Posts Tagged: Advertising

What? You haven’t tried Apple iAds yet?

Screenshot 2014-11-10 10.29.59

That’s like missing out on Facebook ads when they launched in 2007.

Let’s cover this early stage ad platform to understand the opportunities and the

Head on over to at

Sign in with your Apple id.

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There are 4 steps: campaign set-up, targeting, ad, summary.

Sign into your iAd workbench to promote an app or a product.
There are 24 product types.

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Upload your logo in 300×300.

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For where to run your campaign, you can choose App Network or iTunes Radio.
Choose App Network, since iTunes Radio can run only in Australia right now.

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Choose CPC or CPM.
We recommend CPC, in general.
Perhaps Apple will have goal-based bidding via oCPM or another default bidding strategy.

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You’ll want to choose manual targeting, instead of auto targeting.

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You can specify targeting criteria in any or all of the following categories:

  • Device: Which iOS device you want your ad to appear on.
  • Gender: Male, female, or both.
  • Age: The age group or groups that your app is most likely to appeal to.
  • iTunes Store Preferences: The interests that users of your app are likely to have (in several categories including apps, audiobooks, movies, and music). iAd will place your ad in apps downloaded by users who have similar interests (based on download data from the iTunes Store).
  • Geo: Your users’ home (not current) location. You can select locations by state or DMA (designated marketing area).
  • App Channels: The categories of apps in which you want your ad to appear, and whether you want your ad to appear in apps rated 17+ (within the selected categories).
  • Scheduling: The day (or days) and times when you want your ad to appear.
  • Frequency Cap: The maximum number of times an ad will be shown to the same person on any day.Note:  Frequency Cap is available for CPM bidding only.

You have to budget at least $50 per campaign and no more than $20 million.
And you must budget at least $10 a day.

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The recommended bids are low at 15 cents.
And we find that we’re getting CPMs at about 25 cents, which only go up when more folks get on the platform.
Pricing will vary by ad unit and target of course.

400 taps (clicks) on 100,000 impressions is a 0.4% CTR.

So this can work out nicely for you.

You can add multiple lines per campaign.
For those not familiar with lines, it’s an old-fashioned media buying term, where you can have multiple lines run in a campaign, where each line is buy against a particular audience.

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On the creative side, we have to deal with some non-standard ad aspect ratios.
There are 9 of them and it doesn’t look like you can reuse the 2:1 aspect in Facebook ads.
And you have to upload a bunch of creative variants (required).

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You can’t target as fine as you’d like, clone ads, or bid to business goals.
But it’s a great start to a platform that previously required 7 figures to even get in.

If you’re a real pro, you’ll make fully immersive experiences with the iAd Publisher.

Now time to get rolling before you miss out on the cheap traffic!

8 Links you MUST have, but probably don’t, to keep up with Facebook


1) These are the 9 public ad types on Facebook with how to use them, ad dimensions, and so forth.
The local awareness ads might not be showing for you yet.

2) Hard to find, but get to the education section at:
You’ll have a ton of videos and courses to take.

3) Custom audiences are critical to your conversion.

4) Because Facebook is 60% mobile, you must measure traffic that crosses from mobile to desktop, especially if you’re in e-commerce.
This is one part of how Facebook lets you set attribution by view and click windows. Default is one day view-through and 7 day click, but you can change it.

5) And because you need to have an app (iOS or Android mainly), Facebook created a streamlined method for you to connect it Facebook.
Then you’ll be able to run app install ads and app engagement ads.

6) Facebook has great interviews with other ecosystem players.

7) If you can get into this group, you’ll get notice of the latest releases before everyone else, even if you live in New Zealand (the country that gets the updates first).

8) Or you can just search Google for the latest docs.
Do a query for site:

Uh oh… your twitter presence is 18 times smaller than you think!

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Companies used to be able to fluff their twitter stats by counting all followers as impressions.
So tweet 10 times to your 100,000 fake followers and you magically have a million impressions.

