Thursday. Playable Ads are also now available to advertisers outside of the gaming vertical. Video poll ads are scheduled to launch this month and the AR Ads are moving into open beta globally in the fall.

Video poll ads. Moving on the success it has seen since the release of poll stickers for Instagram Stories Ads, Facebook is bringing polling capabilities to its video ads.

“In our early findings, we’re seeing poll ads in Feed drive increased brand awareness and conversions,” wrote Facebook. The company reported that five out of nine brand lift studies showed poll ads increased brand awareness compared to regular video ads, according to internal data from April.

AR ads move into beta. Facebook first began testing its augmented reality ads with a select number of brands in July, 2018. It is opening up a global beta for AR ad units this fall, making the ad format available to all advertisers.

In early tests of AR ads, WeMakeUp reported a 27.6 point lift in purchases — with the average consumer spending 38 seconds interacting with AR ads, trying out different shades of lipstick — and saw a 53% higher click-through rate compared to non-AR video ads.

WeMakeUp AR Ad

Bobbi Brown Cosmetics said it saw three-times the CTR and two-times the website purchases compared to other ads in its AR ad tests.

More advertisers get playable ads. As part of Thursday’s announcement, Facebook said it was also expanding a beta of playable ads, the mobile app ads originally released for gaming advertisers, to all advertisers. The ad unit is now available for reach, brand awareness, conversions, and video views objective. 

Why we should care. Facebook’s latest ad updates broaden the playing field for mobile advertisers — giving marketers new ad formats designed to boost engagement. With the new video poll ads and AR ads, marketers will be able to deliver more interactive experiences to help differentiate their brands from the competition.

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automated lead generation feature for Messenger, which was first announced in May to all advertisers. The new offering allows businesses to create an automated question and answer experience within Messenger that launches via Facebook’s click-to-Messenger ads for Facebook News Feed.

Here’s how it works: when a user clicks a “Send Message” button in a click-to-Messenger ad within their Facebook News Feed, it launches an automated chat in Messenger between the business and customer.

Advertisers can integrate the lead generation tool with a CRM platform, and also have the ability to continue conversations with customers via the company’s Facebook Page Inbox, the Pages Manager app or a third-party live chat solution.

Why we should care

According to a recent consumer survey conducted by Drift (an online chat solution provider) and SurveyMonkey, 42% of the people polled said they expect a response via an online chatbot within five seconds of sending a message. By integrating an automated lead generation feature that connects to a CRM platform into its click-to-Messenger ads, Facebook is helping brands respond quickly to customer inquiries and streamlining communication with customers on the platform.

Businesses that had early access to the Messenger lead gen tool reported a measurable increase in qualified leads. RIFT Tax, a UK-based financial services company, used the platform in a campaign targeting Armed Forces members and drove a 42% increase in leads, with an 18% higher lead resolve rate via Messenger compared to phone conversations.

RIFT Tax also reported a less than 10-minute lead response time. “We’re putting forward a business case to add Facebook Messenger to our mix of channels for lead acquisition and to further develop using Facebook Messenger as a communication channel throughout the customer journey,” said RIFT Tax Senior Paid Digital Performance Manager Alicia Urunsak.

More on the news

  • Facebook’s click-to-Messenger ads, that integrate with Messenger’s automated lead generation tool, can be created in the messages objective within Facebook Ads Manager.
  • The new lead gen tool includes a feature that automatically sends a reminder to leads who haven’t responded to the questions.
  • The automated lead generation platform for Messenger rolled out globally on Thursday to all Facebook advertisers.

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Small and midsize business owners will now be able to list the services they offer directly on their LinkedIn profile pages, the company announced Tuesday.

When an SMB owner adds service listings to their individual profile, they will automatically be eligible to show up in relevant search results for those services.

“From now on, members looking for help will be able to filter their general LinkedIn searches for service providers,” writes LinkedIn’s Group Product Manager Vidya Chandra on the LinkedIn blog, “When you add services to your profile, you’ll show up in these search results.”

Why we should care

LinkedIn reports it has more than 10 million small business leaders in the U.S. using its platform. Giving SMB owners (and freelancers alike) the ability to list their services directly on their profile pages could help them promote their services outside of their LinkedIn company pages — if they even have one. Making sure their profile page shows up in searches for the specified services adds an extra layer of exposure for the business.

This is a bonus for any company lacking the time and resources to build out a comprehensive social media marketing presence. Chandra writes, “This is a great way to quickly indicate to members that you are open for business.”

Not only is LinkedIn adding SMB service providers to search results, it will encourage members to message the SMB directly to ask about services.

More on the news

  • The new feature is first being rolled out to small business leaders and freelancers in the U.S. with a Premium Business LinkedIn subscription, but the company said it will make it available to all SMB owners this fall.
  • To add service listings, Premium Business subscribers can go to their profile pages on mobile or desktop to see if the feature has been activated. LinkedIn said users should see a box under their profile photo and headline to “Add Services.”
  • Any SMBs that currently do not have access to the “Add Services” box can request to be placed on a waiting list for the new feature.

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