Starting around Halloween, on through the ordeal of Black Friday and culminating around Christmas is the magical time of record-high consumer activity — and skyrocketing ad costs (CPMs grow 2x on Facebook for instance). So you’re guaranteed to have to spend significantly more in November-December to get the same number of conversions.
Apart from making sure your ad creative is exquisite in getting the message across to a perfectly tailored audience, here’s what you can do to optimize growing ad costs:
Go Heavy on Remarketing and Lookalikes
Warm leads are a better use of ad budget because they’re way more receptive to brand communication and thus more likely to purchase or at least to engage with an ad (which seems to a factor all of its own in bringing down Facebook ad costs).
Practically all online users are getting so much cold messaging around holidays that it’s extremely tough to get through that noise. So showing them something that is so personalized that it shows you know their interest in you is your best bet.
Cash Out on Facebook Pixel Data
You probably have a sizable chunk of the audience that has visited your website. Even better: users that tried purchasing your products, subscribed to a newsletter, or just heavily engaged with the website.
During holidays, focus on retargeting them by creating a custom audience made up entirely of users that already know who you are:
The best event to choose is, of course, the one closest to (but just before) the final conversion event — as those users will probably be most interested in your product.
For instance, try users that have added your product to cart or at least viewed a product page. They will probably find an ad about your current offer or even just your brand in general quite appealing.
Use Content to Grow Warm audiences
Keep creating engaging content for your Facebook page and use its performance on Facebook as an engagement condition for remarketing.
Invest in short video content dedicated to social media. There are automated text-to-video production tools that will even take video creation off of your hands. Once posted, a 10-sec view of the video within Facebook is an achievable metric to grow your lead base.
For images and text-based posts, now’s the time for truly irresistible creatives if you want to break through the usual clutter of holiday-themed discounts and free shipping offers. Use your best creatives and the most concise and single-minded messaging that just begs to be clicked on.
Optimize Spend via Micro-Targeting
Competition for nearly every online user goes crazy around holidays, which drives up winning bids. So for those cold campaigns where you’re not using remarketing, use these tips to refine targeting and shave off those inefficient users at the edges of your core audience.
- Interests: on top of media they read and influencers they follow, include your competitors.
- Demographics: based on current user data or even an informed guess, try and imagine what kind of life your users are living. A lot of users out there might be interested in your product, but what segments of them will actually be prepared to pay for it — with the reality of their work, family, and studies taken into account.
- Behaviors: devices, purchase history (available in a few countries only), travels can all be good indicators of your users’ income.
A Few More Ideas to Keep Those Ad Costs Down
Be prepared, that you will probably still have to increase your daily budgets (and bids, if you’re managing them manually) to get a close number of conversions to what you were getting before the holiday season.
So recycle your warm audiences as much as you can to increase CPR, while optimizing spend by using micro-targeting.
Be smart about timing so as to catch your audience at the critical moments of rushed late night shopping and the days immediately before the holidays.
And be as active as you can launching ads and analyzing experiments performance. If you try loading off your ad management routine to automated rules, you’ll even have the time to do that 😉