Local Instagram Photos Spike Coffee Chain’s Facebook Ad Performance

Service repurposes consumer and brand pics

MomentFeed is debuting a service that lets retail marketers systematically repurpose Instagram photos as creative for locally targeted Facebook ads. The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf has been testing the system since fall, running ads with store-specific photos from 179 locations from San Francisco to Washington, D.C.

"The ads are getting about a 10 times higher click-through rate compared to the retail average of Facebook ads," said Robert Blatt, MomentFeed CEO. "They are personalized. With so many of Facebook's ads being delivered via mobile, it's important that the ads don't feel like spam."

The system pools together images that are either part of a store's Instagram account or from consumer pics that are tagged with the store's location. (The latter images, importantly, are only available if the consumer who posted the photo has his or her privacy module set to public). The marketer can then choose an image for the ad. Via MomentFeed, ad copy will be automatically generated based on pre-loaded information such as the neighborhood, cross streets and store manager's name. At the same time, the marketer can tailor the ad when inputting the offer (e.g., 20 percent discount). The news feed promo will then be delivered to Facebook users in the locale.

"So what shows up in the Facebook News Feed isn't just, 'Hey, come in for a free cappuccino,'" Blatt explained. "Instead, it can say, 'Hi, I'm Alberto, I'm your barista, on the corner of Wilshire and Main at the downtown location. And I will pour you a free cappuccino.'"

The CEO said retailers can manage the local campaigns from their national headquarters, allowing brands to avoid rogue Instagram-based ads by individual stores. MomentFeed is a Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer, and created the system on the social media company's platform. The ads can also be posted on local Facebook pages for individual stores via MomentFeed. Many chains have a Facebook page for each store, Blatt explained, and his system helps them manage such fragmentation.

"And it lets them optimize where to put marketing dollars at the store, the city, the regional or the national level," Blatt said. "Even in particular regions, you find different demographics from neighborhood to neighborhood. So the messages can be suited to the different demos you serve."

The exec said MomentFeed clients Lorna Jane and Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville are starting to use the ads system for their locations.

Meanwhile, the product development expands the Santa Monica, Calif.-based firm's Facebook-based service offering outside the realm of organic marketing tools.