Highlighted

Best Practices Repository

TanmayMathur

Community Manager

05-09-2016

For the benefit of the community and users I am putting together a list of Best Practices in using various features of Adobe Media Optimizer. Below is a list which will be updated with time:

1. Best Practices for Portfolios: Portfolio Structure Strategies

2. Best Practices for Portfolios: Campaign Structure Strategies

3. Best Practices for Reports

4. Best Practices for Portfolios: Portfolio Budget and Configuration Strategies

5. Best Practices for Search Campaigns: Follow Campaign Structure Strategies

6. Best Practices for Search Campaigns: Write Effective Text Ad Copy for Search Networks

7. Best Practices for Social Campaigns: Follow Campaign Structure Strategies

8. Best Practices for Social Campaigns: Create Effective Social Network Ads

9. Best Practices for Search Campaigns: Create Effective Ads for Content Networks

10. Best Practices: Optimize the Website Landing Pages

11. Best Practices for Portfolios: Minimize Bid Unit Constraints

12. Best Practices for Social Campaigns: Follow Campaign Structure Strategies

13. Best Practices for Portfolios: Portfolio Launch Strategies

14. Best Practices for Portfolios: Improve Cost and Revenue Model Coverage

15. Best Practices for Portfolios: Improve ROI

16. Best Practices for Search Campaigns: Analyze Reports to Refine Your Keywords and Campaign Settings

Replies

Highlighted

TanmayMathur

Community Manager

05-09-2016

Best Practices for Portfolios: Portfolio Structure Strategies

Advertisers with Media Optimizer Premium Only

Use One Portfolio per Budget and Currency

ROI calculations won't be accurate if the portfolio includes campaigns with multiple currencies.

Use the Right Mix of Campaigns in a Portfolio

Each advertiser will require different portfolio structures. Some different options and their advantages include the following:

  • One portfolio with campaigns from multiple marketing channels (search accounts, display campaigns, and social media accounts) — The optimization capability will allocate the most money to the most effective channel.

  • One portfolio per marketing channel and ad network — This configuration will prevent a sudden shift in one marketplace from affecting bids on campaigns from another marketplace within the same portfolio.

  • Separate portfolios for search and content campaigns — This configuration will prevent any algorithmic changes that the search engine makes to its content network from affecting spend on search, and vice versa.

  • Separate portfolios for experimental activity — If you want to experiment with a particular campaign in a portfolio, move it into a separate portfolio to prevent any impact on the other campaigns. Alternately, you can use bid unit constraints to control the experimental campaign, but be careful that the constraints don't negatively affect the performance of the other campaigns.

Note:  When you have multiple portfolios, the Spend Recommendation Tool can help you to identify the optimal budget distribution across all of them so you can maximum revenue for the entire portfolio set.

(Facebook Accounts with Facebook Auto-bid) Structure Your Portfolios Based on the Optimization Goals of Your Ad Sets

(Advertisers who use portfolios to optimize ad set budgets) Limit each portfolio to ad sets with the same optimization goal.

In particular, use the following portfolio objectives based on the ad sets' optimization goal:

  • For ad sets optimized to drive conversions using the "Conversions" optimization goal, use a portfolio objective with the relevant revenue-based transaction properties.

  • For ad sets with all other optimization goals (such as "Video Views" or "Link Clicks"), use the default portfolio objective "Maximize Clicks." Media Optimizer will maximize performance based on the ad sets' optimization goal.

Include As Many Campaigns as Possible in a Portfolio

The optimization capability becomes more effective as the number of campaigns and ads in a portfolio increases, because it can leverage more choices to achieve the specified target.

Make Sure That the Collection of Ads Covers the Breadth of Your Offerings

The keywords and ads in a portfolio should semantically reflect everything you offer, so you need to include campaigns whose collective set of keywords and ads is complete.

Even though your ads should cover your full offering, don’t include many duplicate keywords for tail terms because they will get low quality scores, and, even if you increase the learning budget, they won't get any impressions or revenue, so Media Optimizer won’t be able to build accurate models from them.

Highlighted

TanmayMathur

Community Manager

05-09-2016

Best Practices for Portfolios: Campaign Structure Strategies

Advertisers with Media Optimizer Premium Only

(Facebook Accounts) Build Target-centric Ad Sets

Facebook requires the same targeting for all ads within an ad set.

