Sexy tech: Facebook remarketing

By Paul Routledge

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Don't let that hoodie fool you, Mark Zuckerberg is a man hooked on making money. This became clear when organic (unpaid) reach from posting from a business Facebook page reduced dramatically in the last quarter of 2014. The quarter before coincidentally saw a year on year price per advert increase by 274% according to Ad Age. So if you’ve noticed a serious nosedive in the amount of people who see your posts, then that explains it.

It's left smaller businesses who were using Facebook as a free way of engaging with their customer base seriously disadvantaged. The caveat is that their algorithms that decide whether posts should be seen in someone's feed makes the decision, depending on how sales-y the message is, although in reality many small businesses have not seen such a clearly defined execution. So, many Facebook pagers are left looking at paying for a reach that was once free.

So, on the one hand that move was pretty sneaky, but then he gave us re-marketing. Now, those annoying little adverts that follow you from one website to another that have been around for ages, but consumer audiences allow you to put your product in the feeds of a defined audience, profiled by their Facebook details, making your campaigns work even harder.

So, Facebook creates a pixel (a bit of code) that you put on a web page for which you can create a targeted advert. If a customer goes on your webpage, then logs in to Facebook, then your re-marketed ad pops up in the hope it will seal the deal and get them to convert. What’s great about Facebook feed adverts is that they feel organic, particularly when you have already shown interest in a product and it appears in your feed, so your advertising seems less shouty. Even more exciting, if you have a list of email contacts, you can also feed these into Facebook, so they can be even more highly targeted.

A shrewd move that will no doubt buy him all the blue hoodies he could ever dream of.

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