Social media acquisition ha sbeen a waste of time - now what?


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a fairly long presentation covering 3 main segments
1. explaining how facebook has been a waste of time for online acquisition for igaming companies.
2. introducing the concept of ZMOT (zero moment of truth) i.e. reviews and social proof
3. what you can do to make ZOMT profitable

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Social media acquisition ha sbeen a waste of time - now what?

  1. 1. Social Media Acquisition Has Been A Waste of Time...Now What?
  2. 2. Once upon a time...
  3. 3. AffMar There was an affiliate marketeer. His name was AffMar – he was a bit manic!
  4. 4. OpMar And his friend operator marketeer OpMar – He didn’t get outside much and didn’t get enough sleep.
  5. 5. Facebook AffMar and OpMar were buddies, so they got together to have a talk about Facebook. With 750,000,000 users, they wanted to give it a big push.
  6. 8. People on Facebook More than 750 million active users 50% of our active users log on to Facebook in any given day Average user has 130 friends People spend over 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook Activity on Facebook There are over 900 million objects that people interact with (pages, groups, events and community pages) Average user is connected to 80 community pages, groups and events Average user creates 90 pieces of content each month More than 30 billion pieces of content (web links, news stories, blog posts, notes, photo albums, etc.) shared each month. “ Facebook is immense!” Facebook stats
  7. 10. Facebook looks good! “ So they are bigger than Google now!? Yes, by 'minutes spent on site' but that doesn't equate to commercial intent. Also Google is where you jump from. Facebook is where you hang out. Maybe they should just stop 'working' Google?
  8. 13. Facebook & iGaming “ So it's true iGaming is huge on Facebook?” “ Yes it looks like it...”
  9. 14. Case studies Texas HoldEm Poker
  10. 15. Texas HoldEm Poker!!!
  11. 16. “ I could build some apps and convert users to 'real' players... It's very interesting! “ I could market poker games in Facebook”
  12. 17. $$$!
  13. 18. “ OK, I'll do some research and talk to legal about this. It's obvious Facebook is where its at” Research time... AffMar “I'll ask my affiliate buddies about Facebook, I bet they have made stacks of cash already!”
  14. 19. A couple of days later...
  15. 20. OpMar wasn't so happy OpMar heard back from wasn't promising. So he called AfMar to share the news. :-(
  16. 21. Gambling ads Gambling and Lotteries Ads that promote or facilitate online gambling, games of skill or lotteries, including online casino, sports books, bingo, or poker, are only allowed in specific countries with prior authorization from Facebook. "The gambling ads cannot be purchased through the self-serve ads tool. Gambling advertisements as Facebook mentions will be available through direct sales partnership between the advertiser and the publisher requiring a monthly spend of $30,000 USD. " “ You have to get permission and they want $30K a month minimum spend?!”
  17. 22. Big Budgets “ I can advertise because I have the budget, although I've heard the conversion rates are'nt great. Anyway AffMar I think you have a problem” “ You're right, I can't punt that much before pilot testing facebook ads out.”
  18. 23. Ads not working Part of the problem is that ads on Facebook perform even more poorly than standard banner ads . Even before the jump, though, Facebook posted $1.86 billion in advertising revenues in 2010, according to eMarketer. Facebook serves up more than 50 billion banner ads per month. “ Campaign has always been bad on ROI, so this isn't good”
  19. 24. “ Facebook PPC is ok, but there isn’t a lot of volume and CPC rates are rising. Also when I want to buy something, I don't go to Facebook to price compare!” PPC not that good
  20. 25. Apps / Pages “ What about all the 'social acquisition stuff – like apps and fan pages? ” “ That’s not looking that good either unfortunately”
  21. 26. Apps Gambling Applications: ( ) Developers may operate an App displaying a gambling brand as long as: It is clear through either the branding (e.g., “[insert name of gambling company] For Fun”) or the name of the App (“[insert name of gambling company] Free Poker”) that the App is a “for fun only” game . The App does not link in any way to a gambling site . Earnings within the App can’t be cashed out in any way , including being converted into credit that may be used to gamble online or at a casino. “ It's 'fun only', no direct linking to my transactional site and users can't cash out for $$”
  22. 27. Facebook relaxes... [Facebook has] changed its policy towards apps by gambling companies in the UK, stating that they could launch non-gambling apps on the site as long as they make clear either through the branding or the name of the app that it is play-for fun, and do not allow earnings to be cashed out or converted to credit for an online gambling website or brick and mortar casino. Thus the rule changes mean a gambling company can now launch a non-gambling Facebook application and include links off the social networking site to a company blog which is promoting the operator's products. “ Facebook is making small concessions, but there is a long way to go”
  23. 28. Indirect path My App My 'soft site' My 'real site' 300,000 30,000 3,000 My 'real site' $$$$ 300 300,000 10% 10% 1% “ As you see, there is a very indirect path for new customers, even then Facebook customers are'nt great on gross win”
  24. 29. Zynga will 'rule' (probably) “ If (when) Facebook allow gambling transactions, Zynga will rule.”
