Posts Categorized: Google

Google absolutely crushes other social networks and here’s why

Special thanks to BusinessInsider.com for this image.

Special thanks to BusinessInsider.com.

It’s fashionable to say social is popular, while old dogs like Google are on the decline.
You can cite a litany of failures in Wave, Google+, Orkut, Latitude, Buzz, or whatever.
And you might note that Facebook will earn $4.8 billion in display ads this year versus Google’s $4 billion– pulling ahead for the first time.
In the last year, Facebook has added 200 million users. The  stock price is at $74, and the company is worth $206 billion.

Yet Google makes $30 per user per quarter, while Facebook makes only $6.
Twitter makes only $3, so a tenth of what Google makes and half of Facebook’s monetization.

96% of Google’s revenue comes from advertising, most of which is search.
And what advertiser doesn’t want to put their dollars where consumers are buying?

Here are a few things to consider for this tide to turn:

  • Last click attribution is still strong: As long as people are using last click attribution, they’ll put money into branded search terms and other over-weighted sources of “conversions”.  Heck, they don’t even know what last click is, since a conversion is a conversion. Multi-touch and assisted conversions don’t matter yet for the mainstream.
  • Social networks are not just people posting personal statuses and pictures: Google and Facebook both know that whoever controls the log-in controls the content production. I believe recently, because of mobile logins, more people are logging into Facebook to communicate than mail platforms. But of the Four Horsemen, you could even say that Apple will win, since they’ll own the device, but that Amazon will win, since they own the credit card. So do you want to own the user’s content (Facebook), their logins (Google), their device (Apple), or their credit card (Amazon).  The lower in the stack, the more you can pull the rug out from the others above you.  And Facebook is at the top of this stack.
  • People’s ingrained habits change slowly: A decade after ATMs were available, most people were still going into the bank with their check ledgers. Most small business owners still make orders via fax machines and advertise in the yellow pages. If you’re reading this, you’re a technology early adopter– not representative of the mainstream customer.

Google still has plenty of time to own the customer data.

They own a quarter of Uber, you know, plus are building self-driving cars.
Most people spend 22 minutes each way in their commute. Of those who go in a driver-less car, that’s 44 minutes a day to show ads to people.
You think wifi on airplanes or movie theater popcorn is expensive?  Try valuing the captive audience in a moving capsule.

The telcos and mobile device manufacturers have battled it out on walled gardens, but where do you really think the consumer’s attention and wallet is?
It’s retail, not online. And the physical world is where Google is preparing to dominate.  

The real social network is the shopkeeper who remembers the preferences of his best customers, not video snapchats.

Perfect Audience Acquired by Marin Software and What It Really Means

2014-06-05 16_12_20-Perfect Audience - Blitzmetrics - Dashboard

The real story is that native retargeting via Facebook and Google kills their business as a stand-alone. And the bigger picture is that retargeting is not just an add-on to PPC, but revolutionizes how we all need to think about advertising.

It now means we must integrate marketing automation with our paid search. And thus, our content makers must own the mantle of amplifiers, since they know the target and are closest to the customer.

The casualties are agencies that have depended for so long on the traditional ad agency model: one and done, set and forget, “Super Bowl” campaigns, and media planning cycles. Might as well bring a rusty knife to a drone fight.

Smart Facebook Remarketing- use FBX or WCA?

Screenshot 2014-05-28 20.41.12
I just did a search on Hipmunk.com to fly one of our new folks out here to Minneapolis.
Minutes later, on Facebook I get a retargeted ad with the fare I was just looking at.


This is something called dynamic retargeting, where you can show messages based on a rule– the product they just saw, how many pages on your site they visited, if they are a high value customer, or whatever.


If you’re e-commerce or have a LOT of product SKUs, then you need to use a 3rd party retargeting partner (through FBX– Facebook Exchange).
If you don’t need complex logic, then use native Facebook retargeting (called WCA– Website Custom Audiences), where you can still apply url-level rules.


Google has been doing this for years, so if you want the “full embrace”, you’d run with Facebook and Google retargeting together.
An AdRoll or Perfect Audience can do this for you via one-stop shopping, but if you’re a small biz or not super complex, you’re better off setting up retargeting directly.


And they’re still at it, but with a different variation.

Screenshot 2014-05-28 21.03.01

What converts best: Facebook or LinkedIn? Here are the results…

Interestingly, Facebook mobile converts slightly better than desktop newsfeed, but it depends on the product you’re selling, the content you’re promoting, and how much you’re asking for on the landing page.