The best practice is to use a unique set of targets for each ad set; don't duplicate any of the targets in another ad set. You can configure multiple targets for each ad within an ad set, but you must use targets that are used exclusively for that ad set.

         

Campaign 1

Image 1 - Target 1

Image 2 - Target 1

Image 3 - Target 1

Campaign 2

Image 1 - Target 2 + Target 3

Image 2 - Target 2 + Target 3

Image 3 - Target 2 + Target 3

You can also include one general ad set with broader targets, which can overlap with the targets used in the other ad sets.

Create Separate Campaigns for Search and Content

For search engine accounts, create ad groups for search networks and content networks in separate campaigns to prevent any algorithmic changes that the search engine makes to its content network from affecting spend on search, and vice versa.

It's especially important to create separate search and content campaigns in Google AdWords because Media Optimizer can't optimize bids for Display Select (combined search and content) campaigns; Google doesn't provide data from the Google Display Network for Display Select campaigns. However, Media Optimizer can still optimize ad group-level bids for content-only campaigns.

(Dynamic Search Ads) Create Separate Ad Groups for Each Dynamic Search Target.

When you create a campaign for dynamic search ads, create one ad group per dynamic search target, and include another ad group that targets all criteria.

Create Separate Campaigns for Regions with Unique Conversion Rates

Use the Geo Distribution Report to see the geographical distribution of your site traffic and conversions. Based on the revenue per click for each region, create separate campaigns for any regions whose conversion rates are significantly different than the others. Do not replicate tail terms in these campaigns.

(Retail Businesses) Create Separate Campaigns for Each Vertical and Separate Ad Groups for Each Brand

This prevents any changes in user behavior, channel algorithms, and the quality scores for one vertical or brand from affecting spend on the others. It also gives you the flexibility to put the campaigns in separate portfolios if seasonality creates dramatic changes in performance.

(Retail Businesses) Create a Separate Campaign for Product Listing Ads

If you advertise for products in Google Merchant Center or Bing Shopping, create a separate campaign for the ads to better track their performance. Within the campaign, create one ad group for each product target. Include an ad group that targets all products, with the lowest bid you're willing to pay for a click for any product, to ensure coverage of your full product line.

Make Sure Ads and Landing Pages Are Relevant

All ad copies or images must follow the search engine, social network, or display network's guidelines and should give users an accurate idea of what to expect when they go to your landing page. In addition, the ad copy should follow best practices to ensure good performance, and you should test all ad copy. The optimization capability ranks the ads for each portfolio using the click-through rate and the revenue per click to identify the highest-performing ads; based on this information, the "Status Recommendation" column on the Ads tab includes a recommendation for whether you should keep (Hold) or pause (Pause) each ad to ensure that business and optimization objectives are met.

In addition, the landing page should provide the expected information and provide a positive user experience. If you test different page layouts and messaging for your landing pages, you'll be able to provide the best possible user experience and, as a result, improve your conversion rates.

Note:  Ad copy and landing page testing services are available at no cost for advertisers with full-service contracts.

Use Exact Match for Brand Keywords

If you have search engine accounts, create exact match keywords for each of your brand terms.

Constrain Brand Keywords to High Positions When They Warrant It

In some cases, it's beneficial to ensure that your brand keywords are always shown in the top sponsored ad positions on search engines, but first you should to determine which brand terms are worth constraining to high positions and which are not. By studying the patterns of paid search keywords in conversion path trends, you can determine whether or not brand terms warrant high exposure. When they do, you can implement position constraints on those terms.

For campaigns with Media Optimizer conversion tracking, use the Keyword Assist Report to study the mix of paid search keywords in each conversion path. When a large number of brand-to-non-brand conversions occur for a keyword — even if they don't involve direct conversions on the brand keyword — then placing the brand keyword in a high position will improve overall conversions for the portfolio. For example, if you see that 480 conversions occurred when users first clicked an ad for the brand keyword "Acme Shoes," then clicked an ad for the non-brand keyword "leather shoes," you can conclude that the brand keyword led to those conversions and is worth bidding to top positions.

For more tips on determining if you should use keyword constraints on your brand keywords, see "Adjust the Brand Strategy." For more information about bid unit constraints, see "About Labels and Constraints."

