New techniques to assess the impact of Facebook ads on conversions
Value (larger businesses): [rating=4] (smaller companies): [rating=1]
Recommended link: Techcrunch summary
With recent research being used to assert by Forrester and Business Insider that Facebook and Twitter Do Almost Nothing for Sales, this is an interesting measurement initiative by Facebook that urgently needs to prove to advertisers and shareholders alike that Facebook does influence sales.
The measurement approaches applies to Facebook advertising rather than wider Facebook marketing using company pages. There is certainly a need to prove the value of Facebook advertising with high profile advertisers like GM terminating a $10 million investment in Facebook advertising earlier in the year.
The new ad tracking options in Facebook
- 1. View tags give a method of placing cookies on users’ devices where they view a Facebook ad. View Tags are supported for Marketplace ads and Premium ads in Self Serve. I’ve marked this feature as mainly being of value to larger companies and agencies since this isn’t “plug and play” like AdWords advertising, instead they require the use of an additional field view_tags in Facebook Ad API which will mainly be used by companies with specialist Facebook ad management tools.As this diagram from TechCrunch shows, the technology enables “Viewthrough” sales where ad viewers don’t click, but purchase later to be assessed (against a control for a realistic assessment).
Facebook ViewTags tracking. Source: Techcrunch.
Techcrunch gives two individual examples of the insight this can give from two advertising platform owners using the technique:
- SocialCode showed that 87% of conversions came from impressions, not clicks in one campaign.
- Kenshoo used View Tags to show in another campaign that only 34.6% of conversions were coming from impressions where users didn’t click. Impression-only conversions generated over $31,00, or 29% of the campaign’s total revenue.
Of course the impression-only conversions can be influenced by advertising or interaction in other channels too, they’re not necessarily due to Facebook ads.
- 2. New Facebook ad conversion tracking tools. Due to be rolled out on Friday 23/11, this will be an alternative for direct advertisers to use. More on this once it’s officially launched by Facebook. Of course, for clicks outside of Facebook, Google tracking codes can be used.