Episode 150

3 Things Facebook Advertisers Should Do Right Now

Bob Regnerus - Feedstories
February 3, 2021
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Facebook is still a land of opportunity, but it is NOT currently smooth sailing.  The most powerful storm right now is, of course, privacy concerns.  Namely, the iOS 14 update and how it will impact advertisers' ability to track and optimize campaigns.  Facebook’s ability to track users everywhere online as they did in the past is going to be severely limited.  Whenever I talk to Facebook advertisers right now, uncertainty is the best way to describe their outlook on the platform.   

In this episode, Bob and I tackle some really key issues facing Facebook advertisers right now.  How do we continue to scale and maintain CPAs in the face of privacy changes?  What kind of video ads are working right now?  What data do we focus on and optimize toward when some data is taken away?  Bob is the author of a brand new book - The Ultimate Guide to Facebook Advertising (4th edition).   And he owns a company that specializes in creating authentic video content called Feedstories.  

  • Spend 80% of your time on your offer and on your creative
  • What is the conversion API and why you need it
  • The power of interview-based video ads
  • How you should think about audience targeting right now
  • How targeting based on engagement metrics such as watch time on a video ad can be just as effective or MORE effective than retargeting landing page visitors.  
  • While Facebook is pushing for shorter videos Bob is finding success with :60 to :90 videos consistently
  • How changes in online platforms is creating a renaissance of sorts for marketers

Mentioned in this episode:

Perry Marshall

California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)

“Tested Advertising Methods” by John Caples

John Caples

Facebook Pixel

Facebook Integration on Wordpress

Facebook Marketplace

Bob Regnerus and Brandon Boyd

Eugene Schwartz

Ryan Deiss

Jeff Walker

Brian Kurtz


Bob Regnerus - Co-Founder at Feedstories

Via LinkedIn

Via Facebook

Via Twitter

Via Instagram

Via YouTube


Feedstories - Videos that Sell

Via LinkedIn

Via Facebook

Via Instagram

Via YouTube


Ultimate Guide to Facebook Advertising

Episode Transcript:

Brett Curry:

Hello and welcome to another edition of the eCommerce Evolution Podcast. I'm your host, Brett Curry, CEO of OMG Commerce. And today we're talking Facebook ads and testimonial ads, testimonial videos. Both of which I'm passionate about and those that are longtime listeners know I'm not a Facebook guy per se, I'm a video marketing guy though and I absolutely love testimonials and using testimonials in videos.

Brett Curry:

My guest today is Mr. Bob Regnerus and he is the co-founder of Feedstories which we'll get into all that Feedstories does later in the show. He's also the author of the 4th Edition of the Ultimate Guide to Facebook Advertising in partnership with Perry Marshall on that book, Perry is a friend of the show. And so really excited to dive into these topics. And with that, Bob, welcome to the show man, thanks for coming on and really looking forward to this.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah, looking forward. Always good talking with you, Brett. And we'll just have a little bit bigger audience this time.

Brett Curry:

There you go, I like it, I like it. And yeah, so excited to dig in here, very cool. First of all, congrats for authoring the Ultimate Guide to Facebook Advertising. I know the pain and sacrifice it takes to be an author. So I wrote the Ultimate Guide to Google Shopping that Shopify published. But that was more like a supersized guide. You wrote a real book, a real, real book and so congrats on that.

Bob Regnerus:

This is the real book. This was 19 months of my life.

Brett Curry:

Dang, yeah.

Bob Regnerus:

It was March of... geez, March of 2019 when Perry tapped me on the shoulder and so from that day forward, a lot of research, and yeah, I think we ended up at about 350 pages and there was about 150 that we cut out. So it was challenging. Not only did we have to write all of that, then do the pair it down so we had a really efficient book. Yeah, I've written a few but this has been my biggest undertaking of my career for sure.

Brett Curry:

Well congrats. Yeah, I've heard the editing process can feel like surgery, you're amputating limbs and things like that, that's what that process is like. So really excited to dive in. I know you and I have kind of collaborated together on a couple intestinal type projects. So your company, Feedstories, is very good at getting testimonials and doing that remotely and so we'll talk about some of the cool things surrounding that. Let's talk about Facebook advertising. Let's just talk about the state of Facebook advertising here where we find ourselves in 2021, all kinds of concerns going on, right? There's increased privacy and potentially lack of tracking and attribution which is always an issue, always potentially confusing, and that looks like that's maybe only going to get harder.

