Where Eagles Fly optimizes Facebook and Instagram for content, streaming, marketing, and audience creation for both the expedition and related fine-art gallery websites. Facebook provides powerful audience-building capabilities unavailable on any other streaming or social media platform. Their highly advanced, artificial intelligence-based back-end fuses user data with a comparative-matching algorithm to support a highly effective marketing platform that is easily trained to seek out prospective fans with which to create a huge audience for the production.
I created a series of marketing test campaigns to determine the potential of generating interest and raising a substantial audience for the production. The empirical results of this test are comprehensively detailed in the following review, here is a summary of one such test I ran:
SUMMARY OF METHODS
SUMMARY OF RESULTS
The conclusion is that Facebook is a powerful tool for creating and maintaining an ardent, grassroots audience for this production.
The following overview provides empirical data that supports these findings and it is reasonable to conclude that a comprehensive marketing campaign will create a huge audience for all the different production elements of Where Eagles Fly.
IT’S ALL ABOUT THE AUDIENCE
When using the Facebook/Instagram platform it is crucial to understand exactly how individual users are categorized for audience inclusions.
There are theories that Facebook has a huge set of 98 standard “normal” markers … And while they will not provide this list, it is also understood that they identify trackable behavioral traits far beyond those 98 points.
Programatically, when a user is on the Facebook platform, the algorithm behaviometrically tracks every single movement made on the platform… from the manner in which they scroll, down to the tiniest micro-detail such as pause-time, loiter-time, backup, fast pass, click-thru, play-thru, along with direct interface responses such as comments and likes etc. The algorithm is so fine-tuned it can differentiate between two people using the same account… say, husband and wife… father and son, brother and sister, etc. This activity-based data compiles a highly accurate psychological make-up of every user!
The algorithm data-mines this combination of normal markers and behaviometric traits to implement homophilic matching which categorizes and links users across a myriad of intricate groupings. This ability to identify, link, and track commonalities across such vast and seemingly diverse groups of people is extraordinarily powerful… as it provides an ability akin to rapidly finding multiple needles in multiple haystacks, again and again…!!
Facebook provides access to this huge and insightful collection of highly detailed user characteristics via a robust and intuitive suite of marketing tools provided through its Business Manager Interface and its many sub-applications. The following image is of the Audience Insights interface that is used to design custom and lookalike audiences that can be saved and refined over time.
CREATING A TARGET MARKET DEMOGRAPHIC
Facebook uses data clustering to mine the relational commonality of all users to provide direct targeting of specific user sets (audiences). This is where their use of homophilic psychology comes into play… “Birds of a Feather Flock Together“.
It all begins with identifying Facebook users that could potentially gravitate naturally to Where Eagles Fly (sans advertising)… This is done through the Audience Insights interface (algorithm) by creating “lookalike audiences” comprised of users whom the algorithm has already identified as ardent fans of various interests, geographic locations, celebrities, popular culture, existing films, TV series, events, and activities that align with the values and traits associated with Where Eagles Fly.
This process yielded a large pool of potential candidates spread across 56 different audience sets totaling 209,760,000 viewers based in the USA. It is not difficult to imagine these being an audience for Where Eagles Fly…One must be creative in designing the target audiences as there is a wide variety of linked clusters and not all are apparent. For instance, some audiences are stand-alone such as “Planet Earth TV Series” with a built-in audience of 1,600,000 while others are a combination of smaller audiences such as “Adventure Nature Films” at 2,900,000 comprises audiences from 3 similar films; “Call of the Wild”, “The Revenant” & “Into the Wild”.
Targeted prospective users are algorithmically selected due to audience categorization and their propensity to be naturally attracted to Where Eagles Fly. Once candidates are identified, it is extremely important they are served advertisements in a way that allows the user to “organically discover” the content.
Users must stumble upon the ad/content just as they would with their normal content viewing choices and most importantly, it must not be seen as an advertisement and risk being immediately ignored and discarded. Something difficult to overcome with “Sponsored” affixed to the top left of the content.
