The Art of Online Business Podcast

#79: How Accurate Is The New Facebook Pixel and Other FB Ads Q&A

Welcome back to the Art of Paid Traffic Podcast!  Today’s episode is a Facebook ads Q&A show where I’m answering a bunch of questions that you’ve submitted.

In This Episode, You’ll Learn About:

  • Changing to the new Faceobok pixel vs the custom audience pixel and conversion tracking pixel
  • My thoughts on Qwaya
  • Adding a Standard Event code to the Facebook ads pixel after it’s been placed
  • Video ads not getting the desired results, despite layers of testing
  • In-depth targeting strategies with the new Detailed Targeting
  • Can you sell a streaming workshop with Facebook ads?
  • Best practices for improving your results with video ads

Before we get into the transcript of the episode, I’ve got a few announcements for you…

Enrollment for FB ADvantage Opening

I’m getting ready to re-open my flagship program, The FB ADvantage in just a couple weeks here in early April.  It’s completely revamped this time around, teaching you exactly how to create an automated system that gets leads and sales every single day with Facebook ads.

Included when you join the course this time around is going to be a live two day event here in sunny San Diego. I’m super psyched to be offering that this time around so make sure to hop on my email list here on my site to be the first to know when enrollment opens.

One quick resource that you might want to grab while you’re here is my Facebook ads pixels cheat sheet — “The Complete Guide to Facebook ads pixels,”

While you’re on that page there you can download my complete guide to Facebook ads pixels cheat sheet and you’ll be also updated when the course opens here in early April.

Speaking at Social Media Marketing World

I’m going to be speaking at Social Media Marketing World, which is Social Media Examiners annual conference here in San Diego, in just a few weeks.

My talk is Monday morning April 18th at 10:30pst in the morning. I’m presenting on How to Double Your ROI with Facebook Video Ads.

Super stoked to be talking about video ads during that presentation, so if you’re going to be at the conference definitely say hello, I’d love to thank you personally for listening to the podcast here.

Q&A Transcript

Changing to the new pixel vs the custom audience pixel and conversion tracking pixel

All right my friends, let’s jump into the Q&A and that first question comes from Scott Miller. Scott asks, “Should I change over to the new pixel now or is it okay to still be using the custom audience pixel plus the conversion tracking pixel?” Actually Scott has two questions here, I’ll hit the first one first. Should I change over to the new pixel now or is it okay to still be using the custom audience pixel plus the conversion tracking pixel? In short yes, it’s absolutely okay to continue to be using the custom audience pixel and to track conversions using the conversion tracking pixels. As I’m recording this we’re at the sort of middle to late part of March here and Facebook has come out and said, as I’ve talked about here in the podcast, that as of the second half of 2016, they’ve left that very vague. As of the second half of 2016 that’s when the conversion tracking pixel, pixels are going to be going away and you need to be using the new Facebook pixel.

Here we are later part of March, we’re still not into the second half of 2016 so yes, it’s still okay to be using the custom audience pixel and the conversion tracking pixels. Now here’s the deal, kind of the latest, what I’ve been seeing happening with the new Facebook pixel. If you remember we’ve been talking about, I think it’s on episode number sixty six if my memory serves me right. We talked all about the new pixel. With the new Facebook pixel I’ve been seeing a lot of issues from a tracking perspective. When you are inserting the standard event code on your conversion pages, I’ve been seeing a lot of discrepancies. Not only in my own campaigns, but also I’ve been talking to a lot of people, a lot of my students, they’ve been having issues as well. We’ve reached out to Facebook to talk to them directly about it and they kind of just say, well they do want us using the new pixel because they’re moving their support over to the new pixel and away from the conversion tracking pixels.

We don’t really know what the deal is right now with why there’s so many discrepancies with the new pixel, and adding in that standard event code. I do have some students who are having no problems with it but I do have a lot of people, and I’ve been talking to a lot of people lately who are seeing some issues. What I’m personally doing right now is for the next little while I’m going back to using conversion tracking pixels, just to make sure that Facebook is working these bugs out. Then yes, I will of course be moving over into the new Facebook pixel and adding the standard event code in there. Kind of a long one to answer there Scott, you don’t have to change over immediately. I personally would absolutely get ready for it, but also be aware that Facebook is working some bugs out there.

My thoughts on Qwaya

The second question from Scott says, “What are my thoughts on Qwaya, and is it something I should be investing in, in addition to perfect audience in addition to Facebook ads?” I love this question because this is more of an advanced question. First of all Qwaya is a third party tool that allows you to manage your Facebook ads and track your Facebook ads, it’s much like Ad Espresso. Now Scott I’ve never used Qwaya before, I’ve heard good things about it but I’ve also heard not so great things about it. I’ve heard sort of both sides of the fence when it comes to Qwaya. Now my question for you and of course I’m not able to ask you this directly is why are you looking to use a third party tool instead of Power Editor? We run a lot of ads through Power Editor and don’t have any issues with it. Yeah, it’s buggy, but we don’t have any issues with it meaning like we can’t do certain things in there.