  25. 30. Zynga will 'rule' (probably) “ They 'own' apps in facebook.” Monthly Active Users
  26. 31. Fan page likes “ OK, well then fan pages are cool, what about converting from them. Duck tape has 4.4m fans, then gambling sites must be really popular!”
  27. 32. Fan page likes “ Nope...People don't really 'like' normal gambling pages much.”
  28. 33. Fan page likes “ Some argue fans are worth up to $136 each, but I don't think Facebook influences users to spend. You just 'like' a page because you already like the brand. Stats ( pdf report) And...27% of all externally referred Facebook traffic comes from Google, so when you want to find a brand page in Facebook, Google is a great help. Stats
  29. 34. “ And when it comes to generating direct traffic from Facebook, it's even behind Reddit, but at least it outranks MediaTakeout Hey, what do I care – I can't get direct traffic anyway” Direct Traffic
  30. 35. Pages Authorized gambling, games of skill or lottery Pages must: Gate access to users above the age of 18 years old and in jurisdictions in which permission to advertise has been granted. Limit posting to admins. Facebook users should not be able to post content to the Page. They may, however, comment on or "Like" posts by an admin. “ I can't 'legally' click through to my transactional site, so any Facebook social stuff will just be branding for me. And I don't see how AffMar can make this pay since he's got far less marketing spend than I have”
  31. 36. So it's not looking good.
  32. 37. “ If social acquisition is a waste of time... then what?”
  33. 38. There was SEO (tough) , PPC (expensive and restrictive)  Campaign (poorly performing), so it wasn't really looking easy for the guys. 
  34. 39. “ Ohhhh!!!”
  35. 41. OpMar read about ZMOT, an idea Google had recently presented in their PR war with Facebook. AffMar didn’t know what it was so OpMar explained the idea...
  36. 42. ZMOT – Zero Moment of Truth
  37. 43. 5000 Respondents “ They used data from 5,000 respondents, so it's a good sample size”
  38. 44. Brand Stimulus
  39. 45. ZMOT OpMar “Nice if I could get direct traffic from Facebook”
  40. 46. First Moment of Truth
  41. 47. 2 nd Moment of Truth “ I don't like – I share with a bad rating & review!” “ I do like – I share with a good rating & review!”
  42. 48. ZMOT – Zero Moment of Truth “ Easy online feedback is affecting buying decisions of online users. It's social proof on a massive scale”
  43. 49. What is Social Proof? “ I'm glad you asked, I see it as: The human tendency to believe that others around them might know more than they do, and thereby making decisions based on what others are doing, particularly as more people lean toward one behaviour / decision / purchase. Also referred to as “informational social influence” by some...” -terms-glossary/ “ Hey OpMar you go on about social proof a lot, what do mean exactly?”
  44. 50. Social Proof & ZMOT “ I think it's: - Reviews on review sites (that rank in Google) - Comments and ratings that show up next to businesses on Google. - Message boards on corporate and retail sites of all kinds - Online community sites where users compare notes and share information. - Seller ratings in search results (search for “kids bikes” on Google and you’ll see the stars right at the top)” - Consumers talking directly through email, social networks, chat and IMs, or posting videos on YouTube and other sites “ So what does Social Proof look like online?”
  45. 51. ZMOT is huge “ 84% say ZMOT shaped their purchasing decisions. To me, this shows the power of online feedback and research”
  46. 52. “ According to the report, an average shopper used: 10.4 information sources to make a purchasing decision in 2011. Up from 5.3 sources in 2010. I think shoppers are getting more savvy...” Users do research!
  47. 53. “ I think a credit card account has the same 'emotional weight' as a gambling account. It's fine when they work, but were screaming when they don't” Context : Credit Cards
  48. 54. Gambling : Credit Cards “ My guess is, in iGaming the research begins about 1 month before action and peaks about a week before opening an account.” “ Hey OpMar, so that means search engines are really important in ZMOT!”
