6 Tricks To Increase Click-Through Rates on Facebook Ads

Part of running a successful campaign is being able to increase click-through rates on Facebook Ads. This means that users are engaging with your ad, clicking away to a potential landing page (or wherever else your ad sends them), and are much more likely to convert.

Unfortunately, it can often be difficult to achieve high click-through rates on Facebook, but with these 6 easy tricks, you an increase click-through rates on Facebook Ads with some tweaking to your current campaigns or as soon as you start on your next one.

Here’s how:

1. Offer True Value Mixed with Urgency

This is one of the most important and effective ways that you will increase click-through rates on Facebook Ads. If you offer holds true value in your ad, you’re going to see a heck of a lot more clicks. It sounds obvious, but it’s still something a lot of marketers don’t do.

When a user first sees your ad, whether they realize it or not, their instinctual, unconscious thought is What’s in it for me. If there isn’t an obvious answer to this question, even if they don’t realize they’re thinking it, they won’t click on your ad.

You can offer value in a lot of ways, and one of the most common ones is by highlighting special features that come with your ad and product. A lot of times this can mean a sale. A sale is fantastic because it offers value while creating a sense of urgency, especially if you’ve got “two days left!” tacked on in the copy somewhere.

increase click-through rates Facebook Ads
This ad creates value by offering free items in addition to free shipping. It creates urgency by telling you they’re only offering this for a limited time.

That bit of urgency creates extra value in that your offer only stands for a certain amount of time. And that increases click-through rates.

2. Use Great Images

The image is what will initially capture the user’s attention and get them to read the text (and your offer). Because of this, the image you choose for your ad matters a great deal. To see our blog post on how to create or choose eye-catching images for Facebook Ads, click here. This post gives a great deal of insight on different types of images that work best for Facebook Ads.

While some advertisers go for the image that jumps out at users (and depending on your target audience, that may be the way to go), some marketers have found that choosing images that blend in with the rest of Facebook had higher conversions and click through rates.In this case, you’ll have to test out a few images for yourself to see what converts best and increases click-through rates the most with your specific audience.

3. Keep Text Concise but Interesting

If there’s too much text, it’s too much work for most users, and they’ll scroll away instead of clicking.

You only get so much text on your Facebook Ad, especially if it’s in the right hand side column. You need to make the most of it. You want your copy to be concise—short and sweet—but also interesting and descriptive. Hit the major points, and always make sure you have a call to action, like “Shop our 20% off sale, only 2 days left!”

increase click-through rates on Facebook Ads
You’ve got the call to action– Shop Boots– and can immediately see the benefits of a sale and free shipping, all in one quick glance.

As always, it’s crucial to make sure that your call to action is prevalent, and that you’re the text matches your offer, image, and landing page.

4. Use the right targeting

This one is pretty self-explanatory. If you want people to click on your ads, you need to be showing your ad to the right people. If you get your content in front of the right target audience, you’ll be a lot more likely to see higher click-through rates.

To learn more about targeting on Facebook Ads, click here.

5. Split test

When you split test your ads, you have a good chance of increasing click-through rates just by seeing what works best. Even changing one aspect at a time—whether it’s the image, the offer, the text, the placement, or the targeting—can help you determine what your audience best responds to, and even who they are.

Split testing is so important, and should never be ignored, no matter how high your current click-through rates are or how much profit you’re bringing in.

 

Ad that appears in the newsfeed.
This ad has a different picture and copy than the ad below.
click through rates for Facebook Ads
The ad above, in addition to different images, emphasizes “vintage engagement rings,” while this one focuses on “ethical engagement rings.”

Part of the reason split testing is so important is because even with a great campaign, you will, inevitably, need to change it up.

Which brings us to trick number six…

6. Change it Up

Even if you have a really successful campaign, you still want to change things up every now and then. It keeps things exciting and fresh, and having new campaigns that users haven’t seen before is important to keeping click-through rates high and even increasing them.

One of the easiest ways you can do this is just by changing the image—the image, again, is what initially catches a user’s attention, so if they’ve seen the same ad before again and again, it may have lost it’s allure. To increase click-through rates and get them to click, you need something new.

To monitor how many times people are seeing your ad, you can check the frequency score for each ad campaign. This tells you how many times the same users are seeing the same ad. The higher it gets, the less likely they are to click, decreasing your click-through rates. If you start having a high frequency, it’s time change or end that particular campaign.

If you’ve found your target audience, there’s no reason to change it (aside from some split testing).

New offers can also send click-through rates skyrocketing. Instead of a percentage off a certain product, you could offer a site-wide sale, new items, or “buy one get one half off.” Even if it’s really not all that different, changing it slightly can push users over the edge to click—and to purchase.

 

What do you do to help your click-through rates stay high? Which of these tricks do you think will help you the most? Share your knowledge and experience in the comments below!

 

To see more about how to increase conversions on your landing pages once you get those clicks, click here.

How to Get a Free Coupon for Facebook Ads

Facebook Ads can get expensive pretty quickly. There’s no secret about that. And with organic reach continuing to decline with the most recent algorithm update to the Newsfeed, there’s a good chance that that bidding prices may increase as more marketers start using the system.

Even though Facebook Ads is expensive, there are plenty of ways to decrease the overall cost. One if these methods is by focusing on the new relevance scores.  Another is by finding and taking advantage of coupons and credits for Facebook Ads.

How To Get a Free Coupon for Facebook Ads

Believe it or not, there are multiple ways you can get free coupons for Facebook Ads (and you can take advantage of them all!). You can get them by:

Purchasing a hosting package from GoDaddy: Technically this one isn’t really free, but it still comes at a discount. If you purchase a three month WordPress hosting package from GoDaddy (which costs $12), then you get a $50 Facebook coupon in return. Even if you don’t necessarily need the hosting site but you know that you’ll use Facebook Ads, you’re getting $50 of advertising for only $12. A worthwhile investment.

