Facebook pixel

Social Media Marketing Pixie Dust – The Facebook Pixel

What if there was a marketing tool that would allow your business to tailor Facebook ads based on what pages people viewed on your website or what items they added to their shopping cart?

Think of the possibilities.

Maybe you own a retail store, for example, currently showcasing spring dresses on one of your website pages. Your advertising campaign delivers Facebook ads showcasing dresses only to people who visited the spring dresses page of your website.

This hyper-targeted form of marketing happens every day with a bit of social media marketing pixie dust called the Facebook Pixel. According to BuiltWith, it’s a marketing tool employed on 3.8 million websites across the Internet. So, let’s find out what a Facebook Pixel is and how you can use it in your company’s social media strategy.

What’s a Facebook Pixel?

A Facebook Pixel is a snippet of tracking code placed in the backend of a website page that tracks certain actions or “events” by your website visitors such as buying an item from your online store or searching for specific content on the site. The importance of the Facebook Pixel lies in the data it collects which can help a business build a powerful marketing campaign that targets potential customers in a structured, relevant way. Site visitors that are tracked by the Facebook pixel become part of a Custom Audience created in Facebook, and even if you only install what is often referred to as the “base Facebook Pixel,” you will immediately have more insight into what people are doing when they visit your website. Installation is a little technical, but Facebook covers the many installation options in an excellent knowledge-based article.

Facebook custom audience

Why should you use a Facebook Pixel?

With a base Facebook Pixel, your default Custom Audience is anyone who visits your website. But, now the magic begins.

Let’s say you want to track site visitors by pageview or by the type of content they searched for while on your website. There are nine standard events that can be tracked by a Facebook Pixel. There are also some simpler custom conversions which are different than the events. Within the standard events, most of what a business might want to know about a site visitor is covered. For example, you can track:

  • Purchase
  • Lead
  • Complete Registration
  • Add Payment Info
  • Initiate Checkout
  • Add to Cart
  • Add to Wishlist
  • Search
  • View Content

Think about the value of being able to target site visitors who take one of these actions? You can add them to an event-specific Custom Audience created for your Facebook advertising.

The importance of the Facebook Pixel lies in the data it collects.

Facebook Pixel data and Custom Audiences created, what next?

Grow your target audience by creating a Facebook Lookalike Audience

Using your Custom Audiences, you can then create Lookalike Audiences, which are exactly what they sound like – audiences that have the same characteristics of the Custom Audience created with the Facebook Pixel. To be effective, you want a minimum of 1000 people in your Custom Audience, and the more specific the lead type, the better the Lookalike Audience will work. Your target audience for your ad campaigns has just grown based on the data collected with the Facebook Pixel.

So now you have three ways to hone in on and grow your target audience using the Facebook Pixel. First, you can identify certain behaviors of your website visitors and create Custom Audiences in Facebook with specific interests. Second, you can create custom Facebook ads based on actionable “events” taken by your Custom Audiences, and third, you can grow your target audience by using a Facebook Lookalike Audience.

Using the Facebook Pixel, you can deliver Facebook ads with timely, relevant information to the people that actually want to see them. It’s the type of digital marketing savvy made possible with a bit of social media marketing pixie dust – the Facebook Pixel.

digital marketing trifecta

A Digital Marketing Trifecta That Will Turbocharge Reach

Sometimes 1 + 1 = 3.

In digital marketing, the connectivity afforded across platforms can sometimes have a domino effect on customer reach and engagement. When you find these synergies, the impact is powerful. With that in mind, here’s one of our favorite digital marketing combinations for consumer-facing businesses of any size. It’s a digital trifecta and a must-do for your marketing strategy.

1. Add all company events to Facebook Events

Every business should have a Facebook company page, even if it’s a solopreneur. There are a number of features available on Facebook company pages that are not offered on an individual profile page.

One of these essential features is Facebook Events, and you will see the Events tab on the left side of a company page. In general, why is adding an event to Facebook Events so important?

With Facebook Events, you can:

  • Add the event location so page visitors can find it or get directions via an interactive map
  • Link a registration page where people can purchase tickets
  • Establish recurring events–especially handy for classes
  • Tag the event with keywords
  • Post about the event leading up to the date or afterward; the post can link to the Event page
  • Boost the event reach with a paid social media ad

Less well-known is a new feature that makes posting in Facebook Events essential for businesses. Now, the Facebook Local app is pushing the Facebook Events feed into Facebook user notifications. If an event is in the area and the Facebook algorithm decides that it may be of interest, a person may see a notification of the event in his or her personal Notifications stream. The Notifications stream is where you typically track page likes, comments, and activity. An example of an Events notification in a person’s feed is, “[Business Name] has added a new event near you,” and when a person clicks on the notification, it goes straight to the Facebook Events page of the business.  

community calendar2. Create a community calendar for your business in Burbio

Burbio is a digital, local event aggregation platform that pulls event feeds from the community at large. Burbio users can follow calendars created by local businesses, schools, the public library, recreation sports teams or the chamber of commerce. These community calendars showcase all types of events like classes, lunch and learn meetups, or town sports, and people can register for them if website links are provided.

