Top-performing video ads are able to capture the attention of their target audience within seconds. But, it’s difficult to develop high-quality creative that gets the job done. Video creation is often a time-consuming and expensive process, which is why we recommend taking advantage of performance video templates.
A number of adtech companies have created video templates for the purpose of increasing the success of video advertisements. These templates are kept up-to-date to ensure that they adhere to Facebook and Google’s creative changes and best practices. Bulk sheets and rapid editing tools allow videos to be customized at scale for greater performance.
With ad spending increasing almost $5 billion year-over-year, it’s safe to say that advertisers will be continually looking for ways to improve their video ad performance. Templates are an ideal way to meet this need.
Below we have outlined the benefits of using performance video templates for Facebook and Google App Campaign ad placements:
Video templates are created by using winning concepts. These ad concepts are rigorously tested and found to be highly-successful on Facebook and Google App Campaigns. However, the mobile app market is constantly changing – what works today may not be effective tomorrow. That’s why it’s critical to use performance video templates that are up kept up-to-date with the latest creative trends.
You don’t have to be a seasoned designer to use performance templates. The creative briefing process will help every step of the way to ensure that your finished product drives performance. The majority (95%) of creatives fail to perform profitably. So, you’ll want to develop creatives that have the best chance of performing well.
Video templates walk you through every step of the creative briefing process, including:
From there, you simply upload the video content, branding elements, ad copy, and CTAs that you would like to use and the template does the work for you. This simple process takes the guesswork out of making great videos, leading to better ads and higher performance.
As a performance advertiser, your top priority is to drive profitable results. Our performance video templates allow for easy creative A|B testing and help you develop creatives that have been proven to perform well on Facebook and Google App Campaigns.
Editing video campaigns one-by-one is inefficient. Our self-service bulk editor saves advertisers time and energy by editing thousands of videos at the same time. You can preview changes in real-time before they’re applied, and you can add cards, banners, footers, CTAs and other elements quickly and easily.
Oftentimes, it’s the smallest details that make the biggest impact in an ad campaign. Sometimes changing a headline or copy ever so slightly results in better performing creative. Bulk editing allows you to make these changes as a mass level so that you don’t have to apply these changes one at a time. You can also test ad copy, localize for different languages, and quickly convert videos into different sizes and layouts. These capabilities are what makes the bulk editor one of the most convenient video tools you can have.
It has been predicted that there will be 258 billion mobile apps downloaded annually by the year 2022. That means that more emphasis must be placed on creating great videos and getting the most out of your Facebook or Google App Campaigns when promoting your app.
Performance video templates make it easy. All you have to do is submit branded assets and follow the template. From there, you’ll have a number of video ads that you can run quickly and efficiently.
Want to learn more about our Creative Studio and Performance Video Templates?
“Don’t like the weather? Don’t worry — it’ll change soon.”
It’s an old joke about New England weather, but it sums up the state of user acquisition advertising today.
We’ve been given some amazing new tools and capabilities in the last few years, but it’s also meant that we’ve had to completely remake how we structure and execute campaigns. And the recent changes are just the beginning. As the ad platforms’ AI algorithms get smarter, like with Google and Facebook, we expect the role of user acquisition managers to evolve rapidly in the next few years.
User Acquisition is Dead. So while this statement might have jarred you, the old way of doing user acquisition really is dead or at least dying. Here’s a look at its next reincarnation.
As Facebook and Google’s AIs have grown more efficient at media buying and bid management, the third-party adtech tools some of us used are no longer a competitive advantage. And managing campaigns is no longer best done by human beings. UA managers have to let AIs take over part of their campaign and ad set management.
Easier said than done, though. It requires a leap of faith for any user acquisition manager to hand part of their work over to a machine, but you’ll ultimately be better off. Letting the AI run your campaigns will increase ROI and reduce effort.
The levers of campaign management that have been historically used by humans are now being systematically automated by AI. This actually makes sense — humans had been doing the quantitative analysis of campaigns for a long time. With smart enough code, those tasks can be automated.
Now that the advertising platforms’ AIs are buying media and managing bids, ad creative has become the primary driver of performance.
At least for now, AI can’t do creative, or can’t do it well enough. Templates don’t work well, either. Creative is still best done by humans, though we expect the development teams at Facebook and Google will continue to test that assumption.
Both platforms have taken steps toward automating creative testing — Google with its ad variations, and Facebook with its Dynamic Creative. Those new tools are helpful, but they’re both just taking pieces of creative and re-assembling them into new variations. Humans are still creating the pieces and we expect that to continue to be the case… at least for the next couple of years.
What “UA is dead” really means is that UA is evolving, most of the old strategies of intraday frequent changes of adjusting bids, budgets, and pausing ad sets are dead, and creative is your best hope for high-performance campaigns.
Our own advertising strategy on Facebook has radically shifted every six months for the last six years. It’s almost certainly going to shift again six months from now.
If you’re still doing things like frequent intraday bid or budget edits, you’re not making the best use of the platform.
There are three specific shifts that have changed how Facebook UA, specifically, is done:
Here’s a deeper dive into each of those points:
The old strategy for Facebook advertising was to drive volume — we chased Mobile App Installs (MAIs) and would manage 1,000+ campaigns in each account just to achieve scale. Audiences and placements would be set to drive quality conversions as best we could, but really we were just getting as many conversions as we could, and hoping that on average the value of those conversions would be enough to turn a profit overall. We’d manage bids either manually or with a third-party tool or our AdRules platform.