Need 10 million impressions because you’re behind on your Earned Media Value forecast?
Tweet 100 times or just buy more crappy followers like on Facebook. 

Nobody knows, despite what they may claim, which accounts are real versus robots.
Even twitter doesn’t know.

Now that twitter has come out with organic reach reports, the house of cards comes crashing down– for the 3rd party tool vendors and for people using these reports.

One of our friends runs social for one of the largest agencies in the world– his screenshot above.
Instead of the 27,000 reach from Sysomos, the actual reach was 1/18th that.

Because twitter doesn’t provide organic impressions in their API, even if you pay for the reporting, no tool vendor can accurately report here.

We’ve told twitter a few times that they need to get organic reporting right to be able to drive ad sales.
Certainly hiring a ton of sales people after the IPO is a normal thing to do. But we recommend educating clients instead of just selling to them.

Some people will be shocked at getting numbers 1/18th what they used to report.
  • Will they restate historicals so it doesn’t look like their current performance stinks?
  • Will they keep using the old method (assuming 100% coverage), since those numbers are “better”?
  • Will they decide that reporting impressions is a shell game, abandoning reach for engagement metrics?
  • Will they be unaware or apathetic, saying social metrics are hocus pocus anyway, since revenue is what counts?
1/18th is just barely above 5%.
That’s right in line with newsfeed coverage for brands on Facebook.
So is there cause for outrage?

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Readers, what will you do about the new twitter organic insights?
Have you had a chance to play around with it yet?

$50 in your pocket from Facebook is great news!

2014-05-15 17_13_57-Fwd_ $50 USD Ad Coupon to try Custom Audiences with Facebook Ads - max.darby@bli
And I’ve been saying that custom audiences are the most amazing thing about Facebook.
We can use them to rekindle customer relationships, help us convert new customers, drive engagement with the right audience segments, and make our email performance stronger.
Did you get one, too?

10 Facebook Marketing Tips From 10 Musicians

We recently spoke at the SongRise Music Conference in Peace River, Alberta. It’s an annual conference / workshop for people in the music industry.

I invited attendees to share the following: “What is the one tip you want to share with other artists that you learned at the SongRise Conference this weekend?”

The responses were amazing:

Karen Seaton10153281_10152447121939973_8311348071359097513_n

“This conference has taught me that no matter where you think you might be as a songwriter or musician, your talent is endless, as are the possibilities! My word of advise to all current or future delegates is to leave your fears behind in that crazy place we call the comfort zone. Take the leap and do what you love!!! 😉 Music is love! …and hugs, can’t be without hugs!”


Michael Cassidy Jr.


“The Songrise conference was amazing and all the info provided by BlitzMetrics was very beneficial. If there’s one tip I could offer another artist about the conference it would be this:
Learn a butt-load of valuable information while having some of the most fun you’ll have all year.”



Sarah Richards1506925_10151805203421372_1989875944_n

“The one tip that I would give to other artists about songrise is that I thought it was going to be hard to write with a couple strangers, but you never know who you’ll meet so give it a try and you’ll make lifelong friends and connections! So amazing!”



Richard Woodman1492538_10152307017005733_2960366168304225023_o

“I learned the importance of branding and letting that be a reflection of who you are”



Luke Lounsbury395654_3021274146266_1289562225_n

“This year at Songrise, I was exposed to the business side of the music industry. I also gained knowledge pertaining to grants and other opportunities you wouldn’t find anywhere else. A big thanks to everyone involved!”



Amy Metcalfe


“My tip to future songrise attendees would be to expect the unexpected. This conference has the perfect blend of encouraged creativity and practical tools necessary for today’s musicians. Top notch panel and sessions with small town warmth and personal connections.”