To find out more, you can click here, where they are also offering Google Adwords and Yahoo search credits. Depending on what promotion they’re offering (and it does change), they may only have Facebook Ads credits or Google Adwords credits or Yahoo search credits, but it’s always worth taking a look at.

Finding a reseller of coupons from a Fiverr promotion: The Fiverr promotion is now over, but there are still plenty of people selling their unused coupons that they don’t want. They’re often selling them for cheap, for around $5-$15. Just as there are coupons from Fiverr floating around, there are coupons from other promotions that may be out there, too. Just be careful where you get them from, but they’re worth looking for if you’re interested.

Signing up for Facebook Go: Facebook Go is a great new tool Facebook recently released that allows marketers who spend a certain amount to get personal help from a trained Facebook Ads expert.

pic 1 l

In addition to the benefits of taking advantage of this awesome opportunity (helping to get the most out of the money you do spend), when you go through the Facebook Go program, you’ll get a $50 ad coupon. You can sign up for Facebook Go here.

Getting credit from Bing/Yahoo!: This doesn’t get you a Facebook Ads credit but it gives you a Bing search engine credit, so I thought I’d throw it in our list and give it a mention for anyone interested. If you want to request your coupon to get started (which I’m guessing is largely there to get people to use Bing Ads instead of Adwords), you can click here.

While these are the current ways (that we know about) to get free credits and coupons for Facebook Ads, there are always new promotions cropping up—including those from Facebook itself. If you keep your eye out, they’re not hard to find, and often very easy to take advantage of.

Keep in mind that there are plenty of places that promise $50 or $100 in Facebook credits for only a small fee. A lot of these are spam, junk, and/or a rip-off. Just because you find something that seems like a great deal doesn’t mean that it is. It is the internet, after all, and we all know how that goes.

How To Get The Most Out of It

Some people look at free Facebook Ads credits as a chance to run campaigns that don’t have to be successful, since it is, after all, free money. But if you have $50 that you can use for free advertising, wouldn’t you rather get the absolute most out of it that you can? I know I would.

Getting the most out of your Ads campaigns can certainly be challenging, as the system is complex. That’s why we’ve got our Beginner’s Guide and our popular and highly-praised FB Ads Formula. If you haven’t gone through either program (and the beginner’s guide is completely free!), make sure you do, as both are great resources that help to increase ROI quickly.

If you really want to make the most out of every penny you spend on Facebook Ads (including the money you don’t get from free Facebook Ads coupons), you can sign up for FB Client Machine.

FB Client Machine, as mentioned above, not only comes with a free facebook ads coupon, but it teaches you how to get the most out of your money. It comes with the promise of teaching you how to get businesses calling you for only $5 spent on Facebook Ads. Multiply the amount spent by 20 and you’ll have your phone ringing off the hook. This is still a new product that hasn’t launched yet but it’s one Ryan is contributing to and working hard on. We’ll give you all the new information as soon as it’s available.

Have you redeemed or acquired your free coupon for Facebook Ads yet? Do you know of any other ways to get free coupons for Facebook Ads? Let us know!

To make the most out of the money you save on Facebook Ads, make sure you learn about maximizing ROI with our FB Ads Formula.

Protect Your Page: How to Remove Fake Fans

It’s no secret that having fake fans on Facebook is bad for a lot of reasons, and that Facebook is penalizing and targeting fake likes.

Unfortunately, not everyone knew that fake fans could hurt their Page when they first signed up and purchased the now-notorious fake likes. Some think that it’s a legitimate marketing strategy, and others think it’s worth the risk.

The good news is that if you’ve purchased fake fans and fake likes on Facebook, it’s not all over for you and your Page. It is possible to remove them. It can be kind of a pain, but you can do it.

If you have fake fans and likes on your Facebook Page (and it’s possible to have them even if you didn’t purchase them), then you’ll want to remove them immediately.

Why You Want to Remove Fake Fans on Facebook

Fake likes (and the “fans” behind them) on Facebook are tempting. I completely understand the allure—you spend $100, you get 10,000 likes, and your Page looks popular and exciting.

Unfortunately, this is hardly the reality of the situation. While you will see a big increase in the number of your fans, fake likes have a hugely detrimental effect overall.

We’ve talked a lot about why fake likes are bad in the past, particularly in this post here. For those who haven’t read about it yet and want a quick rundown, here’s the gist of why fake likes aren’t good:

Facebook uses an algorithm called EdgeRank to prioritize different Pages’ reach in users’ Newsfeeds. As we all know, organic reach is declining, and most users only see a small amount of what Pages post on their own timelines.

Part of how EdgeRank determines your priority and how much your posts get seen is by engagement, which is actually weighed pretty heavily. What this means is that if you have a large number of fans (say, perhaps due to fake likes) but relatively low engagement, your reach is going to decline even further, keeping your real fans from seeing the content you post—content they actually want to see.

One thing to always remember is that fake fans will almost never give you any kind of engagement. Most fake likes are just that—entirely fake, and are profiles created just to go through and like Pages, all available for purchasing.

One thing to take note of: just because you haven’t purchased fake likes and fake fans doesn’t mean that your Page doesn’t have any. Some of the more “high-quality” sites that sell fake likes will also like other Pages to help bolster up the profile to make it seem more real. Ultimately, with these profiles being fake, there’s no hiding it. Keeping an eye out for any profiles that flag your interest on your Page can help you detect them if they’re there.

How To Remove Fake Fans on Facebook

Particularly if you have a lot of fans but really low engagement and you know you have fake fans, you want to find them and remove them immediately. It does take some work, but in the long run, it’s exponentially worth it.

To remove fake fans and fake likes on Facebook, just follow these easy steps:

1. Find Them: It makes sense that this is the first step in deleting fake likes. You have to find them in order to remove fake fans.

In order to see a full list of your fans, you’ll start at your Page. On the right hand side, you’ll see a tool bar that says “This Week” and displays the number of new likes you’ve gotten, the post reach, and videos watched. This will help you quite literally find them on our friends list.