As a business owner, once you set up a business Burbio account, your Burbio calendar can integrate with your Facebook Events feed, so Facebook Events will push to the calendar automatically. If you use a personal calendar for events, Burbio can also integrate with iCal or a Google calendar. All of the events businesses are adding to their Facebook Events, iCal or Google calendars can flow straight through to the local Burbio community calendar. Burbio.com will promote your events in their weekly digests that go out to the community and will also allow users to “follow” your calendar for twice-weekly email updates, integrating your business into the community experience of residents.  

Amazon Ask Alexa

3. The Freebie: events are accessible in Ask Alexa voice search

One of the most interesting features of Burbio is that there is a Burbio Alexa Skill for users of Amazon’s Ask Alexa. The integration with the voice platform means that events on a Burbio calendar can be accessed via voice search using Alexa-enabled Amazon devices.

If a person prompts Alexa with, “Alexa, ask Burbio what’s happening in [town, state],” the Ask Alexa app will come back with, “Here’s what’s happening in [town, state]” and proceed to rattle off the events. As long as you configure your Facebook Event titles in the exact way you want Alexa to say them, your event is now available to anyone using Ask Alexa who has downloaded the Burbio skill.

So, now you have an easy, digital marketing trifecta. With two simple steps, you can have your business events pushed to customer notification streams via Facebook Events, integrated into a rapidly growing community calendar application and then get the added bonus of having your events available in voice search.

It’s the payoff of a trifecta without the cost – surely a bet worth making.

how to market your business with facebook

How to Market Your Business With Facebook

Facebook is one of the most powerful marketing tools available. When a company has a strong core business and then layers on well-executed Facebook marketing, it’s transformative. Sort of like the expression “building strong communities one child at a time,” Facebook marketing can be a game changer for businesses with high impact results built one campaign at a time.

Surprisingly, many companies, both large and small, neither prioritize social media nor feel like they have the time to commit to it. To the extent that there is a social strategy in place, results are neither tracked nor measured. Many people perceive Facebook as a social network rather than a powerful marketing platform. But, if you’re a business owner and you are not actively using Facebook to market your products and services, you are missing a huge opportunity to find, reach and connect with your customers.

Here are 10 ways to market your business with Facebook:

1. Boost your Facebook posts

The numbers are grim. According to an article by Social@Ogilvy, organic reach, people who see your Facebook post without any paid advertising boost, amounts to approximately 6% of your followers. For Facebook pages, the primary tool for business, it is closer to 2%. Social@Ogilvy’s prediction based on their interactions with Facebook is even more bleak,”Organic reach of the content brands publish in Facebook is destined to hit zero. It’s only a matter of time.” So, if your social media strategy includes posting to Facebook without a paid social strategy, you are not reaching the vast majority of people that follow your page.

Facebook Tip #1: Create an audience in Facebook Ads Manager, and boost your posts. If your business is small, even a dollar or two spent per post will dramatically broaden your audience reach.

2. Add images to every Facebook post

Facebook posts with a picture outperform ones without – dramatically. According to BuzzSumo, “…updates with images had an amazing 2.3x more engagement than those without.” Every Facebook post should have an image, and the abundance of high-quality free stock photo sites makes this task an easy one. Instead of having a Facebook page that looks like a mishmash of posts plus the occasional image, represent your business with great pictures and thoughtful copy every time you post.

Facebook Tip #2: Add images to each and every Facebook post. Use free stock photo sites like Pixabay, Pexels, or Stock Up to find them. WhoIsHostingThis also has a list of close to 100 free stock photo sites. If you are curating the post content and you don’t like the attached image, you can still upload your own graphic and make it the primary image for the post.

Facebook location filter3. Use demographic and location filters when setting up Facebook ads

Facebook has an incredible array of audience targeting options. You might be surprised just how granular the targeting can be. When setting up Facebook ads, filters help you zero in on the audience you are trying to reach. In addition to age, gender and location, one filter that is often overlooked is net worth. If a business sells high-end homes, luxury cars or exclusive experiences, for example, it’s not a bad strategy to use the net worth income filter. Another important filter in the suite of audience targeting tools offered by Facebook is location – the ability to target a certain radius around a city or even a certain zip code.

Facebook Tip #3: Identify and then target your ads towards potential customers by using relevant demographic or location Facebook audience filters.

4. Consider trying the new Store Visits Facebook campaign

Location based businesses want to know whether social media campaigns drive foot traffic into their stores. Facebook has introduced a Store Visits campaign option. The idea is that if you have a bricks and mortar business, you can create an ad and Facebook will show the ad to people most likely to be in that area. Apparently, Google plans to roll out something similar for display network ads.

