Facebook Exec: Local Input Key to Ads for Global Brands

everson021511Global brands that customize their Facebook campaigns country-by-country instead of using the same creative everywhere are reaping rewards for their efforts, Carolyn Everson, VP of global marketing solutions for the social site, said earlier this week.

“They do perform better,” she said. “The real trick is organizing globally but being locally relevant. And you want all of your Facebook creative to be optimized to get the best reaction. And that takes local input.”

Everson briefly chatted with ClickZ News on Wednesday evening after her appearance on a “Borderless Brands” panel presented by Social Media Week and JWT at the ad agency’s midtown Manhattan headquarters. The Facebook exec said global companies have made somewhat varied levels of commitment to preparing their campaigns with local customs and language in mind. Sometimes, she said, the specific situation at hand or bigger picture has dictated how brands go about creating Facebook Ads and Pages campaigns.

“I think for the big brands that have marquee sponsorships like the World Cup or the Olympics you are going to see more similar creative,” Everson explained. “But usually, it is customized to the local environment, optimized for the experience.”

Peter Nicholson, chief creative officer at JWT, spoke with ClickZ about whether or not clients were willing to customize social media campaigns on a global scale.

“The clients who buy into it are the ones who already have a similar [philosophy] in place,” he said. “They want to do it. They believe they are strong regionally and want to maintain that. The challenge is going into new and up-and-coming areas that they really want to be targeted but don’t have much share and don’t have much customization in existence… That’s where I say, ‘You’ve got to do that. If you cookie cutter something into that space, it’s going to get rejected.'”

While Nicholson said social media campaigns have the best chance to take off in the U.S., he offered interesting commentary on where else they do well. “India is really successful,” he said. “Africa is really successful. Anywhere that doesn’t have a real tight communication infrastructure and hasn’t been dominated by old media.”

He continued, “If you think about what’s going on in these countries, they weren’t part of the TV generation, they were not a part of the past. What they know is mobile communication, and social media is kind of what they have experienced the most. It’s actually stronger in some of those regions as a way to talk to them – even compared to more common places like in Europe. Europe can be one of the most difficult places to get anything in social media to take off in the business space.”

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