The YouTube video from DemandCurve is a masterclass solely about social media ads. The information in the video dealt with three topics, which are the categories we listed below.
A. The Use of Social Media Ads for Prospecting
1. Transitional Audiences
- Transitional audiences are people who comprise a fleeting group, meaning they won't remain in that category forever. Examples of traditional audiences include new parents, someone who just purchased a car, and newly-weds.
- By running social media ads directed at transitional audiences, people won't get oversaturated with an ad over its lifespan because they won't remain part of that category for all that long.
- Another benefit of running ads directed at transitional audiences is that such ads speak to what is most important to those people at the moment, given their statuses as part of transitional audiences. For example, a social media ad directed at a person who was just hired for a job will have a much greater impact on individuals in that transitional audience compared to the entire audience on Facebook.
- It's important to capitalize on the fact that advertising to people in these groups is time sensitive, since they won't be part of that group for all that long. To capitalize on such, it's best to determine the spending amount for advertising to that group.
- Once the ad is made, it should continue running since those people are unlikely to get annoyed with the ad because they will transition from that category in a relatively short period. This is great for advertisers because a new group of people will move into that category after the others depart from it and the cycle will repeat itself.
2. Time of Week/Day Targeting
- One of the best ways to lower customer acquisition costs that few take advantage of is with time of week or time of day targeting.
- The reason why doing so is uncommon is because "it's not a natural feature of Facebook to restrict [ads to certain] hours or days."
- To do this, "a Facebook time-limited campaign" is necessary. That can be done by using a third-party tool such as AdExpresor.
- A b2b example highlighting the value of this approach is that if a company only runs ads during business hours Monday through Friday, instead of 24/7, their customer acquisition cost can be 30% lower.
- While Facebook offers the ability to breakdown data to show the optimal metrics for customer acquisition, a third-party tool is necessary to implement this solution.
3. Pixel Sharing
- Pixel sharing (which is "java script code running on individual websites") is one of the more advanced ways for companies to get their ads on Facebook to work well when their main issue is struggling "to target the right people."
- Pixel sharing is implemented when either Facebook lookalike targeting or Facebook interest targeting aren't yielding good results. This is a common problem for companies with very niche audiences.
- Pixel sharing works by the owner of Company A connecting with the owner of Company B and saying let's share pixels. If they do this, they can both cross target the other's audience.
- If a company decides to do this, they should look for companies that aren't competitors yet have customers in the same niche.
- In practice, this is best to do among people one knows pretty well because it's challenge to get someone random to agree to do this.
4. Geo-Rollouts and "Linkedin-First Retargeting"
- Geo-rollouts means implementing a targeting expansion "one region at a time" (e.g. Dallas only) and then spending a ton in ads in that area. This is effective because it gives the impression that a company is very established due to their frequent advertising.
- This geo-rollout concept can also be carried over to cross-channel retargeting by advertising a ton in that one area across multiple channels. This too gives the impression that a company is really established because people see the ads frequently across multiple channels.
- While it's usually best to avoid Linkedin ads because of their per-click costs which can reach $45 and also because they frequently perform poorly, a good way to make them work well is through "Linkedin-first retargeting."
- The first step is to identify the criteria of ideal customer as narrowly as possible. The next step is to run Linkedin ads very cheaply through text ads with clickbait.
- The ads are structured so that when they are clicked, they are pixeled with Instagram or Facebook. After that, Facebook or Instagram are used for retargeting to convert that Linkedin audience. That's because Instagram and Facebook ads perform best for conversion among social media channels.
1. Retargeting & the Four-Day Window
- Retargeting is a must-do for advertising on social media.
- Instagram and Facebook are the best places for retargeting. However, retargeting on those channels "also needs to [be] pair[ed]" with a complementary platform (Criteo recommended) since neither of those social media channels run adds from their platforms.
- Criteo is great because its banner ads perform well, it performs better than Google display retargeting, it uses good algorithms, it "delivers ads at" optimal time, and it assigns account managers to customers free of charge. However, Criteo should only be used for retargeting and not for prospecting (it's not too good for that).