Create Negative Keywords and Websites as Appropriate

Typically, you should create negative keywords only for search terms that receive impressions but never lead to conversions. Similarly, you should exclude websites only when ads on specific sites produce impressions but never lead to conversions, or of course if the site is prohibited because of the advertiser's business policies.

Caution:  Use caution in excluding sites from your campaigns because content and market changes may rapidly change the value of a site's traffic.

Highlighted

TanmayMathur

Community Manager

06-09-2016

Best Practices for Reports

Automate Your Reports

Schedule customized reports to be automatically generated in either or both of the following ways:

  • Automatically generate reports each day, or on a specific day of the week or month, using report templates.

  • Keep refreshing your customized spreadsheet templates with daily performance data using spreadsheet feeds.

Analyze Advanced Reports to Refine Your Keywords and Campaign Settings

Advanced reports can help you make strategic decisions about the keywords and match types you include in your search campaigns, and the geographical and site targets for all types of campaigns. However, use caution in choosing keywords, geographical targets, and web sites to exclude from your campaigns:

  • When a search term hasn't resulted in conversions, add it as a negative keyword only when you are sure it will never lead to conversions; if it results in a small number of conversions, add it as an exact match keyword instead to retain potential traffic.

  • Sudden market trends may influence user behavior in different geographical areas. If your campaigns target specific areas, market changes may make the excluded areas potentially profitable, and you may miss out on revenue opportunities if you continue to exclude them.

  • Be conservative in excluding web sites from your campaigns because content and market changes may rapidly change the value of a site's traffic.

Highlighted

TanmayMathur

Community Manager

07-09-2016

Best Practices for Portfolios: Portfolio Budget and Configuration Strategies

Advertisers with Media Optimizer Premium Only

Use the Appropriate Budget Strategy for the Portfolio

Consider the appropriate use case for each budget strategy:

                                                                

Strategy

Use Case

Pros

Cons

Considerations

Daily

Similar traffic trends occur throughout the week.

This strategy is easy to manage.

This strategy can't exploit day-of-the-week trends.

The budget may fluctuate slightly over a week, but the seven-day average will be close the daily budget.

Monthly

The advertiser has a monthly budget and doesn't want to change it aggressively within a month.

This strategy is easy to manage.

Spend may be higher or lower at the end of the month, and this strategy can't exploit day-of-the-month trends.

The advertiser must be flexible regarding the daily spend.

Day of Week

Inherent day-of-the-week (DoW) trends occur, or the advertiser has business constraints on specific days of the week (for example, when customer service is not available to process offline applications over the weekend)

This strategy can leverage DoW trends, and it provides more budget control than Daily.

It's difficult to determine the appropriate budget to exploit DoW trends.

The optimization capability must gather enough historical data to create DoW factors.

Day of Month

Inherent day-of-the-month (DoM) trends occur.

This strategy can leverage DoM trends, and provides the most budget control of the budget-based strategies.

It's difficult to determine the appropriate budget to exploit DoM trends.

The optimization capability must gather enough historical data to create DoM factors.

Return on Investment (ROI)

The advertiser has an ROI target, and the portfolio objective will include only revenue (or any other transaction properties will be weighted very low in comparison). If the advertiser is providing data via a feed, the feed delivery must be reliable.

The ROI target determines the budget; you can optionally set a maximum daily budget as a precaution.

This strategy provides less budget control. In addition, spend can be affected by any inaccuracy in the revenue model, and performance is affected when orphan transactions or other data issues occur.

Use when the traffic trends don't vary much. For advertisers sending data via a feed, use only when there isn't a large delay between the time the advertiser receives revenue and the time they send us the revenue and revenue per transaction data.

 

Best Practice:  Use when the model accuracy is at least 85%, and set the minimum and maximum daily budgets to provide some budget control. In addition, set a low revenue model half-life to prevent volatility in performance.

Cost per Transaction (CPT)

The advertiser has a CPT target (where CPT = Cost ÷ Weighted Revenue), and the portfolio objective will include only orders (or any other transaction properties will be weighted very low in comparison). If the advertiser is providing data via a feed, the feed delivery must be reliable.

The CPT target determines the budget; you can optionally set a maximum daily budget as a precaution.

