How to Test Products and Creatives in 2019


A few months ago everyone (our agency included) was preaching about testing creatives and audiences on the PPE campaign. We hired two gurus to consult us on that strategy and they told us the same – test on the PPE campaign, once the creatives prove to work, transfer them to conversion campaigns and start scaling. Even with the help of the gurus, we were seeing really inconsistent results because of the automatic Facebook division of “engagers”, “clickers”, “buyers”, and so on.

The problem with using the PPE campaign was that Facebook was showing our ads to the engagers, but when we transferred the winners to the conversion campaign to buyers, the same strategies were not working. This strategy limited what we were able to do with our advertising, so we naturally moved away from the PPE campaign altogether.

Here is how our process looks like now:

1. We test the product. Let’s say our product’s target CPA is $50. We run ads to our 2nd or 3rd best converting audience and wait until we spend 3x of our target CPA.

2. If we get approval (sales, higher than average CTR, or low CPC) we start by testing the creatives. We create 3-7 creatives for the product. 1 BuzzFeed style video, 1 carousel, squared image with 4 pictures in it, collection ad. We test the offer (free shipping or discount).

We run the test to our 3rd best-converting audience and see how it responds.

3. We move the winning creatives to our top-performing audience. Personally, we know we have 3-5 ad sets with all of our best performing creatives. The ad sets are running anywhere from $100 to $400 daily.

We’ve figured out that if we started with a new ad set with a small budget ($15-30) they perform much worse than the ones running with a much higher budget.

4. If the ad is still performing at this point, we move it to our manual bidding campaign and start testing different target bids. 1x, 1.5x, 2x, 2.5x, 3x.

This is the process we’ve developed in our team and it seems to be working for now. However, there is something to be learned from our mistakes! Don’t blindly believe everything all gurus are saying. Sometimes they don’t know it all and you can be in a situation where blind leads the blind. Have the courage to test what strategies will work best for you and your accounts. Facebook ads involve a lot of trial and error. Constantly testing new creatives and ideas will always lead to the best results.

Don’t just stick to what you know, be open-minded to meaningful changes that can positively impact your business.
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