- The retargeting on Instagram and Facebook can be done by the advertising company itself and thus Criteo need not be used for such.
- For b2b companies, complementary ads (in addition to Criteo plus Instagram and/or Facebook) should also be run on Linkedin so that the ads remain in a b2b environment.
- The period with the highest conversion rate for retargeting is within four days of when a person visits a website. After the four-day mark, the conversion rate plummets significantly. Thus, it's essential for ads to be run a ton during that window.
- Ad spend from day five and thereafter should be far lower than in the first four-day window. However, it's important to note that ads can be run on day five and thereafter nonetheless.
- Another reason to follow that guideline is because it avoids irritating people by them seeing the ads too much and results in better customer acquisition costs. The avoidance of annoying people with ads outside of that four day window is important because if they click "stop seeing ad" and choose "it's annoying" as their reason for doing so, that reduces the quality score for that ad and then increase the impressions cost, which in turn increase the conversion cost.
- For b2b ads, it's important to run those on Instagram and Facebook despite the fact those aren't platforms for b2b. That's because the people who work for those b2b companies spend time on Instagram and Facebook and still can see those ads.
- In further reference to the aforementioned four-day window, it's important to remain broad with retargeting ads during that period since it's hard to know what those people are really interest in. During days five through 30, a good way to attempt conversion is through a time-limited method such as a discount that expires later that day. The time-limited approach shouldn't be used in the first four-day window because that person might make the purchase without even having a discount.
2. Cold Outreach, Geographic Zoning, and Landing Pages
- For cold outreach, the recommended first step is to conduct account-based marketing (identify companies that the advertising company wants to target). Then, those companies names should be uploaded to Linkedin.
- Next, Linkedin ads should be run against those companies so that they familiarize themselves with the advertising company prior to email outreach. As a result, when a cold email outreach is made by the advertising company, the company receiving the cold outreach is likely to have heard of the advertising company and thus is more inclined to respond.
- Geographic zoning is the best way to obtain attribution. This means that if ads run on a single channel in one area, then the advertising company will know that conversions resulting from that ad came from that locations.
- Retargeting ads should be different from prospecting ads in terms of ad side and landing page side.
- It's important to not just use one landing page. Landing pages should be very different, yet involve the same branding.
- People need to see a new landing page so that they actually pay attention to it. By the time they see a landing page for the second time, chances are they probably already know about the company, so that's the time to emphasize what makes the advertising company awesome.
C. Making Ads
- Video ads should be made cheaply so that they can be tested across different types of styles. Those styles include testimonials, screen recording video (for b2b or SAS), videos explaining how a product/service works, videos showing features, or what are called teaser videos (such as a compilation of stop videos that totaling about five to ten seconds).
- For photo and video ads, they should be tested in the form of lifestyle and product ads. Lifestyle ads show someone using a product, whereas product ads show the product itself. It's important to test these types of ads because sometimes one works far better than the other.
- Competitor ads can be extremely effective, especially when they are pared with a landing page comparing the product/service to competitors. One reason this type of ad works so well is because people can quickly comprehend what a company is just by that company comparing itself to a competitor. These competitor ads can also be tested in video format, as that can be effective too.
- It's okay for ad copy to be lengthy, as long as it's written in a very interesting tone. The best way to do this is with a brief opening section, followed by a medium-length paragraph that tells a story, and then concluded by a checklist highlighting all the interesting offerings of a product/service.
- Long ad copy can be effective because it subtly tells people why the ad applies to them. This is effective because most ads don't work due to people not understanding why they're even seeing the ad.
- It's important to include CTAs in ads (e.g. shop now) because that encourages someone to click on it.
- Image-based ads perform better in square format compared to rectangular.
- For SAS applications, the copy positionings that typically yield the best returns are competitor ads. An effective way to format a competitor ad is with check boxes that compare a product/service to one or more competitors.
Your research team applied the following strategy:
We compiled the findings above by listening to the video in its entirety. We categorized the information above as the main points made in the video because the speakers formatted their presentation by talking about numerous insights for each category. Thus, those insights are the main points we included.