Screen Shot 2015-04-29 at 2.14.38 PM

Actually identifying them is a bit harder, and there’s no perfect way to 100% know for absolute certainty that you’re definitely looking at a fake fan. But there are some common characteristics to look for, and these are often highly reliable and very telling (not to mention relatively easy to spot). They include:

  • They have an extremely long list of likes—and we’re often talking thousands of likes. Sometimes they make sense (someone interested in football and Peyton Manning, for example) and sometimes they don’t (someone who has Pages likes for hunting next to eating vegan).
  • Their personal information seems off. Has someone liked your Page who is not anywhere near your audience? Does the information you can see on their Page seem a little fishy?
  • The “fan” is from a country where fake likes commonly hail from. While there are thousands and thousands of legitimate users coming from these countries, most fake likes tend to come from Brazil, Chile, India, Indonesia, Bangladesh, and the Philippines.

Because most fake likes tend to come from the countries listed above, in order to start flagging fake likes quickly, you can search your fans with geography targeting (using Facebook’s Graph search) to see if you have any likes from them quickly.

2. Report Them: Once you’ve found them, you want to report them. This is really more recommended than an actual step. It helps Facebook to flag down fake accounts and get rid of them, and in the long run it can help other marketers, too (especially the ones who never paid for the fake likes and ended up getting them and then getting affected by them in collateral damage).

When you’re looking at their profile, if you scroll over to the right side of the cover photo, you’ll see an option for a drop down menu. Here you can report or block the user. If you can tell it’s a fake profile, hit report, and proceed to the next step.

Screen Shot 2015-04-29 at 3.49.06 PM

3. Remove/Block Them: You’ve reported them, and now it’s time to get them off your Page.

Go back to their listing as a fan on your Page, and choose remove. This takes them off the list of your fans. By going back to the list, you’re making sure that you’re removing them from your Page, and not blocking them from the standpoint of your personal profile.

Screen Shot 2015-04-29 at 4.01.52 PM

This is often effective enough to get rid of fake likes and Screen Shot 2015-04-29 at 4.01.52 PMScreen Shot 2015-04-29 at 4.01.52 PMfake fans; since they’re fake, they often won’t notice you’ve deleted them and won’t be back. If you’d rather be safe than sorry, however, you can see how to block or ban them completely here.

Final Thoughts

If you have fake fans on Facebook, it’s definitely time to remove them if you haven’t already. If you don’t, you risk decreasing your reach further and having a lower priority given by Facebook.

Even if it means you’re losing out on fake fans you purchased, it’s a larger investment to remove them before it backfires on you. Facebook is removing fake likes on their own—it’s best to get rid of them yourself so you don’t get penalized if you’re losing them either way.

Don’t forget, fake fans and fake likes can still affect you directly even if you haven’t purchased any. It never hurts to check your Page’s list for them every so often.

 

Have you ever purchased fake fans on Facebook? Have you made sure to remove fake fans from your Page? Let us know what you think.

 

For more information about why fake likes are far from ideal here and more about how Facebook is killing the likes on their own here.

 

Get Rid of Unwanted Facebook Notifications For Good

Tired of annoying, unwanted notifications on Facebook constantly popping up? Whether it’s from that group from college you don’t follow anymore or a status you regret commenting on, a lot of times we end up getting pinged with notifications about things we don’t really care to be notified for. Especially with how much time and effort we put into social media, this gets old really fast.

Fortunately, it’s a lot easier than you think to get rid of unwanted notifications on Facebook—it just takes a few clicks, and there’s a few ways of going about it, depending on what you want to filter out. They’re also flexible, so you can go back and change your mind to enable the notifications at any time if you want.

Ready to never be annoyed with unwanted Facebook notifications ever again? Let’s get started.

Unwanted Group Notifications

This one is something that, for a while, drove me a little crazy. I joined a few professional groups on Facebook to help me network and learn. I was really excited about this, and more than happy to see the content in my Newsfeeds. I was less than happy to get a notification (and an e-mail) every time someone posted in the group.

It’s easy to disable these notifications, and there’s two ways to do it.

The first method to go about disabling these notifications is the same way you can disable all types of notifications (events, game invitations, etc)—you wait for a notification from the group to pop up.

When you’re viewing the notification, if you hover over it, you’ll see an “X” and a small dot. If you click on the dot, it will just mark the notification as read. If you click on the X, you’ll get the option to disable notifications or to see fewer notifications from that group (and only that group, not all groups).

unwanted notifications on Facebook

The second way to disable unwanted group notifications is to go to the actual group. At the top of the page, on the right hand side of the cover photo, you’ll see some options where you’ll notice that you’ve “joined” the group, and you’ll see a clickable button for notifications.

Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 12.13.20 PM

If you click on it, you’ll see that you can choose what notifications you want to get from this group. You can choose to get notifications for all posts, the highlights (most popular/important), just posts from your friends, or no posts at all.

Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 12.13.29 PM

Unwanted Game/App Invites

How many invitations have you gotten this week to play Candy Crush? Remember the good ole’ days of Farmville? Yep. You and me both.

The best way to turn off these notifications is to wait to get invited, get the notification, and click the reliable “x” that keeps you from being invited again.

As for really annoying app invites, if you want to get rid of them entirely (and not just get rid of the notifications) you can block out entire apps.

Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 12.43.29 PM

To do this, you’ll go to “blocking” under the settings page. You can scroll down to “block apps” and block whatever apps you never want to be invited to participate in again.

unwanted apps on Facebook

Turning Off E-mail Notifications

Not only do we get hit constantly with unwanted Facebook notifications, we get hit with the unwanted notifications through our e-mail addresses, too.

To disable e-mail notifications, you’ll have to go to the drop down menu in the top right hand corner and go to your settings.

Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 12.40.25 PM

Once you’re in your settings, go to the left side navigation bar and click on “notifications.”

You’ll see an option for e-mail notifications. Click on it.

You can then choose to disable or enable whatever e-mail notifications you’d like.

