Facebook has made EVERY brand’s and EVERY business’s ads and campaigns available to the public…
SO WHAT DOES THIS MEAN TO YOU?
It means new insights, new knowledge, and a host of strategies and tactics for YOU to take away and use to brainstorm in the creation of your own material. Discover how to use and leverage this to get ahead of the competition, before EVERYBODY else does…
Okay, so today I’m going to talk to you about something really important. In fact, it’s a major GAME-CHANGER! And it’s SO important, that I’m going to invite you to get into some PRACTICAL ACTION at the end of this article, because I really want you to take advantage of this right away, and use it to enhance and explode your own brands and businesses. It’s about something that we call “Reverse Engineering” in the marketing world. Undoubtedly, you may have heard this term before, and not really have a full grasp on the understanding and the importance of it. So today, we’re going to take a DEEP DIVE into this subject. Are you ready? LET’S GO!
First of all, I will tell you that I can pretty much guarantee that this is true: Whatever brand or type of business you have, there are some other brands — A LOT of them, that have done it before, and they have done it CORRECTLY. Now this is actually GOOD news for you, because as you may have heard it said before, “SUCCESS LEAVES CLUES”.
Now about these brands who have done well in YOUR industry, they’ve blown up, and they have captured a lot of attention — and anyone who has followed me for a length of time knows that I say that ATTENTION is the most important commodity on the planet. (In fact, I put out an article last week about HOW to capture the RIGHT kind of attention on Social Media. If you haven’t had a chance to read it yet, you can access that article here. )
The really good news is that you can ALWAYS re-trace the steps and successful actions that were taken by those successful brands and companies before you. You can find out and see EXACTLY how they did it, from the beginning. (This is something that I still find absolutely MIND-BLOWING!) For one thing, you guys DO understand that whenever you do a video, it is essentially there FOREVER, right? This is pretty incredible. I mean, literally, one day your great-grandchildren can be wondering, “I wonder what Grandma/Grandpa looked like back when…” And say that you created and posted numerous videos on YouTube…even DECADES after you’re no longer around, your offspring and posterity can access videos of you! How AMAZING is that???? (Take a moment to think about it for a moment). But I slightly digress. Let’s get back to the concept of how Success Leaves Clues, and how YOU can access them…
Okay, so now… Close your eyes and imagine a crazy, idealistic world where…
…you don’t have to test ad types, copy, headlines or images. Where all your competitors and market leaders hand you their campaign strategies on a velvet cushion. Where you don’t have to even WONDER how they run their ads, how they write their copy, what images they use, how they create their videos, what call-to-actions they use, websites, how they look, what their landing pages are, or what strategies they’re going after…
Now open your eyes.
You’re there. All of these things can be achieved with a few clicks of your fingertips.
You have access to it now. You have been given access to this data.
You know how cool it is whenever there’s a major shift in a world, something happens. Like for example, the whole data breach scandal that happened just last year on Facebook. It made them have to do this absolutely INCREDIBLE update for us. It has created TREMENDOUS OPPORTUNITIES for us. So, we have to recognize the opportunity for what it is, and just jump in there and take advantage of it because now, based on what Facebook says, in order to create transparency with Facebook Advertising and what advertisers are doing, the so-called Facebook Dark Post has been wiped out off of the face of the earth. There are no more dark posts. If you didn’t have any idea what a Facebook Dark Post is (or WAS, actually), according to the definition from Google:
“An unpublished (or “dark”) post is a status update, link share, video or photo that was never meant to be shared as an organic post. Staying true to its name, it’s never published but is only surfaced as an ad.
Basically, it’s a Facebook post that you control exactly who sees it through ads. If you have seen the main image on this page on Facebook, then that means you have seen one of our dark posts targeting you.
So, right now, that has been eliminated. So now, this means that we have access to all ads on Facebook. In fact, let me show you what I mean. Let’s go to a Facebook Page right now…
Go to any page that you want, preferably of a company that you KNOW is successful with their Facebook advertising (because of course, THAT’S the purpose of reverse engineering: to check out the strategies of the Successful, so that you can follow the CLUES.) 🕵️ Like, for example, go to my dad’s page, Metabolismo TV. Go to any of your Successful competitors.
Okay. So now that you’re on the page…
Scroll down until you see the words “Page Transparency”, which should be located right under the “About” and “Suggest Edits” sections. Right under the words “Page Transparency” it should say “Facebook is showing information to help you better understand the purpose of a Page. See actions taken by the people who manage and post content.”
Ok…now that you’ve found that, click right underneath where it says “See All >”. You will see the “Page History” (when the page was created, if the name changed and when, etc.) You will also see the next section underneath which should say “People Who Manage This Page” (here it will tell you the primary location of people who manage the page, and how many). What you’re really LOOKING for is the next section underneath, so scroll to…
“Ads From This Page”. Right underneath it should say “This page is currently running ads”, and underneath will be a hyperlink that says “View in Ad Library”. Click THAT. (And THIS is where it gets really GOOD) 👀🔎…
Once you’ve clicked on “View in Ad Library”, you’re going to be able to see EVERY SINGLE AD that company is currently running. BOOM! There you go!
Now, I want to let you know THIS: As an advertiser, the goal of “spying” on your competitor’s ads and building a swipe file in general, is to create a source for new ideas. (Let me interject here the definition of SWIPE FILE for anyone who may not be clear on that term: It is a collection of tested and proven advertising and sales letters. Keeping a swipe file is a common practice used by advertising copywriters and creative directors as a reference of ideas for projects). Having said that…
🚫Our object is definitely NOT to just “copy and paste” the ads that your competitors are using! 🚫
It’s about becoming inspired while observing, reading into and recognizing their “messaging patterns”, so that you can create your OWN new mechanism which PROVIDES VALUE to your audience by solving their problems, thereby placing yourself “head and shoulders” above the majority of your competition.