Our new strategy is freed from a volume constraint. Its goal is to drive net profit. We do that via AEO (App Event Optimization) and Value Optimization campaign management, along with some careful manipulation of audiences where we tell the algorithm what to look for. Because we can have the AI optimize for specific events (like in-app purchases, registrations, or specifically, $20+ worth of in-app purchases), Facebook will deliver a far more precise audience.
When using AEO and VO, we also allow the AI to automate placement, bid management, and the creation of audiences. This is exactly where that afore-mentioned leap of faith takes place: UA managers should now let the algorithm manage these key areas of their campaigns.
Facebook rolled out its “Best Practices” update in February 2018. This followed a similar move by Google in late 2017, when Google moved all-new app install campaigns over to Google’s App Campaigns, whether advertisers liked it or not. Both shifts were the official handover from humans managing campaigns to AI managing campaigns.
This is also the move that kneecapped most of the third-party adtech tools. If you have been using a third-party tool to optimize your campaigns, suddenly that advantage was over. The good news was that you could reduce the cost of the adtech fees and move towards very low cost or flat monthly fees. The bad news was that suddenly every advertiser had access to the same algorithm you did and the playing field was flattened.
Facebook has outlined how they want campaigns to be run in their Blueprint Certification. Everyone in UA on your team should get certified — even if you outsource your social advertising. It’s essential information if you want to outperform your competitors now, or even if you just don’t want to lose your shirt.
This third change is basically a shift from people making budget adjustments to machines making budget adjustments.
If you’re not yet using Campaign Budget Optimization, it’s time to adopt it. Facebook will require CBO in September 2019 for all newly launched campaigns. That’s just five months away at the time of this writing. After that, the AI will change budgets and optimize bids, budgets, placement, audience, language, and creative testing. Humans won’t be making those adjustments anymore.
Google’s App Campaigns are already at this level of “black box” management by the AI, but Facebook is coming up fast.
So now that AI has taken over much of the quantitative side of user acquisition advertising, and will take over practically all of it after Q1 2020, what’s a UA manager to do? Focus on creative.
Focusing on creative has two key aspects:
Facebook’s new Ads Library makes it much easier to track your competitors’ ads. It may not tell you how well those ads are performing, but if they’re running the same ad for more than a week, it’s probably working for them. So you might want to cherry-pick one or more attributes from that competitor’s ad and test it in your own ads.
But you’ll also have to test if those new attributes make any difference. If you’re going to create high-performance ads, you have to know the key performance drivers. This is one of the first things we take apart when we work with new clients: Which creative attributes are really making a difference? Once you know that, you can prioritize your creative tests far more effectively.
In a sense, whoever builds the best ad-testing and creative ideation system now will gain a significant advantage in performance advertising. But that testing system will have to be built to test and conceive of a lot of ads (only one out of 20 ads will perform well enough to scale) and it will have to test those ads fast enough to scale them before creative and audience fatigue sets in or competitors swipe them.
As a UA service, account management has become critical. Client communication has to be seamless and, if necessary, instant. Clients have to trust their partners enough to let go of how they used to advertise (managing media buying themselves, for example, and those frequent intraday changes).
Agencies will constantly need to work on improving processes with clients, with campaign and team management, and above all, with creative analysis, development, and testing. Workflow optimization results in better ROI — a lot better ROI.
“Has User Acquisition Advertising Become Easier, or More Complex?”
This is a logical question to ask once you understand the scale of the shift we’ve just experienced. But really, whether acquisition is easier or more complex depends on the platform.
Facebook ads are definitely easier to manage than they were before. The AI does a pretty good job. But that means we’ve all got more competition from other advertisers – other UA managers now have access to all the same cool tools you’ve got.
Google App Campaign is a little different. It’s perceived by some as being “set it and forget it.” However, it is about to get a lot more complex.
We believe Facebook is about to change UA advertising all over again.
Facebook has all of the pieces for an app campaign-style product that is likely to be a combination of CBO + DCO. (Campaign Budget Optimization + Dynamic Creative Optimization). That’s all a fancy way of saying that Facebook is working on a new feature that will optimize creative, creative placements, bids, and budgets for us. We expect this new capability to be out sometime in Q1 2020.
Google’s also got some new developments coming. Google Analytics for Firebase (an app measurement solution that lets UA managers get insights into app usage and user engagement) may also be leveraged for selecting lookalike or similar audiences (also known as “LALs”).
With Firebase’s ability to report on and track up to 500 distinct events within apps, once that data can be fed into the Google App Campaign advertising AI, it will be hard to argue against the AI’s superiority over human management. The AI will have so much data to interpret, and will obviously be able to interpret that data at such a speed, humans won’t be able to compete.
We don’t believe UA managers are about to be out of a job. There will always be a need for a human at the helm of all these controls, even when the controls can mostly run on their own.
But UA managers definitely need to evolve. The job they will be doing in a year (much less two to three years) will be *very* different from the job they’re doing now.
