instagram-direct-ads

New Direct Response Ad Options Within Instagram Stories

Instagram Stories is Facebook’s most successful Snapchat imitation - the other two less successful ones being WhatsApp Status and Facebook Stories. We'd seen stats around the end of April that showed Instagram stories hit 200 million daily active users surpassing Snapchat’s.

If you noticed, towards the end of last year, we had started seeing stories with the ability to swipe up for more information. Facebook had rolled out the ability for select profiles (verified profiles and profiles with more than 10k followers) to insert links in their Instagram Stories. These links came as a swipe up to  “See more” feature and according to Facebook reports, almost a month after the launch, they recorded that 15 to 25 percent of the people who saw the links were swiping on it.

With all this, it made total sense to see that Instagram Stories is starting a gradual roll-out on direct response ads worldwide.

This would allow brands and small businesses that haven't quite gotten enough following or the blue tick have a go at reaching a wider audience with specific CTAs per campaign objectives.

These ads would appear between stories as a single vertical photo or a vertical video of up to 15 seconds in length and would look basically like the "See more" feature above except with different Call To Action prompts. The expected Call To Action prompts include:

  • Apply Now
  • Book Now
  • Contact Us
  • Donate Now
  • Download
  • Learn More
  • Send Message
  • Request Time
  • Start Order
  • Shop Now
  • Sign Up
  • Watch More

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR ADVERTISERS?

  • An extra channel to test efficiency in running conversion campaigns for your brands
  • Small business who already use have been using stories organically and getting results have a chance to scale up significantly

HOW TO CREATE ADS ON INSTAGRAM STORIES

To create ads on Instagram stories; you can use Ads Manager or Power Editor. Please note that only 9:16 vertical images and video can be used for ads on stories, and will only be run on Instagram.

In Ads Manager:

  1. Go to Ads Manager
  2. Click Create an Ad
  3. Select the Reach, Video views, Conversions, App installs or Traffic objective
  4. In the Ad Set section, click Placements
  5. Select the Edit Placements, then select the Instagram placement
  6. Click Stories
  7. Follow the rest of the steps to continue building your ad campaign
  8. When you're ready, click Review Changes to publish your changes

In Power Editor:

  1. Go to Power Editor
  2. Select the Reach, Video views, Conversions, or Traffic objective
  3. In the Ad Set section, click Placements
  4. Select the Edit Placements, then select the Instagram placement
  5. Click Stories
  6. Follow the rest of the steps to continue building your ad campaign
  7. When you're ready, click Review Changes to publish your changes

Ads in Instagram Stories use the same targeting and measurement tools as ads that run in Feed on Facebook and Instagram. You can capture audiences who have seen ads in their stories and target them on Facebook or Instagram feed. You can also run stories ads targeted at audiences that have seen your ad on Facebook or Instagram feed.

Can't wait to see the first set of brands and businesses that would be trying this out. What do you think?

 

 


a complete guide to online payment gateways

The complete guide to online payment gateway systems in Nigeria

Why this guide?

We already wrote about online payment gateways before now. And while it was a good post, it wasn't complete. Never felt like it was either. I receive a lot of calls from entrepreneurs looking to set up online businesses, and a major concern is online payment. How do users pay with their debit cards? How much does it cost to set up the gateway? What technical requirements are needed?

The questions are endless and there's no one resource that answers it all. That's the purpose for this guide. We'd talk about the currently available payment gateways, how much they cost, ease of implementation and their unique features.

Who is this guide for?

If you're looking to setup an ecommerce (online) store, this is for you.This guide also helps developers figure out what the best approach is for client websites.

How to use the guide

If you already have a specific online payment gateway system you're trying to look up, check the table of content. If you're not sure what Nigerian payment gateway system you need to use, I'd recommend taking a look at all of them. I've also posted a checklist of features you should check for while deciding on a payment gateway. You might not find one gateway that has it all, but you should get something pretty close. Remember, your customers are going to be using this to make card transactions online, which are the best types of orders, so pay extra attention to detail.

We have also included links to download free & paid plugins that let you integrate these payment gateways into the most popular ecommerce CMS platforms. Most of these plugins are plug and play and don't require any coding experience. You can check out the full list here

Quick links to key areas

Quickteller / Interswitch payment gateway
Paystack
Voguepay
Simplepay
Amplify pay
GTPay
Table of comparison
Plugins for integration with CMS platforms
Conclusion - Which gateway is right for you?

