I got a call at 11:20 pm while I was already worn out after long day of work and commute and worse, finding my 2 years old nephew suffering severe diarrhea since morning. The guy seemed very agitated about something relating our Facebook fan page. “His comment has been deleted and he has been banned from the page. Now his question is why?” He thought our page is managed by single admin and as I acknowledged as the admin, the question was so swift and sharp- it took me wee seconds to understand what he was talking about. So I had to explain about my ignorance about the whole situation. He seemed to be calm after this and what he explained is like this: “He commented on one of our posts that showed something about an ad campaign stats and we claimed we did something cool. He pointed there it is not good as the number of Actions are less than Clicks.” Wow! I do agree with you mate! So what’s wrong? “Well, someone from my team deleted the comment and banned the commenter“
Oops! That’s very unlikely. I myself ban hundreds of fans once in a while but those are fake, imposter Facebook profiles. Besides we do not welcome spammers or extremists. This guy sounds quite educated and reasonable! Besides so far from his statement, he sound to be a positive critique, an attribute I personally attribute. I assured him I will look into it and get back to him with my response. I also assured he has every right to express his opinion on my page as long as I allow public post on my page. And as long as it doesn’t bear any attribute that conflict with the fundamental of SNS accepted behavior. I asked his name and he identified himself as “Mafiul Islam” and hinted me on the fact that I’d find him in my page’s banned user list. Fair enough!
So I sat to investigate what actually happened. First shock, the user “Mafiul Islam” https://www.facebook.com/rafiul.islam.5492 indeed a fake profile. Well, maybe not fake profile by all means but the profile avatar is Facebook’s default avatar for female, the personalized id reads “rafiul.islam.5492”. At the time of my writing the profile in question has only one friend “Mafiul Robin” https://www.facebook.com/robin.mafiul, likes only two pages namely Alien Outsourcing and Gadget Spot, seemingly sister concern. So I wonder who is Mafiul Robin? He works at Alien Outsourcing. I headed to their Facebook page and in my bewilderment; the Robi number listed there is the number from which I got the call! I am feeling numb as to if I talked to Mafiul Islam or Mafiul Robin? Later user seems to be a legit user and I do remember Alien Outsourcing now. Back in June-July last year, they got my attention from their Facebook ads on the same kind of ad campaign we are running now. So, I want to admit it or not, I got involved with somewhat one of our competitor in Bangladesh market. Well, I guess I am derailing from the original topics “Why I’m banned on your Facebook Page?” Okay, lets’ address it first. I am in no position to answer anybody whom I allow or ban on my Facebook page. (I know, it sounds like Andalib Rahman Partho who once told on a Talk show that he is not bound to answer to things that he told in parliament; if there is any competent MP in the house, they should have stand up). Yet as I promised I will look into the matter and answer it, here it is: each and every member of my ad manager team and Facebook page admins are advised to ban any fake user. Arguably, there are still hundreds of fake users but that’s only because we can’t afford the time and effort on this, at least not yet. I hope my answer to the question of supposedly Mafiul Robin from Alien Outsourcing has been satisfied.
Now comes the question  why did he use a fake/alias profile to communicate with a company that is operating in the same market? And if you are smart enough, you’ll be still questioning me  fake or not, was his comments on good/bad valid? Do I agree or disagree? Admittedly this is the part I like most!
Answer  to the first question is pretty obvious. They are afraid of our marketing approach and living in fear we might cut some share from their market. Anybody can cut your share unless you are competitive. So I tried to find out what set off their alarm. Pretty obviously the pricing model! We do not charge our clients on click or Impression basis. We simply manage their account; help them achieve their advertising goal and we charge our management fee on their monthly advertising spend. If you are into Search Engine Marketing, specifically Google Adwords and BingAds, you know how the world works. On the other hand they charge you at minimum BDT 2 per click (CPC) or minimum BDT 5 per 1000 impression (CPM). Their lowest minimum required budget is BDT 5,000 for Facebook advertising. Sounds fair to me. But, you can see how our approach is threatening their skim the milk pricing model.
Both us and them, we do not set any maximum ceiling on CPC or CPM. So let’s compare side by side with the minimum. (BTW, we set minimum budget to Facebook minimum allowed $1/day times 30 days = $30. Yet we occasionally offer deal to start advertising with BDT 1,000). For the sake of comparison, let’s hypothetically set monthly budget at BDT $5000. Let’s take $1=BDT 80 for ease of calculations:
CPC Pricing Model (Clicks):
With us– At Facebook’s minimum CPC ($0.01) you can get 5,000 Clicks for BDT 4,000
+ Our management fee BDT 1,000
Spending a total of BDT 5000 with us, you get 5,000 clicks
With them– At their minimum CPC (BDT 2.0) you can get 2,500 Clicks for BDT 5,000
Spending a total of BDT 5000 with them, you get 2,500 clicks
Now you tell me any advertiser who finds out this, what’s supposed to happen?
