Facebook seems to be taking the side of smaller businesses, and it’s all good news –as of January 2019, over 90 million small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are currently utilising Facebook advertisements as part of social media marketing strategy.
In Q1 2019, the top 100 advertisers on Facebook only represented 20% of the total ad revenue – meaning to say that large brands are no longer in charge – the advertiser space is getting taken over with smaller, more diverse range of companies who are looking for a platform to reach out to consumers.
Earlier this month, the highly anticipated Facebook F8 was conducted – where some of the most important highlights and announcements in regard to the future of social media were made during the annual conference that lasted 2 days.
Seeing that a huge chunk of their business stems from smaller brands looking to make their mark in the social media world, Facebook is putting in place a set of tools to help smaller brands navigate their way around promoting their products and services.
With the simple understanding that SMEs made up of a single person or small teams may not have the time, expertise and resources to prepare and execute a comprehensive marketing plan – the social giant behemoth has decided to roll out 3 new tools dedicated to help SMEs pull off their next marketing campaign. They are:
- Automated Ad Campaigns
- Appointment Bookings
- New Video Editing Tools
Let’s now take a closer look into how each tool can help SMEs to maximize results without putting growth on the line.
Automated Ad Campaigns
If you have ever done some exploring on your own in Business Manager, you might have come across Automated Ads. This tool may not be completely new to consumers; however, the new algorithm for small businesses will now form new suggestions – based on a simple questionnaire that you are required to fill in order for Facebook to custom-make a marketing plan based on your goals. A great starting point indeed!
SMEs can now eliminate any speculations about creating effective and strategic ads, including promoting a post, generating brand awareness and driving sales to your website – approach any Digital Marketing Agency and they will tell you this takes plenty of research, skills and hard work.
4 features to take note of:
- Create 6 different versions of your ad in minutes (the photos will be pulled from your current Facebook and Instagram pages).
- Get personalised recommendations based on the information of your page (e.g. audience targeting options, suggested budget, call-to-action buttons and other creative details that are most likely to generate results).
- Timely notifications and reports to keep you informed on how each ad is performing, as well as how to improve.
- Track which of the 6 ad versions are currently doing the best – and Facebook automatically optimizes it for you in real time.
In fact, a small business that was given access to the tool reported a Return On Investment (ROI) that went above and beyond the company’s expectations. Even if you aren’t in favour of several of the recommendations made, you still have the final say – Facebook doesn’t take away the autonomy of businesses to make any final decisions.
If you are in the service industry, the new, completely free-to-use appointment booking feature in Facebook is going to facilitate customer meetings through Facebook and even Instagram. You will be able to do a myriad of things, such as:
- Accept and sync appointments into your personal calendar or current scheduling service system in real time.
- Communicate and send reminders to customers through Messenger or text messages.
- Customize the menu of services on your Facebook page that can boost customer service.
- Add hours of availability.
New Video Editing Tools
In line with the growing trend of video marketing as an increasingly important driver of user engagement – the new video editing features found in Ads Manager are designed to simplify the process, making it easy to add texts or overlay images to existing videos without the need for a specialist or expensive software.
The features include:
- Automatic cropping
- Video trimming
- Image and text overlay
Both cropping and trimming will allow an advertiser to automatically crop any mobile video to accommodate the different aspect ratios and shave off a 60-second video – Facebook has found that short-form videos tend to do better on their platform.
Facebook marketing is no doubt one of the best platforms today for small businesses to market their products and services to a large pool of potential customers. With many new updates such as 3D photos, as well as Facebook releasing Blueprint – a self-paced online video program to help owners learn new skills on advertising on the platform – great ideas need not have to sit around in the dust any longer.
We highly recommend SMEs to hop onto the bandwagon as soon as they can –saturation in the upcoming months could mean creative assets that may begin to look similar; however, if done right, can truly make a difference.
It’s #noexcuses – go run some ads and reach out to your most valuable customers!