 

Quickteller / Interswitch payment gateway

This is one of the oldest payment gateways around, only other payment system that has been around that long is etranzact. And this is Quickteller's biggest selling point, it's age, which comes with a lot of trust from users. It's important to note that a lot of other payment gateways still connect to them and act as middle men.

I've personally had to integrate Quickteller in the past. Even after installing the plugins and testing things on my end, took me almost a month of emails back and forth to go live. I do hope their services are much better now

Pros    Well known brand
   Trusted by most users
   Largest payment gateway
Cons    Difficult to integrate without plugin
   Redirects out of your website
Cost    N150,000 license fee
   1.5% per transaction up to N2,000

 

Paystack Payment Gateway

Paystack is one of the newest entrants into the Nigerian payment gateway ecosystem. But it has fast become one of the preferred gateways, especially for developers. It's simple UI and ease of implementation are two of the most common factors. Paystack offers a few new features including allowing users save their card details while making payments. Which means repeat users have a faster checkout process. Although it's active user base is still small (only about 100,000 transactions last month), paystack looks like it's the next big thing. It also doesn't require an upfront fee

Pros    Liked by developers
   Easy to integrate and open an account
   Clean and modern UI
   No redirect. Transaction happens on your website
Cons    Higher per transaction fees
   Still lacking in public recognition/trust
Cost    No upfront license fee
   1.5% + N100 per transaction

 

Simplepay Payment Gateway

Simplepay has been around for a while now. It was one of the first few gateways that acted as middlemen between clients and Interswitch to reduce the effect of the upfront cost  charged by Interswitch. The platform recently rebranded with a cleaner UI and simpler payment process. I cannot say at the moment if it still runs on Interswitch's Webpay. The simplepay payment gateway is quite good and customer service for developers and clients isn't bad too.

Pros    Easy to integrate and open an account
   Clean and modern UI
   No redirect. Transaction happens on your website
Cons    Higher per transaction fees
   Not enough recognition/trust
Cost    No upfront license fee
   1.9% + N10 per transaction

 

VoguePay Payment Gateway

Voguepay is very similar to Simplepay and has been around for some time too. And while they have similar features, Voguepay tries to diversify a little. You can send and receive money from local/international accounts through the platform. The homepage does mention an option of offline transactions but I haven't used that before and I'm not sure how it works. Compared to Simplepay though, I'd say Simplepay looks to be a better option to go with.

Pros    Easy to integrate and open an account
   A few more features for businesses
 Cons    Higher per transaction fees
   Not enough recognition/trust
 Cost    No upfront license fee
   0.99% + N99 withdrawal fee
   1.5% + N30 per transaction
   N1,500 merchant verification fee

 

GTPay

While a lot of the banks (almost all of them) have payment gateway systems that feed off Quickteller, GTPay is the most noteworthy. It is easily accessible to all of its business customers. And yes, you do need to have a GT account opened with the bank to use this gateway. It is largely supported by the trust from the GT brand and so is seen as a preferred gateway. And although the platform still connects to Quickteller to function, the upfront fee is reduced by half to about N75,000.

Pros    Highly trusted brand
   Reduced upfront fee for Interswitch integration
   Get paid directly into your GTBank account
 Cons    Still more expensive than some payment gateways
   Must own GTBank business account
   Tougher account opening processes
  Cost    N75,000 license fee
   1.5% + N30 per transaction

 

AmplifyPay Recurring Payment System

The last mention on my list is a gateway I haven't seen take off just yet but is worth mentioning. AmplifyPay was one of the first gateways to really focus on recurring payments for proper subscription models. Which is something else that isn't really big in Nigeria today but has a lot of potential. The gateway focuses on business models that require users to pay periodically, like a monthly payment for magazine subscriptions. And while I have not had a chance to work with this personally, the API documentation seems pretty clear.

Pros    Easy to integrate and open an account
   Clean and modern UI
   No redirect. Transaction happens on your website
   Focus on recurring payment models
Cons    Not enough recognition/trust
Cost    No upfront license fee
   1.5% + N20 per transaction

 

Comparing online payment gateway fees and features

This table gives you a breakdown of the current fees charged by the payment gateways and features they have. It should give a bird's eye view of what you'd get if you go with any of them. Keep your customers in mind, if you don't offer subscriptions, don't make recurring payments a key factor.

