Facebook Advertising: Why 99 Percent of SEMs Fail The First Time

9 Jun

The reality: after 10+ years of an industry experiencing exponential growth, traditional pay per click search networks have become crowded, over-priced and extremely competitive. Furthermore, in a quasi-auction-based marketplace, often the only companies that come out ahead are the media companies themselves.

With the introduction of Facebook Ads, Search Marketers have been given a clean slate: more targeting options, nearly real-time feedback from target audiences on the relevancy of their adverts (via the ‘like’ feature), and extremely cost-effective pricing (primarily due to fewer competitors). Ad Quality Score is no longer a ‘black box’ held close-to-the-chest by a publicly traded company’s product manager(s).

As a full service Digital Marketing Agency, Facebook Advertising has become an essential advertising venue not only for helping our clients achieve their online marketing goals; but also for us as an agency and our internal B2B lead generation. However, Facebook advertising does not have a direct, 1:1 correlation, to what we would consider “traditional paid search” from a qualitative perspective.

In other words, your Pay Per Click (PPC) search engine campaigns running on Google AdWords, Yahoo! Search Marketing, Microsoft Bing or Ask cannot easily be converted to Facebook primarily due to incongruent qualitative campaign elements:

  • Keywords
  • Text Ads
  • Landing Pages
  • Account Structure

The Top 9 Reasons Why Search Engine Marketers Fail the First Time They Advertise on Facebook

1.  Facebook is not a Traditional Search Engine

“Just what is search; anyways?”

According to comScore, a lot of folks are searching on Facebook.  Is Facebook necessarily a search engine in the traditional sense of the word?

Well yes and no. Facebook is a search engine that is best described within the category of “people search”.

Therefore we would categorize it as one of the following:

  • People Search Engine
  • Social Search Engine

Key Finding for SEMs: Facebook Advertising is more Social Media Marketing than SEM

2.  Campaign Objectives: Alignment

“I put my Facebook ads out there but didn’t sell a single widget!”

Lack of direct sales is a typical experience by a search marketer who tries to port over the exact same campaigns they are running on other ‘search engines’.

Depending on what you are selling, you most likely will need to build up a Facebook fan-base first rather than taking a traditional approach trying to hit search campaign performance measurements.

In other words, your intent should be to “fill the funnel” via building up a list of prospects (formerly known as fans, now ‘likes’) rather than trying to your wares directly via Facebook Ads.

3.   Having a Custom Facebook Page

“Why doesn’t my best landing page convert on Facebook?”

Growing your community online will increase awareness. You will want to serve the Facebook community with custom content and land them on a Custom Facebook Fan Page.

Facebook Marketing Process: think Direct Mail (DM)

1) Build a “fan base” (list of prospects)
2) Manage relationships w/prospective customers (think CRM)
3) Wait for those new prospects to raise their hand
4) Convert into new customers (sales!)

Best Practice: Interest-based list building/hand raisers (me-likes) vs. trying to sell your products/services directly using Facebook Ads.

Why is this? The audience behavior is changed. The typical Facebook user is seeking for ways to interact and socialize.

Read all 9  reasons why SEMs fail on the First Try!


Download Facebook Advertising Strategies

For more information visit ymarketing.com, follow @ymarketing on Twitter or call 877.736.4321 x716

Atlas Search Eliminates Self Service Accounts

31 Jul

If you are familiar with the background of Atlas Search you may view the following change as inevitable with any acquisition or in this case, a triumvirate of acquisitions:

  1. Atlas acquires GoToast, brands as Atlas OnePoint, later rebrands as Atlas Search, and then again as Atlas Solutions;
  2. Microsoft acquires aQuantive, parent co of atlas;
  3. Domainer acquires acquantive.com, misspelled URL for parent co
  4. and so on and so forth

    Important News Regarding Credit Card Processing

    Dear Atlas Search User,

    We wanted to let you know that we will be discontinuing the credit card payment option for Atlas Search effective September 1, 2008.

