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5 Legal ways to contact Facebook winners

When Facebook updated their promotion guidelines this past August, they casually removed the rule that stated brands could not contact promotion winners on Facebook via status updates, private messages, chat, etc. This rule was kind of a hassle, especially for businesses with multiple promotion winners to notify, so pretty much everyone we know was glad to see it go.

With this rule no longer in existence, some of our users have asked: What’s the best way to contact contest winners now? In today’s blog post, we cover not one, but five great and totally legal ways to contact Facebook promotion winners.

5 Tips for contacting your Facebook winners

Here they are:

1. Post a status update

One simple way to contact promotion winners is to create a post on your Timeline and announce your winners in it. For example, the post would read:

‘Congrats Winner Name! You’ve won our awesome prize. To claim it, email us at ‘[email protected]’ You have 48 hours to claim your prize. We will choose another winner if we don’t hear from you by then.’

FYI: When we hosted our first promotion after the new rule change, we initially tried to tag our winners in our status update using their @name but Facebook does not allow business Pages to tag users, even if they have liked the page.

That said, a status update is a great way to announce your promotion winner, but it is not the best way to contact them as it is impossible to ensure that your contest winners will see your post.

Therefore, in order for this to be an option, host a Comment or Comment and Like to enter Timeline promotion.

3. Require users to submit their email addresses

If you don’t like the idea of contacting your promotion winners on Facebook through a status update, require entrants to visit an app to enter their email addresses so that your business can contact your winners via email.

If your business is adamant about collecting the email addresses of your promotion entrants, be sure to include in your contest rules that only entrants who’ve submitted their email addresses will be selected as winners.

4. Use Twitter

Note: Make it clear in your promotion’s rules and guidelines that your winner will be contacted via Twitter.

5. Announce winners on your blog or website

If your business doesn’t want to fuss about contacting multiple promotion winners directly, state in the details of your promotion that an announcement will be made on your blog or website on a specific date and time. This way the responsibility is on your entrants to find out if they’ve won.

In the announcement on your website or blog, provide instructions on how your winners should contact you to receive their prizes. For instance, they might have to email a person on your team on a certain date and time.

As you might have noticed, we did not include Facebook private messaging in our list of ways to contact promotion winners. There’s a big reason for this.

When a user receives a private message from a user other than one of their Facebook friends, the message is often marked as spam. If your business chooses to go this route to contact your promotion winners, it’s likely your winners may never see your message.

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Max Schrems Launches New Legal Broadside At Facebook

After bringing down the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor data transfer agreement, Max Schrems is turning his legal guns on the other mechanisms that enable the transatlantic commerce in Europeans’ personal information — and Facebook is in the line of fire again.

He has filed two new complaints about Facebook’s handling of his personal data, and updated another, he said Wednesday. The new complaints are with the Belgian Privacy Commission and the Data Protection and Freedom of Information Commissioner in Hamburg, Germany.

He also updated the complaint, filed with the Irish Data Protection Commissioner, that ultimately put an end in the Safe Harbor Agreement.

What’s bothering Schrems is that Facebook Ireland, the entity through which Facebook operates its business outside the U.S., is transferring personal information about him to the U.S. in a manner that he maintains is illegal.

European Union privacy law requires that companies only export the personal data of Europeans to countries that provide an adequate level of privacy protection, a level that includes freedom from illegal surveillance by government bodies.

U.S. and European privacy laws differ significantly, yet many of the world’s biggest data processors are based in the U.S.

To make it easy for U.S. companies to serve European customers and comply with EU privacy law, in July 2000 U.S. officials and the European Commission brokered the Safe Harbor Agreement, under which companies could register and self-certify that they would respect EU standards of privacy protection when processing data in the U.S.

This prompted Schrems to file a complaint about Facebook’s handling of his data — in Ireland, because that’s where the Facebook subsidiary legally responsible for European users’ personal information is based. The Data Protection Commissioner dismissed his complaint, and Schrems, unsatisfied, appealed to the High Court of Ireland, which in turn referred questions about the interpretation of the 1995 directive to the Court of Justice of the European Union.