*Withdrawal fee is the fee charged by the gateway when you request funds paid on your website to be sent to your bank account

  •  
  • Setup Fee
  • Per Transaction Fee
  • Withdrawal Fee
  • Recurring Payment
  • Save Card Feature
  • Website

 

Free / Paid Integration plugins for your ecommerce store

A payment gateway is only of use to you when you can integrate it with your website right? And because most entrepreneurs start out using popular CMS platforms, most gateways have ready to use integration plugins. This means all you have to do is download a file, upload it to your website and voila! Gateway installed and ready to be used once you fill out a few credentials.

It'll be very hard for each payment gateway to provide resources for every CMS. So a lot of times, individuals take the time out to build these integration modules and give them out to the public. In some cases, they offer them as paid plugins. Still, not all CMS platforms are covered. We've taken the top 8

  •  
  • WordPress
  • Woocommerce
  • Shopify
  • Magento
  • Prestashop
  • Drupal
  • Joomla
  • Opencart

 

Conclusion - Which payment gateway is best for you?

There's never really a straight answer for this. But it all comes down to what features you need and how much loose cash you have on you. If you have a good developer and money to spare, you can consider Interswitch, the trust factor stands strong. And if you're lean on cash, go with Paystack. If you don't like the extra N100 fee, charge that to customers as a convenience fee or put it in the product cost.

There's a lot to consider when deciding on a payment gateway, because it could make or break your customer experience. I'd say go with what best suits you. And consult with your developer before you do (if you have one). Personally, I use Paystack for everything.

If you found this post useful, be kind enough to share it, someone out there needs it.


beginners guide to Facebook advertising

New Facebook feature lets you share ad previews with clients seamlessly

We recently spotted a Facebook ad preview feature on the ads manager dashboard. Along with other new changes, but this seemed most useful at the time.

One of the most common requests clients have when running ads is to know how it looks. In some cases, clients actually want to see the ads on their timeline the way a user sees it, but we'd not address that today. This new feature provides a sharable link. Clients can follow that link to see what the ad looks like on Facebook, Instagram and the audience network. Pretty cool.

How to get sharable ad preview link on Facebook

Open up the ads manager and navigate to the specific ad you'd like to share. Select the ad with the checkbox to the side, then click preview like shown below

fb preview step 1

 

On the popup that you get, click on the top right link button and select share a link as shown below

fb preview step 2

The next popup shows you a sharable link you can give to your client. Here's the link generated for this post - http://fb.me/1XEh54rjZYi74Ji. This link can also be passed on from the client to his management tea, for example. Here's what the client sees on their end.

fb preview step 3

You'd notice Facebook also gives them the opportunity to opt-in to see the ad in their newsfeed. I think some of us here will relate to the joy of knowing your clients can see their own ads.

I hope this makes your job a little easier now. So next time you get that call saying, "I can't see my ad! How do I even know what it looks like?" Well, here's your response.

 


useful-google-tools

Is Google AdWords about to start accepting Nigerian Naira Payments?

Every freelance marketer or small business knows this pain. Since the crash of the Naira, $100 limits on debit cards, and high FX, advertising has been hard. Paying for ads is now punishment, because you either make payments small small every month, or get a dollar card. If you go with the dollar card, the next pain point becomes actually getting the dollar at reasonable rates.

That's why we were excited when Facebook brought in the PayU option for Naira payments. And it has been a lifesaver.

And now it looks like Google will be following suit. A few days back, a reader hinted at a possible NGN payment option on AdWords. We checked it out and noticed that indeed the Naira denomination was now included in the signup page, which wasn't available before now.

But as of this moment, there are no available payment options under this currency setting. Sources say this is in the works and we should be patient for a possible rollout.

It's hard to stress how much of a relief this would be to advertisers in Nigeria, I think it's long overdue. What we're likely to see is a dedicated payment option for Nigerian cards, just like in Facebook. Payments are also likely to be on a prepaid basis.

We would keep an eye on this space and let you know if anything changes.


smw event

Join Osaze at SMW's 2017 Masterclass event

I'd be facilitating a masterclass event at the SMW 2017. Check out details of the event here - https://socialmediaweek.org/lagos/events/masterclass-tools-engagement-facebook-google-twitter/

Hoping to have a swell time with you there. And if you have any questions you'd like me to address there in person, you can tweet @ososoba to ask them. If you attended the event (or didn't) and would like to download the slides, here's a link, download the Masterclass PDF here.