It’s pretty much the same way that professional athletes and coaches invest their time and effort by studying the video footage from their competition’s past games… They don’t study their competitors’ moves to STEAL those moves!
The purpose is to LEARN and UNDERSTAND the competitors’ movements, behaviors and patterns on the court or field… the athlete does this to identify and be able to leverage the weaknesses in their competitors.
So there you have THAT part of it, which is really the meat-and-potatoes of how to reverse-engineer your competitors…or ANY company who runs Facebook ads, for that matter. Now I want to tell you about something SUPER COOL that JUST happened VERY RECENTLY with Facebook’s latest update that makes this whole process SO MUCH BETTER than it ever was before…
It’s about the Facebook Ads Library!!!! Before the Facebook Ads library came into existence, you would still have been able to reverse-engineer and see your competitors’ existing ads through the link that was called “Info and Ads”, which as of a couple of days ago isn’t there any more. BUT…HERE’S THE THING ABOUT IT:
Let’s take, for example, whatever company you chose to look up earlier in this article for the demonstration. Before The Facebook Ads Library, if that company was running an ad 6 months ago and that ad was currently turned off, it wouldn’t show up in there under the “Info and Ads” feature; it would only show all the ACTIVE ads that that brand is running right now. Now I’m going to tell you…even THAT by itself guys, is STILL amazingly powerful! Because you STILL would have had access to right now understanding what these companies are running now as ads – messages campaigns, video views, lead generation campaigns, website visits, website traffic, traffic direct to Amazon, anything and everything that you can possibly think of no matter what it is whether it’s an ecommerce brand, whether it’s a realtor, or a construction company, or like let’s say business to business. For example IBM, or any of these big players. When the Info & Ads Feature was introduced, that was one of the biggest changes that we’ve had in this platform since the beginning of the platform. For ages, ever since ads became a thing on Facebook, you did not know what companies were running because they were running them behind the Facebook Page – not accessible for people that were actually looking at the Facebook Page. The Facebook Page was just a little front, a store front for people to put posts, videos, images, texts, all kinds of things, but there was nothing else to it. So, it’s a big change guys. It’s really exciting! Now…PREPARE TO BE MIND BLOWN by what I am about to tell you, because believe me when I tell you, I AM!
Facebook’s “Ad Library” is actually AN UPGRADE from the “Info & Ads” feature…
With Ad Library, not only can you access the CURRENTLY ACTIVE ads…YOU CAN ALSO access INACTIVE ADS!!!! So NOW you can EVEN find the ads that ran in the past and are now currently turned off.
HOW AMAZING IS THAT??? 😮😮😮😮😮
For those of you guys who are going through analysis paralysis, implementation paralysis, or whatever it is that you’re going through, please realize that now you’ve been given access to a tool that is going to take away that paralysis. Now remember, please don’t start copying and pasting things and doing exactly what other companies are doing. Use them as an example for how to build your own ads, how to do your own creative. And also, the ones that are doing them correctly, brands that are doing them correctly, the brands that are doing them correctly, how they actually are doing it, how they are capturing attention.
Another thing I noticed that’s interesting is that you won’t see the engagement on the ads; you won’t see the people that are liking the post or commenting, and you won’t see the actual shares on it. But You can see the entire structure of the ad. If you click on it, you’ll be able to click through to the website or to the Messenger or to whatever it is that they’re sending people to but you won’t be able to open up the actual post, the way that people are seeing it on the page. But I think that’s fair. I mean… it’s like it’s not exposing the brand to the existing engagement on that ad but it’s actually exposing the brand to what they’re actually building and putting in front of people.
Guys, this is so cool. So, so cool. I want you guys to start learning about it because in reality, understanding how this thing works is going to make your lives a lot easier as advertisers. So, play around with it. You know what’s going to happen? It’s going to be addictive. If you guys are trying to build ads, you should try to understand how to write your content, how to actually write your calls to action. If you’re trying to understand what images you use, what images not to use and all that stuff, it’s going to make your life a lot easier;it’s going to speed up. If you usually take an hour to write a piece of copy, now you can save yourself several minutes because you have ideas in your SWIPE FILE…. Ideas from brands that are SUCCESSFUL. You have an idea of how to get your message across, based on what is going on in social media in REAL TIME, and how these companies are communicating their messages. Wow! Really exciting, right? It’s a game changing thing that just got launched and it’s time for you guys to jump in and do something about it.
We as humans so often take these things for granted, but do you realize that 2 decades ago, new businesses did not have the ability we have today to be able to go back through history and look at every single thing your competitors did that made them successful? Well, this is an ability we now have and we MUST use it.
Ok….So now it’s time to get into ACTION. This is what I want you to DO…ASAP (NOW would be ideal)
Pick out 5 actual competitors that are very similar to your brand and what you offer and go back in history. Focus on brands that have done it correctly on social media and have produced great content. Actually go back and STUDY them.
Reverse engineer them and learn how they penetrated the market. Start with Facebook and then the rest of the platforms. Go back on the computer all the way down to their beginning and how they evolved to the brand they are today?
Repeat this process of going back in time with each one of the 5 brands. Learn what they have done to grow their business. Focus on the ones capturing attention.
Get an idea of the estimation of effort.
Go to Amazon and type the keywords you have dreamed of having them at the top. Check the social media of those brands ranking the highest inside Amazon. Reverse engineer their organic content.
Okay, there you have it. Once you’ve done the assignment, please comment and let me know what you found. GO FOR IT! You’ve Been Given the Tools…Now the rest is up to you!
Remember, Consistent ACTION is the KEY! See you in the next article.