Vernon John Ledger


“One thing I learned from songrise is the importance of knowing who you are and what you have to offer, because when you know that, you know who your playing to”



Shae Long10245466_640496159358133_5804920539069598936_n

“The one thing I learned this weekend that I would like to share with other artists is that it doesn’t matter how old you are, what your talent is or how big your fan page is. If you have something to offer, that is something special and shouldn’t be taken for granted. Don’t underestimate what you can achieve when paired up with other great artists.



Lorissa Scriven

“Hey Alex big thanks to you a

10258858_10152414101215953_6543424718063694726_nnd Dennis for coming up to Peace River to share your knowledge with us. You are very inspiring people, who empower with knowledge! I love that! So… the homework. I would say going to #Songrise brings a sense of belonging unlike anything I have ever experienced.

It really taught me the importance of networking. Investing energy in relationships with people is honestly the best thing you can do in life and in the business of music.

The unity that comes from supporting one another is truly magical. A few things I would tell anyone who goes to the conference would be to make sure you leave your ego and inhibitions at home, let yourself be open, free yourself from fear, then.. see how you shine from within and outward like a giant light bulb!

Recognize and support all your fellow light bulbs! Everyone is so unique and radiant. Be inspired, write things down and maybe prepare yourself for the lack of sleep you will endure and don’t forget the “Experience hangover” that will happen for the weeks to follow.




Dana Blayone199352_10151416723548012_786784122_n

“Being one of the organizer’s of Songrise Music Conference & Showcase  my mind was blown with all the amazing artists and mentors that surround me during those two days. The business sessions grounded everyone to start looking at their music as a business, and the co-writing sessions made everyone glow with creativity and connectivity with those around them.

The one tip I want to share which I feel is the most important outcome from #songrise is the networking and relationships that happens organically. If you rise together as a musical family supporting and promoting one another while on your own journey, then you will discover success that lasts longer and is more sustainable. With a musical family you then will truly have No Limitz!.”


Music is all about expressing yourself, and the responses we received center around the idea of what makes you special. Share your passions, then reach out and network with others- remembering to always have fun.

This isn’t limited to just music, but crucial for any brand’s story. When your mission statement resonates with what drives your passions, your audience takes notice and reacts.

We cover all of this in our Songrise guides that you can download here.

If you’re a musician or work in the music industry, you should drop in at Songrise next year!

I love LinkedIn ads, but they cost so much!

Though the quality is slightly better than Facebook for B2B.

Looks like the min CPC and CPM bids are determined dynamically by account and even down to the ad level, so the $4 min CPC mentioned previously isn’t accurate.

$10 min daily budget, which is not an issue for enterprise.

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Notice that you can bid by CPM, too.

If you are confident in your content, then choose this option. Facebook will charge you about $12 for a thousand impressions in the newsfeed in the US. So you’re paying only double on LinkedIn, while getting a higher CTR, apples-to-apples.

Facebook has more traffic, is cheaper, is more “top-of-funnel”, and provides advanced lead-gen/conversion features. Read our side-by-side comparison here.

In B2B, few would dispute that LinkedIn has the highest quality traffic. Expensive, yes, but we can target by workplace, seniority, skill, interest, industry, geography, and so forth.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • Keep your audiences really small— only a few thousand– since the cost is higher.
  • We still recommend you create multiple ads to separate out the performance by target.
  • Unlike Facebook, you don’t have to post daily, since you can select multiple updates to sponsor in a particular campaign.
  • Test to see what works— but start with Facebook. In search, you start with Google and then move to Yahoo! and Bing. In social, you start with Facebook and move into LinkedIn and YouTube.
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Here’s another one, this time from our company’s own page.

We got a respectable 2.5% click-through rate.
It cost us $80 for 16 clicks, which is a $5 CPC:

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As we said before, the minimum CPC bid is $4, but we’ve been able to get $3 clicks by bidding CPM and having a killer CTR.