This involves 2 very powerful practices…
1) Creating compelling ad/content that incorporates the concept of “Pattern Interrupt”
2) Serving that ad/content to specifically targeted users in a way that appears like an “Organic Discovery”
Pattern-Interrupt is a Neuro-Linguistic Programming technique used to break the usual pattern of response and form a new line of thinking. This concept holds true for social media marketing and can be used to compel users to engage differently than they usually would. Users develop rigid browsing patterns when scrolling Facebook and Instagram feeds, however, properly formatted ad/content can break that scrolling pattern to redirect/capture their attention, focusing it onto Where Eagles Fly.
By creating ad/films that in no way resemble advertisements, our content holistically attracts algorithmically targeted prospective users who are deemed most likely to appreciate the adventure and danger of flying in remote, wilderness places, and who love the raw beauty found in such environments… and seeing this in the first 10 seconds compels them to watch more… then more…..
There are three ways we use Pattern-Interrupt for marketing… the first is by providing exciting and engaging content at the beginning first few seconds of the ad. 10 seconds maximum is all the time available to convert users into potential audience members before they lose interest and move on… therefore an absolutely crucial consideration is the concept of placing exciting enticing information at the head of the ad/film. The user needs to understand exactly what the content is all about immediately, at first sight, to be enticed to stick around for the entire play length.
And this is where our second Pattern-Interrupt comes into play… Ad/films that are a full two minutes long! Unheard of! Facebook officially recommends to expect that video ads on Facebook and Instagram will average only about 15 seconds or less… so this is shocking to users that are viewing this ad/film. Though it clearly says “Sponsored” in the upper left-hand corner of the content, it is bewildering because this is not a normal advertisement. User reactions are amazing… more on this further down.
This image shows the Facebook Ad Manager, with the ad/film I created for this campaign. This has proven to be a very powerful pattern interrupter.
The third and crucial part of the Pattern Interrupter is the headline or statement that accompanies the ad/film… Using an audacious claim grabs attention; “Nobody Films Wilderness Like This!!” exudes stark braggadocio by making a bold statement that challenges users to check it out.
These three combined elements deliver a very successful Pattern Interrupt that compels users to share it, like it, love it, and comment on it! Very few ads get this response… Especially from a completely unknown production! More on this further down.
ORGANIC DISCOVERY – POSTS VERSUS AD PLACEMENT
Probably the most important aspect of this artificial intelligence-driven marketing platform is the ability to place the ad/film in front of targeted users at “just the perfect time” when they are primed to receive it and more prone to accept and relate to it.
When we make a normal post on Facebook or Instagram, it appears in the news feeds of anyone who has elected to follow us. This post is then time-stamped and moves linearly down the stack of never-ending posts from countless other users, getting more and more obfuscated by subsequent posts appearing after it… This means there is a very good chance the post will not get any meaningful exposure and likely will not be seen by many, and especially not by the targeted select people we need to build an audience with.
Targeted ad placement is a completely different story. Instead of firing a shotgun blast of many pellets and hoping one hits the target… this allows a very directed approach that places content directly into the path of the most qualified potential audience candidates with compellingly positive results. It is all in HOW it is placed that makes a huge difference…
The algorithm is working in real-time with our targeted prospective users… it is watching them scroll, it knows what is coming down their scroll-chain way before they do… the algorithm knows exactly when to place our ad/film right after they finish viewing content which the algorithm has determined will “link” their attention to our content in a way that seems natural, as if they have “discovered it” by stumbling on it simply by scrolling.
Now we focus on training the algorithm to seek out prospective audience candidates we can target with our audience building campaign.
TRAINING THE ALGORITHM
This diagram illustrates the algorithmic process needed to train the Artificial Intelligence Algorithm to identify prospective fans for Where Eagles Fly.
The dots represent individual users, with their separate colors representing the different categorized groupings, linked by commonalities they share… Collectively they represent the 56 targeted audience sets we created.
The green dots represent users that will watch the ad/film all the way till the end… each time this is done, it counts as a “Conversion”, which is represented by the green dots that are falling out the bottom of the dot matrix.
