January 31, 2012
It’s social media, right? Meaning that social context has huge influence over what gets noticed and reacted to, right?
And by “social context” I mean that you think different thoughts, and are likely to respond to different bids for your attention, on December 3rd than July 3rd — or even on Sunday afternoon than on Monday morning. In other words, seasonal events, holidays, and even the current going-ons of pop culture all have their sway when it comes to what you find relevant, interesting, and worthy of your attention. Fireworks sell a lot easier in late June and July, after all.
So why do so few Facebook Advertisers take advantage of seasonal and current events?
Even though PPC Advertisers are well aware of the need for seasonal specialization and tweaks to ad copy and landing pages, most Facebook advertisers don’t — which is why this ad stood out from the clutter when I spied it on my home page:
Here’s what I love about this ad:
First, it’s appearing right in time for Mardi Gras season, which is simply superb timing. If you live anywhere near New Orleans or the Gulf Coast, Mardi Gras is on your mind right now, which means this ad is a whole lot more relevant now than it would be in November.
Second, this ad combines the use of Image-based words, eye-guiding gestures, and story-appeal into one image. The large lettering jumps out at you, the thumbs up image is great symbolism for “liking” and also points your eyes to the assumed-to-be-raucous street party scene, made all the more intriguing by bokeh-based blur of the imagery. You can’t help but look at it more than once, thinking, “that’s gotta be the French Quarter, but what street?” Or maybe that’s just me. Granted, the image doesn’t tell much of a story, but it’s intriguing enough to compel a second look, and association-rich enough to put fans of New Orleans into exactly the right state of mind to grant the city a big ol’ thumbs up/Like of their own.
Third, the copy may not be perfect, but the call-to-action is totally aligned with the image. Plus, the ad is just asking for a Like, rather than a click-through to NewOrleans.com
Now here’s the thing, NewOrleans.com is tourism site. And really, right now is NOT when New Orleans needs help getting visitors into the city. Astonishing I know, but true, nonetheless. New Orleans needs more people to visit during the off-seasons.
But the folks running the ad know that now IS the time that people have New Orleans on their minds. Now is the time they are most likely to react to the ad. So they run a seasonal ad now to get the right to contact you via Facebook later, and then they’ll be all set when they actually have a vacation or travel package to sell in, say, October or something.
In other words, they know the power of social context on Facebook advertising success.