Brett Curry:

So let's talk high level. And you and I were talking kind of off... or before we hit record, most of the eCommerce Evolution listeners are pretty advanced, they're grown, they've got a great brand, probably spending a decent amount on Facebook already. Maybe dabbling into YouTube and using some of our resources for that. But what are some of the strategic considerations if someone's looking at, "Okay, how do we navigate this year and beyond," what are some of the big strategic considerations from Facebook ads right now?

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah. It's a good question. There's going to be more and more talk about this as we head here into 2021. So I think if anybody realized what happened during the 2016 election and the fallout from that, what we're hearing today should be of no surprise. We're all familiar with the Cambridge Analytica "scandal." I don't feel like it's a scandal but, I mean, Facebook basically had an open portal to all their data and a company, Cambridge, kind of figured it out and leveraged it to help elect the president. And from that, the fallout kind of... it's been a snowball, is probably the best way to describe it in terms of what's happening now for us advertisers.

Bob Regnerus:

So a couple things have happened. Number one, we've lost a lot of our ability to target. So we're already fighting with that. That's number one. But what's happening now is there's been a surge from... this really started in Europe, GDPR, California, of course, is always kind of in front of things with this and so CCPA. But what we're really seeing here is Apple is the first large company to really kind of take a step forward and say, "You know what? We're going to stand up for privacy."

Bob Regnerus:

You put Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook, you put those four together, Apple's the one that kind of stepped in front of the line and said, "You know what? We're going to start putting some controls on privacy because it's getting out of control." I think as a consumer, Brett, we look at that and go, "Well, that's a good thing, right?" I think we all want to have a level of privacy and when we don't really understand what the big companies are doing with our data, it's a little scary.

Brett Curry:

Yeah, for sure.

Bob Regnerus:

Right?

Brett Curry:

And just a quick note for those that don't know, I think most people who listen probably do, but CCPA, that's the California Consumer Protection Act, correct? And then-

Bob Regnerus:

Okay, yeah.

Brett Curry:

GDPR is just the British equivalent or the European equivalent of that, right? Just looking at more privacy, more protection for the shopper.

Bob Regnerus:

Right. In essence, a lot of work for your web master developer and lawyer.

Brett Curry:

Yeah, no kidding. No kidding, yeah, for sure.

Bob Regnerus:

We thought we were avoiding it, but here we go. So from a marketing perspective, so we're trying to sell our products and services. Like the ability for us to leverage what the big companies do for us, so in this case Facebook, we could say the same thing about Google, but it's really allowed us to micro target and find customers. What big companies know through the Facebook pixel and what people do on the Facebook platform has made using look alikes and artificial intelligence really kind of a dream. It's almost like an easy button now. And really what's happening now is there's going to be a fallout from all this. Facebook knows it and you know Facebook is scared when they take out a full page ad and do a full PR campaign basically campaigning against Apple.

Brett Curry:

They know that's going to be a major revenue hit for them, yeah.

Bob Regnerus:

They do know, right? And that's why they're so aggressive with this. I just got off a coaching call and one of the things he said is, "Well, what happens when two Goliaths fight? Who wins-

Brett Curry:

Lawyers get rich?

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah. I can guarantee one thing, we as marketers will lose, right?

Brett Curry:

Right, right.

Bob Regnerus:

No matter what happens here, we're going to lose some things. So essentially what's happening is there's going to be a lock down on Apple devices. So we're talking iPhones, iPads, Macs, there's going to be a prompt, if you are going to use Facebook there's going to be this big scary prompt on an Apple device that basically says, "Hey, let Facebook use all my data." Or more importantly it's going to be, "Hey, don't let Facebook use my data." So what's going to happen? Well, the first thing that's going to happen is we're going to lose some tracking capabilities for sure. It's not like we're going to find a way to necessarily get around it but it's going to affect us as marketers. So tracking is going to become an issue.

Bob Regnerus:

Facebook has already talked about creating algorithms that model, they're going to try to create models to replicate what they have but it's going to be very difficult for us to track sales and visitors and anything outside of a seven day window they're basically capping their attribution at seven days. Right now it's 28 days. So that's going to be a big change.

Bob Regnerus:

Well there's two other things. I'll mention one which probably is not as important but this is going to really disrupt the app industry. All those games that we love playing on our phones for free, those are all supported by ad revenue. And in the middle of the scrabble game or in the middle of a game of solitaire we get interrupted by a 15 second commercial, that's all powered by the Audience Network which Facebook owns. And it's ad space so that essentially is probably going to go away. We're going to see people who rely on revenue from apps, they're going to have to switch to a subscription model if they want to stay relevant.