Here are four ways to prepare for the changes:
Facebook changes fast. You don’t need to be told that. Staying current with the advertising platform is essential. If you and your team haven’t gotten certification from Facebook’s Blueprint training program, it’s time to fix that.
But that’s only the first step. If you’re still advertising the same way you were this time last year, you aren’t changing fast enough.
Keeping up with UAC best practices requires constant learning. You should always be testing, always be pushing the envelope of what’s possible. Because — guaranteed –your toughest competitors are pushing that envelope.
A bit more than a year ago, most of our partners were spending maybe 10-20 percent of their budget on Google App Campaigns. That’s completely changed. Right now, most partners are splitting their budgets between Facebook and Google.
So if you aren’t using Google’s App Campaigns, you’re missing a lot of potential volume.
Do yourself a favor. Before you blow $10,000-$100,000 in ad spend, at least, review Google’s training materials for Google App Campaign programs.
Apple hasn’t been a primary ad platform for most UA managers. That’s also about to change. As competition gets fiercer and fiercer on Facebook and Google, and UA managers struggle to eke out even a sliver of a percentage point of extra return, it only makes sense to seek out less competitive spaces. Apple Search ads are one of the best opportunities emerging this year.
Build (or borrow) an aggressive, systematic testing strategy. Creative may be king…..but testing is its right hand. Simple, isolated, unstrategic A|B split-testing isn’t enough in this environment.
When developing your testing approach, it’s important to consider the following:
Here are two scenarios for what user acquisition managers may have to deal with in the coming years.
If the machines optimize:
If people create:
Don’t fear the machines. Let the new algorithms manage the parts of your campaigns that they can manage well. Get ready for them to learn how to optimize creative, too. Q1 2020 will be here in a blink.
Invest in creative. It’s your last best competitive advantage. UA managers will benefit by understanding how to:
Some agencies have already started to take notice: Instead of building adtech tools, they’re building creative teams.
Just keep your skills current and embrace the changes. This is an exciting, challenging time to be a UA manager.
Contact us to find out why ad creative is critical!
It’s not easy managing high-volume user acquisition campaigns. Not only are there multiple settings to manage, but even the smallest mistake could result in a loss of $5,000 in a matter of an hour.
Facebook’s Power Editor and Google’s App Campaign interface are good tools for campaign management. However, these tools aren’t nearly powerful enough to run a professional, high-velocity user acquisition campaign. To do that, you need a more robust tool.
We recently released the Consumer Acquisition Advanced Reporting tool. Originally, this was an internal tool that we used to manage multi-million dollar campaigns, but we’ve rolled it out so that our clients can use it themselves.
Advanced Reporting offers users two new features: Tasks and A|B Testing. These management features can save UA managers hours of work and thousands of dollars in ad budget by providing them with centralized data and easy to manipulate reports.
See what your UA team can do with our newly released campaign management software:
In order to maximize campaign performance, advertisers have to keep up with a lot of time-consuming, repetitive tasks. We did it for some time ourselves before deciding to automate every process we could, which resulted in our new Tasks feature.
This feature streamlines campaign management workflow and allows UA managers to:
The Tasks feature allows you to create and save a number of tasks. To create a new task, start by running a new query, then click on the save icon to the right of the filter ribbon as illustrated below. From there, just click “Save Report”.
You can review your saved Tasks in the Dashboard view of your account.
Click on any saved Task to view a report with the most recent campaign data available.
Running A|B split tests is an essential step to getting your campaigns to perform well, but managing all these tests can be complicated. It’s also easy to misinterpret your results in the case that you don’t have a clear view of the data.
Our Advanced Reporting dashboard comes complete with an Enhanced A|B testing feature that has been specifically designed to let UA managers see how their tests are performing. Enhanced A|B testing allows you to view any type of test (videos, images, or audiences), and sort views by time frame.
This feature also works with classic A|B split tests and multivariate tests. You can sort and view tests using different metrics like ROAS, CPA/CAC, and app installs as well. This allows UA managers to easily review important metrics, and avoid getting distracted by less meaningful stats, like clicks.
Testing views can also be displayed in a graph, like this:
For assistance with Enhanced A|B Testing reports, visit our help page.
Achieving successful Facebook campaign performance is difficult enough – unclear reporting and complicated split-testing shouldn’t be getting in your way. We built these tools ourselves after managing hundreds of millions of dollars in ad spend. They are designed expressly for user acquisition campaigns, helping hundreds of advertisers finally see what’s really going on in their accounts.
If you want to experience what campaign management would be like with Tasks, Enhanced A|B Testing or any of the other features in Advanced Reporting, contact us for a personalized demo. Contact us today!
Finding a Facebook or Google App Campaign advertising partner is difficult. If hiring a partner works out, you’ll yield better results and be able to scale results efficiently. But, if it doesn’t work out, you have lost time testing them out, and you’ll likely lose ad spend and revenue in the process.
To mitigate those risks, many organizations do a 30-day test to see if they will be a viable social advertising partner. While ad partners understand the motivation behind this, it’s important to know that 30-day tests have limitations. 90 days is a better trial period, especially if you’re interested in driving profit and scale.