But here is what is surprising:

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Notice that while the paid ads got 16 clicks, we got 45 clicks organically, nearly 3 times as many.
So if these paid clicks cost us $80, then it would have cost us nearly $240 to buy that same level of organic engagement.

If you believe that, then the moral of the story is that it’s much more effective to produce amazing content than it is to buy your way into the LinkedIn newsfeed.

Do you find it funny that we’re spending money on LinkedIn ads to discuss how LinkedIn ads are performing?

Or that we’re primarily using Facebook to market the research that we’re doing on LinkedIn?

Some counts and analysis, if you’re interested.

But here’s what happens when you sponsor a post indiscriminately.
Look at the comments below:

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When you match the right audience against the right content, you get recommendations that people appreciate- They don’t see it as advertising.

But when your targeting is off, especially in the sacred newsfeed of friends and companies that users want to follow, you’re branded as a spammer.

Isn’t it interesting to see that spam is not about Viagra or weight loss supplements, but often the unintentional by-product of great brands who indiscriminately target?

It’s up to all of us to help companies of all sizes be more effective marketers.

Let us know how your LinkedIn campaigns fare on your business page!

Why I create new accounts for all of our Facebook ad clients

You may remember a couple years ago when we were limited to having access to 25 ad accounts per user profile.

Now we have several profiles that have up to 100 ad accounts each. That’s a few hundred accounts in total.


If you’re a consultant or ad agency, should you just create new campaigns in your primary account or go through the hassle of creating a new account for each client?

Here are reasons why you should make the extra effort to have the client set up a new ads account and then invite you as a “general user”:

The client then understands what they’re paying to Facebook for ad spend versus to you for a fee. Facebook recommends a 20% management fee. So if your client spends $5,000 a month, then your fee would be $1,000. If you bill the client $6,000 (spend plus fees), it’s not the same as paying a SEO consultant $6,000 in fees. You want to create transparency.

Clients trust you more. Let them know up front that at any time, should they elect, they can take their accounts in-house. We see a lot of agencies who play dirty tactics when a client realizes their performance isn’t up to par. They will claim they can’t provide access to the account, because there are many accounts there. And you wouldn’t want us giving someone else access to your account, right?

Clients appreciate the value you add. If you’re killer at Facebook ads, then you WANT them to log in to see what you’ve done. If your ad campaigns are so simple that anyone can easily replicate what you’re doing, then you’ll want to re-think your long-term viability. With Google AdWords, my favorite tactic in auditing existing accounts is to look at the change history, to see the list of most recent optimizations they have done. You’ll likely find little to no tweaking going on.

The spend is not your responsibility. Sometimes a client is insolvent or slow to pay. We had a major retailer delay paying us for 90 days because of a switchover to a new accounting system. So we had to absorb $85,000 a month for 3 months. You don’t want to tie up cash like that.

You can train up folks on the client side. Why not have your cake and eat it, too? Still charge your fee and train up their staff to do most of the work. Then you can spend your time doing high leverage stuff for the client. A smart client evaluates you based on the impact you provide, not the number of hours you bill.

That said, if the client is spending less than $1,500 a month, or whatever is your threshold for making it worth your time to manage their account, you might just put them in your main ads account.

Maybe they have a one-off campaign for an event, so there’s no on-going need for promotion and optimization.

Or they just really want to cut one check to you. Perhaps their finance folks don’t like to ad spend on credit cards or the client just doesn’t want to fill out additional paperwork.

In that case, use a credit card that gives you miles, so at least you’re earning something on that spend. Just make sure that you’re not left holding the bag by floating their ad spend.

A 3 minute fix to setting up a new Facebook ads account


An empty campaign screen with no ads.
A writer staring at the blank sheet of paper.


Ever feel the psychological weight of getting motivated to take the first step?

Use whatever gets you to take action. My colleague, Dennis, told me his trick to getting in a workout when he didn’t feel like running. Maybe he was tired, it was cold outside, or whatever.

