherently visual by nature, an example of a native ad is shown below. You will notice the word “Advertisement” in light grey color at the top of the image. Read More

Ad Campaign Structure Update

In March 2014, Facebook implemented a new ad campaign structure. This was explained in detail in my eBook Facebook Advertising: “Strategies, Tactics, Tools and Tracking”.

The new structure implemented looks as follows:

Within this structure, Facebook originally assigned campaign process tasks as follows:
Campaign > Objective
Ad Set > Schedule and Budget
Ad > Ad Creation, Placement, Targeting and Budding

With it came a recommendation that that ad sets should be created “by audience”. In other words, ads with an ad set should be targeted at an identical audience.

An additional update to be implemented starting September 1 and completed by October 1 makes this recommendation mandatory.

The new campaign creation process will now look like this:
Campaign > Objective
Ad Set > Schedule, Budget, Bidding,k Targeting, Placement
Ad > Ad creation

This change will only affect ad campaigns created after the change has been implemented. However, Facebook has indicated that old ad sets will need to migrated to the new structure by January 1, 2015.

Facebook has issued a guide titled “Facebook Campaign Structure Best Practices Sept 2014“. You can download this guide in PDF format.

Facebook August Updates

No More Like-Gating

If you ARE currently using like-gating on your Facebook page, it will continue to work until Sept. 5, then it will be disabled. If you intend implementing a like-gate, you can forget it. New apps using a like-gate will not work for you.

What are the reasons for Facebook disabling this feature. This is what they has announced:

You must not incentivize people to use social plugins or to like a Page. This includes offering rewards, or gating apps or app content based on whether or not a person has liked a Page. It remains acceptable to incentivize people to login to your app, checkin at a place or enter a promotion on your app’s Page.

To ensure quality connections and help businesses reach the people who matter to them, we want people to like Pages because they want to connect and hear from the business, not because of artificial incentives. We believe this update will benefit people and advertisers alike.

It is probably true that most people used like-gates to get people to enter contents, received coupons or, more rarely, to receive some free gift.

What Facebook now wants is for people to like pages because they belong to a particular brand that a user wants to hear from, or because the page has content that matters to them.

Time Scheduling for Advertisements

You can now choose which times of the day you want your Facebook ad to be shown. This feature is currently only available in the Power Editor.

This feature is available at the ad sets campaign level. Here, in addition to selecting your budget and campaign start/end days, you can now select which specific times of the day your ad is shown to your audience. You can, however, only select time scheduling with the “Lifetime” budgeting option.

You will see a calendar type display with each day of the week shown in a separate row. Here you select the time span when you want the ad shown. It will be shown in the LOCAL TIME ZONE of the visitor. Read More

Facebook Advertising eBook Now Up-to-Date

I spent the best part of a month updating and expanding my previously published eBook about Facebook Advertising.

The new version was released in late July and is now titled Facebook Advertising: “Strategies, Tactics, Tools & Tracking”.

In addition to bringing the content up to date with Facebook’s many changes and new feature implementations, I have also added a number of new chapters dealing with advertising strategies, tactics, reporting and tracking. The main new chapters include:

  • The New Look of Facebook
  • The New Advertising Campaign Structure
  • Ad Objectives, Ad Types, Image Dimensions and Placement
  • Strategies for Facebook Advertising
  • Advertising Tactics
  • Analytics and Reporting
  • How to Get the “Best Bang for Bucks”

The book was available as a free download on the Amazon Kindle Store on August 14-15 and attracted some 400 downloads. I hope the readers come back to this website to find about new changes the Facebook implements.

The book is available at the Amazon Kindle Store. Just click the underlined link to see the book page and the reviews there.

How to Structure and Personalize Your Writing

By Alex Beckis

A previous blog post I published on this website is titled “How to Write – A Methodical Approach”.  I should emphasize the word approach in the title because that piece said little or nothing about writing style at all, only how to prepare the task of writing something in a methodical manner.

writing styleI broke down the method that works for me into segments:

Purpose > Audience > Research > Outline > Content > Presentation > Review.

The most important issues may well be purpose and audience. In other words, “what do you want to say to whom”. If you are not clear about this, then you are off to a bad start. Always start be clearly defining the purpose of your writing and the audience to which it is addressed; this determines the scope and the limitations of style.

Before I go any further, who am I to tell you how to structure and personalize your writing? I am a published non-fiction author with half a dozen books to my name. Unsolicited testimonials and reviews are complimentary. I have also worked as a contract writer for some 15 years. But more importantly, I base my writing, in the main is instructional writing, on a foundation of post-graduate studies in instructional design and computer based learning.

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How to Write – A Methodical Approach

By Alex Beckis

Writing requires a methodology, at least if you intend publishing something a little larger than a blog post. A common mistake authors make is that they just start writing. This is like driving down a country road not sure where you are heading.. After a while, you will disorientate yourself in trying to decide whether content should be here, there or somewhere else. The end result is likely to be messy and the time and effort involved will be far larger.

Proper planning requires a top-down approach, not unlike the planning approach used in software engineering. It will save you time and produce a better result. Here are the essential steps.

  • Purpose
  • Research
  • Audience
  • Outline
  • Content
  • Presentation
  • Review

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