In this post, we’ll take a look at the steps to conduct a 30 or 90-day test and how this process helps you find the right social advertising partner:
There are two primary routes to giving prospective partners access to your advertising accounts: give them access to an existing account, or give them access to a new account. Here’s how these two scenarios play out:
With access to an existing advertising account, the partner can perform an audit of your current ad creative and media buying strategy, so they can see what worked or didn’t work in the past.
Depending on which campaign aspects you want help with (for example, creative or media buying), a partner might develop a creative and/or media strategy based on previous ad spend and past account performance.
The next step is for your partner to present their findings so you can make sure they’re headed in the right direction. If you have a good partner, they might also present and discuss some of your competitors’ ads as well. This is an impactful way to learn more about the look and feel of the videos they’re about to produce. It also introduces you to some new ideas that are working for your competitors. It creates clarity about your expectations, and how your partner can meet your brand guidelines.
The next step is execution. As the partner begins to execute the agreed-upon creative strategy and/or the media buying strategy, they should be having regular calls with you to discuss what’s worked or not worked, and how to make adjustments going forward.
Ideally, your ad partner will also be constantly updating or modifying your account’s strategy documents based on their performance, network changes, and any other external factors.
Sometimes, clients don’t want partners working on existing Facebook or Google App Campaigns. This is often because the client has an internal team working on those campaigns, and they want to use a partner as an external team. Instead of having the partner work in the same campaigns as their internal team, they create a new ad account.
This being said, your new ad partner will still need access to your primary account if you go this route, so they can do creative and/or media buying audits.
If getting access to this information is not possible, then they won’t be able to see what worked or failed for you in the past. Without this analysis, any efforts on behalf of the partner going forward are more likely to fail or cause the same mistakes.
Working with a new account has another problem as well—it slows down the process of optimizing campaigns. When a partner works from a brand new account, they must give the algorithms enough data to do AEO bidding (App Event Optimization) or VO bidding (Value Optimization). The only way to do that is by running ads, and—depending on ad spend budgets—it can take anywhere from a few days to over a week to train the algorithm enough to enable AOE or VO bidding.
Because of this reason, most advertising partners prefer to gain access to existing accounts. Starting with a fresh account means they lose both time and money retraining Facebook’s algorithm, as opposed to gaining instant access to already optimized accounts.
Whether or not your partner receives access to existing Facebook and/or Google App Campaign accounts, they should also begin a competitive analysis. This is usually done while in the process of doing the creative and/or media audit.
The first step of this competitive analysis is identifying the best competitor ads. The easiest way to find your competitors’ ads is with Facebook’s new ads library. This tool allows you to find out how much your competitors have spent on advertising and which ads they have run. You can also search which ads have been linked to particular keywords. Note – you don’t even need to have a Facebook account to use this tool.
The one drawback of the new ads library is that it doesn’t give you ad performance information. For that, you need to use 3rd party tools like PowerAdSpy, Connect Explore, SocialPeta, or AdSpy. These tools assess ad performance, how long ads have run, how much ad budget they’ve been given, and what their engagement measurements are.
Conducting a competitive analysis allows you an almost endless supply of pre-tested ad concepts. You can leverage this information to create better ads and identify themes and characteristics of winning ads.
With this information, you can create better ads, quicker than if you started from a blank screen. Basically, you can peek into your competitors’ accounts, do a high-level audit, and then use their data to optimize your ads.
Facebook and Google App Campaign advertising is done differently due to the rise in popularity of machine learning. The optimization algorithms of these platforms have dramatically improved and simplified the process of managing campaigns, budgets, and ad sets. These algorithms have leveled the playing field for social advertisers both large and small.
The trouble is, this means it’s not easy to gain a competitive advantage. Your team needs great creative to meet your financial ROAS goals, and great creatives hard to find. From what we have seen, only about 5% of new ad creative (only one in twenty new ads) will outperform your “control” ( the current best-performing ads).
The graph below shows the ad performance of a gaming company that spent over $15 million dollars on Facebook advertising.
As you can see, the vast majority of ads do not do nearly as well—and 100x ads are unicorns.
Even if you only want a 10x ad, you can’t find it without testing many. Since only 5% of new creative is successful, you need twenty new ads to find the one that works. Unfortunately, most social advertisers don’t have the ability to test twenty new videos during a 30-day partner test — it’s difficult to remain financially stable due to the resulting non-converting spend.
In an effort to minimize these testing losses, most advertisers want to keep running winning ads along with the tested ads; slowly rotating through new ads until they find a 10x ad, and with hope, a 100x ad.
Well, that takes more than 30 days to do. Even if your new ad partner finds a way to jumpstart a new campaign in just a week, you still only have three weeks left to test new ad creative. That isn’t enough time to test all the ads necessary to find a winner. Because of this limitation, most 30-day tests fail.
It is possible, however, to beat the odds and deliver big wins in 30 days or less, although it’s unusual. If you want to see results, 90-day tests are better because they give your new advertising partner time to test, fail, develop new creative, and iterate again. Creative limitations are just the beginning.
Assuming a partner works with an existing Facebook or Google account, they will start restructuring your account according to several proven best practices, including:
Choosing a new ad partner is a lot like testing ad creative—you have to give them enough time to prove they are a truly valuable asset to your overall marketing goals. If you end a trial with a new partner in just thirty days, it’s a lot like cutting off a creative test too soon—you’ll be making a decision based on incomplete data.