Bob Regnerus:

So the Audience Network is going to... it's kind of a wild west but it's going to be a place where that's going to be very difficult for us to advertise on now. So that's going to mean a change to what we do but what's going to affect us more, Brett, and especially those listening is the ability to track on site events. So website visitors and add to card and purchases and those things is going to be... I hope I can use this word, it's going to be crippled a little bit. We're going to lose some of the effectiveness and I'll go over here in a minute some ways we can kind of mitigate that but we're going to see a substantial change to our ability to track and build audiences off of people that visit our website, that's going to be the biggest fallout of this.

Brett Curry:

Yeah. It's super interesting and you made an interesting point that I agree with at the top of this that, as a consumer, as a shopper, I like the idea that maybe I'm not being tracked 100%, right? That there are these big companies that essentially know everything about me. I don't know, I actually like the convenience of it too, honestly. I have a really hard time unplugging my marketer's brain but I do see that from a consumer standpoint, okay, this may be a good move. The marketer in me, though, sees these challenges, right? And sees them very clearly where we've really gotten kind of into this amazing era or machine learning, subset of AI where we're now, some of the smart bit algorithms that Facebook and Google use are really allowing us to do amazing things.

Brett Curry:

On the YouTube side, we're scaling ads from 10,000 to 30,000 dollars a day, sometimes profitably with a good YouTube ad. That's not that that's going to go away completely. I don't believe it will. But doing it the way we're doing it, it is going to shift. Now I will say, and I'll get a little bit historic here as I talk about marketing but I was actually... so I went through reading a bunch of marketing classics years and years ago. And one of the books that was recommended to me, probably when I was in my early 20s was... Oh no, Tested Advertising Methods by John Caples, right?

Bob Regnerus:

Yep.

Brett Curry:

And so John Caples, one of the all time copywriting legends, we know in his day they tracked everything by mail order, right? And so online didn't exist, none of that existed, right? Computers didn't exist at the time. So they would send out different ads and they would have different mailing addresses where someone would have to mail their coupon to and then they would know because, "Hey, I received this coupon at this address that was this ad." Right? So marketing's always going to be about having the right message, a compelling message, to the right person at the right time and we're just going to have to get creative. We're going to have to maybe think about... just to use a really quick and rudimentary example, different landing pages for different creatives.

Brett Curry:

We have to go old school first a little bit. But I do think, and you mentioned that Facebook is working on models, AI and machine learning are not going away. We'll still be able to leverage it, it's just going to be a little bit different. And so I think in some ways it's going to favor the smart marketers or the marketers that can really pivot and adapt. But challenges on the horizon, right? Rough waters ahead for sure.

Bob Regnerus:

Well it's going to affect the average advertiser and the beginners for sure because a lot of the things we know, it's just because that's the way we had to live a number of years ago. So obviously we're aging ourselves a little bit here but there's really been an easy button with digital advertising here the last five or six years for sure. But you're right, you're going to have to be smarter about the way you segment things. So what I told my client this morning is, "I'm putting a renewed emphasis on building your own list." The idea of we're not just going to rely on Facebook to track our people anymore. It's going back to I want to move them to a media that I have a little bit more control over. Obviously we know from what's going on currently, apps can get shut down, websites can get shut down, email services, right? So diversification is probably the most important thing we can think about.

Bob Regnerus:

Not only diversifying your media but diversifying how you communicate with your customers and prospects. So I think there's going to be renewed emphasis on building out forms to get email addresses and connect with people. But yeah, it's more rudimentary, right? I mean, it's more efficient to have a single landing page and let the pixel handle everything. I guess we're kind of taking a step back in that way. But-

Brett Curry:

Yeah, yeah. We might have to.

Bob Regnerus:

That might be the reality of it, right?

Brett Curry:

Exactly.

Bob Regnerus:

Is we're going to have to create different landing pages. And from a technical side, there's probably things you can do on the server and things like that to do better tracking. But in reality, what we're talking about is some of the really cool things that we can do inside of Facebook, segmenting audiences, website custom audiences specifically, based on when they hit our website or what part of our website. I've got chapters in the book about how to use that, right? And some of that capability is going to be taken away.

Bob Regnerus:

Now, not 100%. It's not like that's going away. There's things that you could do and maybe this would be a good time to get into it. There's really three things that you should be doing as a Facebook advertiser or if somebody's doing it for you, you should be checking into. The first is what's called domain verification. So inside of Business Manager, there's a brand safety link. It's very easy, this is something people have done for other services but you want to get your domain verified. So it's either putting something on your domain or uploading a small file to your web server that basically allows Facebook to uniquely identify your domain that you own it. That's the first thing to do. The second thing, if you're using something like Shopify, and I know a lot of our listeners are probably using that platform or one of the other major ones, they've already integrated a new version of the pixel which Facebook calls their conversion API.

