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Increased Privacy Settings Are Drastically Changing Advertising: Here’s How To Get Ahead Of The Game

Increasing privacy across the web is great for everyone, but presents a ton of new challenges for advertisers. Those who start preparing now for the impact of privacy increases will stay ahead of the game! 

The current game is played by most businesses relying heavily on 3rd party data –> information about people and their online activities which is collected and owned by someone else, not you. A great example of this is the data Facebook and Instagram have on their users – i.e. an audience of engaged women who live in your target market. Facebook gathered up that data, and you use it for an ad campaign. 

With 3rd party data, you’re relying on people to allow themselves to have their demographic information made publicly available across the internet, and you’re relying on other companies to collect and organize it correctly. Another example might be an email list you purchased, and you don’t actually have any connection yet with the people on the list.  

This has served many businesses well, but is getting a lot harder. You’ll see a decline in results if you keep relying solely on 3rd party data as more people increase their privacy settings and choose not to have information about themselves tracked. 

So what can we do to be prepared? 

So glad you asked! The answer lies with 1st party data. 

1st party data is information about potential customers that you have collected yourself, with their permission and that you therefore own. A few examples include: subscribers to your email list, past customers, Facebook / Instagram followers, etc. — people your business has connected with in a much more personal way. 

You can collect and organize your own 1st party data and use it to book more appointments, consultations, tours, etc. etc. — and you’ll be able to overcome many of the hurdles that come with strict user privacy settings and poor data collected by other companies. 

How can we collect more 1st party data?

There isn’t one perfect solution for every wedding business, but we do believe a big part of the solution starts by being found on Google when potential customers search for a business like yours. 

If people are actively searching and don’t yet know about your business, this is the ideal opportunity to begin a new relationship with them. When they click from Google to your website, or when they call your business to ask a question you get the opportunity to connect in a much deeper way than through a cold email list or 3rd party data set owned by someone else. 

This new opportunity is all yours!

(Mastering the crazy world of Google is a completely different topic, but also one we can help with either in our on-demand courses or our done-for-you services.) 

When they visit your site or call, you can begin building your 1st party database by: 

  • Asking for their email address over the phone 
  • Having an email signup form on your website (make sure you offer something of great value that will compel them to want to hand over their email address!)
  • Linking to your social media profiles and giving them a very compelling reason to follow you (social followers are totally 1st party too!)

You can also gather up 1st party data by participating in open houses, bridal shows, etc. or anywhere else you meet face to face with potential customers. 

Once you have your database of 1st party data in the works you can put it to use in powerful ways: 

  • Upload the data to Facebook and create an ad campaign targeting just the folks on that list. (The people on the list are already familiar with the business and are many times more likely to convert.)
  • Create email campaigns to continually engage and nurture those on the list
  • Connect with them by emailing them individually or calling them (more time intensive but extremely effective)
  • Uploading the database to your Google Ads account and bidding higher for those folks to click on your ads if they search again, instead of your competitors.

At the end of the day, you’ll be in a much better position to succeed online if you start now and create a plan for collecting and marketing to your own data. 

1st party data is the future of effective advertising!  

How to get a hold of a REAL person at Facebook support

The last thing you want to happen when running Facebook and Instagram Ads is that you get hit with an unforeseen problem (like ads being disabled for no reason)! Even worse: you have no idea what to do or how to fix it.  Which is why we want to make sure you know how to get ahold of a real life person at Facebook Support!

This info may save you hours of stress and get you help quickly, if you end up needing it. 

(We honestly hope you don’t need it, but chances are that you may need it someday in the future .) 

Facebook Support is something that we use more often than we would like to have to… because let’s be honest, things come up and problems happen! And while their support is not amazing, it’s better than nothing and can be a good resource when you are in a pickle. 

This support resource can help with:

  •  Facebook + Instagram Ads
  •  Your Facebook business page
  •  Your Instagram business page
  •  Your Facebook Business Manager account

First, tap here and go to the support page for businesses—we recommend you bookmark ASAP! (Note: You must be logged into your Facebook account that is connected to your business page and Ads Manager to access the support page.)

Next, check out the short screencast below that our team member Katelin made—it walks you through the steps on how to get into a real-life conversion with someone at Facebook Support.

At the end of the day, we hope that you never have to use this bit of info. But if you do, we’d love to know what your experience was like! 

Want more tips like this? Check out our Instagram page!

Is it time to re-review your website to make sure it’s ready to convert?