In mobile app marketing, complacency kills. Every ad you produce, no matter how good your creative is, will flame out in a matter of days. Audiences will start to tune out the message, or they’ll be tapped out. If you run ads past this point, you’ll just burn through your budget.
For the best possible return on your ad spend, you need to continually test creative concepts in front of new, well-targeted audiences. The strategy you use to target your ads is as important to campaign success as the creative concepts you’re testing. The more audiences you have to move through, the longer your ads will last and the better they’ll perform.
With Facebook’s Audiences tool, you can build custom and lookalike audiences based on particular app events (installs, launches, purchases, etc.) and other criteria that are important to you. But, for every variation you want to test (1-day versus 60-day lookbacks, for example), you have to head back to the drawing board and build a new audience from scratch.
This makes audience building on Facebook a slow, repetitive, tedious process. App developers have budgeted time for it, and made peace with it, as the only means of achieving their campaign goals.
Now, thankfully, there’s a better way—a new audience-building tool that’s so fast and easy, it will transform the way you execute your campaigns.
Audience Builder Express works much like Facebook’s Audiences tool, but in a fraction of the time. Now you can select all your desired criteria with a few clicks of the mouse, and every possible permutation will appear in your audience list. One quick pass through Audience Builder Express can produce dozens, hundreds, and even thousands of distinct audiences.
You can start to build custom audiences by choosing from among 20–30 app events. For each event, you can select multiple variables to further define your audiences. For example, you can choose:
Audience Builder Express eliminates the need to start over for every desired combination. Suppose you click app install, then three distinct platforms (Android, iOS, Games on Facebook), followed by 7-, 90-, and 180-day lookbacks. Just like that, you’ve built nine distinct audiences.
You can multiply your list further by choosing additional app events, purchase values, lookbacks, etc. Each time you click on a variation in each of these categories, your audience list will expand like magic.
Pro tip: We’ve found that custom audiences of 7,500 are the most efficient. Facebook algorithms won’t work as well for smaller audiences.
Audience Builder Express makes it just as easy to ask Facebook to identify potential new users who are a close match for your custom audiences. Select a custom audience, specify your lookalike geographic reach—from a single country to worldwide—and add affinity levels. You can add individual countries, plus affinity levels of 1%, 2%, 5%, 10%, all the way up to 20%.
Suppose you have 150,000 purchasers in the U.S., and you’ve created a custom audience representing the top 5% of U.S.-based users by purchase value over the last 180 days (7,500 users). If you create a 1% affinity for those 7,500 users, Facebook will give you around 2 million users out of 200 million total Facebook users in the U.S.
If you select 10 custom audiences, multiply by four country groups, and again by five of these affinity percentages, Audience Builder Express will instantly return 200 lookalike audiences. It can just as easily return thousands of results.
Consider the time it would take you to build 200 lookalike audiences using the Facebook Audiences tool. Audience Builder Express takes what used to be time-consuming, mind-numbing busywork out of the equation, allowing advertisers to concentrate more on creative strategy and development and accomplish more with their advertising budgets.
Pro Tip: When you’re building lookalikes, be sure to factor in customer lifetime value (LTV) so Facebook weighs the top x% more heavily than bottom x%.
Audience Builder Express is one of several recent industry developments that promise to free social advertisers from some of their heaviest constraints. With the rise of self-service platforms and tools and more affordable marketing services, app developers of all sizes, budgets, and experience levels can now do more with less and get a fairer shot at market success. Their greatest need now is high-quality creative—where the user acquisition battle is won.
Our world-class Creative Studio, led by veteran Hollywood talent, serve startups, SMBs, and enterprise app, developers. To learn more about our creative capabilities and tiered managed services, contact us today.
Finding a winning video ad can be difficult. Often, advertisers have to test many different variables. For every one of those variables and every version of them, the number of videos required to be produced multiplies.
In order to test just two versions of a CTA and two versions of an end card, four different videos must be created. You’ll need to make eight videos if you add two different images to that same test. If you wanted to test three images? That would warrant the creation of twelve videos.
In this post, we’ll discuss how our Creative Studio bulk video editor can get help you edit thousands of videos with just a couple of clicks:
Without the right tool, the work required to make all of those video variations is enormous. To get it all done either your production schedule has to slow down considerably, or you may have to hire help to meet your deadline.
Another option is to use Creative Studio’s bulk video editor.
Here’s how it works:
For advertisers who need to make a lot of videos with hundreds of variations, sizes, and concepts, you can bulk upload the videos you want to the Bulk Editor by uploading a CSV file that contains the videos’ required parameters. Our team has created CSV template that simplifies the process, allowing you to edit thousands (yes, thousands) of videos in a few simple steps.
Once you’ve found your new 100x video, you need to convert it into a number of different sizes specific to each advertising platform. After that, you need to convert it into even more sizes to be used for different ad placements on each platform. You may also have to adjust the video’s proportions to fit square, portrait, or landscape measurements.
“Localizations,” or the customization of videos for specific countries and languages, can make a huge difference in performance. All of the videos you’ve created should be recreated to target the localizations specific to your audience.
Our Creative Studio self-service video bulk editor can create videos with the variations, sizes, and customizations you need in just a few steps. In just a few clicks, you can have dozens of versions of your original video.