Unwanted Status Notifications on Specific Statuses

There are some really big events that we see happen on Facebook all the time—people graduate, get new jobs, get engaged and married, have a child (or adopt an insanely cute puppy), or even just post a really crazy picture. You comment on this picture, followed by all of that person’s two thousand friends. You get notifications each time someone comments, and you kind of regret commenting in the first place.

Sound familiar? Yep. We’ve all been there.

Fortunately, it’s really easy to turn off notifications for a status you commented on.

When you get a notification for the status, hover over that always-reliable “x” and choose the option to turn off notifications for that status.

Screen Shot 2015-04-25 at 1.39.17 PM

Disabling Unwanted Facebook Notifications For Mobile Devices

Now that Facebook and Facebook Messenger are two apps on most people’s phones, it’s important to know how to disable mobile notifications for each if you decide you don’t want your phone to light up every time someone sends you a message or likes your status.

While this partially depends on the type of phone and device you have, it’s easy to do no matter what.

For disabling notifications on Androids, apple devices, and windows devices, click here.

 

Easier than you thought, right? It sounds silly, but making sure you’re only getting the notifications you want can be important and time-saving, and it really matters when you’re doing business on Facebook, too.

 

Do you have any notifications disabled on Facebook? Do you get notifications on your mobile devices? Leave a comment and let us know!

Everything You Need to Know about Facebook’s Topic Data

Continuing with their consistent updates, Facebook has announced another great feature to help marketers and advertisers better understand and connect with their audiences (which is good for everyone, the audiences included). This new feature is called topic data, and it was announced in March.

The goal behind this new feature is to make marketing content more relevant for users and more effective for marketers.

What Is Facebook’s Topic Data?

Topic data is going to compile information for marketers about what audiences are saying about all kinds of topics. Marketers will be able to really see what audiences are saying on Facebook about events, brands, subjects, activities, and more. They will get this insight all while users’ personal information is kept private.

The examples Facebook provided regarding topic data include:

  • A business selling a hair de-frizzing product can see demographics on the people talking about humidity’s effects on their hair to better understand their target audience.
  • A fashion retailer can see the clothing items its target audience is talking about to decide which products to stock.
  • A brand can see how people are talking about their brand or industry to measure brand sentiment.

To do this, Facebook is partnering with DataSift, with the focus of turning “data into insights.”

What This Means

In creating topic data, Facebook is focusing on taking data that was previously only available in case studies and sample sizes (often too small to be truly accurate), and applying the idea to gather data from all of Facebook’s content. That’s a much larger (and often accurate) sample.

Facebook's topic data
Image from Facebook.com

 

This data was only available before from third parties, and it was often expensive for marketers to get their hands on. This isn’t the case anymore (or at least it won’t be soon).

As marketers, we will be able to utilize this information to hopefully create high-value, relevant content for our audiences, both on our Pages and on our Ads.

This information will be useful not only for marketing on Facebook, but for marketing off-Facebook as well. You’ll be able to take this information and apply it to other social media platforms as well as your entire marketing strategy overall.

Our Predictions

As of right now, Facebook’s topic data is only available to select Facebook marketers, like most of new features are when they first get rolled out. We don’t have any set time frame that the majority of Facebook marketers could expect to get access to it, only that Facebook’s plan is to “iterate on topic data thoughtfully and deliberately, and [is looking] to expand it and its availability at a later date.” Because of this, we only really have predictions about the affect it could have.

Until topic data is more fleshed out and developed (and, yes, available to us), we won’t know for sure, but I’m guessing it’s going to be a massive deal and it will be a heck of a lot of help to a lot of marketers.

While this won’t make up your entire targeting strategy for you, it can help you redefine or perfect it, and it will be able to help you create content for your ad that is most relevant to your target audience. Both of these things will only be good.

 

We’re excited to get our hands on topic data, but what do you think? How do you think it will affect both our content marketing and our Facebook Ads?

To see more about how to improve your ad content and strategies, you can find out more about our FB Ads Formula here.

FB Ads Formula
Our FB Ads Formula has helped businesses and entrepreneurs go so far as to quadruple their ROIs.

How to Host a Facebook Contest Without Like-Gating

While there are a lot of reasons and ways that businesses and Pages host contests on Facebook, one fact remains consistent: there is a lot you can gain by doing so, especially when you’ve got the right tools in place.

For a long time Facebook contests were used predominantly to get likes on a Page, but that’s been forced to change since Facebook put a ban on like-gating.

One thing a lot of Page owners don’t realize is that while likes are great, you can get a lot more out of a Facebook contest than just followers on your Page. You can actually get real contact information for new leads, boosts in engagement, and more.

Despite what some users have said, Facebook contests aren’t out just because like-gating is; you just have to know how to host them.

Ban On Like-Gating and What It Means for Contests

Like-gating is the practice of offering users incentives to like a Page, and this includes hosting a contest where users have to “like” the Page in order to have a chance at winning the grand prize.

Facebook banned like-gating last year, and while it is overall a very good thing, it has proven to inconvenience a lot of marketers when they’re trying to increase the likes on their Pages quickly.

When you’re hosting a contest, you can no longer ask users just to like your Page to qualify, meaning that gaining likes is no longer the main reason to host a Facebook contest. While this seems like a hinderence, it’s really not all that big of a deal—everything else you can gain from a Facebook contest is actually a lot more valuable than likes, especially since likes can still happen even when you aren’t focusing on them.

What You Can Gain Other than Likes

Likes are great, but at the end of the day, getting engagement, shares, and even real contact information of interested users can be a much bigger gain than likes would have been. And even though like-gating is out, Facebook contests can still bring you all of these things. Here’s how:

Engagement: Any contest can increase the engagement on your Page, whether engagement is the sole goal or not.

how to host a Facebook contest

Whenever you host a contest, no matter how you host it (we talk more about this in the next section), you should always promote it by posting about it on your newsfeed. This can create massive boosts in engagement while people react to it and talk about it. And engagement is always good.