    This policy change reflects an evolution in the market for search marketing services, and represents a decision to align the Atlas Search product with the needs of large enterprise users. Atlas believes that search marketing will continue to be a vital and effective channel for advertisers as well as an essential element of the Atlas Advertiser Suite.

    For those clients currently using the credit card payment option, your business remains important to us, and we hope you will continue to work with Atlas Search. Given the significance of this change in policy, we would like to invite you to transition to our monthly invoicing plan, which will be the default billing plan for all users as of September 1, 2008. You will be able to enjoy all the existing benefits of the Atlas Search toolset – you’ll simply be sent a monthly invoice based on your product usage, with a minimum monthly fee of $750.00. Your Atlas Search representative will be able to assist you with this transition and answer any questions you may have.

    For those clients who choose not to transition to the monthly invoicing plan, we would like to invite you to continue to use Atlas Search free of charge through the end of October, 2008. As of November 1, 2008, this option will also close and Atlas Search will be available to clients only on the monthly invoice plan.

    Note that the final credit card billing date will be August 16, 2008. Charges on this date will relate only to billing cycles with a start date between August 1 and August 15; any client who does not have a billing cycle with a start date in that date range will not be charged for their August/ September billing cycle. No clients will be charged for October.

    While it may be disappointing to see the credit card option go away, Microsoft and the Atlas team remain committed to serving the needs of search advertisers. We will continue to add new features and enhancements to Atlas Search throughout the year, and hope to continue to work with you to maximize your search marketing potential.

    If you have any questions, please contact your Atlas Search representative at SearchCS@Microsoft.com or 1-800-416-8389.

    Best regards,

    The Atlas Search Team

ymarketing was one of the first (100?) customers to use Atlas Search way back in the early adopter year, 2001, for Search Engine Marketing Campaign and Bid Management, literally building a business on what was at the time, a cutting edge technology. On a side note, I also personally contributed to the growth and evolution of the atlas search product by recommending specific management rules and enhancements over the years (‘shooting holes’ in the app as some may say).

With this new model and min price point of $750 per month, it will become cost-prohibitive for many in the self-service [read long tail] market to continue using this service. The good news, on our end, is we strategically migrated all of our clients and internal process to Omniture at the beginning of the year which will officially be more a cost effective and true enterprise solution; atlas search has fallen very hard downhill since the first round of acquisitions back in ’03.

I wish you the best of luck to you, atlas!

-The MADD Man

PS: This was my first attempt at creating a blog post using MS Word and you see the formatting outcome. :(.

Yahoo! Search Marketing to Terminate Ambassador Program

23 Jul


I received the following notification today which is fairly big news related to Yahoo! outsourcing their Search Marketing to Google:

Dear Current or Prospective Yahoo! Search Marketing Ambassador:

The Yahoo! Search Marketing Ambassador program was specifically developed to help marketers drive sales leads to their clients. For the last four years, Yahoo! has made an effort to enhance the program to provide the greatest added value to our users. After a thorough evaluation of the program, we have decided to discontinue the program.

The Ambassador Program, except for the limited use of the Ambassador Logo as noted below, shall be terminated as of September 30, 2008.

For Prospective Ambassadors
Yahoo! stopped accepting new registrations to be an Ambassador on April 29, 2008. Ambassadors with pending certification have until July 31, 2008 to qualify to become an Ambassador.

If you have registered but not yet obtained certification to be an Ambassador, you have until July 31, 2008 to complete the training and take the test to become eligible to be an Ambassador. Once certified, landing pages will be delivered to new Ambassadors no later than August 31, 2008.

For Current Ambassadors and Prospective Ambassadors Who Become Certified
Ambassador commissions will no longer be earned or paid for any Managed Advertiser Account created on or after July 31, 2008. No Ambassador commission will be earned by an Ambassador or paid by us for any Managed Advertiser Account created on or after July 31, 2008. All Ambassadors that are due payment of an Ambassador commission will be forwarded such payment no later than September 30, 2008.

The Ambassador Logo may Still be Used
Ambassadors may continue to use the logo of the Ambassador Program on their web sites only to exhibit their designation as an Ambassador by Yahoo!. However, all other sales, marketing and promotions relating to the Yahoo! Search Marketing Ambassador Program must cease effective July 31, 2008.

