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January 29, 2018

Improving Performance With Creative

This article was originally published @ Blog

At, we collaborate closely with  our customers to discuss data, automatization, complex customer journeys, and many other types of metrics and optimization set-ups. During these sessions, we share our best practices on automation, hands-on strategies, and ad placement recommendations so that our customers can spend their budgets efficiently. What role does creative play in the mix?

Illustration: Aki Tanninen

Facebook and Instagram advertising features and ad formats allow brands to resonate better with their target audiences. Targeting features and optimization strategies are great tools, and when used creatively, they can have a significant impact on the campaigns they are running.

Each brand, campaign, and ad has a story to tell. The story allows the brand to communicate its values and to evoke an emotional response. The brand should tell an authentic story about who they are and what’s unique about them. The story is translated into content in the top of the funnel with the purpose of engaging, entertaining, educating or inspiring the audience. Ad formats that support the awareness stage of the funnel are branded content, slideshows, Carousel images and videos, and animated GIFs and Cinemagraphs, to name a few.

The product itself is introduced in the mid-funnel to communicate the added value. How? Create a desire to explore the offering and give your audience reasons why they should purchase your product or service. Suitable ad formats for the consideration stage are Canvas, Collections, Carousel video, and product category/ discovery videos. In the final conversion stage the product becomes the hero. GIF, square/vertical product ads, Carousel, Canvas, or the Collection formats are all great for driving conversions.

When Competition Is Fierce, Differentiate

As your content is competing for the undivided attention of the audience, the creative needs to be eye-catching and appealing and state the offering clearly. Chatbooks, a company that turns photos (memories) into photo books (collections of memories) is a great example of creating this type of content. They put a lot of thought and effort in their creative work. They have been able to maintain high performance by combining their creative with’s Ad Rotation and Budget Allocation tools: ads that don’t perform as expected are paused, and the budget is automatically allocated to ads that resonate best with the audience. Chatbooks also has a deep understanding of the type of content their target audience (millennial mothers) likes. They differentiate their content based on the audience’s preferences and the results speak for themselves; their past videos have gone viral as a result of this audience-first approach.

Bringing Meaningful Content to The Performance Mix

We can say from our experience that there is room for brands to explore new approaches to creative outside the traditional direct response advertising. There is room for different types of creative even in cases where the brand is first and foremost interested in conversions. In a study conducted by one our customers in the APAC region, a brand awareness campaign had a positive impact on a simultaneously running direct response campaign. The brand awareness ads increased web and app content views by 23% while impacting the efficiency of direct response campaigns positively.

A brand will see their conversions improve when it succeeds in adding value to each step of the purchase funnel. If the audience does not trust a brand or does not have enough information, the brand should rethink its creative. Authentic and carefully prepared creative is a powerful tool for brands to connect, to convey emotions, and to establish relationships with their audiences. Authentic imagery and text will not only contribute to a full-funnel experience but also add value to the audience’s experience, which in turn translates to a better performance. When done right, Facebook advertising allows brands to meet their audiences’ expectations and begin establishing loyal relationships with them.

Illustration: Aki Tanninen

The Use of Immersive Ad Formats

Advertising adds value by changing the audience’s perception of a product, not by changing the product itself. When a brand communicates the right thing in the right way, it can deepen its relationship with the audience.

BarkBox, a company, specializing in dog goodies, does not only sell toys and treats but also their genuine love and care for dogs. BarkBox’s authentic creative has succeeded in communicating both their products and values. They have seen excellent results with the use of immersive ad formats to reach a lean backward experience with ads like Canvas Ads.

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