  49. 55. “ Depending on the complexity and value of the product or service, users will research at different times.” Research Cycles
  50. 56. “ Yes AffMar I do think search engines are critical in finding social proof in for people who want to have an iGaming account” “ Social proof means review sites and I already have a review site - I make good money on it!” “ Well, you are touching on a very interesting point that is almost unique to iGaming...”
  51. 57. The affiliate ecosystem: “ AffMar, here is my theory on ZMOT and iGaming: 1. iGaming affiliate is very profitable...if you rank and ideally have a brand, so there are a lot of affiliates. 2. Affiliates only care about revenue and ongoing business, its the operators job to keep a customer happy and keep the brand strong. 3. Affiliates aren’t bound by licence terms or advertising legislation, so they can say more or less what they like to get the sale... 4. Affiliates can do something operators don't do – make direct comparisons between each other.” So True ;-)
  52. 58. Reviews If a user goes to 'online casino reviews', they will see affiliate sites with 'honest' reviews. – that’s my site!
  53. 59. 'Honest Reviews' “ So AffMar, are your reviews really honest? Or is your leaderboard order about who makes you, the most cash? “ Well OpMar, I think you know the answer ;-) “
  54. 60. Affiliate Bounties “ I've noticed when an operator offers me a bigger bounty, or more rev share, that operator starts getting to the top of the review sites pretty quickly! In fact 'Lucky U Win Casino' is very good according to lots of review sites.” “ Yes, they're ruthless on conversion revenue optimisation and so can offer bigger affiliate deals. Users think they are genuinely better and get influenced by this. This has a massively distorting effect on the ZMOT/social proof ecosystem”
  55. 61. So What! “ That’s intense! But the only thing that comes to mind is – So what?!” “ Good question... AffMar, you cost me a lot of money and I want to spend less on 'commission only salesmen' and I think ZMOT is one way I can cut my spend.
  56. 62. So What! “ Ha Ha very funny! You know I'm here because you can't do your online marketing well enough ;-) Anyway, I think I can make this work as well...” “ OK, well lets go through some ideas then!”
  57. 63. OpMar's Plan This is how I intend to do it...
  58. 64. Business case “ I'm taking charge of ZMOT: - Setting up tracking so I can collect 'evidence' - Laying out the business case ROI - Working across the business to make sure I have the right structures on place i.e. relationships with CRM & new sites being built and sorting out the SEO team.
  59. 65. SEO & ZMOT SEO is critical in manipulating the ZMOT / 'social proof ecosystem. i.e. ranking the right content around the right phrases The big area for ZMOT is ranking on phrases where people: - 'Compare' i.e. Is 'A' better than 'B' - 'Question' i.e. What do others say? - 'Cross Check' i.e. Is there a consistent opinion? It's not just the raw volume of searches, it's the intent. So if someone goes 'review MyOperatorBrand' they are probably more committed then if they searched 'online casino'
  60. 66. Start listening <ul><li>“ I'm setting up a 'listening station' and see what people are asking about when it comes to my brand. </li></ul><ul><li>Google Alerts </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>I'll Rank those positive conversations in 'Social proof hotspots' ” </li></ul>
  61. 67. Sorting out Negatives I'm setting up a reputation management strategy and dealing with stuff where there is influence. Try searching [operator name] stole money ;-) A classic is 'Nike Sweatshops'
  62. 68. Blended search “ Fortunately blended search isn't so important for ZMOT related phrases, so its one less thing to deal with. i.e. you don't get much image search or video listings.”
  63. 69. Feedback “ Win positive reviews. Rank them on brand.”
  64. 70. AffMar's Plan This is how I'll do it...
  65. 71. Email Database “ I've got a database of emails, so I'm going to do a survey and ask for comments and feedback. I'll then add this real content to my site and rank it for '[operator] review' Of course I'll edit out the negative reviews, so the best paying operators like 'Lucky U Win Casino' will look great!
  66. 72. Affiliates = fast “ OpMar, because you’re so slow to get moving, I'll out rank you on your brand. I'll just copy what you’re doing, but use my own site!”
  67. 73. Reviews “ I'm going to be relentless with getting reviews. Someday, I'll have one of the biggest iGaming review hubs there is!”
  68. 74. Competition “ You know AffMar – you are a clever marketeer and I know you will make a lot of money form this. I guess were going to compete! “ “ Of course! And you will end up paying me a lot of commission ;-)”
  69. 75. AffMar and OpMar did go on and make a lot more money , which made them happy.
  70. 76. The End.