Before we talk about why search engine marketing (SEM) professionals should be running Facebook advertising, things are just too exciting this month to jump to that topic. Of course, Facebook's IPO (which as of this writing is not doing particularly well) was preceded by The Wall Street Journal reporting that General Motors is killing all Facebook advertising, relying instead on the content, social and earned, media element of Facebook. The Wall Street Journal quoted GM Marketing Chief Joel Ewanick, who said, "GM is definitely reassessing our advertising on Facebook, although the content is effective and important." Of course, almost immediately (presumably at the request of Facebook), Ford came out with a contrasting view. Ad Age reported that Scott Monty, Ford's head of social media, said, "We've found that Facebook ads are very effective, and they're most effective when we strategically combine them with great content and innovative forms of storytelling rather than a straight media buy…"
Of course, GM, Ford, and their agencies don't buy most of their Facebook advertising using the same self-serve interface that most mid-sized marketers use, but the targeting options are essentially the same. Clearly, opinions differ in the quality of impressions, clicks, and likes within the Facebook ecosystem, as well as how much influence the impressions, clicks, and likes deliver to brand or direct response marketers. There's even pending litigation around invalid clicks. Jonathan Shub, a lawyer with Seeger Weiss whom I've advised on the pay per click (PPC) ecosystem, has been investigating click quality at Facebook on behalf of advertisers in connection with a lawsuit pending in California. Shub said, "It is my view that advertisers have not been diligent enough in auditing click and impression quality and validity of their Facebook ad campaigns, and we continue to discuss with advertisers steps they can take to improve the ROI in these campaigns to hold Facebook accountable for their promises." Facebook clearly still has to win over many brand advertisers and direct response advertisers that the huge reach and high touch of the Facebook ecosystem translate into influence over brand metric and influence over sales.
It's almost a natural assumption among the online marketing community that the best suited professionals to manage Facebook PPC advertising are the SEM managers (in-house SEMs or agency SEMs). Indeed that is true, and this column will discuss some of the best practices in SEM that hold true for Facebook PPC as well. However, Facebook advertising also has some very social media-specific quirks and best practices. Facebook ads also share some performance characteristics with online display advertising. At the conclusion of this column, I'll cover those important differentiators as well. But let's get started with the elements of Facebook advertising that make you, as a seasoned SEM professional, a great fit to manage Facebook PPC advertising:
On the flipside, there are some things we as search marketers take for granted that can get us in trouble on Facebook. These are areas that require additional training before we can master PPC Facebook ads. For example:
In the meantime, you can count on Facebook rolling out significant changes to its ads and to the targeting options because it needs to show Wall Street that the earnings and revenue estimates can be revised upward.
Meet Your Favorite ClickZ Contributors
Many of ClickZ's leading expert contributors will be at ClickZ Live, the new online and digital marketing event kicking off in New York (March 31-April 3). Hear from the likes of: Jeremy Hull, Lisa Raehsler, Andrew Goodman, Bryan Eisenberg, Mathew Sweezey, Aaron Kahlow, Stephanie Miller, Simms Jenkins, Jeanne S. Jennings, Dave Hendricks and more!
Kevin Lee, Didit cofounder and executive chairman, has been an acknowledged search engine marketing expert since 1995. His years of SEM expertise provide the foundation for Didit's proprietary Maestro search campaign technology. The company's unparalleled results, custom strategies, and client growth have earned it recognition not only among marketers but also as part of the 2007 Inc 500 (No. 137) as well as three-time Deloitte's Fast 500 placement. Kevin's latest book, "Search Engine Advertising" has been widely praised.
Industry leadership includes being a founding board member of SEMPO and its first elected chairman. "The Wall St. Journal," "BusinessWeek," "The New York Times," Bloomberg, CNET, "USA Today," "San Jose Mercury News," and other press quote Kevin regularly. Kevin lectures at leading industry conferences, plus New York, Columbia, Fordham, and Pace universities. Kevin earned his MBA from the Yale School of Management in 1992 and lives in Manhattan with his wife, a New York psychologist and children.
March 19, 2014