The European Commission and the national data protection authorities put a brave face on it, saying that they were close to finalizing a stronger data protection agreement with U.S. authorities, giving companies reliant on Safe Harbor a three-month grace period in which to make alternative arrangements — and reminding everyone of the alternate legal mechanisms that Safe Harbor was brought in to simplify.

While the CJEU’s ruling specifically targeted Safe Harbor, it raised doubts in the minds of legal scholars about the validity of the other legal mechanisms to protect data transfers. German regional data protection authorities like the one in Hamburg were so concerned, they refused to issue new authorizations to use such mechanisms, and said they would audit and even prosecute companies that did not have appropriate protections in place. The safest place for Europeans’ data, they said, is in Europe.

Schrems’ latest complaints make that same point, seeking to demonstrate that no legal mechanism available to Facebook Ireland can oblige or enable its U.S. parent company to protect his personal information to the extent required by EU law.

It now appears, though, that since November 2013 the company has been relying on a binding corporate rule, which it updated on Nov. 20. A few days before Schrems filed his updated complaint — and some six weeks after he requested the information — Facebook provided his lawyers with a copy of its contract with Facebook Ireland governing the exchange of data.

Legal Search Advertising Benchmarks For 2023 (With Data & Tips)

We’re also sharing tips lawyers and legal services businesses can use to maximize the profitability and effectiveness of their Microsoft and Google Ads.

Legal business category

Accidents & Personal Injury Law 4.56%

Criminal Law 4.51%

Bankruptcy Law 6.23%

Estate & Probate Law (incl. Wills) 5.17%

Family Law (incl. Divorce) 4.70%

Tax Law 4.96%

General Practice Law 4.80%

Bankruptcy Law and Estate & Probate Law saw higher-than-average CTRs of 6.23% and 5.17%, respectively. Criminal Law and Accidents & Personal Injury Law saw a little lower-than-average CTRs of 4.51% and 4.56%, respectively.

CTRs for attorneys and legal services as a whole increased 12% year over year.

Legal business category

Accidents & Personal Injury Law $9.30

Criminal Law $12.30

Bankruptcy Law $11.70

Estate & Probate Law (incl. Wills) $7.92

Family Law (incl. Divorce) $7.69

Tax Law $11.82

General Practice Law $9.97

Of the industries we looked at, 91% saw increases in CPC in 2023, including attorneys and legal services. This year’s CPC for attorneys and legal services is only slightly higher than the average CPC they saw last year at $8.67.

Legal business category Avg. conversion rate

Accidents & Personal Injury Law 5.45%

Criminal Law 9.90%

Bankruptcy Law 13.56%

Estate & Probate Law (incl. Wills) 9.65%

Family Law (incl. Divorce) 8.52%

Tax Law 13.30%

General Practice Law 5.52%

Bankruptcy Law and Tax Law had the highest conversion rates at over 13% each. General Practice Law and Accidents & Personal Injury Law had the lowest conversion rates at 5.52% and 5.45%, respectively.

An uncertain economy and increased inflation have impacted almost every industry’s conversion rates, and the legal industry is no exception. Conversion rates fell for attorneys and legal services by 24% year over year. Keep reading for tips you can use to increase conversion rates for your Google Ads this year.

Legal business category Avg. cost per lead

Accidents & Personal Injury Law $159.17

Criminal Law $101.49

Bankruptcy Law $82.27

Estate & Probate Law (incl. Wills) $72.24

Family Law (incl. Divorce) $103.54

Tax Law $120.30

General Practice Law $96.54

Accidents & Personal Injury Law had the highest CPLs of the legal services businesses at $159.17. Bankruptcy Law saw the lowest CPLs of the bunch at $82.27.

While these numbers are higher than the average CPL across all industries of $53.52, it’s important to look at CPL in the context of average lifetime customer value. While an industry like Restaurants & Food or Animals & Pets may see lower CPLs, their customer value is much lower than that of those in the legal field. This is where understanding your law firm’s marketing ROI can play an important role in determining what a good CPL looks like for your business.

Try Local Services Ads

Plus, to run LSAs, your firm or business has to be Google Screened, which lets potential clients know that you’ve been vetted by Google. People want to make sure they’re finding legal services from businesses they can trust, and this extra vote of confidence from Google can help alleviate some of the hesitations over contacting your firm.

Audit and test your ad copy

This could be even more compelling with a strong CTA.

