Laura Arietta

Internet Marketing Consultant

Taking Advantage of the Latest Tools on Facebook and Instagram

It may seem hard to believe that it was just five years ago when Facebook introduced mobile ads. The rollout signified the first major opportunity for marketers to use social media to advertise across consumers’ devices and drive incremental revenue. The platform, along with others, has since launched numerous features and capabilities, most recently evolving to offer direct response opportunities.

Here are some of the newest features available on Facebook and Facebook-owned Instagram and how you can incorporate them into your social media strategy.

Collection Ads
This March, Facebook introduced Collection, a mobile ad format that is response-focused and allows brands to pair their existing product feeds with video content. With Collection, retailers can manually choose products to be shown alongside a video or static ad on Facebook and Instagram, or the platforms can automatically pull popular products from a brand’s site. Previously, product feeds were only used for remarketing, through dynamic product ads. This new format expands the bottom-of-funnel tactics that are now available to advertisers.

Collection ads enable you to drive product discovery, provide seamless browsing, and turn demand into sales. Here’s how you can incorporate them into your social strategy:

  • Promote products: Through product feed integration, you have the opportunity to highlight key products and get them in front of your Facebook or Instagram audiences. Each ad is capable of showcasing up to 50 products at a time on mobile platforms.
  • Reach new customers: Collection ads can also be used for prospecting, helping you identify potential new customers and deliver an experience that's more robust than a static ad.

Canvas Ads
First introduced in 2016, Facebook’s Canvas ads have recently grown in popularity. Canvas ads are just as they sound— blank spaces to tell your business’ story. These ads consist of full-screen videos and images, text, and call-to-action buttons. They can be used with all Facebook ad formats including carousels, static images, and videos.

Here are some of the benefits Canvas ads offer:

  • Ready-to-use templates: These simple templates can be easily built and are categorized by your brand’s objective, whether it’s brand awareness, conversions, traffic, or others.
  • Fast and easy navigation capabilities for consumers: Engagement is a priority for most brands and being able to showcase a full-screen, interactive ad enables you to provide an engaging experience with no additional loading time.
  • Multiple ad formats: Canvas allows your brand to host various types of ads in one place, while maintaining complete creative control.

Using Canvas and Collection Ads Together
Most recently, Facebook announced that its Canvas full-screen ad unit experience is also now available within its Collection ad format. Brands can attach Canvas experiences to their Collection ads, allowing advertisers to not only feature products for sale, but to also increase brand awareness and knowledge. Consumers can still tap on the product gallery underneath the Canvas ad’s main image or video to open the full product catalog if they choose.

As part of this collaboration, Facebook also introduced three new Canvas ad templates: Get New Customers, Sell Products, and Showcase Your Businesses. Here’s how your brand can benefit from each of these templates.

  • Get New Customers: Bring consumers to a mobile landing page that provides information about your products and current promotions, or provides an introduction to your brand.
  • Sell Products: Present consumers with a product catalog where they can click on specific products that interest them and be taken to the specific product page on your website. This provides a more direct path for completing a purchase.
  • Showcase Your Business: Combine videos and photos to create highlight reels and deliver a comprehensive brand experience.

Instagram Stories
When Instagram Stories released advertising capabilities in March, brands could only run reach campaigns, limiting the tool to top-of-funnel initiatives. Now, Instagram offers a number of ad objective to allow for full-funnel solutions: video views, website clicks, and website conversions. Brands are no longer limited to reach and brand awareness tactics, and can create campaigns that lead to purchases and drive revenue.

Here are a couple of ways your brand can incorporate Instagram Stories into your social strategy:

  • Share engaging, limited-time content: Instagram Stories enables you to create even more engaging images by adding iconography and text. The format's 24-hour lifespan also provides a fresh way to share time-sensitive offers and content.
  • Leverage video: Stories’ video feature lets you quickly capture users’ attention with videos up to 15 seconds in length. This could mean offering glimpses behind-the-scenes, highlights of upcoming and ongoing promotions, or quick Q&As.

Social media continues to evolve and provide a number of ways for brands to target their customers. These represent just a few of the ways your brand can incorporate direct response initiatives into your social media strategy.

To learn more about how to take advantage of Facebook and Instagram offerings, contact the social media team at Rise.

06/29/2017 at 08:18

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