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A Pixel Paints a Thousand Words

A Pixel Paints a Thousand Words

Ever since Facebook launched business pages in 2007, marketing teams the world over have grappled with the challenge of proving a return on their social media investment. 


We have seen social measurement transition from likes to engagement and now find ourselves in an era where we can show the effect of Facebook in delivering certain KPIs – driving website traffic, building databases, booking tables, buying t-shirts and downloading apps, to give just a few examples. As a result, the power of social has become more evident, and the case for investing in it, more compelling. 


 
However, we believe these metrics still sell social short. Think about it. Social is a firmly mobile-first media. Across all channels, people check their newsfeeds on the go, on the bus, in between meetings, first thing in the morning, whilst watching TV. They will see some promoted content but not be able to act on it until their lunch break, later that night, the following day or at the weekend.  They then visit the website, see an email, click on a banner. All of this could be have been prompted by a post on Facebook, but most analytics will never show you that because of their attribution model. In other words, measuring social on the popular ‘last click’ model only cannot possibly do it justice.
 


We set out to prove this with one of our major retail clients – one with a strong and growing ecommerce function. With the support of their web team, we implemented a Facebook pixel on their website, the primary (but not sole) objective to track conversions. The spend of anyone who clicked on an ad and went onto make a purchase in the next 28 days would be given consideration when valuing the impact of Facebook and Instagram.


 
The results were, in a word, incredible.  The revenue generated from social ads was shown to be 170% higher than had been previously estimated using the last click model. In fact, in two months, the transactions from always-on social had almost paid for the next six month’s activity twice over.


 
Suddenly social had climbed higher up the marketing agenda and no one was more pleased to see it there than us.