Tag: Facebooks

September 29, 2020

Facebook’s Removing its 28-Day Attribution Model for Conversions from Ads

Facebook has announced that it’s removing its 28-day attribution window option for Facebook ads, which will mean that advertisers will no longer be able to track direct actions based on their campaigns over a longer period.

Facebook’s attribution models enable advertisers to measure specific responses to their campaigns, based on rules set by the advertiser. 

“For example, if you were to select ‘purchase’ as your conversion, and apply this default attribution model and attribution window, your reporting will reflect purchases that can be attributed by Facebook to the last ad click that happened within 28 days prior to purchase or the last ad impression that occurred within 1 day of purchase, whichever happened last.”

Facebook attribution models

Essentially, attribution models use specified touchpoints in your Facebook advertising process in order to provide more specific insights on your chosen response metric. This, in some ways, enables marketers to glean more info on the actual impact your ads have had, based on that focus element.

But now, that capacity will be limited. As reported by Search Engine Journal, Facebook has been contacting advertisers directly to inform them of the change, explaining that:

“Upcoming digital privacy initiatives affecting multiple browsers will limit business’s ability to measure people’s interactions across domains and devices. Among those limitations is the ability for businesses to attribute conversion events back to an ad over longer attribution windows.”

So, due to changes in data tracking policy, Facebook will no longer be able to offer a 28-day window, and will instead be limited to a 7-day overview of direct response performance.

The change will likely only impact advanced Facebook marketers and those operating large scale campaigns, while it will also effect automated systems which determine Facebook ad spend based on specified events. 

The changes will take effect from October 12th, though all historical data will be available until that date. If you’ve used attribution models in the past, it may be worth downloading your data to keep track of historic performance.

Free Speech Social Media Platform

September 25, 2020

Apple Grants Temporary Waiver of its 30% Fee on Funds Raised Through Facebook’s New Paid Events Option

Last month, Facebook launched a new paid events option in order to provide another way for businesses to generate income amid the COVID-19 crisis, and in replacement of IRL functions.

Facebook paid events

At the time, Facebook highlighted its opposition to Apple’s revenue approach, which meant that it would need to pay 30% of any funds raised through the option to Apple for any event on an iOS device.

“For transactions on the web, and on Android in countries where we have rolled out Facebook Pay, small businesses will keep 100% of the revenue they generate from paid online events. We asked Apple to reduce its 30% App Store tax or allow us to offer Facebook Pay so we could absorb all costs for businesses struggling during COVID-19. Unfortunately, they dismissed both our requests and SMBs will only be paid 70% of their hard-earned revenue.”

This is just one of several criticisms Facebook has shared publicly in regards to Apple’s 30% in-app charge – but in this instance, Apple has actually decided to change its stance and give Facebook more leeway to help struggling businesses.

As reported by TechCrunch:

“Today, Facebook is announcing a reversal on Apple’s part: Online event fees will be processed through Facebook Pay, without Apple collecting its 30% cut, meaning businesses will receive all of the earnings from their online events, minus taxes.”

That may be a bigger win than it initially appears. 

Various companies have joined in the recent criticism of Apple over its in-app fee structure, the most high-profile of which being Epic Games, which has decided to take its fight against Apple to court over its 30% fee being applied to in-app purchases in its popular game Fortnite.

Apple has suspended Fortnite from The App Store, and is investigating further penalties, after Epic refused to keep paying, instead opting to charge its users less for in-app purchases on other platforms. 

Epic’s argument is that Apple has no stake in such purchases once the app has been downloaded, with The App Store no longer playing a role in the transaction. With the 30% fee removed, Epic argues that it can better serve its audience with lower charges, facilitating business growth and expansion, which is being limited by Apple’s policies.

As noted, Facebook has also aired its grievances about Apple’s approach on several fronts.

Last month, Facebook also released a new version of its Facebook Gaming app, which it was forced to revise on iOS due to Apple’s classification of in-app functions. Facebook has also clashed with Apple over in-app notifications, through which it sought to alert users to Apple’s 30% fee. Apple refused any such notification, standing form on its long-held position on its process.

Given this, Apple’s decision in the case of Facebook’s paid events option is a significant step, and shows that Apple may have at least some flexibility in how its regulations may be applied. Though it’s only temporary – Apple has said that the events fee removal will only be in place till December 31st, and it won’t apply to gaming creators.

Still, maybe it’s a sign that Apple is reconsidering such, which could bode well for Epic Games in its ongoing battle with the company. But probably not. Any ground Apple gives up in any isolated case will have potential implications for other apps looking to implement similar, and Apple could lose billions in fees if it cedes too much to pressure on this front.

As such, it may be up to a court to finally decide whether Apple’s charges are anti-competitive – but still, from right now, people running paid events on Facebook can generate more income from such via iOS.

Worth noting in your planning.

Free Speech Social Media Platform

September 24, 2020

Facebook’s Oversight Board Set to be in Place Before the US Election

After almost two years of development, Facebook’s new Oversight Board, a group of experts in a range of fields that will help the platform make more informed decisions on what should and should not be allowed to be shared across its network, now looks set to begin hearing cases ahead of the US Election in November, after initially saying that it would not be ready in time.

Back in July, in response to rising controversy around a post from US President Donald Trump, the Oversight Board said that:

The post in question at the time was this one, which many believe provoked increased tensions within the community during the #BlackLivesMatter protests.