Shares: People love to share good news! This is particularly true when they have to share your posts to have a chance at winning a prize. Shares are social media gold, just like engagement—the more people who see your Page, the better off you are.

Contact information: Things like likes and engagement are great for your Facebook marketing and overall marketing, but you have the information to get users’ actual contact information, wouldn’t you take it?

how to host a Facebook contest

Having the ability to get even a user’s e-mail address to add to your weekly newsletter can help push them along the buying process much faster. There are a lot of great apps that can help you collect this information, and we talk about some of the best ones a little later on.

Keep in mind that while you’re focusing on increasing engagement or valuable data like users’ contact information, you can still gain likes, too. They’re just more of a bonus while you get even more valuable information.

Methods You can Use to Host a Facebook Contest

When you’re hosting a contest on Facebook, there are several ways you can go about it.

The first is that you can post it directly on your Timeline, and host the contest off one particular post. For example, you could ask users to share that post talking about the contest, or comment on said post. Social media collaboration software like Rignite makes this easier than ever and will select winners and automate the process for you.

The second way you could run a Facebook contest is by using an app designed purely for the purpose. There are some really great apps that set up an entire tab on your Page, and this is how you can get contact information that is otherwise elusive on social media. E-mail addresses are always a given for a safe request; you can also require phone numbers or addresses, though users may decide that this is asking too much and you may get less participation.

No matter how you choose to run your contest, you should promote it heavily. You can do this on your Page just with regular posts, you can run Facebook Ads to promote it more heavily, and you can also promote it off-site (such as on Twitter or your website).

Best Apps to Host a Facebook Contest

Hosting a contest that gets personal information needs you’ll need a landing page to get this information in a secure way that doesn’t risk a user’s security. That’s where apps come in, and not all Facebook contest apps are made equal. These are the ones we recommend:

Wishpond: Wishpond is a big name here, being used by other big names like NPR and Avon. They offer a wide range of templates for different types of contests, including photo contests, vote contests, essay contests, and more. Their features include real time reporting and being mobile friendly.how to host a Facebook contest

Heyo: Heyo’s contest pages are beautiful, which is always a big plus when you’re looking to appeal to people. They offer group deals (get enough people to sign up and everyone gets a deal), which is something not a lot of other contest apps offer. Heyo is particularly perfect for Page admins and business owners that aren’t too involved with social media and don’t want to be; it’s an easy-to-use platform.

host a Facebook contest

Shortstack: Like wishpond, shortstack offers a ton of different types of contests, with their focus on “action-gating” (offering incentives for actions) instead of like-gating, and they’re known to be successful doing so. Managing contests on shortstack is really easy thanks to their features, which include setting restrictions to reduce voting fraud, and having the option to automatically select a winner.

host a Facebook contest

Final Thoughts

Whether you use apps to host a Facebook Contest or you make do it quickly through a few posts, you have the opportunity to gain a lot of great information and engagement in a fun, exciting way that makes users excited to see what you’ll be posting next. Contests can be a lot of work, but if you put in the effort, they’re definitely worth it.

No matter what, you always want to make sure the prize is relevant and exciting to your audience—a prize worth their information and time.

 

What do you think about Facebook Contests? How have you gotten the most out of them?

To see more about other ways to promote your Page, you can see our blog post here.

6 Blogging Tools All Bloggers Need to Use

In theory, blogging doesn’t sound that hard. You start up a site, pick a layout, write some content, and hit the post button. For casual bloggers, that’s all it takes—you’ve got a site up and running in no time at all.

Actually getting and maintaining traffic is another matter entirely. You have to understand how to bring in traffic, where it’s coming from, how to appear in the search engines, and how to make sure your site’s appearance, functionality, and content is the very best it can be. That’s where it starts getting complicated.

Fortunately, there are a lot of great tools out there available to bloggers. Some are free, and some are not. Either way, if they’re on our list of the 6 blogging tools all bloggers need to use, they’re worth the investment.

If you’re serious about blogging—especially if you want your blog to gain a lot of traffic, help your business, or make you money—these are all tools you need to have and know how to use.

1. Google Analytics

I know, I know. How many times now, in how many posts, have I talked about Google Analytics? A lot. But it’s for good reason.

No matter what platform you’re on, Google Analytics is one of the—if not the very most—important tool that you could be using.

Google Analytics tells you exactly how your site is performing. It tells you how much traffic you’re getting, where it’s coming from, how long users are staying, and what pages they visit.

blogging tools

You can use this information to evaluate what’s working and what isn’t, and then to come up with a plan to increase traffic, pages visited, and the amount of time spent on your site.

tools for bloggers

Best news! It’s free and easy to set up on your site. And so, so valuable.

2. WordPress

There’s a lot of great blogging sites out there, but WordPress takes the cake. Like Google Analytics, it makes your job easier, more effective, and it’s free to get started on (though there are paid options with WordPress).

WordPress is a Content Management System (essentially this just means how you publish your blog posts), and it’s got great support, is easy to customize, and easy to navigate. It’s also extremely easy to optimize, which for a busy site (which yours may not be at first, but may become) is extremely important.

tools for bloggers
WordPress has an interface that’s easy to navigate and use.

 

As far as CMS platforms go, WordPress also comes with what seems like an endless number of plugins available to help you achieve your blogging goals. We talk about one a little further down.

3. Pingdom

It’s frustrating to go to a site that always seems to be down, especially when you’re trying to get business taken care of. You don’t want that site to be your site, particularly if you’re trying to run a business from it (or it is your business).

Screen Shot 2015-04-09 at 5.35.19 PM

Pingdom lets you know if your site is down, and for how long. This way you don’t lose customers without even knowing there was a problem. More than that, you’ll be able to see if there is a recurring problem either with your site, or perhaps with the host of your site. No matter where the problem is coming from, Pingdom will help let you know if you have one, before you start losing customers and visitors for good because of it.

