Google Mobile Ads are Changing Next Month

Google has announced that beginning on October 15th mobile search ads may no longer display the second line of ad text in lieu of ad extensions, depending on what Google predicts will perform best for your ad. AdWords Product Manager Senthil Hariramasamy posted on Google’s official blog that this will “make it easier and faster for consumers to find things they are searching for, while on the go.”

Here’s how the updated mobile search ads will appear:

“By eliminating the second line of ad text, we give businesses another point of engagement with customers in their ads — in this case, it’s the additional location extension.  With just a single click on their smartphones, consumers can now directly engage with Flowers Forever in three ways: they can visit the mobile website, place an order, or get directions to visit the store,” wrote Hariramasamy.

While there are no required actions necessary on your part or of an account manager to alter an existing ad, Google suggests three best practices to achieve optimal results:

  • Ensure that your most important information is in the first line of ad text (description line 1) to address customer needs right away.  Remember to keep this text within the 35 character limit.
  • Enable all relevant extensions to help consumers find information faster and increase clickthrough rates (CTR).
  • Use mobile preferred creatives to help consumers quickly and easily take action while on the go. You’ll also get better results when your ads are more relevant to mobile searchers.

You can choose to opt out of the update when it becomes available if you prefer the two-line ad text through a form in the Help Center, though the benefit of the additional information readily available to the user through mobile search is apparent.

YouTube is the Highest Converting Social Network

We’ve previously posted about YouTube having the largest post-click engagement of any other social network; and last week, Aol Platforms released a new study proving YouTube additionally reigns supreme in both introducing new products and having the largest influence in the final stage of the purchasing funnel, leading to the most conversions of any social network.

The study evaluated 500 million clicks and 15 million conversions in social purchase interactions during the first quarter of 2014 through Convertro’s attribution technology. According to VentureBeat, “This then determined which platforms had affected online sales and at what point in the purchasing decision they had influence on the consumer.”

Convertro CEO and Co-Founder Jeff Zwelling told VentureBeat, “YouTube’s own search volume and preferential positioning on Google’s results help drive large amounts of traffic, of course. But when you get to YouTube, the content is rich, descriptive, and usually helpful.”

Venture Beat explains how the stages in the buying cycle aka “touch points” work in social media:

Being introduced to a product via social media is considered the ‘first’ stage of the purchasing decision. The ‘middle’ of the buying cycle is where consumers may see re-targeting ads or other marketing efforts to drive them back to the product they were initially interested in.

In the ‘last’ stage, consumers will often search for the product they’ve been introduced to in the first stage or that they’ve researched or been re-exposed to in the middle and are now ready to buy. Importantly, though, consumers don’t follow this path in a linear fashion — purchases are made at all stages of the process.

funnel-position-social-network

Facebook ranks as the second best platform for introducing new products and closing sales while Twitter ranks as the worst, nine times less effective than YouTube. However, Twitter performed the best for the middle stage of the buying cycle, and paid-for tweets are “30 times more likely to lead to a direct purchase with no other interaction or research, and over fives times more likely to results in the introduction of a product to a new customer,”according to VentureBeat.

“Throughout our study, it is clear that social media in general — and Twitter in particular — is much more likely than any other marketing channel to provide the customer with brand awareness and consideration of a product,” Zwelling said.

You can download the full report here for free.

 

 

 

Will Millionaire Network’s Publishers Be Paid?

Despite an impressive display just a few short weeks ago at ASE 2014 in New York, the invitation-only Millionaire Network has announced that it will be going out of business and didn’t say much more than that, leaving publishers wondering if they’re going to see their payouts or not.

To Our Publishers,

We regret to inform you that as of this morning, for financial circumstances beyond our control, Millionaire Network, LLC has closed its business. We are in the process of pausing all advertiser campaigns and hope to have them all paused by the end of the day today. The company will be winding up its affairs as quickly as it can and will liquidate its assets and distribute the proceeds to our creditors on a pro rata basis thereafter.

We truly regret that these actions are necessary and we deeply appreciate your business. We wish you all continued success in your future endeavors.

Sincerely,

Parker, Wiz and Dean

Let’s read between the lines here – if they’re liquidating assets to pay creditors, is that their way of beating around the bush and stating that their publishers won’t be seeing any money? I’m sure their short and sweet apology of truly regretting “that these actions are necessary” will be enough to suffice publishers…

“In all of the “best of surveys” that required pay-for-play, Millionaire Network ranked high, but barely had any votes in the PMI surveys over the last four years by affiliates who knew the industry. Go figure that they were able to promote themselves as the best of the best, but those in the know kept far away from them,” wrote Pace Lattin of Performance Marketing Insider. His post was rather entertaining, you can see it here.

Whatever the case may be, we at CrushAds hope that this works out for all parties involved. We won’t be closing our doors any time soon and are always looking for new publishers to add to our ever-growing and succeeding performance network!