Speaking of competitors, to improve your ad copy, you can take inventory of how your competitors are talking about their services, what CTAs they’re using, and what they’re communicating about their business. Then you can find ways to tweak your ad copy so it stands out.

Optimize your landing page

You may also need separate landing pages for your keywords, services, or campaigns. The more you can tailor your landing page to a specific query, the better chances you have of conversion. Plus, the more relevant your landing page is to your keywords, the higher your Quality Score will be. And your Quality Score can impact your performance in the Google Ads auction.

This landing page closely matches its Google Ads copy.

By understanding the latest data and how your campaigns compare, you can make meaningful tweaks and optimizations that will drive the best results for your business. It’s important to understand that these benchmarks serve solely as a guidepost—every business is unique, and results will vary depending on a whole host of factors, including keywords, demographic and location targeting, and budget.

About the data Stephanie Heitman

Stephanie is the Associate Director of Content for LocaliQ and WordStream. She has over 10 years of experience in content and social media marketing and loves writing about all things digital marketing. When she’s not researching the latest and greatest marketing news and updates, she’s probably watching reality TV with her husband, reading, or playing with her two pups.

Other posts by Stephanie Heitman

Facebook & Instagram Shops Integrate With Shopify

Facebook and Instagram Shops are adding Shopify as a payment option which is estimated to increase conversion rates by 1.72x.

All Shopify merchants selling on Facebook and Instagram can now offer Shop Pay as a checkout option for customers.

Checking out with Shop Pay is said to be 70% faster than a typical checkout, which is due in large part to how it pre-populates customer details such as billing and shipping information.

When a customer uses Shop Pay for the first time their information is stored for future purchases. Next time they checkout with Shop Pay they can speed through the process with a simple tap.

This marks the first time Shop Pay has been available outside of Shopify. For businesses, the expansion of Shop Pay means more sales and fewer abandoned carts.

In a study of 10,000 of the largest Shopify merchants with Shop Pay enabled it was found that checkouts going through Shop Pay have an average checkout-to-order rate of 1.72x higher than those going through regular checkouts.

That number is even higher on mobile, where Shop Pay increases conversion rate by 1.91x.

Shopify merchants can enable Shop Pay by following the steps laid out in the next section.

How to Enable Shop Pay

Shopify merchants can enable Shop Pay in a few simple steps:

In the ACCELERATED CHECKOUTS section, check Shop Pay.

Now your customers can use Shop Pay to check out on your store.

In an announcement, Shopify emphasizes the benefits Shop Pay has provided to businesses since it launched in 2023:

“With Shop Pay now available as a fast and secure payment option on Facebook, people also get access to industry-leading order tracking and carbon offsets from their deliveries.

Shop Pay helped buyers complete more than 137 million orders in 2023, and by the end of the year, had facilitated nearly $20 billion in cumulative GMV since its launch in 2023.“

Shop Pay will first become available to all Shopify merchants using checkout on Instagram in the US, and will be rolled out to Facebook in the coming weeks.

When Shop Pay is available in Instagram and Facebook, users will be able to find tagged product in the app and add them to their cart.

At checkout they will have the option to select Shop Pay as their preferred payment provider among other choices such as credit card, debit card, and PayPal.

When the order is completed, customers can conveniently track the progress using Shopify’s Shop app.

Shopify merchants in the US can sell products directly through Facebook and Instagram using tools that were introduced last year. Shop Pay will automatically be enabled in Facebook and Instagram Shops if it’s enabled in the merchant’s main Shopify store.

For more details on Facebook and Instagram Shops, see our coverage here:

Sources: Shopify (1, 2)

4 Things Your Facebook Ad Visuals Must Have

The ultimate goal of any Facebook ad is to catch someone’s eye with the right combination of stunning visuals and compelling copy.

You want the ad to stand out against the background noise of news, politics and status updates.

And there is a lot of noise right now.

The ad copy could be great but the visual has to be even better.

Because that’s what will be seen first.

Now that almost every news site, company page or blogger uses compelling visuals, standing out has become more difficult.

But I have come up with a few tried and tested tips to help you create a winning Facebook Ad visual.