Pingdom can detect even relatively minor server flakiness and shakiness, and it’s because of that we recommend it above all the other server monitoring tools.

4. WordPress SEO Plugin by Yoast

WordPress SEO is an amazing plugin that we’ve been using for months—and a lot of the other big name sites and blogs are using it, too. This plugin breaks down each page individually, letting you know the strong and weak points that contribute or take away from the page’s SEO influence.

Screen Shot 2015-04-09 at 5.34.05 PM
This plugin has helped us a great deal with our SEO practices.

 

SEO is crucial to getting your site ranking on search engines—if you don’t rank, users can’t click because they can’t find you. SEO is crucial to expansion (even if not right away). SEO can also be incredible complicated, and using this plugin will help you to monitor what you’re doing right and wrong. Overtime, this will make a huge difference when it comes to helping you show up in search engines. And we all know that’s a really big deal.

5. MailChimp

MailChimp is one of the most frequently used e-mail applications, and for good reason. Not only is it affordable, it’s easy to alter customizable sign-up sheets and templates, and just as easy to embed them on your websites or Facebook Page.

MailChimp has great features like pre-made and easy-to-customize templates, subscriber profiles, automation, and some great analytics. All of these features are unbelievably useful.

Screen Shot 2015-04-09 at 5.36.32 PM

Having an e-mail subscription sign up is so important to long-term success. It helps you remind users that you’re there. Whether you use this information just to let them know about new posts, or to push them along in the buying cycle, getting their contact information and using it will help expand your blog and your business.

Screen Shot 2015-04-09 at 5.36.39 PM

Added bonus: MailChimp’s low cost and easy-to-use interface, like WordPress, makes it ideal for both beginners and professionals alike.

6. Free Stock Photos

Sites with free stock photos. While many bloggers are able to take their own stunning, beautiful, artful pictures, many—definitely including myself—are not able to do so. For those of us who don’t excel in photography, photo editing, and/or graphic design, we have two choices: we can either have a mediocre-looking blog that screams amateur hour (even if the rest of it is really great) or we can use stock photos.

tU3ptNgGSP6U2fE67Gvy_SYDNEY-162

The problem with stock photos: they’re often really, really expensive. If you google “free stock photos,” the first ten sites that come up are not actually free. Fortunately, there are great sites out there with beautiful high resolution, high quality stock photos—all for free.

To see more about our recommendations for free stock photos, you can see our entire blog post on the subject here.

 

 

What blogging tools do you use to help your blog find success? Do you use something not on our list? Leave a comment and let us know!

 

To see more about our blog and our content marketing strategy, you can see posts about how we do it here and here.

Put Your FanPages on Autopilot with FB Auto Post Pro

There is a lot of money that can be made with Facebook marketing on your Fan Pages. Like all other money-making endeavors, however, marketing on Facebook requires a lot of time, creativity, hard work, and often money to go into creating and scheduling high quality, monetized content that will lead to profits.

Fortunately, marketers have started to find a way to make the process less time consuming, much easier, and much cheaper. Incredible new software FB Auto Post Pro was created to improve and speed up this process, and we’re excited to say that it does.

What is FB Auto Post Pro?

FB Auto Post Pro is powerful new software that automates the content on your Facebook Page for you. It does automates the process of Facebook marketing in several ways.

The first is that it allows you to schedule when you want your content to be posted. You can create multiple lists of content and set them to a schedule all at once. This keeps you from having to remember to post a few times a day, and makes sure nothing slips between the cracks.

As for the content, you have a few options. You can generate and create the content yourself, as most advertisers currently do. You can also import content from your computer, say if someone else created it for you. You can also have FB Auto Post Pro utilize one of its best features, and have it find unique, monetized, viral, and relevant content for you to post.

fb auto post pro review

With FB Auto Post Pro’s incredible search engine, you can search for content that you can use to post to your Page. It just takes a few quick clicks, and you’ve got high value, monetized content that you can set to post on a schedule. The whole process of content creation, scheduling, and posting happens in the blink of an eye.

fb auto post pro

It takes ten minutes to set up the software, link it to your Facebook Page, and find content to post.

Why This Software Matters

We all know that there is a lot of potential for money to be made through Facebook marketing. This isn’t even counting Facebook Ads; we’re talking about the money-making potential of content you’re posting for free on your Fan Pages.

Successful Facebook marketing is all about that monetized, relevant, high quality content. FB Auto Post Pro now locates that content for you, so you have a system making money almost entirely on autopilot without needing you to put effort into it.

fb auto post pro

This is good for all businesses. Any time you’re crossing a task (especially a time consuming and potentially expensive one) off your list, that frees up more time for you to focus on the parts of your business that you really love (or more time with the family), and you can devote your efforts to making more money elsewhere.

Especially if you take part in any kind of affiliate marketing, this software can change your marketing approach. Can you imagine running multiple fanpages easily and without added effort, while still making a profit on each of them? Now you can.

How It Saves You Money

This statement is true for everyone: what saves you time saves you money. FB Auto Post Pro can save you both.

If you’re currently creating content yourself, you’re undoubtably spending a lot of time doing so. If you’re paying someone else to do it, that’s a lot of time and money. Paying someone to manage your Pages can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars a month to a few thousand.

FB Auto Post Pro costs only a $47 one-time-fee. It saves you money while making you money. Win-win.

How You Can Sign Up

FB Auto Post Pro is compatible with both PCs and Macs, and works on most major internet browsers. It will be launching on April 6th, right around the corner.

In the future, FB Auto Post Pro will cost a monthly fee of $97 per month. Right now, as a pre-launch and opening special, there’s only monthly of $47, so you want to make sure you secure your place in our launch pricing quickly.

In addition to this low, one-time price, the purchase of FB Auto Post Pro also comes free with FB Pixel Pro (priced at $47) and Social Redirect Pro (priced at $67), both of which will only improve your Facebook marketing campaigns even further. You can also pay to upgrade to FB Auto Connect Pro.