A third party tool like Qwaya or Ad Espresso, that’s really for if you’re doing super, super high volume. They do make it easy to split test things, I will say that, it’s a pretty cool tool. Those third party tools do make it very easy to split test. I wouldn’t say, “No don’t do it,” I wouldn’t say, “Yes go do it,” it really depends on what your needs are. I have heard good things, also I have heard some challenges with it. Now you said in addition to Perfect Audience, for those of you guys who don’t know what Perfect Audience is, that is a retargeting tool in their platform that allows you to place the Perfect Audience pixel on your website, much like you would with your Facebook ads. Then you can re-target across the internet, like Google’s display network and so forth in addition to Facebook. If you’re looking to do banner retargeting, and that sort of thing Perfect Audience or Ad Role are great tools for that. Yeah, I definitely recommend checking those out if you want to get ninja with this stuff, which I love that you’re doing here Scott.

Is it something you should be investing in, in addition to perfect Audience, in addition to Facebook ads? Well, it’s hard to say, it really depends on what your needs are and what you’re trying to accomplish. I think it’s a great thing if you are combining a Perfect Audience or an Ad Role with your Facebook ads, absolutely I think it’s a good thing. When it comes down to using Qwaya or Ad Espresso it really comes down to what your needs are and what you’re trying to accomplish. Good question Scott, thanks so much for writing that in.

Adding an event code to a Facebook ads pixel after it’s been placed

Let’s see, the next question is from Johnathan and he says, “All that marketing paid is on my Word Press Blog, they use Optimize Press, so he’s adding the pixel code to the header of every page and post using Optimize Press but the issue is, how would I add the event code to my Facebook pixel … “excuse me, “say to track leads after somebody opts in when my pixel is already on every page. Isn’t the event code placed within the pixel? Thank you so much in advance.” Yeah Johnathan this is a great question, you place the new Facebook pixel on every page, the only thing that you need to do now to track conversions is you want to grab the appropriate standard event code, whether it’s like a registration, or an opt in, or leader, or whatever it is that you’re doing. Grab that specific piece of standard event code and put into the Facebook pixel on the specific opt in thank you page. Whatever page marks that conversion on your website, it’s that page that you want to ad the standard event code in.

Even though you’ve placed the base Facebook pixel there that’s great because that’s what’s allowing you to build those retargeting audiences and so forth. On the conversion page, on the thank you page, that is the page where you want to add the appropriate standard event code, okay? By the way, I mentioned this at the intro of the episode here, over on the Complete Guide to Facebook Ads Pixels tutorial article that I wrote on my site I take you through what that chart is at the standard event code. If you want to check that out, will take you right there. Good question there Johnathan.

Video ads not getting the desired results, despite layers of testing

All right we’re rolling along here. All right Peter writes in he says, “Hey Rick I hope all is well, I’ve been hearing about people getting really great results with video ads on Facebook so this past weekend I edited down our video to be short, and Facebook friendly. Here’s the result,” and he sent the link to the video. “We then created a website conversions ad using the video in the creative, we split test the ad sets to mobile and desktop to see if there was a difference in performance.” I love that, the fact that you did that Peter, good job. You use Lookalike Audience, Lookalike’s against past customers, awesome, with some minor demographic layering on top of the lookalikes. Perfect, I love it, I love it Peter.

“I believe the video should perform well given that we made it easy to quote on quote get it within the first thirty seconds or so and it doesn’t rely on audio. The CPC we are seeing is really not that great and I’m wondering what the reason could be. The CPC’s around a dollar fifty, when normally we see between fifty cents and a dollar for regular image ads. Any idea what could be holding us back? We’ve also seen our CPC going up overall over the past couple of weeks but it’s particularly bad with the new video ad. Any ideas would be welcome.”

Well Peter it is hard for me to say because I’m not actually seeing the video. One thing I would look at, I would go into your Facebook reporting and look in the video section and look at the average duration that people are watching of the video and break that down into a percentage, and also the second. That’s the first thing I would look at. I would also look at what your relevance score is for the video ad, because remember the relevance score is on a scale of one to ten, the closer you are to ten the better performing ad that you’re going to have and the lower costs that you’re going to have. If you’re in that sort of one to four range that’s low, and so you’re going to have higher cost there.