Bob Regnerus:

It basically allows the server, at a deeper level, to do the tracking that we're really used to at a more cursory level with the Java Script portion of the pixel. But using conversion API is another way for you to be able to do this. Good news is even if you're not on eComm platform, let's just say you're using WordPress, the official WordPress plugin that Facebook has has been updated. So if you haven't updated that plugin, I would go ahead and do that sooner than later. That has the conversion API built in as well. And really what it means for us, Brett, is that it's going to allow us to track more people accurately than we have before.

Bob Regnerus:

And there's one more thing in regards to the pixel, I'll just mention it here, is there's something called advanced matching. And so when you put a form on your website, obviously people are putting in their name, their address, phone number, email, things like that, Facebook has the ability to obviously read the data that was inputted on that form even if there's not a pixel even from that, let's say the pixel was blocked, Facebook still is able to take that demographic information and match it to their database.

Bob Regnerus:

So even in that instance, advanced matching, you're able to sometimes get a match on something even when the pixel is blocked. And we have a client right now where we get 15% of our conversions are from advanced matching. So this is sent from the event setup tool. If you're not technical with of Facebook, whoever's handling your Facebook account can go in there and do that. But those are three things that you could right now that will help at least mitigate some of the fallout from this.

Brett Curry:

Yeah. And I think one important thing to note is Facebook is still going to be able to keep their data, right? Where they know that Bob is logging into Facebook and they see what you're liking and commenting on. They see what happens in their own ecosystem. Google is going to be able to still do the same thing, right? They see what you're searching for, they see what you're doing on YouTube, stuff like that. That's their ecosystem.

Bob Regnerus:

Well and that's really the good thing, Brett, let me jump in here is that anything that happens within the Facebook universe is completely the same. So one of the things that I talk about a lot and it's because our company does it but video, video custom audiences are still going to be valid even if you're using an Apple device that's blocking the pixel, Facebook still knows what videos you watched within the platform. It knows how long you watched it so a lot of the strategies we talk about in relation to timing content based on the number of seconds or the percentage of a video watched, that's still going to be there.

Bob Regnerus:

Lead forms, the lead form objective type is still going to be there collecting emails and data within Facebook itself, instant experiences. So all these interactive elements within Facebook ad platform now are not going away. And so it's a time for us to maybe shift away a little bit or not totally rely on landing pages and forms like that. But maybe shifting some of the focus to doing those types of things. And then the other thing that Facebook has done is both on the Instagram and Facebook platform is roll out these brand new shopping interfaces. So I think this is probably going to affect a lot of people, Brett, that you're working with and you're going to have to kind of have a second store like a Facebook store or an Instagram store setup to sell your products. And it's all fair game inside of there, right? So it's kind of like you've got Shopify and Facebook running at the same time, right?

Brett Curry:

Yeah, absolutely. And some of it's been discussed for a long time. And Facebook has kind of dabbled in it a decent amount. I know that Facebook Marketplace has really taken off, kind of Facebook's answer to Craigslist so to speak. Facebook's answer to Google shopping as an example, that really hasn't taken off. But it will one day. And actually I view it as a good thing. We do a ton of Google shopping but ultimately we just want merchants to be successful so if that means, hey, we can sell more on Facebook, that's an additional marketplace that we can sell on in addition to Google shopping and Amazon, then that's awesome.

Brett Curry:

One thing I think that we'll also do getting back to new information that Facebook can track, on the Google side, Google built what's called in market audiences where they can see based on what you're doing through search that, "Hey, I'm in the market for lacrosse gear." My daughter's playing lacrosse, so that's what came to mind. But I'm in the market for lacrosse gear. I just bought sticks and bags and balls and all that stuff. Now Google can build an audience around that, right?

Bob Regnerus:

Yep.

Brett Curry:

And Facebook can do the same thing and Facebook is doing the same thing now. But, again, that's going to be another component where, hey, I can see what someone is shopping for on Facebook and so now I can still put them in that in market audience. I don't know what they call it in the Facebook world but the equivalent of an in market audience. That's all data that Facebook is going to be able to use and that you're going to be able to use that shopper behavioral data, which is super powerful.

Bob Regnerus:

That's all there and Facebook really kind of pushed Google on that. Facebook was way ahead in terms of audiences-

Brett Curry:

No doubt, yeah.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah...

Brett Curry:

One thing that I'll just plug really quickly is we talked to a lot of Facebook advertisers, a lot of people coming to us, they're spending 100, 200, 300,000 a month on Facebook and they want to do something on YouTube and look alike audiences and maybe we'll talk about audiences in a minute but look alike audiences on Facebook, I know they're so powerful, they're so good. And it makes sense that that type of audience would be just killer. Well, Google has their own version, it's called similar to audiences. And I'm a Google guy, I love Google, but they're not that good. They're not that good it's just hit or miss. Sometimes they have a similar to audience that crushes it, other times it's just kind of hit or miss.

