Facebook Ads. Sponsored Stories. Promoted Posts. There are plenty of options for advertising on the world’s most popular social network (and second most popular website).
Now, there’s Sponsored Results - the latest advertising option from Facebook.
Sponsored Results launched in August, and work more similarly to Google AdWords in that you bid on key words and phrases. The interesting thing is that it appears you are allowed to bid on other brand names or even irrelevant terms.
So wait - You can bid on competitors? Other related brands? Britney Spears? It appears so.
Take the search we did today for ‘Obama’. You’d expect the President’s page to appear as the top search result, right?
Looks like Romney is using Sponsored Results!
(For the record, when we searched for Mitt Romney, CNN’s politics app and Paul Ryan’s Page appear as the top Sponsored Results.)
Although the practice of bidding on competitor’s brand terms in Google AdWords is fairly common, we’ve found that the practice rarely garners much of a result. Unless you mention these brand terms all over your own website, you’re likely to get a low Quality Score from Google, and your ad will rarely be shown anyway.
According to AllFacebook.com, the performance on Sponsored Results ‘is stupidly good’ - with higher click thru rates and lower cost per click than newsfeed or mobile ads. However, the volume of search is much lower, especially if you try targeting by gender, location, age or interest, like you would regular Facebook Ads.
The number of advertisers using Sponsored Results is still small, but look for the option to advertise with Sponsored Results to come soon via Facebook’s Power Editor.
This is one instance where it will pay to be an early adopter. The waters are still relatively uncrowded and sponsorships are somewhat unexpected, but as the number of advertisers using Sponsored Results increases, it’ll be harder to make an impact on a budget.
Danielle Hohmeier is the Online Marketing Manager at Atomicdust. She writes about marketing and design in the digital world, with a focus on marketing convergence and social media.