He would simply make this promise to himself– that he just needed to step out the door and run 100 yards. Then he could feel free to turn around and end the workout.

But in the years of doing this, not once has he turned back early. It’s just in getting started.

How to take the first step out the door when it comes to Facebook ads

We do most of our campaign building in Power Editor because of the bulk functions, partner targeting, and other features.

But if you need to get moving, don’t have much time, aren’t feeling particularly “creative” today, or are tired, just do this.


Create one ad that is a page post ad with the most recent post option selected, connection targeted at fans, with the newsfeed placement only.

No need to touch interest targeting, custom audiences, bidding, ad creative, or any other options.

Put it in its own campaign called 2_engagement at whatever the client’s total daily budget is.

And that’s it.

This one ad will do most of the work for the client with no need for you to ever touch it again. It won’t ever burn out, so long as you or the client posts organically 3-4 times a week.

It can’t “blow” your budget, since it’s targeted at only fans.

The CTR will be nice and high because it’s targeted at the newsfeed, expect 3-5% consistently. So long as you’re doing a good job posting engaging content, you’re not going to get negative feedback.

So long as the client doesn’t have a junk client base gained from “free ipod” contests, you’re essentially retargeting, making sure that your newsfeed reach is 40-50%, instead of a more typical 6-10%.

Ta-da! You’re winner!

3 minutes of effort, if you take your time, and you have solved the biggest challenge most clients have on Facebook.

How to diagnose newsfeed burnout

The newsfeed placements (desktop and mobile) are tricky. It’s “personal” space for Facebook users, so you wouldn’t want to burn out from a high frequency or push overtly promotional messaging. Save that for the dark posts to fans and the RHS placements.


Above we have a newsfeed that that is at a frequency of 6.5. The CTR has fallen to 0.352%. We like to see CTR stay above 1% and frequency below 2.0.

You can also look at your negative feedback to tell if users are weary. Grab this via your page insights, downloading the clunky CSV file on post insights. You can also expand the comments to see if you have people demanding that you “get off my Facebook”.

Besides user experience, a poor CTR or quality score (now defunct) is financial, Facebook will charge you more. 126 clicks for $91.40 is 72 cents a click. Had this ad not burned out, we’d likely see a 1% CTR (3 times better) and 24 cents a click (a third the price).

The exception to a seemingly high frequency ad is the page post ad that is always on “promote most recent post”. Provided that you’re posting daily, this ad is not going to burn out, no matter the budget you allocate against it. The true frequency is lower than stated.

Facebook is progressively limiting the frequencies of newsfeed ads based on your negative feedback. The rule doesn’t apply to RHS (right hand side) placements, since users expect ads there.

How do I tell if my Facebook ad is working or not?

Do I let it run for a certain number of days? Or perhaps wait until it gets a certain number of clicks and impressions?

How do I know when to turn off an ad or create a similar ad?

What’s the simple answer for those who are not math geeks?

Simple Answer

Let each ad generate 10 clicks or $10 in spend, whichever comes first. This gives you enough data to tell if the CTR or the CPC is not where it needs to be.

If you can’t get a 1% CTR in the newsfeed, something is wrong with either your targeting or your content.

If you have multiple ads in a campaign, sort them by how you’ve spent over the last 7 days, high to low. Pause (not delete) the low performers, such that you keep 3 ads live at any one time.

So each time you optimize (every couple days), you create a few new ads and kill a few ads. Takes 5 minutes tops.

Sophisticated Answer

If you have your ads set up properly, with the right counts and structure, as defined here, you’ve got your Facebook funnel of Audience, Engagement, and Conversion set up to nurture your customers.

At 3 campaigns of 8 ads each, you’ve got 24 ads to watch– each with a different combination of content and targeting, along with varying business objectives and audience counts.

Within Audience, you’re looking to gain new fans and reach people who don’t know about you yet. You’re comparing your audience ads against only the other audience ads, since the engagement and conversion campaigns have other objectives.

