A Blank Canvas – The Death of the Microsite?

Facebook could have caused the death of the microsite.

The new Facebook canvas feature can act as a landing page for social media activity, reducing the need for expensive site creation. At Brazen, we’ve been using canvasses on Facebook & Instagram much more frequently for social media campaigns, allowing the landing page to be hosted within Facebook rather than directing traffic elsewhere.

In their own words, a Facebook canvas shortens the distance between a brand and the consumers’ – it takes out some of the steps in a customers journey to purchase, decreasing the likelihood of basket abandonment. The format can work across Facebook as well as Instagram & can aid in creating a more meaningful connection between brands and their target audience by providing an immersive experience that the user becomes a part of.

At Brazen we live and breathe social, and have picked up a few tricks for getting the best from a Facebook canvas.

Lead the way with a hero image – unlike in-feed carousel adverts where users can see multiple images at once, users only see one page at a time in a canvas. Open content with an image that grabs users’ attention, this is key to gaining click-through.

Be clear what you want the user to do. Remember they may need a gentle nudge on what steps to do, don’t be afraid of spelling this out. Over complicated formats cause drop off.

Stay visual – just like basic Facebook ads, overloading your message with too much text is off putting and won’t be cost effective, let your visual assets lead the way and restrict the use of text, adding a concise and clear call to action.

Be aware that there’s no one-size-fits-all approach across platforms – tilt to pan and 360° photos aren’t currently supported on Instagram. When creating visual assets, this needs to be taken into consideration, as there’ll be a different user experience across channels.

Understand its capabilities before pitching to a client. Whilst the ad format is highly customisable and allows images to be placed together within a carousel, the format doesn’t allow the same experience for video. Currently users can only use one video per arm of a canvas with supporting stills. Watch this space for more canvas updates.

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