The bulk editor feature also makes it easy to edit existing videos, allowing you to alter any of these elements quickly and effectively:
See how it’s done:
The Creative Studio video editor can also be paired with our new Performance Templates to help reach your advertising goals. These templates are basically blank concept ads that employ the top-performing elements that top-spending advertisers on Facebook and Google App Campaigns are seeing success with right now.
To use Performance Templates, simply add your creative assets into the template that best fits the goals of your ad. Then, you submit a brief to our team and we’ll create the video ads for you.
The options above allow you to have a body of high-potential ads right at the start. This allows your advertising to get up to speed quickly at a cost much less than typical creative development.
The Creative Studio Bulk Video Editor, Performance Templates, and our designers and developers have helped thousands of advertisers build high-performance creative and scale their advertising. Our case study on Glu’s Mobile’s Design Home app is just one example of Creative Studio success – the team increased their ROAS by 70%.
Looking to test our Creative Studio and Bulk Video Editor yourself? Sign up here.
Having an internal marketing team is critical for businesses to reach and sustain the highest possible net profit. In order to maximize revenue, a focus should be placed on building this internal skill set.
But, there is strategic value in benchmarking internal marketing teams against external teams. Benchmarking will help management validate the performance of the internal team, and increase team intensity by encouraging healthy competition.
This initiative will allow both the internal and the external team to render new ideas, eliminating tunnel vision and stale marketing. Further, internal teams that work in a silo for months often stop thinking outside the box and get stuck in a rut coming up with very similar ad creative concepts. By benchmarking the internal team against the external team, members from both sides will be encouraged to develop new concepts and media buying strategies and constantly be generating new ideas.
Below, we have outlined best practices for structuring the internal and external marketing teams to work effectively in tandem for success:
Total transparency and open communication are key to any successful venture. Internal marketing teams and external agencies that are working together should freely and openly share their ideas, strategies, and successful creative with each other. Open communication builds trust and ultimately allows the teams to generate more successes together.
Note: The internal marketing team should own all of these ideas and strategies.
In order to maintain transparency and cooperation, these two teams should be speaking on a weekly basis. This weekly meeting presents an opportunity to share information about work that has been recently completed and objectives for the coming week. More importantly, this meeting allows the external agency to talk to the internal team about upcoming objectives and marketing initiatives. This ensures that both teams have the most up-to-date information and that they stay on track.
Email inboxes are messy, cluttered, and hard to keep up with. Team chat tools like Slack, Google Hangouts, Hive, and Fuze have become a popularized way to execute intraday communications across teams. These tools allow user acquisition and design teams to ensure that information is staying out of crowded email inboxes and stored efficiently within specialized communication channels.
For creative reviews and approvals, project management systems with simple UI, like Trello, are helpful. These platforms make it easy to share ad designs and provide teams with a streamlined place to gather and centralize feedback. And again, these deliverables stay out of email inboxes.
This way, both the internal and external teams are able to operate efficiently in regard to creative reviews and approvals. This is especially helpful to intellectual property holders as they often have a multitude of external sources that are contributing feedback.
The job of an external agency is not to replace the internal marketing team. However, marketers are often apprehensive about partnering with an external team due to the fear of the agency outperforming them. This is certainly not the objective of an external agency and is rarely the outcome.
External teams are put in place to help ensure that internal teams are operating at peak efficiency, and this offers a number of benefits to both the creative team and the media buying team.
External agencies are often leveraged on the creative side to assist in the brainstorming process and help deliver new concepts. When they find a high-performing deliverable, they share it with internal teams so that they can create variations. The creative testing strategies for finding high-performing ads are also recorded and shared between teams.
This also benefits internal teams by allowing them to efficiently share the lessons of what has worked and what has failed, which prevents them from making the same mistakes and wasting money. Both teams work closely in tandem to form a cohesive whole.
The two user acquisition teams are able to benchmark each other. When one account goes into a test bucket at Facebook causing something to stop performing as efficiently, it’s a good idea to have one or two more accounts running. It’s also more efficient to have one account that spends less because it does not reach as far, as it allows for more efficient running.
Giving media buying power to an external agency allows the internal team to separate their budget and run it efficiently in a split format. This is the concept of shifting budgets.
Both internal teams and external teams can work in tandem to learn, push, and drive better marketing results. To accelerate the growth of internal marketing skills and knowledge, consider partnering with an external agency to give your team the means to push further.
In September 2018, Facebook launched Stories Ads to global advertisers. This ad format offers marketers a new way to engage users and increase conversion rates on the web’s largest social networking platform. This presents marketers with a great opportunity to reach targeted users, as over 300 million people use Facebook Stories every day.
Facebook Stories allow users to share, discover, interact and engage with content on a vertical screen. Facebook Stories ads are full screen, vertical advertisements that appear between user stories on the Facebook platform. Video Stories ads can run anywhere from 1 to 15 seconds, while image ads in this format can appear for up to 6 seconds, and swipe up calls-to-action allow marketers to prompt users to visit their target landing page. These ads look similar to Instagram and Snapchat Stories, creating an immersive full-screen visual experience.
Below, we’ve outlined best practices to use for developing Facebook Stories ad creative.