The algorithm needs to see 50 successful conversions to gain enough insight on each user to support a data-cluster analysis that determines commonalities between these 50 users. Once the algorithm has identified these commonalities it then continuously refines itself by identifying users for an additional 50 conversions. Each of these 50 conversions equals 1 cycle, the grey dots at the bottom represent each completed cycle.
To test the ad/film we ran a 24-hour campaign on February 29 during which it was served to 22,506 users on Facebook and Instagram. 4,741 users (appx 23%) watched the ad/film all the way to the end for a successful conversion. According to standard results, in most cases, this initial cycle of 50 conversions can take up to 3 days to achieve but our ad/film campaign only required 33 minutes to achieve 50 conversions! a good sign…
Facebook analytics reported an “Above Average” score on all 3 of the important Facebook marketing metrics; Quality Ranking, Engagement Rate Ranking, and Conversion Rate Ranking. The test netted 94 conversion cycles.
The algorithm continuously refines over time, gaining deeper insight into what makes up our “perfect prospective candidate”. Becoming more and more adept at extending the homophilic processes to identify prospective fans the data on our prospective target audience is baked and the algorithm is now primed to support a very large audience-building campaign.
The results of this test were used to build a month-long test-marketing campaign to provide empirical data to support a full-blown campaign to Where Eagles Fly to the Facebook / Instagram community at large.
LAUNCHING AN EXPLORATORY MARKETING CAMPAIGN
To test the efficacy of our campaign strategy and ad/film format, and to gain a better understanding of the algorithmic ability to successfully identify qualified prospective “fans” for our Where Eagles Fly audience, a test campaign was launched to determine how many conversions could be accomplished by serving the ad/film to 1,000,000 Facebook users or for 30 days, whichever came first. It took 27 days to complete to reach 1 million.
To review the two ads utilized in the test please go here.
The ad/film was placed by the algorithm in front of 1,058,968 users (listed as impressions). 780,287 users interacted with it, either watching a few seconds or clicking on the “Learn More” button to be taken to the website or clicking on the post link back to the Where Eagles Fly Facebook Page. 202,099 users viewed the ad/film until the end.
The results of this campaign provided empirical data that illustrates clearly what this ad/film campaign delivers.
The following are the results as seen in the Facebook Ad Manager beginning at the bottom of the first image;
*This was done to see if it altered reception of the ad/film because now it looked even more like an advertisement… it did not, and the conversion rate remained exactly the same. Nor did it affect the cost per conversion, as that too remained the same.
** This was a test to determine what would happen using a different ad/film but formatted the same. This was also to check if the first ad/film was an anomaly. Running 24 hours, with a tiny budget of $10.38. It returned the same conversion rates with the exception that it cost less per conversion!
*** This test was undertaken when we reached 1 million users on April 26th, to determine if a statistical difference would occur by serving the ad/film to one single audience from our set of 56 Audiences, instead of the combined set we had run all the tests against. In this test, the target audience was made up of fans from the TV Series “Duck Dynasty”. The results from this test were identical, to the letter to the results garnered from the larger audience sets. This clearly illustrates the algorithm has baked a very strong audience identification formula and that our ad/film format works! Unequivocally…
This next image pulled during the last 24 hours of the campaign shows the “Above Average” score on all 3 of the important Facebook marketing metrics; Quality Ranking, Engagement Rate Ranking, and Conversion Rate Ranking.
These next two images show how the twin ad/films appear on Facebook. Although an advertisement, the manner in which it is placed on users’ feeds makes it impossible to distinguish from normal posts, unlike Instagram placements of the same ad/film.
This first of the pair has 220,051 views and has been shared 209 times… with 623 users leaving a “like, wow, or love” and 16 users actually leaving a positive comment… for an ad!! I have rarely if ever seen users leaving positive The results from this test are impressive, to say the least. These images perfectly sum up the campaign results…
To watch and compare both versions of this ad/film, click the image above and below for the different versions… The only difference is the soundtrack.
