A new year has come upon us and while looking forward to what the new year has to offer us, let’s take some time to take a look at all the past year gave us.
In the tech world, there’s no better place to start from than with Facebook. 2017 was certainly a year to remember for Facebook, from debates around politics and “fake news” to discussions on privacy policies, to making major updates for advertisers, a lot happened with Facebook in 2017.
As a marketer, it is your duty to stay up to date with trends on social media and use them to your advantage. In this post, we will be taking a look at seven of the major updates Facebook made to its ad system to help you the marketer advertise more effectively.
- POWER EDITOR AND ADS MANAGER WAS MERGED
Overtime, we have gotten used to Facebook making small updates to their Ads Manager or Power Editor. Well in 2017, Facebook decided that they were tired of updating both respectively and decided to merge both features into one tool called Ads Manager.
Luckily, there was no other major change apart from the change of name rather they have received a few shiny new features which include:
- OPTIONS FOR WORKFLOWS FOR AD CREATION
This feature gives advertisers the option of to use the updated workflows from Power Editor which allows users draft campaigns, hop around different ad sets and ads to work on out of order; this is typically used by more experienced advertisers. The older ad creation workflow is still available to users who prefer the step-by-step process of the original Ads Manager.
- THE ABILITY TO REVIEW AD DRAFTS OUTSIDE THE SIDE PANEL BEFORE PUBLISHING
This is a feature which was added to Power Editor during the merge but advertisers still need to navigate with caution and ensure they don’t hit the “Publish” button until they are ready to do so. Rather if they are making changes outside of the side panel like importing ads, delelting ads or duplicating ads, you will need to review the draft before selecting “confirm changes” to publish.
- ADDITION OF ECOMMERCE AND RETAIL FOCUSED AD FORMATS
This year, Facebook decided to expand their ad format options to allow for more creativity and flexibility among retailers, ecommerce businesses and anyone selling physical items looking to take advantage of these visually intriguing ads.
These new ad formats also allow users tell more visually engaging stories with their ads via immersive video experiences. The big deal about these new ad formats is by a user clicking any of these ads, they are led to an immersive, fast-loading shopping experience which allows the user showcase up to 50 products at a time and by tapping on a product, the user is taken to the product detail page where they can make a purchase.
- ABILITY TO EXCLUDE CONTENT CATEGORIES
With the new Facebook ads feature, users now have the ability to exclude certain content from being associated with their brand so they addressed this issue by adding an “Exclude Categories” under “Edit Placements” > “Advanced Options” in Ads Manager.
There are five categories you can choose from including gambling, dating, tragedy, adult content, and debatable social issues. So this means you no longer have to worry about which controversial content your ad will be appearing alongside. However you must note that Facebook doesn’t guarantee the success of blocking your ad 100%.
- UPDATED POLICIES TO MAKE ADVERTISING MORE TRANSPARENT
Under the new Facebook ads update, they are taking specific steps to protect against so called “foreign interference” or in layman terms, “fake news.”
Under the new ads transparency policy, they are:
- Hiring 10,000 employees to improve security
- Blocking ads from pages repeatedly marked as false
- Facebook is sharing 3000 ads with the US congress to partner with the government to block any common threats.
- Making an active effort to fight fake news
- Reducing the appearance of click bait
- NEW TOOLS TO GROW FACEBOOK COMMUNITIES
For many marketers, Facebook communities are the focus of their ad efforts and with Facebook allowing group of persons come together to form communities, businesses are looking to leverage this opportunity.
Facebook showed how serious they were about this when in June 2017, they launched their very first Communities Summit where they announced a plethora of new tools for community admins including features like:
- Group insights which gives admins access to real-time metrics around engagement and growth.
- Membership request filters and improved clean-up which takes the pain out of sorting through new membership requests, allowing admins decide on which persons get accepted or not. They have also added features which allow admins remove members from the group in cases where they are violating community rules.
- The ability to schedule posts so they can better manage their time
- Group to group linking which allows admins recommend similar groups to their members.
- NEW FEATURES FOR INTERNATIONAL ADVERTISING
Did you know that while 88% of Facebook’s users are outside the US and Canada, 48% of their ad revenue comes from ads targeted to clients in the US and Canada? Crazy right??!
This is why Facebook is taking steps to release tools which will help businesses expand their ads to international audiences. These tools include:
- Dynamic language optimization- This allows businesses include multiple languages in one campaign while Facebook does the job of matching the right language to the user.
- International lookalike audiences- Look alike audiences are an incredibly powerful tool and with this tool, businesses can find their target audiences in the country of their choice.
- Multi-city targeting- This feature allows marketers target cities above a certain population size without having to make research to add them one by one.
- IQ Cross-Border Insights Finder- For businesses looking to expand internationally with no idea of where their audiences are, this tool enables them find untapped markets with high business potential based on past Facebook campaign successes.
- INSTANT VIDEOS WERE PUT IN THE PIPELINE
While this feature has not been released officially, it is likely to be a thing of the near future. Instant videos will allow for the download and cache of Facebook videos to your phone while connected to WiFi so you can view later so you don’t waste cellular data.
This feature will be a game changer for advertisers in developing countries where internet connection is slow and for places where data is expensive and network poor, this feature will even the playing field.
These were the 7 updates we considered the most impactful ones made by Facebook this year. Tell us what you think !
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