Facebook Stories employ full-screen visuals. So, if you opt to display an ad in this format, it means you can’t compromise on flat visuals. Due to the fact that users are able to swipe off a story, ad creative must be compelling and engaging, and motivate the user to click on the call-to-action. Facebook suggests using minimal text at no more than 20% per piece of creative content.
Users engage on Facebook to stay up-to-date with new trends and happenings. Facebook Stories are only visible for a maximum of 24 hours, and one of the main reasons that these Stories are so compelling is due to the fact that they are so short-lived. Creating time-sensitive, urgent content makes it more likely that users will take action quickly. Use Facebook Stories Ads to announce important updates or offers that will be available for a limited time only, host competitions and sweepstakes, or reward engaged users with sales codes or discounts.
Top-performing Stories ads tend to be shorter and contain branding elements earlier than lower-performing ads do. Facebook’s research revealed that, in video Stories ads that have multiple scenes, top performing ads have shorter scenes and last for a duration shorter than 10 seconds.
Using a clear CTA in your ad simply and directly encourages a user to take action. The Facebook Stories advertising platform provides advertisers with a variety of different options for creating good CTAs. Remember to use the call-to-action option that relates most directly to your overall campaign goal. For example, mobile game or app advertisers should employ the “download now” option. This will help drive users to download your offering in the app stores.
Users consume content at a faster rate on mobile, so it’s important to deliver your brand message quickly (in the first few seconds of your ad) to boost engagement and CTR. Use vertical dimension ratios to ensure your ad is optimized for full-screen viewing.
Tip: Many mobile users opt for silent viewing, so don’t rely on sound to deliver your message – optimized visual creative is key.
Facebook Stories Ads provide businesses and marketers with yet another tool for gaining user attention. This placement offers a great opportunity for advertisers hoping to boost leads, conversions, traffic, or brand awareness. Facebook Stories Ads also gives marketers the ability to repurpose creatives for both Instagram and Facebook platforms, saving them time and money on creating extra content, and enabling A|B testing over both platforms.
At this time, Facebook Stories Ads drive lower competition and therefore present lower CPM rates. Facebook’s Chief Product Officer, Chris Cox, expects Stories to be shared more often than news feed content in the future, and platform Creator, Mark Zuckerberg, has said that one of Facebook’s goals is to ensure that these ads perform as well as they do in the news feed.
Facebook launched Campaign Budget Optimization (CBO) a year ago to give social marketers the option for machine learning to control their budget at the campaign level. When CBO is activated, Facebook can automatically move the budget to the most effective ad set in a campaign and distribute budgets in real-time to increase efficiency.
This allows marketers to run multiple ads within a single ad set. Once CBO is turned on, Facebook will optimize to find the best ads and ad sets based on performance across a campaign. Then, it will distribute the budget to automatically maximize financial results. Campaign Budget Optimization is a powerful optimization tool offered by Facebook to simplify account management and reduce daily tasks for social advertisers.
In this post, we’re discussing what marketers need to know about CBO:
It’s no secret that Facebook is evolving, and two key changes will have a significant impact on media buying:
This means that budgets will no longer be controlled at the ad set level, regardless of if you are using Facebook power editor or a 3rd party bidding tool that has their own rules or algorithm for budget distribution. Marketers will have to adjust how they manage and build Facebook campaigns. Starting in September, Facebook will be the one to decide how to distribute campaign budget across ad sets. In short, marketers will no longer be able to make intraday changes, which will fundamentally change the way marketers buy media on Facebook.
With this move, Facebook is signaling a move to automated media buying and automated management of budget and ad set optimization, much like their biggest competitor – Google’s Universal App Campaigns (UAC). Sometimes, Facebook will “pre-announce” big changes and new features, like hiding device IDs from custom audiences, which allows time for the market to provide feedback and for Facebook to validate their approach and determine if it needs modification. Other times, such as with the “significant edits” roll-out in February of 2018, Facebook will just release the big change and the market is required to adapt to stay current with best practices.
In making CBO mandatory, Facebook is reducing the complexity of media buying to further level the playing field between large and small advertisers. In addition, this appears to be a crucial step towards the simplification of their overall algorithm—moving towards offering a more Google UAC-like product.
With other optimization improvements, Facebook has made it easier than ever to buy media on their network. As they continue to roll out new features, they gain more control over the media buying process and will continue to automate processes; decreasing complexity and increasing efficiency for all advertisers.
On the bright side, marketers will have time to experiment with this feature in preparation. Come September, all campaigns will automatically migrate to CBO, and this will impact how all existing and new campaigns run. So, it is vital to test CBO now to be prepared for this transition.
Of course, there’s always a way around rules. For a short while after the September rollout, you could “game” Facebook’s CBO requirement by restructuring accounts into thousands of campaigns with only one ad set—grabbing back granular control over budget allocation. There are, however, a few challenges with this approach:
Our key takeaway on this transition is to take advantage of the months between now and September to gain a full understanding of how to use CBO efficiently across your accounts. Test and re-test structuring campaigns so you are not penalized with the mandatory migration in September.
There is still a huge potential advantage to CBO. If marketers embrace CBO, it will be easier to maintain accounts, which means they may be able to hire lower cost staff to manage Facebook campaigns. This ultimately redirects capital back into top-of-funnel marketing.