Brett Curry:

We did see, and I'll be careful here because of some NDAs, but we got to see an alpha of some stuff Google's doing on a new version of similar to audiences, it's not called that, that looks pretty wicked amazing. But for now, Facebook is totally kicking Google's butt when it comes to look alike audiences, in my opinion, from my observation anyway.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah. And it's based on two things, number one people spend a lot of time within Facebook's platform so they track all that behavior, right? They know what they like, they know what they read, they know what they comment on. So that's why everybody's news feed is customized. And then the second thing is the pixel itself so it knows in app activity and it knows off app activity. So my wife and I are kind of doing our winter prep with our golfing and getting ready for the spring and trying to take a trip down to Florida here soon. We're looking at golf stuff. Well guess what our Facebook feed is filled with, right? It's golf stuff, right?

Brett Curry:

Yeah.

Bob Regnerus:

So Facebook is just really good. And, again, I think as a user I'm okay with that because I'm not -

Brett Curry:

Better than and ads, right?

Bob Regnerus:

Right. I'm not seeing ads for lacrosse gear, which is good, right? Because I don't have a daughter that plays lacrosse so that would be irrelevant to me, right? But I do golf. And so I do appreciate some of the things I get in my newsfeed related to that because I'm a consumer, right? And so that's a big benefit, that's a huge benefit to the marketer. And Facebook is right in that way, the way they're arguing is, "We're going to lose a little bit of that." They're going to lose the ability to do that scary targeting that we all talk about but I agree with them on the point of it's a benefit to the users when this marketer can super target an ad. Unfortunately there's a lot of bad apples, Brett, that don't listen to us that just do things really crappy-

Brett Curry:

Always the bad apples, they're ruining it for the rest of us.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah, they're the ones that pee in the pool.

Brett Curry:

Exactly. So let's do this, let's talk a little bit about some audience strategies just anything new or any considerations here related to strategic audience targeting and then I want to move in to kind of some ad creatives and then we'll talk testimonials as well. But let's talk audiences, anything new or any tips, suggestions, ideas you would give to people for audience targeting right now.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah, I mean this has really shifted and it's really become simple and our opinion is that as long as we're creating good models, meaning we're modeling our customers or our best customers, look alike audiences is absolutely where you should be running your prospecting ads against. I know there's still people that want to build really careful detailed interest target audiences but I've found it to be way more effort than it's worth. Facebook themselves, I've talked with Facebook engineers, people that actually work on the algorithm like, "Bob, we could target much better than you so focus on the ad creative because that's way more important. As long as we have the right campaign objective and we're using some of the AI, we're going to get most of our results of how good our ad is and how good our offer is."

Bob Regnerus:

So we, as marketers, we should be spending 80% of our time working on our offers, working on our creative. That's where the real wins are. So from that perspective, using a good look alike as long as you have a good model. I've come across a few accounts lately that I've done audits on where they've got really, really old look alikes meaning they created a model... I just looked at this one the other day. They had a model from 2018 and they were still using that look alike in a prospecting ad. I like to keep those things as fresh as possible. So create a new model, your customers change, they're demographics change, upload fresh customer lists at least once a quarter, maybe twice a year. And create new look alikes off of that.

Bob Regnerus:

And it's really interesting to see how different those are when you start to do some comparisons inside of the audience tools. So that would be my best recommendation is keep a good fresh model so that you have that recency built into your model so you get a much better look alike when you do prospecting.

Brett Curry:

Love that. I think that's super, super smart. And I love what you said because this is the same on YouTube. I know I've been making the comparisons of YouTube and Facebook a lot but I think it's really relevant like the two play well together, they complement each other.

Bob Regnerus:

Very much, yes.

Brett Curry:

And there's some similarities there. So one of the things we talk about a lot and this is info directly from Google but we've seen it pan out where 50 to 80% of your success on YouTube is the creative, right? It's the actual ad you're running because it's amazing where if you're talking to the right person but saying the wrong thing, you're going to get nowhere. Obviously if you're selling retirement homes to teenagers, that's not going to work either. So audience plays a part in it but a lot of your success is going to come from the creatives themselves.

Bob Regnerus:

That's right.

Brett Curry:

So let's dive into that a little bit. What are you focusing on or are you doing more video ads, I know video is a specialty of yours, want to get into some specifics there in a minute. But are you running more video than image ads, does it depend on the client? What does that mix kind of look like right now?

