March 14, 2019

FACEBOOK

FB apps were down and the web goes crazy. Pages will be able to share Stories

What happens when FB goes down? Everybody panics and moves to Twitter, right? Even Facebook crosses the border!

The issues with FB apps have now been resolved but the causes of this blackout are still unknown.

In other news, Stories are to be released for Pages too.

Facebook down, Instagram down, WhatsApp down, everything is down!

How many days have passed without Facebook having a collapse? Not so many, huh?

By now, it’s something we should be used to. However, yesterday a lot of people started panicking when they noticed that all the FB family apps were down.

Of course, many advertisers found their Business Manager inaccessible as well.

Some users claimed that the issue was related to a Distributed denial of service (DDoS)  attack, but Facebook have assured us that isn’t the case.

Currently, the outage seems to be over and there haven’t been any more updates about it.

The web is freaking out!

Moving on to your campaigns, it seems that the budget for some advertisers has been wasted.

What should you do in these situations? You can limit the damage by setting an account spend limit. This reduces the spend without pausing the ad sets.

Stories coming to Facebook Pages

Stories is one of the formats on which Facebook is betting big on. After letting regular users share stories, the social network is now testing new ways for Pages to archive and share Stories.

How can this benefit marketers?

This update could help brands experience better organic reach on Facebook, which has long been an issue with Pages.

Additionally, the chance to archive them will help marketers to analyze the results of past content and build new strategies using that data.


PPC

Decrease sales to increase your PPC earnings?

Logic dictates that more sales lead to more revenue. But maybe not…

In this post, we’ll talk about how to increase your net earnings by adjusting your bids in PPC campaigns. Also, somewhat counterintuitively, by decreasing sales.

Bid optimization

  • Tweaking bids: How should you maximize your ad spend? One strategy is to set your bid as 30-50% of your net earnings, rather than the total revenue. This leads to the ad cost being taken away from the total net margin generated.
  • Modify bid adjustments: Some users might convert differently during different times of the day. Some demographics might increase average conversion rates while others will drag it down.

Without using bid adjustments, you would have to combine highly converting users with poorly converting users and try to find some hazy middle ground between them. This is a sub-optimal way of working.

By segmenting and using bid adjustments, you can boost the ad position for high converters and reduce the bid for the low converters.

The final result is more conversions with a higher ROAS per conversion.

Decreasing sales

In some cases, decreasing sales might be the way to go.

Sounds ludicrous, right? Bear with us though. In order to have higher margins on every sale, you may need to slightly decrease their volume.

  • Raising product prices: When done correctly, this can lead to higher net earnings. It’s a balancing act though – Setting prices too high discourages sales, while setting them too low could lead to you spending more on advertising and other costs than the actual revenue generated.

You have to find that sweet spot shown in the image below.

Testing different prices is another way to go, unless you can adopt the dynamic pricing system that flight, hotel and taxi apps use.

  • Raising the AOV (average order value): If you want to avoid orders of just one or two products, you can reduce the bids on keywords, ad groups and shopping product groups if they fall under a certain AOV level. This allows you to lower your ad spend when the purchases are likely to lead to lower margins.

If you want to dive deeper into this bid optimization guide, you can check out the post here.


BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

How Unbounce reached $30M in revenue

Today we bring you the man behind Unbounce. Rick Perreault, the CEO.

He shares his experience on how Unbounce used word of mouth to drive conversions and why they decided to go upmarket. Also, how focusing on the right customer helped them grow to 15k paying customers and $30M in revenue.

Here are the key highlights from his Podcast with GrowthEverywhere:

  • How and when was Unbounce conceptualized.
  • Life before and beyond 70+ employees.
  • Touching $30M in revenue with 15,000 paying customers.
  • Why Unbounce went upmarket.
  • A people-first business and the company culture.
  • How Word of mouth drives conversions for Unbounce.
  • Their advertising strategy and revenue share program.
  • Managing company partnerships and integration partnerships with Marketo, HubSpot, and Zapier.
  • Hiring the right talent.
  • One tool that has added the most value for Rick.
  • One book Rick recommends to everyone.

Well, these are just some breadcrumbs from the 30-minute episode. You can listen to the entire podcast on Spotify or iTunes to learn actionable strategies & tactics on how you can make your business grow and mistakes to avoid during your journey.


SPONSORED

If you ever needed a reason to go to Brazil… We have the best reason of all!

You might know it as the home of samba and capoeira, the home of some of the best ever football (or soccer if you’re American) players. What you might not know is that Brazil is also home to one of the biggest affiliate conferences in the world!

Afiliados Brasil takes place between 30th May and 1st June in 2019 in São Paulo. It grew from 400 attendees in 2013 to over 3,000 last year. And this year, they will likely break through the 4,000 mark!

The WTAFF Crew will add to that number with Manu who is going to be speaking at the event. Join his keynote where he will go deep into 6 figure lessons from sending over 1M emails with an average open rate of >40% through WHAT THE AFF.

From technical setup, to strategy, to tricks for Gmail, Outlook and other inboxes – no stone will be left unturned so that you can skyrocket your email engagement for any vertical!

What else can you expect?

  • More international speakers: We can’t spoil it just yet but we can say you’ve certainly heard of them. All will be revealed soon!
  • 70+ companies exhibiting: If you ever wanted to tap into the 200M+ people market of Brazil, this is where you will find the right partners.
  • Cocktail parties on 30th and 31st May.
  • 4 stages for all things affiliate marketing packed with speeches on all 3 days.
  • The Brazilian Affiliate Awards: Recognizing the leaders of the Brazilian affiliate community!

What better way to spend the first day of summer than to visit sunny Brazil, hangout with some of the industry leaders and surround yourself with like-minded entrepreneurs?

