With Facebook in the process of its IPO, some investors have been frightened beyond the general terrors afforded by founder Mark Zuckerberg's refusal to remove his rebellious-yet-comfy security-hoodie - they fear that Facebook might run into a bit of an issue concerning the effectiveness of its ad content in general, mainly the present lack of viable translation to mobile - and now a small pizza place in New Orleans has reported on the actual results of running a paid ad on the Social Network.
Pizza Delicious, a small business owned by Michael Friedman and Greg Augarten, peddles takeout New York-style pizza in New Orleans, two nights a week. The two wanted to expand, but weren't sure how to proceed. So they decided to run a paid ad on Facebook - and NPR, while compiling other stories regarding Facebook, stepped in and hooked Friedman and Augarten up with Rob Leathern, a social media advertising guru.
Incidentally, there is also a Kickstarter project for the restaurant presently winding down. Here's a clip:
The three first targeted the friends of users who already 'liked' Delicious Pizza on Facebook, which equated to roughly 224,000 people, or 74% of people who reside in new Orleans. This was too broad a demographic, so those who like N.Y.C-type things (the Jets, the Knicks, Notorious B.I.G., etc.) were targeted, bringing the demographic down to about 15,000. Still, after 12 hours of running the ads, nobody clicked, and Facebook took it down. If an ad spot isn't doing anything on the social network, Facebook promptly pulls it. New Orleans-based 'likers' of Italian food were then tried, about 30,000 users, and these ads went viral, presenting about 700,000 times.
Alas, the results weren't anything to write home about really. The campaign ended up costing $240, which equated too about a dollar per new Facebook fan. So, out of 700,000 ad views, 240 users actually 'liked' what they were seeing. Friedman commented, "Is that feeling of exhilaration worth 240 dollars? - I don't know - hopefully, that translates into new business."
There would be no new business really. Though, when Augarten was emptying the trash one night, he got a message on his cell reading, "Just found out about you guys via a sponsored Facebook ad if you can believe it. Super excited about your new place -happy to toss in a few bones over the top." The person who sent the message contributed 10 bones, I'm assuming the the Kickstarter project. So, 10 bones against $240 was the final result of the Pizza Delicious Facebook ad campaign. Optimist Friedman said, "And that was cool - We got some return on our ad."
It would appear that social media advertising might not replace TV ads anytime soon, though some businesses have had better luck. I wonder how well Samsung Mobile USA's ad on the Facebook logout screen did yesterday - Facebook logout screen ads run about $700,000 a day.