Trump post on Facebook

This specific post was also the key driver behind the Facebook advertiser boycott in July, which has lead to ongoing questions about Facebook’s capacity to make content decisions. 

Trump also posted the same comments to Twitter, which did take action, flagging the tweets for violating its rules against glorifying violence, and that created an immediate inflection point, showing that while Twitter was willing to make the tough call, Facebook, which has many more users, and is much more influential, was, for whatever reason, not willing to take that extra step

In defending its decision, Facebook has repeatedly referred to the coming Oversight Board as a means to give it more insight and capacity to make better calls in such cases. But again, Facebook’s been developing the Board since January 2019, and with the US Election fast approaching, which will likely see Facebook once again have to make tough decisions on should and should not be allowed on its platform, many have called for it to get the Oversight Board up and running now, ahead of the campaign peak.

Evidently, Facebook has heard those requests.

As per the Oversight Board:

We are currently testing the newly deployed technical systems that will allow users to appeal and the Board to review cases. Assuming those tests go to plan, we expect to open user appeals in mid to late October.” 

It does seem like it’s taken a very long time to get the process moving, with the initial appointments to the group announced back in May. Facebook says that it’s had to train board members and set up the systems in order to enable them to hear cases. But of all the times were Facebook needs such a mechanism in place, the 2020 US Election seems like the peak, the time where its decisions will be increasingly consequential – and again potentially divisive.

As such, it’s good to see Facebook looking to get the board in place quickly. How much impact the board will have in the end is hard to say – while Facebook has said that it will commit to actioning the board’s recommendations in specific cases, Facebook won’t be obliged to make subsequent policy changes based on the same findings. 

“Facebook is committed to implementing the board’s decision on individual pieces of content within seven days, as outlined in the bylaws. Facebook will also assess the technical and operational feasibility of applying the decision to identical content with parallel context, as explained in the bylaws.” 

Still, that should mean that in cases like the above post, the Oversight Board, which is made up of a diverse range of experts, will weigh in and help Facebook make a call.

The Oversight Board says that it expects to decide on each case, and for Facebook to have acted on its decisions, within a maximum of 90 days.

There are various concerns around the US election, with President Trump once again refusing to assure a peaceful transfer of power, in the case of him losing the poll, at a press conference this week. 

The concern is that, if Trump loses, he could use social networks to incite violence among his supporter base by questioning the official result. Of course, that’s dependent on Trump losing in the first place, but this is just one of the scenarios where Facebook could be put in a difficult position in deciding what to allow, and what to take action on, with respect to political speech.

The Oversight Board will improve its capacity on this front, and could be a key tool in Facebook’s process of improving its decision making, expanding its perspective beyond the company as it seeks to find the right balance.  

Free Speech Social Media Platform

September 23, 2020

Facebook’s Removing its Restrictions on Text Content in Facebook Ad Images

This is a significant update for Facebook Advertisers. According to reports, Facebook is removing its restrictions on ads which include more than 20% text in the main image.

As shared by social media expert Matt Navarra, Facebook is contacting advertisers direct to inform them of the update, explaining that:

“…we will no longer penalize ads with higher amounts of image text in auctions and delivery.”

We’ve asked Facebook for further confirmation, but as per the above note, the platform is currently in the process of updating its documentation to reflect this update – on the Facebook Help page about text in ad images, for example, it now says:

Facebook text in ad images

A previous version of this overview outlined the specific ad limits:

“To create a better experience for viewers and advertisers, ads that appear on Facebook, Instagram, and the Audience Network are screened based on the amount of image text used in your ad. Based on this review, advertisements with a higher percentage of image text may not be shown. Please note that exceptions may apply to certain ad images. For example, exemptions apply to book covers, album covers and product images.”

The rule, as you can see, was pretty clear – ads with too much text in their images would not be approved.

Facebook even provided a Text Overlay tool to check if that your ad aligns with the 20% restriction.

Facebook text overlay tool

That tool is also no longer available, as Facebook looks to ease back its text in ad image restrictions.

Facebook’s long-held text restrictions in ad images have caused major headaches for many advertisers, requiring significant, specific reformatting of ad images in order to align with Facebook’s ad rules. At times, Facebook’s enforcement process in this respect has also been flawed, so it’ll be a relief to many to see those limits taken away.

Why did Facebook have the text limit at all?

Over the years, Facebook has repeatedly noted that Facebook and Instagram users dislike ads with too much text in the main image, so it’s restricted such seemingly to improve the general user experience.

Facebook did. however, change its ad text rules back in 2018, which enabled marketers to include more text in their ads, but their ad reach would be restricted as a result, relative to how much you exceeded the limit (this is reflected in the image above).

This new update, apparently, removes any reach restriction for this, meaning that ads with more than 20% text in the main image will be displayed, as normal, and will reach the same amount of people as any other Facebook ad. As you can see in the official explanation, Facebook still maintains that ad images with less than 20% text perform better, and recommends that advertisers “keep your text short, clear and concise in order to get your message across effectively”.

But if you include more text in your ad image, your ad will run, and could theoretically reach just as many people as any other campaign, depending on your approach.

We’ll update this post with more information from Facebook as it’s provided.

Free Speech Social Media Platform

September 10, 2020

Facebook’s Newest Consumer Trends: What Your Brand Needs to Know