CPM Pricing Model (Impression):
With us– As facebook has no set minimum cost per 1000 impression (CPM), we can’t say more about it. We have found our lowest so far is $0.02. So if you are spending BDT 4,000 and your industry is less competitive to get the lowest at $0.02, you are getting 2,500,000 impressions for BDT 4,000. Plus our management fee BDT 1,000.
Spending a total of BDT 5000 with us, you get 2,500,000 impressions
With them– At their set minimum cost per 1000 impression (CPM) BDT 5, you get 1,000,000 impressions for BDT 5,000.
Spending a total of BDT 5000 with them, you get 1,000,000 Impressions
You don’t need to be mathematician to realize how we set off the alarm!
Why we are doing this?
We do not expect to profit from Bangladesh market, at least not from Facebook advertising. People have limited access to the payment system, more alarmingly- most people do not understand how the system works. So we aim to create awareness in our local market so the small businesses know the benefit of the online marketing. Google already aimed operation in Bangladesh, rumor has there are some disagreement between the Bangladesh government and Google Inc. regarding licensing and et.all. Google expects to start form 2014 when the government changes. Outsource marketplace has started focusing in Bangladesh market. BASIS and Google Business Group Dhaka has been running several events and seminars on online business and e-commerce awareness. We are simply aiming to develop a sustainable business model in this emerging market. We do not expect to skim the milk from the underprivileged and unaware clients and close our business one it has been enough.
What about Alien Outsourcing as a market player?
I am not sure if Alien Outsourcing position them as an Internet Marketer or simply as a facilitator, middleman. I do not think them as our competitor as any of their positioning. That’s not worthy of our market positioning.
But from the professional interest I had to check a little, specifically when I noticed they offer Google Adwords as well. Interestingly, similar to Facebook advertising, they offer Adwords starting from $100. Sounds more like a facilitator than a marketer to me. I also googled them and I don’t have time, energy or enthusiasm left to remark on it.
 If you have survived reading till this with my bragging and rambling, I must say you are hell of a reader! Okay, now answering to the very base question from where it all started. Click Vs. Actions? I am afraid if the person in question is actually familiar with Actions or he thinks it a number, the more the better. He didn’t know what was the campaign was about, what was the goal and yet his comment was “the performance is bad”. His logic was number of Actions need to be greater than clicks to be a campaign better. Well, generally it can be true provided that your advertisement is about a Facebook page or Apps that involves actions like Comments, Share, Like page/post, Join an event, or Claim an offer, or Installations, usage and spend credit in your Apps. Did this guy have any idea what kind of ad campaign it was?
Secondly, Facebook Actions is somewhat combination of Adwords Click-through conversion and View-through conversion. It requires a time frame to record the actions. We showed stats of a week only while –
An action is only counted if someone: (1) Views your ad or sponsored story and then takes an action within 24 hours (2) Clicks on your ad or sponsored story and then takes an action within 28 days
To measure our Total number of actions, 28 days haven’t been yet passed. The comment was made too prematurely. Yet if the commenter were a real person, I would have personally taken the honor to educate him on the Facebook Analytics. April last year when Facebook announced that they are going to add this “Actions” as a new matrix in analytics to help the marketer better measure their marketing efforts, Facebook provided a mockup of how the new analytics interface will look. In that very mockup, the total number of actions was 1/5 of the total clicks. What my fellow marketer/facilitator failed to understand that not every Facebook ads lands you onto a fashion house’s page where people are more likely to like a dress or browse through.
And finally, do you guys have any decent idea about the most significant and only important matrix in Facebook PPC advertising, the CTR? Unfortunately unless Facebook facilitates CPA model, CTR is the only thing you can count on for your advertising efforts, cost and success. Do you know what global average of CTR on Facebook is? The mockup Facebook provided as an example it has CTR 0.267%, our Alien friend had also posted a link to an illegible screenshot of an account as an example of good campaign that has 0.339% CTR while the stat we shared consisting a week’s data has CTR 2.360%. I know even if my friend from Alien doesn’t know what this means, my reader friends know what it means.
Being said that, I have some interesting stuffs to share with you guys who have survived this long saga of my first encounter of negative marketing on my own turf 😉
Here is a sample of their ad that grabbed my attention. Luckily I took a screenshot of it on July 13, 2012 in a hope that I will write an article on how and why Facebook CPC is highest in Bangladesh.
This one is still hanging on their Facebook page. I guess it was their cover page for some time?
This is the Screenshot my alien friend referred as an example of good campaign:
The fake profile in question:
His liked Pages:
The man behind all these??
Alien’s Adwords bragging using Adwords ad Preview Tool:
Alien’s pricing model:
Our Pricing model: http://uparw.com/UApricing
About Us: http://uparw.com/fbAbout