Discover key Facebook advertising best practices that can help your team gain a competitive advantage.
Developing and publishing a game has many challenges, and the go-to-market launch plan is typically reserved for the last several months. We’ve noticed that most gaming companies produce creative assets for social advertising campaigns after the game has been designed and is ready to launch. Reusing game elements in advertising is a crucial issue for game publishers, and it poses a threat to profitable advertising.
Many game publishers do not pre-plan advertising asset allocation. This creates an enormous challenge when promoting their game in the highly competitive Facebook and Google advertising markets. Not only will gaming companies need a large number of assets, characters, and environments for the initial launch – they’ll also need an increasing volume of assets to achieve and sustain profitable advertising spend.
We recommend developing an advertising asset plan that is tied to the game development schedule to avoid any issues. Here’s how:
Whether you’re working with an external agency or in-house designers, it’s important to establish your brand guidelines before moving into creative asset production. This provides consistency, ensures quality, and reduces time spent in creative reviews and approvals for branding changes. Your brand guidelines are a manual signifying how your brand should be presented to target audiences. This can be across many elements, including fonts, characters, color palette, logo size and placement, iconography, and brand voice.
When running a social advertising campaign on a platform like Facebook, social advertisers should have hundreds of ads in rotation at one time in order to surface winning ads that convert effectively. Additionally, creative ad fatigue can set in quickly, so it’s critical that you continue developing and testing a high volume of creatives throughout your acquisition campaign.
To keep the creative development engine running, you need to develop an efficient creative approval process. Consider the following questions when establishing your advertising and approval process:
Given the fact that 95% of new creative fails to outperform the best running ad, we recommend developing a company-wide policy that embraces prototype ads, which can be designed quickly and efficiently. The most effective and profitable companies blast out ads that are about 60% brand compliant to quickly test and remove the low performers. If a winning ad is found, new variations are enhanced to be more brand compliant—and then are retested. This process helps to maximize creative testing, minimize rejections of out of the box concepts and minimizes the financial loss associated with non-converting spend.
Another important process to develop before creative assets are in production is the organization of how files and layers will be shared across internal design teams and with external companies. If you’re working with in-house and external designers to develop a continuous stream of creatives, you will really want to establish the directory structure and naming conventions for asset sharing and layers, as it will save time across resources. You will want to think about how to organize your native files versus those being edited. As well as, how to manage assets in review versus approved files.
In image editing, layers are used to separate different elements of an image. For example, separating characters and environment elements from the background. If you’re working with an external creative company, you can save a tremendous amount of time and provide creative flexibility with layered, well-organized, and named files.
This enables any designer to quickly identify which file and layers they should use to develop countless iterations of ads with different elements from a photoshop file. Provided your brand guidelines with these layered files to ensure that the countless iterations, colors, and fonts will adhere to guidelines.
Advertisers should integrate characters or personalities from game titles into creative. By testing 100K Facebook ads, we’ve found integrating characters can result in stronger ad performance. Showcase a wide variety of characters or sprites from your game. Provide ample images to choose from when creating ad units. This makes it much easier for the designer. Also, make sure to save out all character animations, background elements, and environments with transparent backgrounds into well-organized folders, so they can be reused easily.
Creative including theme music from the game or sound effects typically draw a stronger response from users. So make sure to create a set of ad units that include licensed audio. For editors, provide full songs or clips from the audio track being used in the game. This allows them to easily access and select segments for ad units that reinforce gameplay and brand experience.
By using a game engine (like Unity) or a modeling and animation software (like Maya), you can build and leverage detailed 3D environments from your game. This creative can then be used for your acquisition and social advertising campaigns. There is no better way to showcase your game to prospective players than with the same characters and immersive environments that you have designed in-game. Utilize these assets can help to create higher quality visuals as well as capture user attention.
It’s crucial to think about your social advertising strategy both early in the game development cycle and ongoing as you’re making an update or adding a new level. Whenever there are assets in production for your game, you should be organizing them for future social advertising campaigns.
Your creative asset development plan should start with thinking about what you want to achieve. For example, you may be looking to build awareness for your upcoming game (perhaps to create pre-registrations or pre-orders). Or you may be looking to drive clicks, conversions, and sales (driving interested consumers directly to the store to buy). Depending on these goals, you will need to create different types of creatives to achieve them.
As a next step, you will want to identify all of the social platforms that you plan to use to advertise your game. Facebook, Twitter, Snap, Instagram, and YouTube each have standard IAB and custom ad units that you’ll need to plan for in advance. Consider platforms where video ads may perform better and plan on developing video creatives according to the platforms’ guidelines.
Think about what key takeaways or feelings you want audiences to experience by seeing your ads. Regardless of the goals of your ads (i.e. registrations or downloads), it’s important to think about how you want your advertising to impact your target audience. Do you want them to think your game action-packed and intense? Or do you want them to think it’s a casual, easy to pick up and play, kind of game?
By constructing a plan on when, where and how your ads will appear to consumers, you will be prepared to develop your assets and launch campaigns more quickly. Your design teams will be more effective and time-efficient in creating the creative assets you need to win your audiences and ultimately grow your player base.
Learn more about our Creative Studio and how it can help you build and develop the ad creative you need to win over your audiences.
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