How to use Facebook Instant Experiences (Canvas Ads)

Learn the ins and outs of Facebook Instant Experiences with this Quick Win. From set-up to optimization, this guide will help get you up and running with Facebook Experiences in no time at all.

Access the How to use Facebook Instant Experiences (Canvas Ads) quick win

1. Include a product image

If you are using a Facebook Ad to show off your product you should probably include a shot of your product. Right? In most other marketing channels that would be a no-brainer. But when it comes to Facebook Ad visuals some people may have missed the memo.

Because some people think that they can use a stock image or a few lines of text to create a winning Facebook Ad visual. Wrong. For example, recently I have seen some brands either us a somewhat related stock image:

Or just the slightly better vague stock image with some random text overlaid. But in this case the internet’s favorite pet can not make up for a bad Facebook Ad visual:

Actually, they are both virtual products, which is why I picked them. In this day and age, many marketers are trying to sell products that you can not hold in your hands or see. I do not see that changing anytime soon, in fact, it will probably get worse. That makes it hard to include a product in your Facebook Ad visual when you technically do not have the traditional definition of a product. It is difficult for sure, but not impossible. Just take a look at the simple but effective way 99Designs showed off their logo design service.

Or you could be like Hubspot in the example below and include a screenshot of the product. This approach can be extremely useful for products that have a very beautiful or easy to understand interface as well.

Finally here is an example from one of my campaigns for an Ebook about creating social media images.

2. Use legible text and fonts

It is common knowledge that Facebook Ads visuals can only include text that takes up to 20% of the image. And that definitely causes some headaches for even the most seasoned social media marketer. Because it is hard to not only grab someone’s attention but also inform about your product them in few words.

That is why some marketers decide just to shrink the size of the text to fit more in. And if you are paying attention to the title of this section that makes it barely legible. Like this example that shrunk the most important part of their text, the savings, for some reason:

As you can see the font is very light, the text small and the background color too light, which when all are combined makes it even harder to read. Something like this is not going to stop someone from scrolling right over it in their Facebook feed.

Here is another example of using the wrong text in your Facebook Ad visual but in this case, it is all about using the wrong font colour:

In this case, the font blends into the background image pretty easily and does nothing to grab the reader’s attention. In contrast, the text on this Facebook Ad from Clearbit jumps off the page and is easy to read:

They used a dark background, a bold font and an acceptable text size, which makes this a great visual. I will show off why dark backgrounds are so important in the next section too.

To make it very easy to read they not only use large and in your face text, they also use two different font weights. This makes it even easier to read, and we have seen this work very well in our Facebook Ad visuals.

I would also recommend using a white font, it sticks out on about any dark background.

Like on this visual that comes from one of our past campaigns and performed very well.

As you can see it uses white font, two font weights and very large text to make it incredibly legible. And people are able to quickly read this and react while scrolling through their feed. Unlike some of the bad examples, we saw above. Unlike some of the bad examples, we saw above.

3. Dark and bold backgrounds are your friend

As you are probably well aware of by now, the background colour of the Facebook feed is white. Which helps it look clean and beautiful on almost any screen. That does not mean that your Facebook Ad visuals use a white or light colour scheme to fit in. Because that is exactly what will happen, your ad visuals will just blend into the background.

People will scroll over them without even noticing your product and you will have wasted a nice chunk of money. And as many props that I have given Hubspot in this article, sometimes they just have a bad Facebook Ad visual:

This is something that does not grab my attention at all and blends into not only the background of Facebook but the text of the ad.

Honestly, you are not sure where the ad text ends and the visual begins if you take a quick look. So I would recommend taking their hiccup and using it for your gain by never using a white background in a Facebook Ad visual. The same can be said about this ad from Blocks about using white backgrounds:

It may look incredibly clean and futuristic while you are designing it but a white background will rarely ever work on Facebook. Instead, I recommend very dark or bold backgrounds for your Facebook Ad visuals. Anker, the portable battery company, did just that in their ad below and it looks fantastic:

Plus the white text really pops off the screen and blends into the clean aesthetic that you see on your Facebook feed. Additionally, it does not have to be a static dark background, you can also use an image with darker tones for your Facebook Ad visual. Like the team at Blenders Eyewear did below:

And if you can not avoid using a white or lighter background, just throw a dark colored gradient over the image. It is one of the oldest tricks in the Facebook Ad or really any social network game and the team at Hoth used it perfectly.