Famous Rebrands – Infographic

Some of the biggest brands you know and love today that have been around for decades haven’t always gone by the names they carry now. Even some of the most famous companies today have undergone a rebrand to evolve with the times. For example, did you know that Nike used to be Blue Ribbon Sports prior to 1971? Ever heard of BackRub? You probably use it almost every day… it’s only the most popular search engine on the net; you now know it as Google. Take a look at this infographic we found on Offervault highlighting some of the most famous rebrands to date.

[Read more...]

Facebook Now Targeting Ads Based on Bandwidth

Facebook announced today that it will offer a new targeting option – bandwidth connection. This is going to be particularly beneficial to advertisers when choosing creative to display on the social network. Because of diverse network speeds in different countries, advertisers have said that having this option could help them create better ad experiences for the end user. Advertisers can now target 2G, 3G and 4G networks, allowing them to run an ad that will operate adequately for their connection speed.

Facebook Product Marketing Manager Brendan Sullivan explains how this is beneficial:

For example, serving a video ad to people in Indonesia with 2G connections may mean wasted impressions if people are unable to load the video or it buffers for minutes when clicked. Optimizing the creative — for instance, targeting a video campaign to people with high-speed connections, and swapping in an image or link ad for people with slower connections — means ads can perform more efficiently for the people seeing them.

Advertisers already have the option of targeting users based on the type of device they’re using  (tablet, smart phone, feature phone) as well as device model and operating system,  and by knowing how quickly (or how slowly) the device functions is another definite advantage.

IMG Source: Facebook

Ronita Mitra, Senior Vice President, Brand Communication, Insights and Online of Vodafone India, says that they are testing the new targeting option and already seeing positive results, adding that they are “excited about the new mobile targeting option” and “hope to see more such technology innovations across the industry,” according to the Facebook post.

The bandwidth targeting feature is available today worldwide via the Ad Create tool, Power Editor and the API. “Our hope is that mobile network targeting can improve the experience people have with Facebook ads by helping advertisers deliver the right experience while respecting people’s device bandwidth and data costs,” said Sullivan.

Facebook Puts an End to Annoying Click-Bait

Facebook is as tired of irrelevant articles that commonly have little to do with its headline flooding your News Feed as you are. It’s called click-bait, a way for publishers to get users redirected to their sites. Facebook has had enough of this schemey technique and announced today on their blog that it is making improvements to “help people find the posts and links from publishers that are most interesting and relevant, and to continue to weed out stories that people frequently tell us are spammy and that they don’t want to see,” said Khalid El-Arini and Joyce Tang of Facebook. “We’re making two updates, the first to reduce click-baiting headlines, and the second to help people see links shared on Facebook in the best format,” they continued.

News Feed FYI Click-baiting

Click-bait is considered a headline and image posted on Facebook by a publisher that doesn’t give much information about the article, forcing a user to click on the image to read more. These types of posts generally receive a lot of clicks, in turn causing them to reach the top of your News Feed and drown out posts from your friends and pages that are more valuable to you. A survey conducted by Facebook found that 80% of users prefer a headline with more information to explain the article to help decide if they actually want to see more before having to click through.

Facebook explains how they determine what is click-bait and what isn’t:

One way is to look at how long people spend reading an article away from Facebook. If people click on an article and spend time reading it, it suggests they clicked through to something valuable. If they click through to a link and then come straight back to Facebook, it suggests that they didn’t find something that they wanted. With this update we will start taking into account whether people tend to spend time away from Facebook after clicking a link, or whether they tend to come straight back to News Feed when we rank stories with links in them.

Another factor we will use to try and show fewer of these types of stories is to look at the ratio of people clicking on the content compared to people discussing and sharing it with their friends. If a lot of people click on the link, but relatively few people click Like, or comment on the story when they return to Facebook, this also suggests that people didn’t click through to something that was valuable to them.

The second update will involve changing the way links are displayed, choosing to display links in link format rather than through captions or status updates. Facebook’s studies have found that link format produces twice as many clicks than links embedded in captions.

Facebook says that a “small set” of publishers who use what they determine to be click-bait will be affected by the update as they will see their distribution decrease in the coming months. “We’re making these changes to ensure that click-bait content does not drown out the things that people really want to see on Facebook.”

BMI Elite and CrushAds raises over $3,000 for ALS; Q Interactive Accepts Our Nomination

As promised, CrushAds partook in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge on Monday per CEO Brandon Rosen’s nomination. In addition to dousing ourselves with buckets of ice water, we as a company donated $2,500 along with personal contributions made by other individuals within the company for a grand total of over $3,000 to give to the ALS Association! You can see below how much fun everyone had (and how soaked everyone got!) taking the challenge.

Employees happily and nervously awaiting their icy fate…

The buckets were all set up…we needed 300 pounds of ice!!!

Looking for the buckets with the least amount of water in them.

Right about now they’re thinking, “Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea…”

Ready, set, go!

Good thing Lynsay brought a change of clothes.

As if the buckets of ice water weren’t enough, Brandon stood on top of the firetruck and sprayed everyone with a hose, just to make sure no one left dry.

As is customary with the Ice Bucket Challenge, we went on to nominate three other local companies in the industry to do the same, and Q Interactive completed their challenge today! Good job guys, but we still hope to see video proof of our other nominees soon…