How Facebook Exchange Worked for Us and Why It Could Work for You

TImothy Johnson, Small Business Solutions / PPC Team Lead

Adroll's FBx image
What is Facebook Exchange anyway?

The Facebook Ads service got a lot more advanced these last few months with the introduction of a fancy new feature, Facebook Exchange (FBx), that expands the reach and custom targeting of their ads. FBx allows you to run real-time bidding and remarketing Facebook ads through one of their partner companies (AdRoll, AppNexus, Brandscreen, and Triggit to name a few).

A new spin on remarketing

Remarketing is nothing new. It’s a very useful marketing tool used to follow up with potential customers who didn’t make a desired action the first time they visited a site. By placing a snippet of code across your website, you can build up a list of users who visited your site and display ads to them later down the road.

The ability to remarket on Facebook is a game changer. The ads appear the same as normal Facebook ads but FBx allows you to create copy and creative targeted specifically at users who made an action outside of Facebook (i.e. a user visiting your certain page on your site).

I have been testing out FBx for the past few weeks using Portent as a guinea pig.

Ad Samples
Consolidating remarketing campaigns with AdRoll

FBx Dashboard

We were already using AdRoll to remarket for our PPC Essentials package so we used them for our Facebook remarketing as well. Having all of our remarketing campaigns in one place proved to be very efficient and allowed me to make a clear side-by-side comparison of Facebook vs. traditional remarketing.

AdRoll released a brand new UI in early February that allows advertisers to manage their FBx ads and user segments (target audience) with relative ease. AdRoll does charge a set-up fee but you can get a free trial by visiting their site.

My experience with AdRoll has been a good one. Their UI is highly functional and we have seen some promising numbers from our advertising efforts using FBx. The one drawback to AdRoll is that you have to contact a representative to make some in-depth changes to settings like ad frequency. This is only a mild setback, though, as it is very easy to reach their support staff via their onsite live chat service or by email.

Our FBx campaign is nearly identical to our general remarketing campaign that is showing ads all across the web. I have compared the success of these two campaigns and FBx comes away with a few solid wins.

Mainly, the FBx campaign has a CPC that is half that of the other campaign (roughly $2.32 as compared to the general campaign’s $4.30). The general remarketing campaign is winning on CTR by a small margin. Total click volume is very similar from campaign to campaign. The big win for FBx though is a conversion rate of 3.12%, 74% higher than the general campaign.

Is Facebook Exchange worth it?

Facebook has definitely hit the nail on the head with FBx. This is an amazing tool that gives advertisers the ability to reach a very specific target audience in a place with over 150 million unique visitors a month and 1 billion plus total users. If you are interested in seeing some more statistics for FBx, specifically through AdRoll, check out AdRoll’s blog and infographic with their analysis of the service (it is fairly biased but numbers don’t lie).

I highly suggest you give it a try and see how you can use it to your advantage. Remarketing is a great tool and remarketing through Facebook just makes sense.

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  1. Great data, Timothy, thanks for sharing. Do you happen to know what number of cookied users drove the FBX impression volume you list above? It’d be great to see an angle on the relationship between an advertiser’s monthly unique visitors, and the FBX impression volume they end up seeing.

    1. Yes. I believe at the time of the test we had a little under 35,000 users in our target segment. Also, I definitely agree. The size of the user list most certainly has a large effect on total impression numbers for remarketing and it would be very interesting to find out just how much of an effect it would have on FBx. Thanks for the comment!

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