Facebook developing marketing mix model solution for major retailers

Facebook strives to be taken seriously as an advertising option. The company has rolled out simpler advertising methods and a Facebook for Business hub, where the social network can show what it can do for brands.

Now, Facebook wants to show what it can offer retailers in comparison to other tried-and-true advertising platforms such as TV, print and website ads. Facebook is developing and will soon launch a marketing mix model data feed for major retailers, according to Facebook Mix Marketing Lead Joshua Opoku. Facebook’s Attribution Lead, Rob Creekmore, talked about this at the Kenshoo K8 summit last week, as well.

Opoku told Inside Facebook that this will go live within the next couple weeks. A major retailer has already been using this data in their mix models to determine Facebook impact such as return on ad spend and volume per dollar spent, and Opoku said that the retailer has been pleased.

While this data feed is currently available to brands, Facebook wanted to develop something for larger companies who sell products from many different brands. Using this new data feed and through mix models, these big companies can easily see and compare metrics to what they’re doing on other avenues like print, radio and TV.

Opoku said that this will largely show the value in advertising through Facebook, as it can deliver a better return on ad spend than television, for instance. As retailers share back data with Facebook regarding other campaigns, this will also give Facebook a better idea of how their ads are performing compared to competing platforms.

Facebook’s current marketing mix model feed for brands is more tailored to consumer packaged goods companies, but Opoku said that more tech companies and other businesses are catching on. What Facebook is developing next will allow bigger retailers to go through a separate pipeline versus the traditional brand feed. This will make it possible for retailers to model at a more disaggregate level, such as by department, versus at a brand level, which is not possible given how many brands are sold at a retailer.

Facebook’s goal, Opoku said, is to give advertisers a better understanding of what their metrics mean. While many page admins champion the number of likes or people talking about that (PTAT), those numbers don’t really lead to what advertisers want — sales. By opening up a marketing mix model data feed, Facebook can more easily show advertisers the company’s ability to deliver conversions by tracking effectiveness in terms of impressions, volume per dollar spent, and return on ad spend, among others.

Using the metrics from this pipeline in marketing mix models will also allow retailers to measure the optimal spend on the Facebook platform.

Opoku told Inside Facebook that while this new platform is being used primarily for larger retailers, Facebook won’t turn away partnering in this manner with other companies who would like to see how a Facebook ad campaign stacks up against other models.

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