As all events these days, the Facebook Marketing Summit 2020 was in full grip of the Covid-19 pandemic. Turned fully digital, we were in the convenient situation of leaning back in our remote office chairs and listening to the (marketing wise) most important topics to Facebook. Those were quite diverse, however we want to focus on one particular issue in this blog post: "discovery commerce". Under this term Facebook is fusing multiple topics which are happening within our behaviour as consumers as well as the commerce space.
The shift towards online shopping is happening for quite some time now and the global pandemic has simply accelerated this shift. For advertisers this is a significant disruption as it changes the consumer journey as we know it: “Instead of consumers finding their preferred products, their products are finding them.” While e-commerce comes directly in mind when thinking about online shopping, it is already established and limited on searching and purchasing through a website. Customers will mainly encounter products they already know and are actively seeking out. However, it needs way more to create demand in this new reality. That's where "discovery commerce" shines. It lets "products find people so they can discover (and potentially buy) things they are most likely to love".
To help a company’s products find the right people, Facebook is supplying a set of tools within its “discovery engine”. Those are clustered in four pillars:
“Nobody knows your customers better than you.”. In other words: If you know who your customers are (CRM, Tracking etc.) or what characteristics they have (interest, behaviour etc), Facebook is offering ways to utilize this data to target specific audiences most relevant to you.
Sophisticated Advertising Tools
“...with some help from machine learning…”. With its algorithmic power Facebook is able to utilize the various signals advertisers are getting back to constantly improve optimization and hence becomes better at “turning desire into demand”.
Engaging Shopping Experiences
“...with your own digital storefront, people can be easily moved from discovery to purchase…”. Facebook and its family of apps is already the digital place where people are engaging with your brand and products. Enabling them to nearly frictionless take the next step, offers great potential.
Secure Data Handling
As data security is being watched more carefully from various stakeholders, Facebook is highlighting the system being rooted in privacy.
Why do we find this so interesting:
First of all, it appears that someone at Facebook is closely following our blog: Having a top view, Facebook is offering its own perspective on the importance of social commerce. They are simply dressing the topic within a facebooky wording.
To be honest we believe this is quite a smart choice:
With Facebook running ads (even on competitor networks) about discovery commerce, we know they are really serious about the topic. The considerable push we can expect for social commerce in general will be great for everyone! We are excited to see what they are able to accomplish!
Stay cmmrcl.ly impactful!
Sources: 1.) https://www.facebook.com/business/c/discovery-commerce 2.) Turn on discovery commerce - Driving demand through shopping serendipity
Huge digital malls with unlimited storefronts: strength and weakness at the same time. The need to stand out from the crowd. This is a lot to process, so let us compare it to something we know and understand quite well: actual malls.
For many of us malls were a place to hang out, windowshop and of course buy products. We used to spend whole afternoons in malls, strolling through the hallways, trying to figure out which of the many storefronts is worth visiting. Changing the perspective to the shop owners. We see that they face their own set of challenges. What is best shown in the storefront to entice people to come in. Which of my products attract the most people? How to best allocate shelf space between my various suppliers? Who are the people who just windowshop and who are the actual buyers?
Social Media platforms recognize the challenges for both the consumer and the brands/shops. With their advertising capabilities they are offering tangible value to both. As a consumer I can configure what kind of advertising I want to see and get advertising that is relevant to me and as a brand/shop I can identify the people with the highest value to me and showcase them the products with the highest value to them.
The advertising possibilities on the social media platforms are constantly evolving and getting more complex. To understand what is actually possible is the first step in escaping the social storefront dilemma. As we are trying to help you navigate, we compiled some of the most important features.
Targeting - Reaching the user that is most relevant to you
This is a bold claim, however with their walled garden structure and the ability to collect user data, social media platforms are in a good position to actually meet that. All platforms have their own capabilities (with differing degrees of sophistication), but we can cluster them into 3 categories:
Ad formats - The ubiquitous storefront
Knowing the right customers is only part of the equation, as they need to be aware of the brand and products. This is where social media platforms shine. They created dedicated ad formats for specific advertising goals. From discovery and experience to consideration and purchase: users are in specific mindsets making ad formats specifically designed for those mindsets more successful. Looking at the most recent trends in social media advertising we see some interesting trends:
Algorithms - The almighty blackbox
Social media is almost a synonym for strong algorithms affecting our daily lives in 2020. In terms of advertising those algorithms are often mystified with their inscrutable ways. The platforms are of course anxious about keeping their proprietary algorithms as secret as possible. When managing many campaigns and understanding their workings though, the impact of those algorithms on the outcome is undeniable. However, as it is the case with every tool, you need to understand how it works and how it is supposed to be used. One of the key trends of the past years is the land grab by the social platforms. They requested ever more control to be passed to their algorithms and were taking it away from brands/shops. It is imperative though, that even if these autopilot systems work well, brands/shops do need to understand their workings to leverage them for their own objectives.
The social storefront dilemma is something every brand has to overcome. Getting the required visibility for one’s own brands and products is a real challenge, but with the right usage of their efficient advertising tools social media platforms are offering the right path to drive actual return!
What social platforms are offering is unprecedented in many ways: They have the place, form and tools to showcase the right brand and product to the right customer in the right way.
Stay cmmrc.ly impactful
Welcome to our blog! We are happy you found your way to us. Within this space we are covering all things social commerce: From current trends to new features, talking about everything that excites us!