If I had to choose between my instinct and the billions of advertising impressions that fed Facebook’s seismic shift in available text space, I’m going to rely on the behemoth’s deep and wide sampling of our buying culture. Advertisers don’t make the rules. Consumers do. We advertisers either break ourselves upon those rules or play within them for more and better traffic to our auctions.
None of these options are inherently right or wrong. Your situation will dictate which one you use and when you use it. For many of my campaigns, I use more than one—because I’m not always fishing in the same lake for the same fish.
The longer I advertise on Facebook, the less I trust my strategic instincts and the more I lean on data. I get surprised just about every week by which ads do better than others in the same campaign.
Most of these remedies can be implemented for free. Some don’t take any additional time—just patience. All of them will increase the professionalism of your brand and quite possibly your commissions and sell-through rates. When a client doesn’t have these ducks in a row, it actually relieves some of the pressure I feel to deliver them high-performing ads. That relief comes in the truth that I charge the same fee to send crowds of people to an active marketplace as to a dead end.
You will never eliminate the risk or the guesswork of auction advertising. You can, however, make more educated guesses and better seller presentations based on captured, curated, and comparable data. If you don’t have those statistics, you’re welcome to borrow mine.
Whatever your political or even nonpolitical view of the United States Post Office is right now, I hope you’re using it effectively and efficiently. If you aren’t, that’s actually an auctioneer problem more than a USPS problem. The good news, though, is that you can be part of the solution, part of those adapting to changing marketplace conditions. While chickens run around without their heads or tell us the sky is falling, we can drive targeted traffic to what will hopefully be successful auctions.
Over the next two decades, conglomerates and aggregate sites are going to put hundreds of bid callers and even auction marketers out of business. They’re going to pay people to do this data curation work. Instead of trying to buy data, they’re going to mine their own. Those of us who follow their example will most likely be the ones in 2035 who are still advertising auctions at all.
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