The same as for ROI

The same as for ROI

Marginal Cost per Transaction

The advertiser has a marginal CPT target (where marginal CPT is the change in cost to acquire one additional unit of weighted revenue). If the advertiser is providing data via a feed, the feed delivery must be reliable.

The marginal CPT target determines the budget; you can optionally set a maximum daily budget as a precaution.

The same as for ROI

The same as for ROI

Optimize Your Budget Across Portfolios

When you have multiple portfolios, the Spend Recommendation Tool can help you to identify the optimal budget distribution across all of them so you can maximum revenue for the entire portfolio set.

Set a Maximum Bid for Each Portfolio

Most advertisers should configure a maximum bid for each portfolio, particularly when they receive smaller amounts of revenue per transaction. Sometimes the ad networks provide inaccurate traffic estimates for new keywords and ads, and you don't want to spend more for an ad than it will produce. For most portfolios, use the maximum expected cost per lead as a guide for setting the maximum bid. For Yandex-specific portfolios, initially set the maximum bid to two times the average cost per click and change it if necessary based on performance.

If you do set a maximum bid, make sure you monitor performance over time; it's likely that you will need to change the value eventually based on market changes.

Let Media Optimizer Adjust Campaign Budgets

Under most circumstances, you should let Media Optimizer determine the optimal bids by enabling the portfolio's spend management option to auto adjust campaign budget limits, with a multiple of two (2) or less to prevent volatility during the initial weeks of the launch. For portfolios with display campaigns, the optimal multiple value is 1.3. For portfolios with Facebook ad sets, we recommend 1 as the multiple value.

Don't manually bid on keywords unless it is absolutely necessarily. If it is necessary, consider temporarily setting manual bids by creating and posting campaign bulksheets, rather than setting manual bids permanently. Any bid changes resulting from the posted bulksheet data are applicable for just one day, and after that Media Optimizer will resume setting bids according to its own optimization strategy.

Avoid Large Budget Changes Unless They're Necessary

Typically, you shouldn't change the budget by more than 25%; this allows the optimization capability to learn gradually. However, when you need to make significant budget changes, the best practice is to let the optimization capability determine the optimal bids by enabling the portfolio's spend management option to auto adjust campaign budget limits.

In any case, you should expect to see volatility and possibly some overspending in the first few days after a large budget change, especially when the historical spend is much lower or higher than the new budget, as any keywords are bid to their previous positions. As soon as the optimization capability has new data on these positions and is able to create better forecasts, the bidding technology will adjust and the portfolio will stabilize.

Minimize Portfolio Limits

The optimization capability provides optimum performance when portfolios have no bid or position limits. When you set limits, ROI may decrease. Nevertheless, if you have smaller amounts of revenue per transaction, configure a maximum bid for each portfolio to ensure that you don't spend more for an ad than it will earn.

If you need to set portfolio limits, use historical data as your basis. For example, if you use a maximum bid for the portfolio, use the historical maximum CPC.

(Portfolios with Search Campaigns Only) Set the Learning Budget to at Least 10%

This will ensure that untested keywords are bid up until they receive impressions (for search campaigns, impressions on the first page of search results).

Set Appropriate Model Half-lives

Data half-life parameters control how quickly the optimization capability reacts to changes in market conditions by giving a higher priority to the most recent N number of days when evaluating bid units for bidding purposes. A smaller half life value makes the optimization capability react to changes more quickly. Each portfolio has a cost model half-life and a revenue model half-life.

  • For the cost model half-life, use seven days or more unless you expect volatile user behavior. For example, the Facebook and display marketplaces tend to be volatile, and you may need to use a half-life of just a few days for portfolios that include those types of campaigns.

  • For the revenue model half-life, use the greater of these two values:  a) the average number of days between clicks and conversions or b) 30 days unless you expect volatile user behavior. For example, the Facebook and display marketplaces tend to be volatile, and you may need to use a half-life of just a few days for portfolios that include those types of campaigns if conversions occur quickly after clicks.

    Note: You may lose information on some tail terms if the revenue model half-life is too short.

Note:  Various factors can unexpectedly affect the performance of a portfolio, making the forecasting models inaccurate, and you may need to adjust the portfolio's half-life values accordingly.