If you’re not 100% satisfied with FB Auto Post Pro, you can get a hassle-free, no-questions-asked, full refund within 60 days of purchase.

To learn more and sign up for FB Auto Post Pro, you can get more information here.

 

Jump Start Your Content Marketing Strategy

Getting Started with Content Marketing 

Content marketing is no get rich quick scheme. It takes a lot of consistent work over a very long period of time to see real results. It is because of this that a lot of sites end up giving up—it can take at least a year to see any real headway, sometimes longer to make significant strides. It is, however, very worth it.

To be clear, content marketing does not replace SEO—they go hand in hand together. Each one helps the other succeed more. It does not automatically replace any of your other marketing efforts, like those promoting sales. Content marketing does enhance and multiply the results you’ll get from all these separate campaigns, however, as well as helping you to build your brand, your reputation, and often your client base.

The Idea Behind Content Marketing and Why it Works

For those new to the concept marketing, it’s a pretty straightforward one: by producing content that members of your target audience will want to consume and share, and distributing this content online for free, you will increase traffic to your site, which increases sales.

Content marketing has changed our business, and we’ve seen massive increases. It offers a large number of benefits:

  • Some of the best benefits you’ll receive from successful content marketing:
  • Your Audience (and often client base) increases
  • You can build your brand, and have more control in what it represents
  • You build a reputation as an expert in your field
  • People come to your site every week (or even more frequently, depending on the number of blog posts)
  • This is a marketing platform that is either free, cheap, or relatively inexpensive compared to traditional ad campaigns (even if you hire a writer like myself to do it for you)

Content marketing works because you’re offering something of value for free to an interested audience. Even if it takes time to find the audience and to build their trust in you, it does work.

How to Start Content Marketing 

Blogging is one of the most popular and effective methods of content marketing, and a great way to start. You also have the option to provide recurring content on platforms like YouTube; we use YouTube in conjunction with our blog posts. For this post, we’ll focus on getting started with content marketing through blogging.

When it comes to creating a content marketing strategy, you shouldn’t necessarily just get started blogging right away. There’s some planning you should do to make sure that you do, in fact, have a content marketing strategy and you aren’t just shooting blind.

The reason why is important: without a long term strategy in place, it will be hard to keep up and expand on your content marketing—a lack of focus can be dangerous, and it’s too easy to be discouraged or distracted. Content marketing is a long-term, long-commitment form of marketing. It’s almost always worth it, but you need a strategy to get there.

When you’re planning out your content marketing strategy, there are a few steps you want to take and things to consider:

  • Check out the competition. The first thing you need to do when you’re planning your content marketing strategy is to look at your competition. You need to see what they’re doing and what’s working for them.
    You can also learn two important things from this: what questions your target audience is asking them in comments, and what you can offer that is different. Different will get you those followers.
  • Choose a Niche. This is particularly true when you first get started. Within every industry, there are niches and sub-niches. Finding and truly understanding yours will give you a solid start. You’ll be able to focus in on that audience.. Once successful you can expand later, but always starting focused is a good rule of thumb to follow.
    For example, our blog covers everything having to do with online and social media marketing, but our main niche focus has been for Facebook Ads. This has helped us gain traffic and footing, and now we are able to expand more into other areas of online marketing while still focusing on Facebook Ads
  • Plan out a List of Topics. There’s nothing like getting stuck with writer’s blog two weeks into having a new blog going, and realizing that your niche or your blog might not have started in the right direction. This can cause a delay or a complete halt in the posts, and before you know it, your content marketing efforts have already died.
    Before you ever get started, come up with a list of posts in the niche. Make sure you have enough to write about and say for longer than the forseeable future. If not, it may be time to reconsider the topics and niche you were thinking about focusing on.
    It can be incredible difficult to come up with topics—especially so frequently—when you first get started. The best thing to do is to think about what questions people ask—the things you now take for granted, even, but didn’t know when you first got into the industry. A grocer could write a series of posts on how to find ripe fruit; a jeweler could write about how to identify repairs; a boutique could write about maintenance of different fabrics. There are always topics for each field—you just have to get used to finding them.
  • Know Your Tools. This is one of the most important things you can do for your content marketing long term—knowing and using the right tools. Having plug-ins to help boost SEO, programs to protect against spam, free stock photos to make things beautiful, and—of course—Google Analytics to track traffic (including where it’s coming from, how often, and how long it stays) will all help you with your content marketing strategy.
    Screen Shot 2015-03-29 at 5.06.54 PM
    Google Analytics (which we talk about using with Facebook Ads here) is probably the most important tool I use—I see where traffic is coming from, which posts do best, which have higher bounce rates, which get more visits. Having this kind of information helps me learn more about my target audience and better plan future posts that will be most relevant to them. It keeps me going on the right track.I also highly recommend using Rignite, a social media collaboration software. We use it to schedule all blog posts to be re-posted to Facebook twice a week for six months after they’re written (so long as they’re still relevant). It has made my job so much easier.

How Content Marketing Works With SEO

I’ve seen new marketers ask the question “which is better, SEO or content marketing?” The answer to that is you can’t much success with content marketing without SEO, and your SEO will certainly be better due to your content marketing efforts.

Overtime, the better your blog gets, the more visits your site overall gets, and the higher web authority ranking it’s given. This means it starts popping up first in the search engines—this is good because it means there’s more eyes on your blog (starting a great upwards cycle) as well as more eyes on your site, potentially leading casual users to become clients.

tools for content marketing

The two work hand in hand together—they work best together, and choosing one or the other isn’t the productive way to go about things.

Why You Need Social Media

It’s hard enough to get started on social media; the same is true for getting people to your blog. We’ve used a combination of e-mail marketing and a heavy dose of social media promotions to advertise every blog post we’ve published, and this has helped get a lot of eyes on our site while our SEO ranking was crawling up inch by inch.

getting started with content marketing
We run multiple Facebook posts a day advertising both new and old blog posts, and each one gets clicks. These clicks add up.