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah, there isn't a client that I work with that we're not pushing video in the newsfeed. There's the technical advantage to this because, again, related to tracking, if we lose 100% accuracy in terms of people landing on a website, we're not going to lose that within the Facebook platforms. So a video custom audience. Here's what I've found, Brett, and I could throw numbers out there but essentially we're finding that, let's just say for an average of a one minute video, somebody that watched 75% or more of a video, I have found has proven more valuable than a landing page visitor. So that means this, we don't necessarily know how long somebody spends on a site unless we set up our tag manager for scrolled up or things like that, right? Which you should be doing.

Bob Regnerus:

But I know this, a landing page visit is kind of... it's a little esoteric but somebody that watches 45 seconds of a one minute video, I know they spend 45 seconds with me. That is an eternity in internet time, right?

Brett Curry:

It really is.

Bob Regnerus:

Right? And so if you are nailing our video creative, you nailed it there which is if you've got a good message to market match, if the video's compelling, if you hook them, if you talk about the problem, if you agitate the problem, you develop a solution to offer them and have a good clear call to action, a 45 second or more video viewer converts on the back end significantly more than somebody who just lands on your website. So we are pushing video as much as possible.

Bob Regnerus:

Facebook has been pushing for years for shorter and shorter video and we started to buy into that but we've actually gone the opposite way. We're using longer and longer video. Kind of our standard video length, at least for call audience, is about a minute and we'll go 30 seconds shy or 30 seconds over that. But we have found that a good one minute video in the Facebook newsfeed that is structured properly carries a lot of weight and does more than what we could do necessarily on the landing page. So that's kind of what we're pushing in terms of our clients on the cold traffic side.

Bob Regnerus:

On the warm traffic side, we're running some videos sometimes at two minutes, five minutes, we've run 15 minute videos kind of middle of funnel. If you have a complicated or expensive or engaging type of product or service and people are in the market for it, they're going to watch that content. Maybe they don't watch it all the way through but they're absorbing a lot of that. So I have found video to be... I mean, geez, it's been since 2016 that we really shifted so much to video. But video is so much easier for people to consume on their mobile phones and 90 plus percent more traffic is mobile related. So videos and just I'll say this, people don't like to read but they do like their captions on because most people watch videos with the sound off.

Bob Regnerus:

So make sure you use captions on your videos but it's just consume more, you get better engagement and you get better pricing. I don't want to say you get a discount but because it's cheaper than some of the other advertising you do, I see it as a discount.

Brett Curry:

Yeah. And the way Facebook looks at it is, "Hey, people are more likely to engage with a video ad because consumers do like it and so you get rewarded a little bit by the lower ad cost of that." Which makes sense. And all of those really valid points. I wanted to key in on something really quickly and then we'll talk testimonials. I love that you guys are going longer with the videos, that's awesome. Google as well, YouTube, they're making a push for shorter videos. We're not really seeing that work at all on our end like anything less than 30 seconds we're not finding success with on YouTube.

Brett Curry:

I talked to a lot of other big YouTube advertisers and they're all kind of in the same boat, kind of that minute and a half to two and a half minutes is... I mean, even longer on YouTube than on Facebook in some regards. But yeah, that's really interesting. And I think it just goes to show you should listen to your Facebook reps, you should listen to what conventional wisdom is but you should test because sometimes what they say is totally self serving and sometimes the reps don't even know it, right? They're just saying what they've been told to say.

Bob Regnerus:

They don't know, yeah. They're there to meet objectives. They have to have a certain number of phone calls, in person appointments, and then there's an agenda they push. But what I really like what you said, Brett, I think Facebook and YouTube in terms of video, really complement each other. And if you're having success on Facebook using video, I think it's a fairly easy jump to YouTube. And I think vice versa what you've found working on YouTube, you can shift to Facebook and make it work fairly well. A little bit different-

Brett Curry:

Absolutely.

Bob Regnerus:

Right? A little bit different in terms of the technical part of it but the creative, the important part, ports real well between the two platforms.

Brett Curry:

It does port well. Sometimes you have to make a few tweaks to the opening of a video and if you're going from Facebook to YouTube you can't rely on any of that copy block above the video like you have on Facebook and it's not there on YouTube but yeah, it's similar ability to target people, creatives work pretty closely all though they are somewhat different. But yeah, you're 100% right. If you're finding success with Facebook video, YouTube should be something you're considering. If you're really crushing it on YouTube, you should be running video ads on Facebook without a doubt. And so yeah, I think that's really important. Let's talk kind of quickly and then we're sort of up against... got time for a few more things to discuss here.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah.