New Program Terms reflecting the above changes are set forth at
http://help.yahoo.com/l/us/yahoo/ysm/sps/start/overview_ambassador_directory.html, or at such other location as we may designate.

We thank you for your support, dedication and participation in the Ambassador Program, and for your business with Yahoo! Search Marketing. For further information on these changes, please contact us at ambassadors-ysm@yahoo-inc.com.

Sincerely,

Your Partners at Yahoo! Search Marketing

This is just one of a series of steps Yahoo! is taking to transition their core, outsourcing it to Google; ironically, the same company they helped establish as the world’s largest most powerful brand by, once again, outsourcing their search exactly 8 years ago but in this case, their natural search engine results. Remember the good ole ‘Powered By Google’ icon? Who said display, er icon, advertising does not effectively build a brand!

History repeats itself once again, the blue whale is already in the room and there will only be one player in the Search Engine Marketing Business; unfortunately for the good of a competitive marketplace.

-The MADDMan

Google learns to crawl Flash…Finally?!?

7 Jul


Allegedly, Google finally learns to crawl Flash. well the folks at ymarketing are putting this to the test and have launched the first, but possibly last ALL flash-based site!

Flash is an SEO’s worst nightmare and a faux paux from a best-practices perspective for the following reasons:
1) The major engines could never effectively ‘read’ the content which means your site will never effectively well rank for it unless you had a high number of external links with a wide variety of different anchor text.
2) Internal links could not be followed which means their anchor text would also not be ‘read’ making your entire site appear to contain only one page, er in this case a ‘swiff’ file.

But hey, it’s only our natural search rankings…what do we really have to lose :).

-The MADD Man

George Carlin's – 7 Words You Can’t Say on [Offline] Media: TV or Radio

23 Jun

It was a sad day in the comedic forest yesterday when arguably, the tallest tree fell; so tall the sound was loud enough for the entire world to hear in less than 24 hours.

George Carlin was one of the most influential comedian’s of all time; not just for folks in the comedy biz but also those with careers in broadcasting and advertising. If you are familiar with his work you may also know his father was an Ad Man which I would presume sparked his rant on BullShit:

“Every time you’re exposed to advertising in America you’re reminded that this country’s most profitable business is still the manufacture, packaging, distribution, and marketing of bullshit. High-quality, grade-A, prime-cut, pure American bullshit.

In honor of one of the greatest, here is my tribute to George:
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fFmRypAYz_E]
…which sparked a debate on censorship eventually running all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court and a landmark decision resulting in the created of the family hour.

Farewell GC; an old friend is indeed gone but not forgotten…we will always celebrate your life.

-The MADD Man

PS: I know he would appreciate the publishing of this list, so here they are, the seven words [uncensored] + the 3 that did not make the cut:

  1. Shit
  2. Piss
  3. Fuck
  4. Cunt
  5. Cocksucker
  6. Motherfucker
  7. Tits
  8. Fart
  9. Turd
  10. Twat

PSS: for those with a little more free time on their hands, here is the whole bit with an explanation of each:)
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MvvUmnnxoIM]

Gangsta' Search Marketing

8 Feb

[yt]c96LTLlaXew[/yt]

It aint nothing but a G-thang!

(Google?)

There is a whole series of these over at Mo Serious’s YouTube.

It’s nice to go out this week with a laugh.

Happy Friday!

-The MADD Man

Is Yahoo! Search Marketing Overcharging you for Content Match?

21 Jan

I received a few of these emails for various Yahoo! Search Marketing Accounts today:

===================================================================
Yahoo! Search Marketing
===================================================================

Dear Advertiser,

Our systems experienced an unexpected technical issue that caused a
limited number of Content Match clicks to be priced higher than we
intended. As a result, we have credited your account XXXXXXXXXX
in the amount of $XX,XXX.XX.

To protect the integrity of our systems, we unfortunately cannot
provide you with more specific details associated with this
issue. However we want to assure you that we have identified and
corrected this issue.