Have any more questions for me? Send a tweet with the hashtag #AskOsaze and I'd be sure to post a response in one of my videos.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLqh33GV1Z9Dmf4r5T8XyLpK8iKKkwZU4K]


Facebook Ads now accepting Nigerian Naira Payments

Anyone in the digital marketing space would know that this had become a huge problem for brands and clients. Dollar ad accounts didn't make it easy at all for us to make payments. First there was the $100 restriction by banks on their cards, which meant that paying $500 needed 5 cards! Just last week, I had to somehow get 30 cards to make payments online.

But thanks to a tip from Subomi Plumptre of the Facebook group "Silicon Africa", I got a tip that Facebook might have started taking Naira payments. Sure enough, tried it out just now and I have a N100 balance on my account.

Start paying for Facebook ads in Naira instead of Dollars! Check this post out to see how it worksClick To Tweet

How it works

1. You'd have to create a new ad account that is naira denominated. If you have a Facebook business account, this should be easy. Just setup a new ad account and choose the Naira option.

naira account setup

 

2. When you get to the payment method modal, be sure to select PayU as the payment method.

payment method

 

3. Once you have this selected, proceed to enter your card details. PayU accepts both MasterCard and VISA debit cards. The only catch is the 3DS screen that comes up. If you've shopped on Quickteller recently, you'd likely be familiar with it. For MasterCard users, you'd need to put in your one time OTP to complete the transaction. Here's what that page looks like

3DS

money added

A few things to note

  1. Naira payments have to be prepaid. You wouldn't be billed as you go, rather, you'd fund your account and then run it from there
  2. Your Naira account isn't a dollar account that has been converted to Naira, so no DCC issues with the banks are encountered
  3. Still based on the previous point, your campaigns are now directly charged in Naira. So if you were using $1 / click before now, don't convert and assume it'll be N500/click or N320/click, you'd need to check to see what your new charges are like. Once you have this, you have a baseline moving forward

facebook blueprint now live

We're sponsoring one individual to write the Facebook Blueprint Certification

I recently blogged about the Facebook Blueprint certification, and how I took the mock test.

For a while now, I've hoped that I'd be able to take the Core Competence exam myself, but there's just not enough time to read up on this. So on behalf of Localized Digital, I'd like to sponsor one individual to write the £50 Facebook Advertising Core Competencies exam.

Localized Digital is sponsoring one individual to take the £50 Facebook Certification exam. Comment to qualifyClick To Tweet

How to enter

  1. Simply comment on this post with your name and a link to your LinkedIn profile
  2. Please put in your email in the "email field" not as a part of your comment. So I can reach out to you

Entries will be evaluated to some extent based on the following

  1. Work experience (especially with managing paid ads)
  2. Willingness to learn and also help others in understanding the process

What we expect...

Just a recap on your experience. Our aim is to help other marketers out there understand what the certification is like, especially because its still new. And 50 GBP is quite an amount for some to pay, so I'm sure they'd be looking to hear from someone first before going ahead.

That's it! Nothing more to qualifying really. Do drop your comments below, hopefully we'd have a pick for our winner by Friday.

Good luck! Let's hope you have this at the end of the day


linkedin for beginners

You can now advertise on LinkedIn through Google Display Ads

To be honest, I'm not sure when this happened. But in my 2 years working with a digital agency, LinkedIn was always a "premium ad" platform. We basically had to go through a media outlet to place ads there. As a matter of fact, I remember we had some form of exclusive agreement to be the advertising partner in Nigeria.

And to give you an idea of why this is important, we had only 2 ways of advertising on LinkedIn. Advertisers had the choice of self served ads, little ads that promoted sponsored posts for example. Or they could put up display type advertising (which went through the agency). The self served ads would usually go for about $1/click, on an average. And premium display advertising used to cost me about 15x more than regular Facebook / Google ads.

No more $1/click for LinkedIn ads! You can now serve ads directly through Google AdWords :)Click To Tweet

Just to be sure I never noticed it and it was there all along, I looked for similar queries online. Here's a recent answer to someone asking about advertising on LinkedIn through Google. PS: This was accepted as correct by a Google Employee

linkedin answer

 

Now that display ads are possible, here's what the ads look like

linkedin google ads

 

What does this mean for advertisers?