My next bit of feedback here, the way to answer this is why are you looking at CPC when your goal is website conversions? I talk a lot about this is don’t over complicate the performance stats. When it comes to reporting we should be looking at first and foremost what is the primary stat based on the objective that we’re trying to do. In this case here you said that you created a website conversions ad, so the stat that you need to be looking at is what is your cost per lead because that’s what you base the objective on. What is your cost per lead, how many leads have you gotten, and then how much money have you spent?

You said you had an issue with the cost per click, now that’s the first thing I would look at. If you’re more concerned about the cost per click then I would be trying out a clicks to website objective, all right? That’s my primary answer there. Now, to kind of whack some poetic here on why we could possibly seeing higher cost here it really comes down to what is that relevance score? If the relevance score is low then there’s a disconnect between the targeting audience and the video. Really what’s going to help us with that is when we’re looking at the stats there. What’s the average percent duration that people are watching of the video? That’s really going to tell us a lot. Maybe the call to action isn’t super strong, I don’t know, I haven’t seen the video. That’s how I would be approaching, kind of trouble shooting if you will, this video ad that you’re talking about. Good question here Peter.

In depth targeting and the difference between choosing ‘any’ and ‘all’

All right, we’re rolling here. I love questions like this. All of these questions, I don’t mean one specifically. All right Valerie writes in, “Under interest when targeting both a relationship status and a life event does Facebook show your ads to people who meet either criteria or only those who meet both criteria? For example,” which is the real life example that she says. “We target engaged people and historically have done that by choosing engaged on the relationship status area. This time we did that but also chose engaged one month, engaged three months, and engaged six months all found under the life events area. Is Facebook showing the ad to people meeting any of these criteria? For example, engaged for any duration of time, or only to those people who are engaged one month, engaged three months, engaged six months for example.” She wants to know has she mistakenly paired down her targeting for the purpose of this particular ad, the duration of their engagement doesn’t matter so she’d prefer a wider net of all engaged people within the geography that she is targeting. “Thanks for your help, Valerie.”

Great question here Valeria, so Facebook has since brought out the detail targeting, so this has kind of taken place of the, they called it the interest targeting. You can do interesting targeting, and behavior targeting, and all of those life events and so forth in the detailed targeting section now. Normally when you’re choosing, when you were choosing the life events, under the life events section, you were targeting all of those people. If you were doing this under the interest section it was or, so you would target people who were engaged for one month, or people who were engaged for three months. Under the detail targeting in the first section there you can type in, you can type in like engaged for three months, or engaged, that sort of thing. You’ll see all the options there.

There’s also now a link so what I recommend you do, there’s also now a link that says, “Narrow your audience.” What the narrow your audience thing can allow you to do is add an and in there. For example in the first field you would put … well actually for this, I’m kind of thinking out loud here as I’m answering this. What the and thing is you would say maybe they’re engaged for three months and interested in something else. I don’t know, brides magazine, or whatever it might be. If you want to hit all of those, so engaged one month, engaged three months, I would put it as an or so that you’re not saying … because you wouldn’t say engaged for one month, engaged for three months, and engaged for six months, that doesn’t really make much sense. You want or because you just said that you prefer a wider net. I would have those all under the first field of the detailed targeting section, you can put all those right in there and then it would be you’re hitting people who were engaged for one month, or engaged for three months, or engaged for six months and you’d hit all of those people.

Guys if you haven’t checked out the detailed targeting section there it’s really, really great because now you can do and, you can also exclude audiences. For example, off the top of my head you could say, “I’m interested in social media examiner and Ink magazine, but exclude the people who are interested in entrepreneur magazine.” Something like that, pretty cool stuff, you can get really, really targeted now.

Selling a streaming workshop with Facebook ads

All right moving along, we’ve got two more questions to hit here. Hashmatulla says, “I’m freaking loving your webinar series, so much awesome. Info, I’m excited for the next episodes, quick question if you don’t mind. Would selling a streaming workshop through Facebook ads be effective? What I mean is instead of sending them to a webinar registration page or content page, then the webinar, then selling your product on the webinar you ask them to purchase the streaming workshop because it’s full of great content right from the Facebook ad. Would that work or not?”

Hashmatulla this is a great question, and I get that would that work or not question a lot. Really, I have no idea meaning it could work and maybe it doesn’t work, it all depends on a lot of different factors here. However if you’re running an ad to cold traffic, meaning people who don’t necessarily know who you are and you’re trying to get them to purchase something right off the bat, that’s pretty hard to do. They don’t know who you are and, you know, for someone to take out their credit card and give you their money when they don’t even know who you are, that’s kind of a big task, that’s a hard thing to accomplish. I’m not saying it’s impossible, but it’s a hard thing to do.

