I had some success, but not the exact success I was looking for. Targeting the audience for the Facebook ad got the new video in front of viewers who identified themselves as inventors or fans of innovation. One of the stand out successes of the ad campaign was an increase of our likes, something I was not going for. I want to talk about intent and call to actions in marketing, but first let's look at the stats:
The Facebook likes were an unexpected surprise and likes are important for getting in people’s feed to share more info on Master of Inventions. But overall I’m not happy with these stats.
The ad did get some clicks, but one of the major reasons for the poor performance was not having a clear and definable action for the viewer to do.
This is stressed in lots of guerrilla marketing books. Your marketing has to have one, just one, very specific action you want your potential customer to do. Your marketing material needs to point them to that one and only action. For this ad I thought it was 'watch this video', which would lead to more views. But in this case, and I suspect the nature of most Facebook ads, there is several calls to action (that to the best of my knowledge cannot be changed) including commenting or liking posts. Clicking the video opened a new window, with several options for the viewer.
Here’s the ad:
you get 4 options: 1) Watch the video 2) like the ad 3) comment on the ad 4) click to look at the Master of Inventions page
My intention was for people to click and watch the video, and the others options are not that distracting. Clicking the thumbnail opens another window for the video. I didn't think much about it until after the campaign, but this new window could be very confusing to anyone not familiar with my film, plus I did not define the one call to action clear enough.
What the viewer gets is a page with 6 very strong options, all-fighting for the viewer’s attention:
1) Visit the page 2) Like the page 3) (The video plays automatically and ends with) links to watch more video 4) Like the post 5) Comment on the post 6) Share the post
Viewers are likely to scan this pop up left to right, top to bottom. I feel most who liked the page hit the like button assuming they were liking the video.
With all these options and no real direction from the ad, it's no surprise the results were all over the place. These results reflect a bigger issue that plagues most people’s marketing: What do you want your marketing to do?
Bad answer: Get more exposure. Good answer: Get more followers to any of my social media outlets. Better answer(s): Get more Twitter followers, or Get more likes on a Facebook page, or strengthen my email list.
When you have a defined call to action for your potential fan or client, you leave them with 2 choices: (1) do the one thing you want them to do or (2) leave. When you don't have a clear and defined action they will guess, or when not seeing the clear next step, leave. I paid $49 to get 15 new likes. That's not a good deal. Consider it money spent learning a lesson in marketing.
I do want higher page likes / a stronger twitter following / more emails on my mailing list to get stronger attention in an attempt to get people to watch my film.
So in the future I'll have to make it more about getting a fan’s permission (page likes, follows on twitter, etc.) and with that permission share more of my work. As for Facebook ads, it seems most effective to send your traffic to a Facebook page.
I want to stress: I'm not treating this as a 'more likes = good' sort of contest. This is permission marketing 101. Get into people’s feeds first. It’s very difficult to get people to watch an hour long independent film knowing nothing about it. But getting a like allows me the permission to market to them a little more. I later post clips, out takes, and other Master of Inventions stuff to broaden their relationship with the film, which hopefully leads to a fan watching and sharing it. It takes several steps, all of which need to be fined tuned, but a critical strategy in getting people to watch Master of Inventions.
What do you think? I want to hear your thoughts! Comment below. Tweet me at @joeavella