Grab your ticket here, pack your bags and we’ll see you in São Paulo.


E-COMMERCE

Shopify updates their 3rd-party agreement. XSS Vulnerability in WordPress e-comm plugin

Shopify is releasing a new update for 3rd-party apps. And a WordPress abandoned cart plugin vulnerability too you should beware of.

Shopify updates their 3rd-party agreement

Do you use Bold Upsell, Zipify, One Click Upsell or similar apps that allow your customers to complete the check out outside Shopify?

Bad news if you do: Shopify is releasing an update that will no longer allow 3rd party apps to drive customers outside Shopify to complete the purchase.

Understandably, Shopify wants all payment processes to go through their own checkout system. Partners cannot bypass Shopify checkout unless authorized by the company in writing.

For this reason, the e-commerce company will restrict partners (the apps in question) from soliciting merchants to leave the Shopify platform.

In exchange for having access to countless merchants, they require their partners to avoid actively encouraging sellers to leave the Shopify platform.

The message is clear for app developers: If you want to be part of the Shopify ecosystem, at least let them make their commissions on sales and gather customers’ data.

What does it change for e-commerce owners?

This update was shared with developers over an email. However, as an e-commerce owner, there isn’t much you can do – It’s up to developers to adapt to this update. Changes will come and we will have to adapt.

Hopefully, they’ll find a way to work efficiently with Shopify.

WordPress Abandoned Cart Plugin leads to site takeovers

Are you are one of the 20k people using Abandon Cart Lite for WooCommerce plugin on WordPress? BEWARE!

An XSS vulnerability in the e-commerce plugin is allowing hackers to take control of WordPress websites.

Here’s an easy way to spot if your site has been infiltrated: If you see an admin account named “woousers” created on your WordPress backend, your site is probably infected.

Taking advantage of an XSS vulnerability, hackers are adding items to a cart, entering fake contact information in the checkout fields and injecting malicious JavaScript with a BitLy link in the “billing last name” field before abandoning the cart. The JavaScript then executes once an administrator logs in to view the list of abandoned carts in their WordPress dashboard.

If you’re using this plugin, be sure you’ve updated to the current 5.2.0 version and carefully review previous submissions in the database.

The latest version also scans for the email address that was registered with the malicious “woouser” account and will delete that user if found.


BING

Bing launches 3D ads

3D ads in search? Yes, you heard that right!

For once, it’s not Google either. This innovative ad format is being tested by Bing Ads to promote the new Galaxy S10 phone.

It’s the first time in search advertising that users can interact with a full-screen ad to inspect product features and details.

These ads are currently being displayed on desktop search when users search for the Samsung Galaxy S10 or Samsung S9. They aim to provide the in-store experience of getting hands-on with a device and its features in all its glory, no matter where they are.

The 3D unit expands the size of the screen and users can interact with it by rotating and zooming in on the product image to explore features. Users can also click on an image to see product details about the device.

As per Bing: “These new 3D ads, unique to Bing, herald a new era of search advertising when it comes to displaying products through desktop search since they complement and enhance the experience for consumers looking to engage with a product,”

Zoom In

Ad spaces are getting bigger than before, text characters are increasing. Google and Bing have previously tested giant banner ads and Google is currently working on the expansion of its large image driven ad format.

Well, we tried but were not able to trigger these 3d ads and there are no answers from Bing yet. Let us know what you think if you come across it.


GOOGLE

Google quietly rolling out Budget Planner tool

Google is rolling out a new Budget Planner tool to give you more insights into how changes in spending could impact campaign performance.

First noticed by ClinkDigitalMarketing, this tool can be found under the Tools –> Planning section of your Google Ads account.

Here how it works:

  • Create a budget plan based on one of the key metrics such as clicks or conversions.
  • Choose a target. This allows you to manually enter a target amount. You can also choose from “previous period” or the “same time last year.”
  • For Clicks as a key metrics, target options available are clicks, spend or average CPC.
  • For Conversions as a key metrics, target options available are conversions, spend or average CPA.
  • Once you set the above variables, it will forecast how your campaigns are expected to perform with the existing settings and how changes in spending will impact your key metric.
  • A “Compare” feature is also available. Compare tab tells you how your current settings and your forecast settings stack up against past performance.

A few things to note:

  • Like all tools, this one needs enough data to generate any insights. Hence, some of your campaigns might not be eligible for the tool if they don’t have enough historical data.
  • It doesn’t work with all bidding strategies at this point.
  • Forecasts are updated once every 24-48 hours, and they use recent campaign history as well as auction data.
  • Holidays and other seasonal traffic is also taken into account depending on business type and location.
  • These forecasts are more accurate the closer they’re generated to the start date.

Zoom In

This tool does not estimate how much budget you should start off with. However, it does provide some great insights into existing campaigns with decent data available.

If you are not using any other forecasting tool, this can be a handy one that’s worth getting acquainted with. Also, it is still being rolled out, so you might not see it in all your accounts yet.


POOLSIDE CHAT

Cool tech, (funny) business, lifestyle and all the other things affiliates like to chat about while sipping cocktails by the pool.

How NOT to deal with getting banned…

“Extreme times call for extreme measures” for this guy who got his YouTube channel removed.

In a furious rage he grabbed 3 baseball bats, got into his car and set off on a 3,000 mile road trip from Maine to California, to try and teach YouTube a lesson.

The trip itself was not without incident and ended with him getting arrested in Iowa. This is a facepalm moment if ever we saw one, and it can be used as a valuable lesson:

If your YouTube channel, Facebook ad account or whatever gets banned, don’t be stupid like this guy. Take a deep breath, and figure out where you can start from scratch.

A cool head prevails when things don’t go your way. We actually don’t know if his channel was removed for a good reason or by mistake, but it doesn’t make his actions any less stupid, lol.

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