The CTR on your conversion campaigns will be much lower than your engagement campaigns, but the revenue per click is higher for conversion. Your CPF (cost per fan) is lower for your Audience campaign, since you’re explicitly asking Facebook to generate new fans.

The early indicator on ad performance is CTR, since it tells you if there is a mismatch between your content and audience. I like to see a 1% CTR in the newsfeed, though you might be able to get 5-10% if you are in a “social” vertical (entertainment, food, babies, pets, etc). If you’re running RHS (Right Hand Side placements), your CTR will be much lower, but likely generate the same CPC, since the decrease in CTR is offset by the decrease in price for oCPM bidding.

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Above you can see 4 ads, of which one ad is getting most of the traffic. The second ad is generating new fans at 20 cents each, while the first ad is at 32 cents. However, the second ad is not necessarily better, as it’s spent only $1.59. Be careful not to declare a winner too early.

We like to see 10 clicks or $10 in spend before making a decision to pause an ad. Anything less and you’re looking at an issue of statistical significance– results that are noise from not enough data. For example, if you got one click on only 2 impressions, that’s a 50% CTR. But it’s noise.

Ads that have a decent CTR can stay alive for the second level of ad pruning– a decent CPC and engagement rate.

Usually CTR and CPC have an inverse relationship. When you bid on oCPM (which you should always do, except in rare exception), Facebook is going to allocate inventory for you automatically based on your chosen business objective. They select who within your target is most likely to engage/convert and they determine the right price to pay for you.

In an engagement campaign, you’re looking for a strong CTR and a low cost per action. Look at the ratio of your total actions vs your total clicks. If that’s high, you know that only is your content interesting enough to generate interest, but that people will also engage.

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In the above example, the CTR on the second ad is a whopping 6.7%, while the first ad is still an excellent 3.6%. We have enough data so far to say we should keep both ads alive for now.

Note that the ad that spent more ($8.91 for 42 action) is hitting a larger audience (4,600 people) than the smaller ad (less than 1,000 people). Facebook used to tell us a precise number, so less than 1,000 can be anywhere from 1 to 999 people. Use the data to tell.

The second ad, even with a higher CTR (which normally means a lower CPC), does cost more per click and per action because the price we pay for the inventory is higher– a $10.26 vs $6.95 CPM. Don’t worry about the effective CPM being higher for some ads. Facebook is choosing what members of your audience is most likely to convert, and that can often skew towards more educated or older, which will cost more.

In your conversion campaign, you’re looking at 3 levels of progressive culling of your ads– a decent CTR, a strong engagement rate, and a good CPA (Cost Per Acquisition). Of course, the cost per conversion (also called CPA) is most critical, but the early indicators of CTR and engagement will help you shut off ads before they spend too much.

I like to see 10 conversions per ad before I can make a proper decision on if an ad is working well.


In the example above, we’ve sorted this e-commerce campaign by spend. As is often the case, one or two ads take most of the volume. So we’d focus on just the top 3 ads, which have spent more than $10 in the last week.

Notice that the second ad has a $4.34 cost per conversion, which is a shopping cart checkout. If we have our ROAS calculations set properly (a topic for a separate blog post), we know we can afford a $10 CPA. So this is strong.

The first ad, though it has an unprofitable CPA of $88.85 does have a higher CTR than the other two ads, as well as a lower CPC than the other two ads, as well.

In most cases, especially if this were Google AdWords, we’d cut this ad for being unprofitable. However, this ad might be profitable with some landing page optimization and it may contribute as an “assist” by driving more people into Google searches for our name.

This is a tricky example, since Facebook does drive more Google traffic, enhance the performance of email campaigns, and boost other marketing efforts, in general.

This ad, though in the conversion campaign, might actually belong better in an engagement campaign. Most of the actions are photo views. So it tells us that the creative is strong, but that we might need to trim down the targeting, change bid types, and tweak the landing page.