The following image is the other version of the pair and it has been viewed 212,867 times and shared 122 times and another 450 users left a “like, wow or love” plus 18 left comments. Interestingly, the combined views of these two ad/films equal 432,918 views… while Facebook analytics reports 202,099 unique conversions… this means that 230, 819 views were replays… meaning prospective fans watched it more than one time! That is awesome…
What is funny about this image is the comment I opened so you can see what it is… as the user shared this to Vice Magazine in response to a query where Vice asked viewers how they were spending their time at home! They commented… “good weed and scenic views” and linked to this ad/film!
When the ad/films run they are considered a”dark Post”, meaning you cannot find it anywhere on the Where Eagles Fly official Facebook page. But when they build up as many views are we are achieving, then it helps to post them on the official page so that they can be viewed repeatedly. The fact that the ad/films already have so many views likes/loves/wows and shares will prompt people to view it and share it even more… Funny how that works!!!! The plan is to post these ad/films on the Facebook page when we are ready to begin the marketing campaign again.
A NOTE ABOUT FACEBOOK AD AUCTIONS
Facebook auctions their ad placements… and as with any auction there is always a winner, but with Facebook, the winner is not necessarily determined by the highest bid. Facebook uses all 3 marketing metrics; Quality Ranking, Engagement Rate Ranking, and Conversion Rate Ranking, to determine how valuable the content is to Facebook.
Selling ad space is important to Facebook but keeping people from leaving Facebook is more important. So advertisements that ask users to leave Facebook are down-valued against those that do not. Our ad/films do not ask users to leave the platform, in fact, we want them to remain engaged and watch the film all the way through till the end. Facebook’s ad placement algorithm continuously gives our ad/films preferential treatment that repeatedly delivers prime ad placement for much less per conversion because our ad/films have such high user engagement and conversions.
BUILDING AN OPTIMIZED AUDIENCE
While running these marketing campaign tests, there is another sub-process that is happening in the background, and that is the development of an optimized audience set. As we serve our ad/films to the full set of 209 million Facebook users across 56 Audiences, the users that watch the films all the way till the end and then replay them, share them, comment on them and follow the link to the website, are siphoned from the main audience list and become part of our optimized audience.
These users are then specifically targeted for our full “membership campaign” which seeks to convert these users into ardent fans of Where Eagles Fly. Once placed in the optimized audience, users are available for direct targeting in our Fan Membership Campain, outlined in this next image.
This Fan Membership Campaign is a highly specific marketing exercise that has 2 phases; nurturing and permissions… based on established marketing psychology, this process focuses on building meaningful relationships with prospective candidates with the goal of converting them into ardent fans.
The ad/films presented in the Fan Membership campaign are in the same format as our introduction ad/films. The first one will be the “Sacred Two Medicine” film we used as a test… to review this film please go here. This film is presented on the very page the ad/film will link directly to. This brings the user off of Facebook and into the Where Eagles Fly website.
REACTIONS TO OUR AD/FILMS
An interesting phenomenon is the interaction users display with our ad/films. It is highly unusual for users to comment, like/love/wow and share advertisements, yet they are doing so with our ad/films. The comments are rather wonderful and show clearly that users are willing to become fans. Here are samples from the Facebook ad/film placements;
And these are samples from the Instagram ad/film placements;
These clearly show that users are compelled to engage with this content! Even though they realize it is an advertisement, they still enjoy it!
TRACKING USERS FROM FACEBOOK ONTO THE WEBSITE
In the following image of the Facebook Pixel event monitor interface, we are able to view the different devices visitors from Facebook (users) are accessing the website from…
And in this image, we can see the different domains they went to from the Where Eagles Fly Facebook Page.
This last image is also from our Facebook Ad Manager and details the demographics of our marketing efforts to date. This clearly illustrates who our audience is;
ASSOCIATIVE STRUCTURE BETWEEN WHERE EAGLES FLY & FACEBOOK/INSTAGRAM
This image illustrates how the Where Eagles Fly website, the Zedekiah Gallery website, and the two official Facebook pages, Instagram profiles, and online sales channels are linked.
Ok, this wraps up the Facebook Marketing overview of the presentation. There is a great deal of information unincluded in this presentation simply due to a lack of space. If further information is required please ask and it will be provided.