Watching the news this past week was like drinking from a firehose. Speaking of which, you probably missed a busy week in cybersecurity, so here are the big stories from the past week.
THE BIG PICTURE
Blackbaud hack gets worse, as bank account data stolen
Blackbaud, a cloud technology company used by colleges, universities, nonprofits (and far-right organizations), was hit by a data-stealing ransomware attack earlier this year. The attack was one of the biggest of the year in terms of the number of organizations affected, hitting dozens of universities, hospitals and other high-profile organizations like NPR. Blackbaud said in July that it paid the ransom — but also claimed and received “confirmation” that the stolen personal data “had been destroyed,” fooling absolutely nobody.
This week Blackbaud confirmed in a regulatory filing that the stolen data also included bank account data and Social Security numbers — far more personally identifiable information than the company first thought. “In most cases, fields intended for sensitive information were encrypted and not accessible,” the company claimed.
Despite Blackbaud’s claim that the data was deleted, these are malicious hackers driven by financial reward. Hope for the best, but assume the worst — Blackbaud’s data is still out there.
Facebook shuts down malware that hijacked accounts to run ads
Hackers spent about $4 million to run scammy ads on Facebook by hijacking the accounts of unsuspecting users, reports Wired. The hackers used malware, dubbed SilentFade, to compromise Facebook accounts using stolen passwords to use whatever saved credit card details on those accounts to buy ads for diet pills and fake designer handbags.
5 Effective Ways to Run Facebook Ads A/B Tests
Facebook Ads A/B Tests or split tests help them try different versions of ads with various campaign elements. This process helps them arrive at the best version for the organization’s target.
A/B Tests offer a vast pool of resources to try out various versions. You may get caught up and lose your way to arriving at the best version in a limited time. To better understand this topic you can read the Facebook ad testing guide. Here are five effective ways to run Facebook Ads A/B Tests-
1) Start with the minimal number of variables
This approach will help you analyze the impact of a variable much better. The lesser the variables, the better will be the relevant results and more conclusive. Once you have various versions, you will need to run them through the A/B Significance Test to determine if the test results are valid.
2) The second way is to select the correct structure.
There are two structures in A/B tests. One is a single ad test, and the other is multiple single variation ad sets. All the variations will go under one ad set in the first structure. Each variation will be under a separate ad set in the second one. Out of the two, the second one works out to be better and gives better results.
3) Use of spreadsheets is important to stay organized.
These spreadsheets help collect and analyze data to get meaningful insights and arrive at data-backed decisions.
4) Do target advertising and set realistic time goals.
One approach is to choose an entirely new set of audiences. Also, the data pool should be vast and not the same as some existing campaigns. The reason for choosing a different audience is that Facebook may mix up your ads and give contaminated output.
Another approach to choosing the right audience is to pick geography. It works better, especially when you have business in a particular region.
It’s also essential to set a realistic timeline for your testing. Facebook suggests one should run a test for at least four days, but you can choose to run the test for up to 30 days.
5) Set an ideal budget.
The concept of a perfect budget is subjective. But, you can fix it yourself, or Facebook can do that for you based on your testing data. A large part of the test budget is spent on avoiding audience duplication. If the same audience sees variations, it could affect the test results.
Besides these top five effective ideas, you will need to take a few more action points to make the testing process efficient. Make sure you put the website’s domain link and not the landing page link in the ad, as that doesn’t look good. Put appropriate Call To Action Button, such as ‘Learn More,’ ‘Buy Now,’ etc. It’s also important to see how your ad is coming across on various electronic gadgets- mobile, tablets, etc.
Another strategy that works is trying to engage the customer. You may add social engagement buttons such as ‘Like’ or ‘Comment.’ Use high-resolution images as they work better with the customers. Low-quality, highly edited images are often not liked and trusted by the consumers.
You can learn more about the audience behavior patterns with A/B test results. Conducting these tests on Facebook streamlines the entire process and makes it smooth for you. With the test results, advertisers and marketers can work on the creatives they need to utilize.
To sum it up, you can run an effective A/B test campaign within the specified budget. You don’t need to spend massive amounts to get your advertisement right. You’ll make the correct assumptions about the performance of variations with a good understanding of business and consumers.
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