Salesforce.com + Facebook = Like: How The Technology Duo Will Revolutionize Marketing By Super-Targeting Social Ads.
January 18, 2013
By Dan Mallin, Managing Partner & Justin Cox, Director of Channel Marketing at Magnet 360
Facebook is known for its massive membership – engaging an amazing 167 million Americans. That’s 54% of the population spending more than six and a half hours each month logged-in. It’s the Holy Grail for marketers: such an attractive audience, yet so difficult to reach. At least that was the case, until recently. New developments at Facebook and salesforce.com are revolutionizing marketing by enabling social ad targeting pinpointed to the specific individual.
At Dreamforce 2012, salesforce.com introduced its new Marketing Cloud. The new platform combines the best of newly acquired Buddy Media and Radian6 to create a full-service social suite for publishing, advertising, analytics, and everything in between. Salesforce.com also announced a new partnership with Facebook that creates unprecedented opportunities to integrate business intelligence with social advertising. Industry analyst Jeremiah Owyang of Altimeter Group reacted by tweeting “Big news: Salesforce now offers FB ad buying capabilities in marketing cloud. This is why they bought buddy for $600m+”, (i.) but 140 characters cannot fully describe the possibilities of this partnership.
This alliance is all about integration. Marketing Cloud’s products combined with a new type of Facebook advertising, which actually moves ads from the side of the page right into users’ newsfeeds, provides salesforce.com customers the ability to integrate CRM and Facebook data to target and deliver social advertising with unprecedented precision. Instead of targeting Facebook users based on Facebook data, or targeting CRM contacts based on business data, salesforce.com customers can now combine their business and social data to super-target their ads.
Whole New Stream
Facebook revolutionized the world of social advertising when it started offering Sponsored Stories, paid content that looks a lot like traditional Facebook posts, and nothing like traditional Facebook ads. This innovation moves Facebook ads out of the dead space on the right side of the screen and into the stream users are looking at in the first place. On top of that – literally – Sponsored Stories stay frozen at the top of the user’s newsfeed until they log in, whether that’s 10 minutes after the story is posted, or 10 days. Not surprisingly, Facebook says Sponsored Stories are getting results, delivering eight times more engagement than the old ads. That type of interaction is impressive, but those are the reported outcomes before combining the super-targeting that salesforce.com offers. Let us explain…
Unlocking Social Identities
Anybody can target Sponsored Stories by using a set of Facebook criteria, for example, age, location, or any other Facebook-collected facts. However, targeting individual people requires knowing the email and phone number the person used to register for Facebook. There are so many potential obstacles in obtaining the correct information for even the closest of business contacts. Consider how often people register with personal phone numbers and email addresses, or old Gmail or Apple addresses that are never used for anything else but logging into social media.
The answer to these problems comes through Social Key. In many ways, Social Key is one of the most exciting parts of the Marketing Cloud. What it does is uses salesforce.com’s vast stores of information (Salesforce, Buddy Media, Data.com, and others) to match names with social identities, phone numbers, and email addresses with users. This obtained information is valuable for a number of social scenarios, and is the key to unlocking the next level of access for Sponsored Stories.
Now, a business can take CRM data, match it with Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter names, and turn that into a new target list for social marketing. That creates an unprecedented level of precision, because as Facebook Vice President of Business and Marketing Partnership David Fisher said at Dreamforce, “it’s not only the right demographic, but the specific people” (ii.). The targeting of ‘specific people’ is what makes Social Key so valuable. Other CRM platforms simply cannot offer this kind of integration, because other platforms do not have Social Key, and they don’t have the same kind of strategic partnership with Facebook, as Preferred Marketing Developers.
How does it work?
Imagine the possibilities. For example, a salesforce.com customer that is already capturing website visits in CRM can easily add Marketing Cloud, Social Key, and marketing automation to set up an improved Facebook campaign that reacts to each of those web visits by sending the visitor a Sponsored Story.
Apply these same tools to an email campaign, setting up a rule that once the message is opened a Sponsored Story is sent out that complements the campaign. This simple action creates an extra layer of engagement that starts generating real-time reactions and conversations, while increasing the targeting and relevance of marketing messages in unprecedented ways.
Marketers often talk about creating conversations, but this is the first opportunity to present specific messages to specific people in social media, at scale. In essence, a message can be broadcast to thousands of people, but targeted in a way that allows marketers to know who each of those people are. Instead of sending an ad or message to 50,000 people while hoping it finds the right 5,000 people, those 5,000 people are singled-out to hit the target right in the center.
Clearly companies that already use Facebook can leverage integrated social marketing products to use it more productively, but there’s an even greater opportunity for businesses that haven’t found a fit for Facebook yet, particularly Business-to-Business companies.
Although social networks are considered a great way to connect with consumers, because those customers logging-in are obviously “people”, it’s important to remember that “people” also make the key decisions on every B2B deal. With these tools, those business “people” can be found on Facebook, and then targeted with highly relevant Facebook ads.
- A commercial printer dealer can take a list of sales contacts, use Social Key to match Facebook profiles to those contacts, and send out a Sponsored Story on a new product, or an actual invitation, before the dealership’s next sales event.
- A national company could mine CRM and contact lists before a regional sales event, and post a Sponsored Story about the event that would pop up on all contacts’ and prospects’ newsfeeds.
- Even if the contact is already a Facebook friend, a Sponsored Story is the most effective way to reach a customer or prospect because the Sponsored Story does not leave the user’s news feed until the person has a chance to see it.
The key to these opportunities is that they are limited by imagination rather than technology. Identify possible targets in any database, whether prospects, contacts, or customers, and you can tailor a message to reach them. Better yet, because these tools operate in real time, there’s the flexibility to test, react, and make the message more effective as time goes by.
The price of the entire Marketing Cloud is $5,000 per month (on an annual contract), but all of the functionalities discussed are just a small part of the platform. Any enterprise that is already using Marketing Cloud should take full advantage of all the tools, and any enterprise that’s considering making the move should add the tools to the cost-benefit analysis. Most importantly, remember that Salesforce is the only CRM platform that can provide this kind of functionality, and missing out on it means missing out on valuable opportunities.
1) Facebook advertising integrated with salesforce.com CRM won’t just change marketing, it could revolutionize advertising as a whole, providing a level of targeting and engagement that never seemed possible.
2) Businesses that aren’t already using social need to do so, because businesses that are positioned to start using these new features and functions early will have a huge competitive advantage.
3) Social isn’t just for B2C. With this level of targeting, it’s easy to create a low-cost, high-impact, super-focused campaign to any kind of buyer.
(i.) Twitter.com, Jeremiah Owyang (@jowyang): Sept. 19, 2012
(ii.) David Fischer, Marketing Cloud Product Keynote Speech, Dreamforce 2012