The Facebook Store Visits campaign has limited metrics. We recently compared the results for an established Google remarketing campaign against a Facebook Store Visits campaign over a one month period. We had the same marketing dollars applied to each and it was the same client – one month we tried Facebook Store Visits and one we kept the original Google remarketing campaign. Website traffic and Facebook referral traffic to the website were markedly down using the Store Visits campaign, so our conclusion is there’s still lots of work to do on this front, but it’s the right idea for sure.

Facebook Tip #4: Use the new Facebook Store Visits campaign option in addition to, not in lieu of your current marketing strategy. The idea of in-store foot traffic as a measure of social media conversion is here to stay.

Facebook pages to watch5. Set up Pages to Watch in Facebook Insights

This Facebook feature is really useful. In Facebook Insights, there is a section called Pages to Watch. You can add Facebook pages for your competitors and look at comparative metrics such as Total Page Likes, Posts This Week and Engagement This Week. If the engagement for one of your competitors’ Facebook pages spikes or is consistently strong, Pages to Watch serves as a reminder to see what they are doing.

Facebook Tip #5: Use Pages to Watch in Facebook Insights and track 5 competitor Facebook pages. Set a goal to surpass their metrics and be cognizant of what they are doing, and see if your page can climb to the top of your Pages to Watch list.  

6. Post videos on your Facebook page

According to TechCrunch, over 8 billion videos are watched on Facebook every day. It’s equivalent to 100 million hours of time that people are watching video on Facebook. Even more important, Facebook is rated as the most impactful social channel for video — 8.4X higher than any other social channel, according to Animoto.

Currently, a Facebook video can be up to 45 minutes in length while Instagram, by comparison, only permits video uploads of between 3 and 60 seconds. The ability to upload lengthier videos on Facebook makes it a versatile, robust video platform.

Facebook Tip #6: Build video into your marketing strategy and post videos on Facebook. As of June 2017, you can use a video for your Facebook cover too.

negative online reviews7. Collect customer reviews on Facebook

A steady stream of online reviews has become the new normal for business. In a list of top 10 review sites, Facebook ranks #2. With an estimated 214 million Facebook users in the US and 1.94 billion monthly active users worldwide, it is an ideal platform to collect online reviews and respond to customer feedback. Positive reviews on 3rd party platforms such as Facebook are credible social proof for your business and drive revenue, foot traffic, and consumer purchasing decisions.

Facebook Tip #7: Activate the Reviews Tab on your Facebook business page so that you can collect online reviews and engage with your customers. Answer your reviews promptly and professionally.

8. Encourage Facebook check-ins

When customers visit your business, they can “check-in” on Facebook, an option which tells others via the news feed that the customer is at your business. Depending upon what audience the customer chooses, either the public or just friends can see (s)he is at your business. Could there be a better endorsement? In addition, the person checking in at your business can tag friends, upload photos and write a post. As a business owner, you should LIKE the check-in post as a way to say – we’re glad you’re here!

Facebook Tip #8: Take advantage of Facebook check-ins by reminding your customers to check-in while they are at your business. If you’re a retailer with free samples, put some in a basket on your counter and let customers choose one if they check-in. Check-ins are an easy and effective way to get the word out about your business to people who may not otherwise know about you.

Facebook Wi-Fi

9. Connect to more customers with Facebook Wi-Fi

If your business offers guest Wi-Fi, Facebook Wi-Fi is an interesting way to advertise your business, reinforce your brand and build engagement with your Facebook page. Once you set it up, the way it works is that when customers want to access your guest Wi-Fi, they are presented with two options. If they check-in on Facebook, they get immediate Wi-Fi access. If they don’t want to check-in, they can still input your guest Wi-Fi password as normal and skip the Facebook check-in. As mentioned in #8 above, check-ins are broadcast on other people’s Facebook news feeds, so it’s great advertising for you.

Facebook Tip #9: Set up Facebook Wi-Fi and actively add your promotions on your Facebook page. When people check-in to access your Wi-Fi, they can see business specials, events or announcements that you have posted.

10. Give an insider’s view with Facebook Live

Facebook Live gives you the opportunity to live-stream broadcasts to potential customers and see their reactions and comments. You can give an insider’s view of what you do behind the scenes or offer a longer how-to instructional video. As you build a following, people can choose to get notifications when you are streaming, and there is even a Facebook Live Map so people that may not know about you can find Facebook Live videos currently in progress.

Facebook Tip #10: Interact with your audience using Facebook Live. Give them a glimpse of an event on location, a walking tour of your store or even share your desktop screen and offer a tutorial.

Every company, no matter the size, can use Facebook to market their business. It’s one of the most versatile, impactful marketing platforms available, and much of what you can use is free. What’s not to LIKE about that?

If you need help with your Facebook marketing or don’t know how to get started, contact us.