Episode Transcript — Facebook Ads Update - Advertiser Transparency
00:00 Announcer: You're listening to The Spend $10K a Day Podcast, brought to you by the performance marketing experts at MuteSix. This is your source for cutting-edge insight into the world of online advertising, from the team with more Facebook case studies than any other agency on the planet. Here are your hosts, Steve Weiss and Stewart Anderson.
00:25 Stewart Anderson: Welcome back to The Spend $10K a Day Podcast. I'm Stewart Anderson, here with my good friend, Steve Weiss. We are doing a quick little upset for you today, to talk about one big thing in the news. Obviously, I don't think a lot of people have heard about Facebook making moves to be more transparent in its advertising game, after some of the confusion around Facebook's involvement in the 2016 election. Facebook recently announced that any advertiser's ads are actually gonna be visible through a tab on their Facebook pages, coming up soon in an upcoming product release. Steve, I wanna get your read on this. What do advertisers need to know? Should they be scared? Should they be excited? Take it.
01:07 Steve Weiss: Let's talk about users first. This is a very exciting moment in the Facebook world, if you're a Facebook user. Now, you could spend the rest of your days looking at advertiser ads.
01:17 SW: 'Cause I know how much you love them. I mean, everyone loves to look at ads.
01:21 SW: Here, it's 2:00 o'clock in the morning and you can't go to sleep at night. You're just gonna sit, looking at fan pages and their ads.
01:28 SA: Well, that's what I do.
01:30 SW: Okay, all jokes aside. Facebook has to up their game when it comes to transparency. I think that users, in general, they're pissed off. Frankly, they're pissed off that Facebook, the perception is that they're not giving equal treatment out to both advertise... To all advertisers. In a way, they come in in a transparent way, to give everyone an equal opportunity now. Each fan page that's running ads, each company that's running ads, now, users will be able to see in a tab on the fan page. Obviously, if you have some secret Facebook ad strategy that's so secret that you don't want anyone to know about, well, you know what? Your competitors are gonna see your ad. The reality is that people are gonna be copying people like they are already, but I don't think people should overly worry, advertisers should overly worry about this feature. I think it brings transparency. I think it brings trust. And I think it's leveling the playing field for everyone.
02:27 SW: And I think that Facebook's goal with this feature is to make sure that no one has an unfair advantage over another person. But you will now, in the very near future, probably one or two months, I believe they are already testing out in other countries, to be able to see on both Facebook and Instagram, the specific ads that are running from both the Facebook fan page, as well as the Instagram page for any brands. This is pretty cool. I know we're gonna be looking at a lot of our competitors' Facebook ads, and I'm sure our competitors are gonna be coming to look at our ads. At the very least, it's gonna increase engagement time on Facebook for more and more people looking at ads.
03:05 SA: Yeah, for sure. I think the other thing that I would bring up to, especially advertisers, agencies, consultants who are concerned about this is, if you really wanted to understand how one of your competitors, or how another company, or how another agency was advertising for itself, for its clients, you could pretty easily, by creatively browsing somebody's website, suss out a lot of the ads that they were running. Obviously, if you really wanna get an idea, you have to purchase stuff and do all sorts of things. But you can find a lot of the ads that are running for winning competitors, just by going to their website. I think you have the right perspective here, which is, it's gonna make the user experience better for everyone on Facebook. It's gonna offer new opportunities and challenges for advertisers, but it's not a reason to be scared. It's potentially a reason to be excited.
03:56 SW: Yeah, the dark post is gone. The dark post needed to go years ago. When Facebook launched, I never really understood why the dark post didn't actually, or the "ad," the Facebook ad, didn't actually reside on the fan page. But Facebook made it so that on the outside, there's the organic content, which is all organic and pretty. It's just whatever the social media content team puts out there. And then you had your sleazy direct-response people who created the ads to support the business. Well, now, it's all in one. Now, nobody sees the organic post and everyone sees the ad post. Isn't that great for society? The reality is this: Organic is gone. For all intents, purposes, organic reach on your post on Facebook or on Instagram is gonna be gone over the next two years.
04:45 SW: So what you're gonna be seeing from brands, is you're gonna be seeing their ads, and then, if you miss an ad, you're gonna be able to go to their fan page, and take a look, and see what you missed, that they're giving away a discount to some users, and not giving away to other users. You're gonna be able to see that, which is the only thing that I was thinking about, was we run ads where we exclude specific audiences from these ads, and we run other ads where we're discounting to some audiences. Well, you know what? Now, if you really wanna do some digging into a brand that you buy from, to see if they're discounting to some people, well, you're gonna find that. You're gonna start seeing that people, some are discounting, some aren't. And maybe you're not part of the audience it's discounting.
05:23 SA: Yeah, all good points. Well, Steve, do you have any other parting thoughts, takeaways, things that you want people to think about now, with this new level of transparency that's being brought to advertising on Facebook?
05:36 SW: I keep urging people that, the people who use Facebook now, they're educated, they're part of the educated population, they're not stupid. And to really get them to buy your product, or service, you gotta motivate them, you gotta provide a real solution. These are all excuses to not do things the right way, doing the dark post. And I feel like now, there's a new level of transparency that you need to bring to the newsfeed, and that Facebook is working hard to do. They're obviously not perfect at it and they've made their fair share of mistakes. We obviously have an amazing working relation with Facebook. We're one of few advertisers that has nothing but positive and amazing things to say about the service that we have working with them. And I would say, this new feature's nothing to worry about. It just shows that you have to be truthful and honest in your marketing, and if you are, you will win in the long run.
06:23 SA: Steve, all excellent points, as always, my friend. Thank you for joining us for another episode of The Spend $10K a Day Podcast. If you have any questions about Facebook ads, or e-commerce, or anything you just wanna talk to us about, you can always email us questions at mutesix.com, or you can email me, Stewart Anderson, at email@example.com, or my good buddy over there, Steve Weiss, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you and we'll see you again soon.
06:50 SW: Yup, thanks, guys. Have a happy holiday.