When was the last time you put yourself in the shoes of a bride and looked at your site from her perspective?

If you can’t remember, then walking through your potential customer’s online journey with your website is a must-do in the near future to get ready.

Every business grows and changes, so even if you think you’re already familiar with your site, it’s important to do this to make sure it hasn’t fallen behind. Every single one of your potential new customers will either find you first online or check you out online before deciding to contact you.

Here’s our list of what to look out for as you take stock of what your site communicates:

  • Read your text.
    • Does it make sense?
    • Is it answering the questions your ideal customer would be asking?
    • Does it compel the reader to take an action?
  • Look at your images.
    • What are they communicating to the viewer
    • Do they tell your story? Show off who you are?
  • Test your booking & contact systems
    • Do they actually work the way you want them to?
    • What does the visitor see after they click submit?
  • Check Your Map & Address information
    • Is it correct and current?
    • If it links to directions, is it linking to the correct place?
  • Click on all your links
    • Are any of them broken?
    • If you’re linking your phone number & email, do they work the way you want them to?
  • Test all the above in both desktop & mobile
    • These days, most users are looking at your website on their phones, so don’t ignore your mobile view!

If you find changes to make, reach out to your web developer so they can get started now. When they’re done, don’t forget to check your ads to make sure they still accurately reflect your business!

Cheers to better website experiences that convert more brides!

How your website’s load speed affects your success

In our work managing ad campaigns, we’ve seen time and time again that one of the most important things to get right is having a website that loads quickly!

It is easily overlooked, but it’s massively important. If your site isn’t loading super quickly, we can all but guarantee that your slow site is costing you a lot of money, and you’re losing leads. 😳

How exactly?

Well, think of the last time you clicked on a link for a business you didn’t yet know and you had to wait for their site to load.

Chances are you hit the back button and selected one of their competitors instead (if you were searching Google) or you just went back to scrolling your newsfeed (if you were on FB, IG, or elsewhere).

🤯🤯🤯 On average, having a website that takes one extra second to load costs you 10% of visitors.

Not only are those people who won’t be contacting you if they clicked on your ad – you’ve actually paid for them to land on your website and leave before ever learning about your business. Having more than just a few people do this is a waste of money that adds up fast!

Take action:

  1. Find out your website’s load speed:
    Head over to Google’s free tool – PageSpeed Insights.
  2. Enter the URL of the page you want to test. Pages can have different load times, so it’s good to start out testing your main landing page(s).
  3. Wait 10 seconds and find out the results! It’s helpful to look at results for both mobile & desktop.

👉 If you discover that your site speed needs improvement, reach out to your website developer to share the results and ask them to help you get your site to load faster.

While there’s a lot that can go into making a site load quickly, sometimes it can be as simple as upgrading your hosting to a faster plan!

Cheers to faster websites and more leads!

A new remarketing strategy to overcome privacy challenges

In 2021 we saw one of the biggest changes to Facebook Ads we’ve encountered in the history of the platform!

🤯 The Apple iOS 14 privacy update took effect – this allows users to opt-out of being tracked by advertisers.

We’ve had a lot of time to see how this change has been shaking out, and the impact has varied quite a bit across all of our Members’ accounts.

Our traditional Facebook remarketing campaigns (where you are able to show an ad to anyone who has been to your website) are still performing better than the industry average! 🙌🙌🙌

But as expected, we’re no longer able to retarget individuals who have opted out of tracking, even after they’ve landed on a member’s website.

🔥 The good news though…

In our ongoing research & learning, we’ve discovered a great solution that has continued to work phenomenally well!

We’ve started using a new audience based on “social engagement” – which is a fancy way to say that anyone who likes or comments on any of your ‘organic’ posts on Instagram or Facebook will start seeing your ads!

This new audience type has been able to reach a much larger number of people, and continue driving qualified leads from remarketing despite the impact of the Privacy changes.

👉 If you’re managing your own ad campaigns and want to give this a try, here’s how to get started:

  1. Make sure you’ve been actively posting on Facebook and Instagram! (If your accounts are totally dormant, this new audience won’t be much help.)
  2. Create 2 new “custom audiences” in Facebook Ads Manager. One for Facebook engagement and one for Instagram engagement. Make sure to select your correct pages and select the option to include “People who engaged with any post or ad”. We set the time period to the last 90 days.
  3. Create a new ad set (or campaign if you want a separate budget), duplicate your existing ads, and include both new audiences in the new ad set.

Cheers to keeping remarketing alive and thriving!