Brett Curry:

Let's talk about testimonials. First of all, kind of share what you guys do at Feedstories. I think it's really unique and really interesting. Talk about what you do and then we'll talk about kind of the how and why's of testimonial videos.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah. Feedstories was born out of a meeting I had at Facebook in 2016. I was down in Austin and there was about 100 advertisers in the room, it was kind of a pre-holiday thing and they were pushing some strategies and things like that. But man, for two days straight all they kept talking about was video so it was funny. I was a Facebook ad agency at that point, more of a solo guy, I should say. I had a couple people helping me. But so I went downstairs, I went outside, I called my current business partner, Brandon Boyd, who's a creative and copywriter, he's a graphic and copywriter guy, who had been working in video.

Bob Regnerus:

I'm like, "Hey, Brandon, dude, all they keep talking about is video. And there's all this proof and everything was like Facebook and Instagram just pushing towards video." I said, "We really got to focus in on that." So that's kind of where Feedstories was born, a conversation in late 2016 on the streets of Austin. And what we do is we work with companies, individuals, doing video and it's built for the newsfeed, built for YouTube, built for Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn. And the type of video that we do is very much like you and I are doing, having conversation. We do interview style or face to camera.

Bob Regnerus:

We do some things like some animations, some graphic stuff, but we really try to build a story behind an individual or a brand and with the eye of a copywriter, right? The eye of us helping the person sell. So video, obviously you dabble in video, Brett. There's video that looks good and might win some awards. But then there's video that actually sells. So we feel we have this superpower here at Feedstories to pull a story out of somebody's head and organize it into a really coherent sales process. So it's not just a single video of course. It's a video over time and we call it deep funnel marketing and I outline it all in the book that you mentioned. But we're really dealing with creating content for top of funnel to get people's attention, content in the middle of the funnel to nurture them and content at the bottom of the funnel to close them.

Bob Regnerus:

And you said a phrase that's almost identical, Brett. In all my training, I talk about the right content to the right audience at the right time. And that's kind of what we're all about and we love video because it's engaging. Look, obviously during 2020, we've lost that personal connection and I think people really need that. So-

Brett Curry:

They do, without a doubt.

Bob Regnerus:

I just feel and Brandon and I feel like why not try to develop as much magnetic connection with your market as possible so we really love getting people within a business, the founder, the owner, on camera and find out why they do what they do and connect with people on a story level. And then what really came out of that, Brett, you mentioned testimonials, we have a service called testimonials.live. My favorite thing to put in the middle of funnel is, if you do anything, do testimonials. It's just the most powerful thing that you could have in marketing.

Bob Regnerus:

You and I can sit here all day and talk about ourselves and try to sell our agency and our coaching services all day long, our seller eCommerce products, whatever it is, but when somebody who has actually paid us money has made the step to get on camera and to talk about the transformation they've had through doing business with you, it's the most powerful marketing tool in the world. So we love getting a client's customers on camera and walking them through a simple process to help them tell a really great story about your company. And it's absolutely magnetic type of content that closes business for you.

Brett Curry:

Yeah. I just love it and I think testimonials can be used in a lot of different ways, I think they can be sprinkled in to your cold traffic or top of funnel videos because testimonials make all of your claims easier to believe when you could use a testimonial to overcome an objection, that's powerful. You use testimonials for proof, that's all really powerful. We even run some top of funnel videos that are just a mashup of testimonials. I think though you're 100% right, that often works really well mid funnel because lots of times mid funnel, you know you've got someone's interest. You know they're at least somewhat interested and aware of the product but they need more. They need more education, more convincing, just a little more proof right, to get them over the edge. And what's so great about the way you guys approach testimonials and this is the way I've always done it, get some TV background, this is the way I've always wanted to approach it is you interview, right?

Bob Regnerus:

Yep.

Brett Curry:

You're not handing someone a script, you're not saying, "Hey, could you save these specific things." You're just interviewing and letting them speak in their own words because you need that authentic testimonial to come through. It's so much more powerful when someone says something in their own words and it's from the heart. You can feel that.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah. And that may be a big difference between us and other video companies. We have never used a script. We've used a script twice and it was for animated video because we had a spokesperson read it. I think like you and I are having this... we kind of planned a little bit what we're going to talk about but we really didn't know the way the conversation was going to flow.

Brett Curry:

Exactly, exactly. Yeah.