If it’s warmer traffic it’s people who are on maybe your email list, or people who have visited your website and you’re retargeting those people. Yeah, depending on what the price of the streaming workshop is you could try that out. I like what you’re doing here but I would say if you’re going to test this out, test it to warm traffic, okay? I think it’s going to be difficult for you to do for cold traffic, but again, not impossible and it depends on a lot of different things here like the price, and the specific targeting, and the offer, and all that type of stuff. If you’re going to test this out I would test this to warm traffic first.

Best practices to get good results with video ads

All right here last question, we’ve been going for a little while here. I love these questions, great questions. Carole says, “Hey Rick I’ve tried Facebook ads a few times with little success, last week I decided to go big, in quotes, and try video ad. It’s a short video, about thirty seconds, with no words, just video animation and a quick summary on slides at the end plus a call to action. I’m still tweaking on the targeting so I might have challenges there too. So far after a week I have no conversions, it’s okay though to me I’m still experimenting so I didn’t expect a jackpot right from the start.” I love that mindset Carole.” It also helps establishing a baseline to go from,” yes, “However I see many other stats about the video and although I don’t have any conversions maybe the stats can tell me something about the video, or the targeting so that I can tweak further. I have no idea what’s good, or bad, or expected, or definitely out of the norm, in quotations.”

“For example, thirty percent of the impressions are viewed for more than ten seconds, ten percent have viewed fifty percent of the video, four percent viewed to it’s completion, and there are more stats. What do these stats say? Is ten percent good or bad? Is it average, or not very good? Does it mean that the ad is still doing something despite no conversions, or should the conversion be the only meaningful metric and the rest is vanity? Thanks for pointing me in the right direction,” says Carole.

This is such a great question, I’m so glad Carole that even with you just starting out here you are actually looking at the reporting stats and the metrics that Facebook gives us, and using these stats to try to make some decisions about your ad, which is exactly what you need to be doing, I love it. My first question Carole is what is the objective that you are using for this ad? You said that you didn’t have any conversions so I’m assuming that your goal is conversions, I’d want to make sure you’re using the website conversions objective for this ad, and not video views. Again, we’re choosing our objective based on whatever we want from Facebook. If we want conversions even though we’re using a video, we want to be using website conversions. If we want to get traffic to our website, clicks to website. If we want people just to simply watch our video and you don’t really care about a whole lot else, then video views is the objective. That’s the first question, I’d want to make sure that you’re using website objectives … using the objective website conversions as your objective for this.

Now with it being thirty seconds you know, with no words but just video and thirty percent of the people are viewing it for more than ten seconds, well my question … ten percent viewed half, or more, that’s pretty low at ten percent. Granted I don’t know how much money you spent on this, meaning I don’t know what your reach was on this or anything like that. I also don’t know where your call to action was, so if the call to action was at the very end and only ten percent of the people are viewing fifty percent of the video, lots of percents here. Then not many people, ninety percent of the people are not even getting to the call to action. That wouldn’t surprise me that you haven’t had any conversions there.

These stats are telling you that there’s a disconnect between people are watching the video, and the targeting audience. I would encourage you to look at your relevance score at the ads level to see what that is, again it’s on a one to ten scale, the higher the better. If it’s a low relevance score which I’m guessing it is, then I recommend changing things up. Maybe what Facebook likes, meaning the people on Facebook when it comes to video is if you can, I know that this is harder for a lot of people including myself, getting in front of the camera first and then if you don’t want to stay in front of the camera for the whole time for the video ad at least start off in front of the video, or in front of the camera and then shift over to the slides. People, remember the mindset of people on Facebook, why they’re there in the first place. It’s a very personal platform and people are sharing with their friends and family and stuff like that. Getting in front of and letting people see you on video is very, very helpful when it comes to video ads.

I’m not saying it’s the end all be all because slide type video ads can work extremely well as well, but that could be something that you might want to try out. Basically Carole from the stats I’m looking at here I would recommend number one, looking at your relevance score, seeing what that relevance score is, making sure that you’re using the objective website conversions, and then you want to be changing things up here a little bit with the video. Not many people are watching a whole lot of the video, so that either comes down to sort of alignment with the video and the targeting audience that you have. The relevance score is going to help you figure that out, and then also look at what the content of the video itself is.


All right guys that is all of the questions that we’re going to cover today, we’ve been going for a little while here actually. I get into this stuff, I go a little bit long winded on these answers because I love the Q&A episodes.

Coming up on the podcast we’re going to get back into some more case studies where a holistic health practitioner named Becky Moulden is going to join me. Becky spent about three thousand dollars on Facebook ads over a six month time period where she was promoting her certification program. From that three thousand dollars she made thirty thousand dollars in sales. In the next episode we’re going to break it all down for you, everything that she did to 10x her ad spend. A lot of fun coming your way here in the Art of Paid Traffic, so until then keep testing your paid traffic to find out what works for you and your business and then do more of what’s working. I’ll see you in the next episode.

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