SEO won’t be enough when you get started—you’re not even a blip on Google’s radar yet (even though you technically are). Getting ranked on highly on a search engine takes a significant amount of time and hard work—your blog won’t likely won’t hit it even within the first few months. It took us about a year to start ranking, and we’re hoping to see this continue to increase.

Social media is also so important to content marketing because it increases shares and engagement. Both of these are so, so important.

getting started with content marketing; get started content marketing
Every share is a whole new audience that is seeing that post. Even one share can do a world of good.

 

Now, even though organic search traffic has surpassed all other traffic to our site (which is the goal), our social media campaigns still send a large number of users to our site. You can read more about this in our post here.

When to Start Guest Blogging

Guest blogging, as many of you likely know, is a great way to boost your content marketing and SEO efforts. You get to continue to establish yourself as an expert, you build rapport with your peers and their already-established audiences, you build valuable links back to your site, and you get some of that traffic to hopefully come take a look at your site, too.

While some marketers with blogs start trying to guest post right away, and I do see the benefit of jumping at every opportunity, I personally prefer to wait to start guest blogging for at least a few months. There’s a few reasons for this.

The first is that one of the biggest benefits of guest blogging is that it sends users to your own blog and website. Whether this is done through links in the guest blog post that send them there or by a link in your bio following the post, the whole point is that it gets users to your site while building your reputation.

If you send users back to your blog too soon and you only have a few ok posts, they might not be back. If you wait a few months until you’ve gained some momentum and have a few pages of high quality posts, new visitors will be much more inclined to come back for more.

 

content marketing; guest blogging
Only after writing for Ryan and several other blogs for almost two years was I accepted to write guest posts for Social Media Examiner. It was worth the wait: one post from their site sent a ton of traffic to ours (the twitter shares alone hit almost 3,000).

Waiting to guest blog until you’ve got your own site (and reputation) established gives you one more distinct benefit: there’s a good chance this will help you be able to write guest posts for higher quality blogs than you would have before. This was certainly the case for me.

This is important because while almost all links are good, you want to make sure your name is associated with other high quality, credible, expert sites. While everyone needs to start somewhere, you want to make sure your business is posting on those high quality sites so that it represents your brand in the way that you want.

 

 

Content marketing can take a lot longer than running some ad campaigns (as if that was ever really easy), but the overall pay off can bring in large numbers of clients and sales. It can build a loyal following, and help establish you and your business as an authority in your industry.

No matter what, it’s important to remember that consistency in quality and frequency are the most important factors in content marketing: without this, you’ll lose readers faster than you can blink.

What questions do you have regarding content marketing? What strategies do you implement now? How has it affected your business?

To see more about our current content marketing strategy, click here.

How Facebook’s Relevance Scores Can Improve Your Campaigns

Facebook recently started providing advertisers with yet another amazing tool: relevance scores for Facebook Ads.

Facebook has always taken relevancy into consideration as a factor when determining how they deliver their ads, and to whom. Now, they’re allowing advertisers running Facebook Ads to see these scores and to evaluate their own success.

This is another change designed to make their ads system even better and more accessible to advertisers, and it’s an exciting one.

Where To Find Relevance Scores for Facebook Ads

To access your relevance scores for Facebook Ads campaigns you run, you can view them in any of the ads reporting or monitoring tools. You can access them through ads API if you have access to this as well.

The easiest place, though, to access your relevance score, is through the Ads Manager.

From the Ads Manager, you can access a tab just for your relevance scores. There, Facebook will give you all the information you need.

How They Work

Facebook has been evaluating how relevant an ad is to the audience it’s shown to. It’s how they work to make sure users are seeing the content most relevant to them, and thus those users will be on Facebook more. They’re now giving it a number and allowing advertisers to access this information.

The relevance score for each ad will be a number 1 through 10, with 10 being the most relevant. This score is continually updated as people see, interact with, and provide feedback on the ad through engagement. You will be able to see how relevant your ad is to those being shown to it.

Facebook's relevance scores; drive down cost of Facebook Ads

These ads will have a bigger impact on those seeking conversions of some sort (CPC) instead of those paid for reach (CPM) due to the nature of those bidding systems. This is because ads with “guaranteed delivery” (CPM) are not impacted since they are more about reaching people than driving actions like installs, sign ups, or sales.

How to Use Facebook’s Relevance Scores to Improve Your Ads

These relevance scores offer direct feedback, and this always offers a chance to improve your campaigns. While even Facebook has said these scores shouldn’t be used as the primary indicator of an ad’s success (that depends on a large number of factors as you can see here), it’s a great factor to be able to take into consideration.

Are you targeting the right people? If you aren’t, your relevance score will probably be pretty low.

If you are targeting the right people, is something about your ad (what you’re offering or how you’re offering it) keeping them from clicking?

Relevance scores, along with other tracking and measuring tools like the conversion tracker and even the reporting tools available in Facebook’s Ad manager, will make split testing even more effective. If you run two campaigns, you can see which performs better—which has more conversions, which has conversions for a lower or higher cost, and which gets more engagement.

How They Can Lower The Cost of Your Campaigns

As Facebook claims, “the higher an ad’s relevance score is, the less it will cost to be delivered. This is because [their] ad delivery system is designed to show the right content to the right people, and a high relevance score is seen by the system as a positive signal.”

While a high relevance score won’t compensate entirely for a really low bid, it will help lower the cost of your campaigns. And hey, every little bit helps, especially long term.

As time goes on, we’re going to test this out to see how effective these scores are as a metric to help us actually lower our campaign costs. Keep an eye out for those findings.

 

To learn more about how to best connect with the right audience and create successful ads, you can learn more with our FB Ads Formula.

FB Ads Formula
Our FB Ads Formula has helped businesses and entrepreneurs go so far as to quadruple their ROIs.

 

What do you think of the new changes with Facebook’s relevance scores? Will you be taking the relevance scores into account? Leave us a comment and let us know!