Bob Regnerus:

So that's the way we approach a video session. It takes a lot of pressure off somebody to say, "Look. I'm going to be the interviewer. I'm going to take a lot of pressure off of you. I'm going to give you the high level points we're going to cover. But all you have to do is talk about what you already know." And people are just way more comfortable on camera because they don't have to worry about, "Did I say it right?" When you ask somebody to memorize something, their energy goes down, they become closed off. That doesn't play well on camera. What you really want, when you watch a news show, when you watch somebody being interviewed, they're talking about what they know, if you have a really gifted director or interviewer who can pull that out of you, it makes for really compelling video. And so whether it's you on camera or it's your customers on camera, having somebody just ask some questions and have a conversation makes really, really compelling video content.

Brett Curry:

Yeah. And don't hand a script to someone unless they're an actor, right? If they're a professional actor, great. If not, just have a conversation.

Bob Regnerus:

Oh yeah. I mean, they have years of training on how to make that look natural. But we're not trying to put on a production here, we're trying to tell a story and for the lay people, absolutely, a script is just, absolutely, it's so restrictive. It's never worth it.

Brett Curry:

Yep, yep. Awesome. So let's talk a little bit more about the book. First of all, for anybody listening, you can tell Bob knows his stuff. Obviously Perry never would have partnered with him if he didn't but you got a glimpse of it, a taste of it here. It's awesome stuff. I love how you talk about the deep funnel strategy and getting the right video for top funnel, mid funnel, bottom of funnel. Where can people find the book? I'm sure in the obvious places but where can they find it, anything else you want to mention about the book? And then I'm just curious, is there an Audible version of the book yet. I enjoy listening but no problem if not.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah, no, there's been no talk about an Audible version because there's so many visual elements within the book.

Brett Curry:

Yeah -

Bob Regnerus:

Lot of screenshots. So the book itself, the way I approach the book is there's got to be kind of the technical, hands on manual type stuff. Go here, do this, this is what it looks like. So that's obviously a part of the book. But I did fill the book with a lot of timeless strategy stuff so you can I reference older people that have come before us that wrote books like John Caples. I talk about Eugene Schwartz quite a bit in the book.

Brett Curry:

That dude's a legend.

Bob Regnerus:

Breakthrough Advertising, 1966. Like what? You're talking about that in a Facebook book. But-

Brett Curry:

It's still so relevant.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah. I'm a basketball coach so-

Brett Curry:

Nice, me too.

Bob Regnerus:

Yeah, I mean, I've been coaching basketball since I was 16 years old. So I'm going on year 35 here soon of basketball. But I approach it from a fundamental standpoint because that's how I help my players and my teams win, right? Is focus in on the fundamentals. So I take the same approach to my coaching clients and consulting cases. If I get you to apply the right fundamentals, the thing that works today and goes away tomorrow is really not useful to you. But if you learn this fundamental, you're going to be able to adapt and apply it over years. So my idea is, yeah, obviously the book needed a rewrite, it was three years old, a lot of the technical stuff was completely out of date. So my goal in writing this version was, yeah, there's going to be a little bit that's going to be out of date but the fundamentals that are in here, the direct marketing principles.

Bob Regnerus:

I've had a lot of people read it, Brett, that are just getting started and they're getting a good marketing education and that kind of touches me in a really deep way because I'm helping somebody learn what you and I kind of breathe every day. So the book is filled with it. Yeah, obviously it's available at major retailers. I have a resource site, ultimatefb.com. I've got interviews with some of the people that helped me with it, Ryan Deiss wrote a chapter, Jeff Walker wrote a chapter, Ryan Curse wrote a chapter. So I interviewed them and I got a number of other people that I talked with.

Bob Regnerus:

So I've got those interviews there as a bonus. I'd love for you to go over there and opt in and learn a few things from some people that I really admire at ultimatefb.com. And if you're interested in video and testimonials, feedstories.com would be another good way to get ahold of me.

Brett Curry:

Awesome. That's fantastic. Bob, it's been amazing. I'm going to check out those interviews at ultimatefb.com. I have not seen those yet so I definitely want to do that.

Bob Regnerus:

Cool.

Brett Curry:

If you don't already have it, get the Ultimate Guide to Facebook Advertising, highly, highly recommend it. With that, Bob, man, thank you so much for the time. It's been a ton of fun. We could have talked like another two hours I still would have enjoyed it.

Bob Regnerus:

We could have. Yeah.

Brett Curry:

Yeah. Really appreciate it and we'll have to do it again sometime.

Bob Regnerus:

Oh it was an honor, Brett. Always good talking with you, man.

Brett Curry:

Fantastic. Thanks, Bob. And as always, thank you for tuning in. We'd love to hear more from you. What would you like to hear more of, what topics would you like us to dive into? And if you have not done it already we would love to get that review on iTunes, it makes our day and helps other people find the show. And so with that, until next time. Thank you for listening.

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