Biddable Blog Series: Facebook pointers for direct-response campaigns

February 10, 2017

Making dough through Facebook

To drive conversions on Facebook, brands and advertisers must understand how to leverage the social media platform’s vast and growing capabilities around audience targeting. Mastering the fundamentals of Facebook advertising is a good starting point to reach your target audience and improve the ROI of what was once considered just a branding channel.

Here we will touch upon some pointers every advertiser should be aware of in order to maximise revenue generation on the social platform, looking at a real client example, selling something everybody wants – PIZZA!

Audiences

Sketch out audiences that are going to be useful in scaling up. Create a custom audience from your first-party email lists (or multiple, including high value customers or frequent customers). Create an audience from site purchasers (of differing degrees of recency if relevant e.g. 7 days, 14 days, 30 days etc.). These can then be used to generate lookalike audiences which can help you easily reach more people similar to those who are already customers. Recent purchasers may want to be excluded from campaigns to avoid insensitive messaging and being too pushy. For our client example, an interest-based audience for vegans was also created, allowing us to raise awareness of vegan cheese.

Targeting & scheduling

It pays to spend time understanding who you are trying to reach, where they are, when you want to reach them and what you are reaching them with. For our client selling pizzas, campaigns were segmented by store, with postcode targeting added to reach only the relevant areas for delivery. Ad scheduling was important to make sure ads were only running at times the pizzas could actually be made and delivered. Once you’ve chosen your preferred days and times, you can select “Standard” (ads dispersed evenly throughout your selected times) or “Accelerated” (ads go out ASAP in your selected times) delivery.

Ad scheduling in Facebook Ads Manager

Ad placement analysis

If your creative is suitable, you may want to start out with Automatic placements. This allows ads to be showing in-feed or right hand column (Facebook), as well as Audience Network and Instagram. Leaving the ad placement open, we noticed cost per pizza sale was more cost-efficient on Instagram vs Facebook (looking at post-view conversions). Through 2017, Facebook will continue to find new spots to put ads within the platform (we’ve spotted some within photos being tested).

Instagram ad example

 

Creative

Creative, and the copy and content within, is your lifeblood. Put serious thought into creative so it’s not received as a token effort, and use high quality assets that are entertaining and engaging. Then test away. From product photos to video, brands should test and analyse creative – leveraging tangible metrics to support and help decide where and how to invest in creative efforts for Facebook ads. We have tested a combination of static image ads and carousels, alongside softer sponsored posts highlighting provenance of the ingredients and raising awareness of a customer-favourite pizza that was re-introduced.

On New Year’s Eve, we tailored ads to football matches being played on 31st December (overlaying interest-based targeting for football fans to our audiences). On New Year’s Day, when pizza demand spikes, we tailored ads around the customary 1st January hangover. Engagement, conversion rates and cost per pizza were all well below target for our client – and for 400 people, 2017’s first ropey morning was remedied by us. To keep creative varied and avoid ad fatigue, a Tuesday Date Night offer and creative is being tested too around Valentine’s Day. Video on Facebook is unstoppable too – additional benefits if you’re posting video on Facebook include lower CPMs, greater reach & ability to build audiences from viewers to sequentially reach. Canvas ads are also something that excite us, and we think experimentation with this ad format will kick on in 2017.

 

David Walby, Biddable Account Director


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