  1. Advertising for one on LinkedIn will now be significantly cheaper
  2. Since display advertising is now on an open platform like Google, small businesses with lower budgets can now reach the platform
  3. Clients with a more business oriented message now have an extra platform they can use for managed placements
  4. LinkedIn will accept text, leaderboard, skyscraper and video ads

Here's the current inventory listing as seen on the Google Display Planner.

linkedin inventory

What this means for LinkedIn as a platform

What I found a bit troubling about this, outside of the obvious good that it means for us advertisers, is that the platform loses some level of integrity. Seeing that Jiji ad advertising bikes... that just ruined the LinkedIn feel for me. But this is my personal opinion.

The most likely scenario is that LinkedIn realized premium display advertising wasn't working out for its Nigerian audience. And I say Nigerian because I do not think that LinkedIn has opened fully to Google ads in all African / West African countries. I checked Kenya and I still see only text ads. I'd likely be trying out ads on this platform, will be sure to put up my findings on performance.

What do you think of LinkedIn's move to start running Google Display ads? Let me know your thoughts


growth-hacking-masterclass

Join us at the Growth Hacking Masterclass at Hotels.ng

A simple conversation on Radar sparked an event to life and I'm really excited to be a part of it.

The growth hacking masterclass is

An Invite-Only Event For Growth Hackers, Digital Marketers and Startup Founders. The Event Is A Platform To Share Actionable Insights Around Growth Hacking Best Practices For Startups In Nigeria.

And I'd be taking a keynote on data driven marketing for paid advertising. Along with Abdul, Analytics Lead at Google Nigeria. QA sessions will also be held with a focus on building growth teams and incorporating virality into product marketing. You can check out the full press release here.

The event will hold at the Hotels.ng office in Yaba, on Saturday the 10th of December. Here's the full event schedule:

  • Keynote sessions: Paid Marketing And Data-Driven Marketing Wins For Startups (Presentations by Osaze Osoba and Abdul Salam
  • Panel Session 1: How To Build Viral Products And Products That Scale (Panelists are: Aniedi Udo-Ubong, Olufunbi Falayi, Chinedu Azodoh and Somto Ifezue. Moderator is Wole Ogunlade
  • Panel Session 2: How To Organize And Building A Team To Focus Solely On Growth (Panelists are: Justin irabor, Ekundayo Temitope and Yele Gbademosi. Moderator is Ubah Benson
  • Open Mic Session: What's the Fastest Way to grow your startup: Paid or Organic?
  • Live Case Study session (startup to be pre-selected. You can apply to qualify)
  • Networking and mentoring

Only 50 seats are available for this event, so be sure to signup early enough! Would be expecting to see you there


google adwords campaign groups

AdWords Click-To-Message ads now live for advertisers

For a lot of clients, your typical AdWords campaigns don't cut it. I learned that during my time at a digital agency. Take an FMCG that wants its customers to enter a competition by calling a number for example.Which happened on more than one occasion. In those cases, we had used the AdWords Click-To-Call campaigns and seen good uptake. Although the downside to that was the lack of conversion tracking for Nigerian numbers.

In a blog post last week, Google officially announced the Click-To-Message extension. Which I'm certain will have so many use applications. According to Google

Nearly two thirds of smartphone owners use messaging more than five times a day to communicate with others. And people aren’t limiting their use of messaging to social communications - 65% of consumers say they’d consider using messaging to connect with a business to get information about a product or service, or to schedule an in-person appointment.

The messaging extension will now be available just like the call, location and callout extensions. Here's an example of what the extension will look like in your ads

 

And the best thing about this extension, is that you can enter a default text in the message that's sent! Clicking on the message CTA opens up the users message app.

Possible use cases in Nigeria

 

Basic services, like food (Chicken Republic)

Lets take Chicken Republic as an example. The company already has an online sales platform. We've seen the company push their express meal for just ₦1,000 right? And they take orders from multiple areas in Lagos. Here's a simple campaign I could run to test out this functionality

chicken-republic-call-to-text

And here I'd include a message extension with the copy "SMS Your Order for delivery". Which could easily be designed to auto-fill the message "I'd like an express meal. My address is [insert your address]". This can then trigger a call to confirm the order.

There are a million and one other use cases for this. Only thing that'll get in your way is your imagination.

And don't forget, this is a new feature, so you'd want to try it out to see how your customers respond to it. If you do and you get any interesting feedback, let me know in the comment box below