The right-hand side ads fared poorly here, but delivered the most clicks and the highest share of new visitors. Of course, new visitors convert at a lower rate than retargeting traffic. So make sure you’re apples-to-apples.

Will the new RHS ad format convert better, as opposed to only delivering a higher CTR?

LinkedIn converts 70% better than Facebook, but the traffic costs 4 times as much.  Once they’re a lead, the conversion rates are similar, largely because we use ad copy that qualifies leads.

Some B2B players say that Facebook is for generating awareness (top of the funnel), since they have the greatest reach, while LinkedIn is for converting.  I’d say that was true a year ago, but not anymore because of website custom audiences and email custom audiences. The new workplace targeting options help mid-funnel activity, too.

So the question is not “Is Facebook better than LinkedIn?”
Rather, keep the highest performing segments from both networks. If you can spare the effort to run campaigns on both networks, it’s well worth your time.

Your own results will vary, so test it on your own data and let us know!

Google has lookalike audiences, too!

Sorry- “Similar audiences”, an analogy to Facebook’s custom / lookalike audiences.

via verticalnerve.com

via verticalnerve.com

It takes your existing remarketing list and builds it’s own audience based on similar interests. It’s compiled from people browsing the Google Display Network over the past 30 days and can be used to serve both text and image ads on the GDN, but your remarketing list needs at least 500 unique cookies to use the feature.

You should only use lists with closely identical userbases, or Google might have a hard time making a similar audience. The similar list sizes are currently small, so you should take precautions such as adding the matching remarketing list as a negative to only serve fresh users.

You can find Similar audiences under the Display tab by going to Ad targeting->Interests & Remarketing, or in your Shared Library under Audiences, so if you have an awesome list- give it a shot and let me know your results!

 

Whoops, I forgot that you can’t promote a Google+ url on Facebook

The Infusionsoft and Blitz folks are doing a Google hangout tomorrow.
So naturally, we promoted it to fans of Blitz and Infusionsoft.

Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 11.52.00 PM

Well, we tried to.

I forgot that you can’t promote G+ on Facebook, in the same way that you can’t mention Facebook in your ad.

Ironically, you can promote your Facebook page in Google AdWords.

Go search for “Facebook advertising” or “Facebook marketing”.

Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 11.55.37 PM
Google has no problem accepting Facebook’s money. In fact, Facebook is in position #1 in the premium slots, while Google has #1 on the right-hand side.

We believe that Facebook and Google should work together.

How about you?

How Facebook and Google work together

Remember the “Great Taste, Less Filling” ads from Miller Lite?

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Today, people argue about whether Facebook or Google is better.

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But the reality is that they work together, like peanut butter and jelly, Laurel and Hardy, an engine and transmission for your car, and so forth.

Use Facebook primarily to drive awareness and engagement. Potential customers find learn more about what you sell, especially amplified through word of mouth.

And when they’re ready to buy, they Google your name, the name of your product, or what you do. But if they don’t know about you, there’s nothing to initiate the search.

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Facebook drives the top of the funnel, while Google is there to collect it.

If you run only Google, but not Facebook, then you have a cash register without people coming into your store. If you run only Facebook, you’ve got lots of people coming into your store, but have made it hard for people to buy when they’re ready.

WHO, WHAT, WHEN

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On Facebook, you know WHO the user is, all the things in their profile, where they’ve been, who their friends are, what they like, and so forth. But you don’t know WHEN they want to buy.

On Google, you know WHEN they want to buy, but not WHO they are.

So track how your Facebook is driving more people searching for you on Google, more people opening your emails, more people talking about you in any offline channel, and making all your efforts more effective.

Are you setting up your Facebook campaigns properly to take advantage of this, as described here?

Do you have your marketing efforts feeding one another into audience, engagement, and conversion, so they reinforce each other?

Asking whether Google or Facebook is better is like asking if the brake or the gas is the most important feature of a car. You need them working together.

Google Drive Down

For the second time in a two month period Google Drive has been reported down by thousands of users on Twitter. This was first discovered at about 5AM Pacific Standard Time. It also appears that there are reports of Gmail, Apps admin panels, and Google product forum outages as well. Unfortunately at the time of this writing the Google app status page isn’t reflecting that the service is down.

UPDATE (6:01AM PST): Google has now reported the outages of Gmail and Drive on the app status page.

UPDATE (6:13AM PST): Outages of Documents, Presentations, and Spreadsheets are confirmed on the app status page.

UPDATE (6:43AM PST): The Google services have come back to life. Whew!

I will continue to update this post as new information is available.