Your credit should now be reflected in your account balance. You can
see this adjustment by viewing the Billing Transaction Detail Report
within the Reports section of your account.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at
866-YAHOO-SM (866-924-6676).

Sincerely,

Your Partners at Yahoo! Search Marketing

Now the funny thing is I can’t recall the last time we enabled Content Match for any of our clients due to what we view as ‘lack of quality traffic’ (i.e. it never converted well). Therefore this credit has to be for traffic delivered back in the first half of 2007.

Timing aside, what is most intriguing is how “a limited number of clicks” became a 5-Figure credit; I wonder if this is what their engineers had in mind when they rolled out the new Quality Based Pricing Model last year :).

-The MADD Man

PS: Yahoo! cutting 20% of their workforce is starting to make a little more dollar$ and $ense!

Jeffrey Lindsay thinks Yahoo is worth more if broken up

8 Oct

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Yahoo Inc would be worth far more to shareholders if it broke up its Internet businesses or embarked on a major overhaul, including a departure from Web search, but management is unlikely to do either, according to an analyst note issued on Friday.

Jeffrey Lindsay, analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein, said Yahoo’s operations viewed separately could be valued as high as $39 per share, compared with a current share price closer to $27.

The shares rose 2.4 percent in pre-market trading to $27.80 from a close of $27.15 on the Nasdaq on Thursday.

The company, which lags Web search leader Google Inc and faces greater competition for its e-mail services, could be worth as much $45 per share with a dramatic overhaul that would include outsourcing its paid search, cutting staff by 25 percent and restructuring its graphic display advertising, according to Lindsay.

“It appears that Yahoo will not take bold measures to right the ship,” he wrote in a research report. “We believe that Yahoo still has a potentially high intrinsic value. We believe, however, that to stop the inevitable slide into irrelevance the management team must consider more radical actions and strategies.”

Yahoo’s main display advertising business appears to have deteriorated, mainly due to the company’s troubles in effectively capitalizing on its ad network, Lindsay said.

He reiterated a “market perform” rating on the stock, with a $25 price target.

Lindsay said he based his valuation on Yahoo taken as separate businesses on the recent spate of Internet advertising acquisitions, such as Google’s planned purchase of DoubleClick for $3.1 billion, among other factors.

He also recommended that Yahoo give up the fight on paid search and outsource that segment of its business to bigger rival Google.

(Reporting by Michele Gershberg)

I disagree! This sounds more like a pump and dump scheme by Mr. Lindsay than anything else to me.

-The MADD Man

What Women Want?

11 Sep

The New MADD Men’s Law for this Age Old Question (adage).
Women really only want two things:

1) Love
-&-
2) Money

Fortunately Mel is good at making both!

-The MADD Man

I Took the Red Pill to Hack My Own Life

8 Sep

Admittedly I borrowed this idea from JB’s Searchblog, as I used to work off of a setup like his several years ago. I also have to give credit to the original Lifehackers.

As a Search Engine Optimizer (SEO) by trade, my obsessive compulsiveness (OCD) has poured over into my every day personal and work life. I now end up ‘twacking’ everything, work stations included!

Also, as a serial entrepreneur I am always extremely busy and do everything possible to increase productivity; in addition to working for my Search Engine Marketing Firm I also own/operate a Sports Nutrition Company and am producing a TV Show (will have more info on this shortly).

The System

What we have here (besides failure to communicate) is a system comprising of 5 machines (from left to right):
-PowerBook G4
-HP Pavilion (backup box)
-Apple iPhone (8 gigger)
-HP Dual Core Pavilion (primary box)
-HP Pavilion Tablet PC

All computers share 1 primary terminal (keyboard + mouse) and 3 19″ Samsung Monitors via the use of software (synergy) and hardware (IOGEAR KVM Switch) .

The End Result?

1) 300% increased productivity
2) ZERO Downtime
3) A lot of toys to play with (=’s fun)

-The MADD Man

PS: Please feel free to tap me on the shoulder during lunchtime at the next industry event and I will gladly show you how to optimize a sandwich :).