Timex: Fall 2017

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In this campaign, I experimented with an A/B/C test for delivery optimization. In just 5 days, not only did I meet our client's goal of 10,000 page views, but I discovered which campaign objective would deliver the most for our money. But first, I tested for post creative -- copy and photo. Here's an example of some post variations. (I had 3 more photos paired with these copy options.)

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We had a $3,000 budget, and until 11/31 to reach our goal. But only $400 and a series of tests later, I found we'd met that goal over the long weekend. Q: What do we do with the rest of the money? A: Over-deliver by doubling the page view goal (20k) and only spending $1200 because that's all that was needed with these awesome ads yielding $0.08 and $0.10 CPCs.

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That first set up top was my "C" in this test, optimizing for post engagement. Optimizing for post engagement brought us the best results overall because:

  1. The CPM was lower than the set optimized for link clicks, and more than $2 cheaper than the low end of our benchmark, especially considering that this was style content, which has had some of the highest ad costs for us traditionally. (Typically $8 or $9 CPM!)

  2. The CPC stood at a marvelous 10 cents, one cent cheaper than the set that was actually aiming for people who would click. Go figure! Why? My theory is that post engagement gets people taking action, and when people take action on a post it increases the post's quality score in Facebook's "mind," therefore, Facebook will show the ad to more people who will find the content resonates with them.

  3. But the set optimized for reach had a CPM of 89 cents-- what about that? Sure, more people were seeing the ad for cheaper, but look at the cost per click. When the cost per click is high, it doesn't matter how many people see the ad, it matters that those who see the ad will take action, when the goal is page views.

The Winning Ad Creative

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Ad 1

People love listicles.

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Ad 2

Conversational headline, but listicle post text to tell the reader what they'll learn and the format to expect.

Moving Along

Both CPC and cost per engagement have dropped another cent, bringing them each to 9 cents. Our CPM is $4.24, which is the lowest CPM I've seen on a campaign with content like this. Usually our tech or gadget campaigns can reach this type of CPM. Very exciting! We're more than half way to doubling our page view goal for the client, with only $1000 or 1/3 of the budget spent. I expect us to hit 20k page views within the next two weeks, only spending a total of $1250 to reach that point.

How’d It Turn Out In The End?

Indeed, we reached a little more than 20k page views, spending $1250, as predicted, and the campaign finished with a total of 34k page views, that’s 3.4X more than the client’s goal with the original budget.

Erika Finnimore