4. Do not forget icons and graphics

Using icons to add something extra is one of my favorite design tricks I use while creating infographics, and they translate to Facebook Ads as well. They can be used to catch the eye of your reader and direct them to a part of your ad, like a call to action. Or icons can become the focal point of your Facebook Ad visual in which the text latches onto. And they even can be used to add a bit of context to the ad without using any extra text.

It really is up to you, and since there is not really a wrong way to use icons I will jump to the good examples! In this first Facebook Ad from Southwest airlines, they masterfully use a simple icon to draw your eye to the low price of the flight:

Using icons in this way really helps your visual look balanced and also sets the tone for what the ad is about. And finally we have one from the team at Hubspot, where they use just a simple Instagram icon to add quick context to the post:


There you have it, my personal guide to creating better Facebook Ad visuals. You should be set if you:

Include a product image

Use legible text

Feature a dark background color

Do not avoid using icons

I will be using these tips in all of my future Facebook Ads and I hope you will too.

And if you need some more guidance on creating your own Facebook Ad visuals I recommend checking out our e-book on the subject here!

Learn how to set up Facebook Ads and target your customers with effective messages to boost your sales.

Is Employee Monitoring Software Legal?

If you look for computer monitoring tools on a search engine, you’ll see a range of tools designed to keep tabs on employees. These typically include some worrying features, such as the ability to track someone’s activities without them ever knowing. But how legal is this, and can a boss get into serious legal trouble if their monitoring is discovered?

What Kind of Monitoring Can Happen?

Employers will typically monitor employees for one of two reasons. For one, they want to protect business assets. When a company owns a building and gives resources to their employees, they want to ensure nothing gets stolen or damaged. This includes tracking the location of employees and products but can also mean monitoring email to prevent data leaks and breaches.

Another reason is that the boss wants to monitor the productivity of the employees. This involves spying on what the employee is doing during work time. This can include keylogging, webcam spying, and monitoring active applications.

How Legal Is the Monitoring?

When breaking down how legal this monitoring is, there are many variables involved. For example, different countries will have different ways of approaching this grey area.

You’ll find that laws typically side with the business when it comes to protecting assets. For example, if a business logs emails made on its work email accounts to prevent information leaks, that would be legal. Similarly, if a business wants to use CCTV to protect against thieves, they could.

Things get a little murkier when it involves spying on how a worker uses their company computers. Typically, if an employer can see what you’re doing by watching over your shoulder, they can log it. This includes the websites you visit and the applications you use.

The grey area comes in when the employer hides these tracking apps from the employee. In most U.S. states and some countries like the UK, it’s totally legal for a boss to install monitoring software without the employees knowing. Connecticut, Delaware, and some countries demand the employer tell their workers what’s being monitored and for what purpose.

Employers also enter a grey area with GPS tracking on equipment. They can argue that installing GPS on a laptop helps retrieve stolen goods, but it could also be used to track employees after work to see what they do. As such, an employer may need to put forward a strong defense for GPS monitoring – that is if such a thing is even legal in the country they operate in.

When Monitoring Goes Too Far

So we can see there’s a good chance that employees in your country can and will monitor workspace equipment. However, this doesn’t give them free reign over what they can monitor and store about you.

For instance, things get illegal when the employer tries to push their monitoring into employees’ private lives. For instance, if you use a work PC during a break to check your email, the employer can legally see that you visited your email provider but can’t go through your emails.

Similarly, any monitoring that does occur has to have a business reasoning behind it. If an employer monitors your phone calls to ensure you’re meeting company protocol, that’s acceptable. However, if an employer monitors someone with a speech impediment and saves recordings to share with his friends for a laugh, that’s illegal.

Monitoring Made Legal

While employee monitoring software features may seem intrusive, the truth is that employers can legally monitor a lot. As long as it’s related to the operation of a business, employers have a lot of freedom; however, as soon as it breaches into unprofessional spying, the employer works against the law.

Do you think employers should inform their employees of monitoring software by law? Or is it an effective way to prevent misuse of property in the first place? Let us know below.

Simon Batt

Simon Batt is a Computer Science graduate with a passion for cybersecurity.

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