Perhaps you, as the web-savvy business owner who actively takes advantage of the opportunities offered by social media, have decided to engage in some Facebook ads. This would not be surprising in the least, as according to Facebook’s second-quarter advertising report from last month, ad buys increased by 25% in the U.S. alone.
For many, the aspect that is most attractive about Facebook ads is that they offer a more precise way to determine the effectiveness of advertising. The traditional way to gauge the effectiveness of an advertisement is to see if sales increase, but the popularity of a product or service is often dependent on a wide variety of different factors, and distinguishing between causation and correlation can be difficult. Facebook ads provide a solution to this problem in that they track how often users “click through,” or click on ads, making it an effective way to determine which ads are most appealing to which consumers.
Recent news, however, has changed how businesses approach Facebook ads. Forbes Magazine reported an advertiser’s claim that 80% of Facebook’s ad clicks were from “bots,” or automatic loading pages. A company called Limited Run, which helps musicians promote their music online, investigated Facebook’s claims and through tracking the clicks, determined that only 20% of the clicks on their page were by actual users. Facebook has since claimed that they are investigating these claims.
Now what does this mean for the small business owner with an ad on Facebook? Fret not. One advertiser’s claim does not prove that this is true – for all we know, Limited Run may just want an unofficial discount on promotion. Don’t pull all your ads, fearing complete collapse – just remember, if anything does happen, bad news travels fast.
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Photo Credit: Sean MacEntee