Highlighted

TanmayMathur

Community Manager

08-09-2016

Best Practices for Search Campaigns: Follow Campaign Structure Strategies

Target Ads to Both the Search and Content Networks

In addition to targeting ads to the search network, consider also targeting ads to the content network. This will extend the audience reach to include potential customers at different points of the buying cycle, including content browsers who may be unaware of your products and services. You can create content ads in multiple formats, including rich media, which can be beneficial for branding.

Create Separate Campaigns for Search and Content

For search engine accounts, create ad groups for search networks and content networks in separate campaigns to prevent any algorithmic changes that the search engine makes to its content network from affecting spend on search, and vice versa.

It's especially important to create separate search and content campaigns in Google AdWords because Media Optimizer can't optimize bids for Display Select (combined search and content) campaigns; Google doesn't provide data from the Google Display Network for Display Select campaigns. However, Media Optimizer can still optimize ad group-level bids for content-only campaigns.

(Dynamic Search Ads) Create Separate Ad Groups for Each Dynamic Search Target.

When you create a campaign for dynamic search ads, create one ad group per dynamic search target, and include another ad group that targets all criteria.

Create Separate Campaigns for Regions with Unique Conversion Rates

Use the Geo Distribution Report to see the geographical distribution of your site traffic and conversions. Based on the revenue per click for each region, create separate campaigns for any regions whose conversion rates are significantly different than the others. Do not replicate tail terms in these campaigns.

(Retail Businesses) Create Separate Campaigns for Each Vertical and Separate Ad Groups for Each Brand

This prevents any changes in user behavior, channel algorithms, and the quality scores for one vertical or brand from affecting spend on the others. It also gives you the flexibility to put the campaigns in separate portfolios if seasonality creates dramatic changes in performance.

(Retail Businesses) Create a Separate Campaign for Product Listing Ads

If you advertise for products in Google Merchant Center or Bing Shopping, create a separate campaign for the ads to better track their performance. Within the campaign, create one ad group for each product target. Include an ad group that targets all products, with the lowest bid you're willing to pay for a click for any product, to ensure coverage of your full product line.

Make Sure Ads and Landing Pages Are Relevant

All ad copies or images must follow the search engine, social network, or display network's guidelines and should give users an accurate idea of what to expect when they go to your landing page. In addition, the ad copy should follow best practices to ensure good performance, and you should test all ad copy. The optimization capability ranks the ads for each portfolio using the click-through rate and the revenue per click to identify the highest-performing ads; based on this information, the "Status Recommendation" column on the Ads tab includes a recommendation for whether you should keep (Hold) or pause (Pause) each ad to ensure that business and optimization objectives are met.

In addition, the landing page should provide the expected information and provide a positive user experience. If you test different page layouts and messaging for your landing pages, you'll be able to provide the best possible user experience and, as a result, improve your conversion rates.

Note:  Ad copy and landing page testing services are available at no cost for advertisers with full-service contracts.

Use Exact Match for Brand Keywords

If you have search engine accounts, create exact match keywords for each of your brand terms.

Constrain Brand Keywords to High Positions When They Warrant It

In some cases, it's beneficial to ensure that your brand keywords are always shown in the top sponsored ad positions on search engines, but first you should to determine which brand terms are worth constraining to high positions and which are not. By studying the patterns of paid search keywords in conversion path trends, you can determine whether or not brand terms warrant high exposure. When they do, you can implement position constraints on those terms.

For campaigns with Media Optimizer conversion tracking, use the Keyword Assist Report to study the mix of paid search keywords in each conversion path. When a large number of brand-to-non-brand conversions occur for a keyword — even if they don't involve direct conversions on the brand keyword — then placing the brand keyword in a high position will improve overall conversions for the portfolio. For example, if you see that 480 conversions occurred when users first clicked an ad for the brand keyword "Acme Shoes," then clicked an ad for the non-brand keyword "leather shoes," you can conclude that the brand keyword led to those conversions and is worth bidding to top positions.

For more tips on determining if you should use keyword constraints on your brand keywords, see "Adjust the Brand Strategy." For more information about bid unit constraints, see "About Labels and Constraints."

Create Negative Keywords and Websites as Appropriate

Typically, you should create negative keywords only for search terms that receive impressions but never lead to conversions. Similarly, you should exclude websites only when ads on specific sites produce impressions but never lead to conversions, or of course if the site is prohibited because of the advertiser's business policies.

Caution:  Use caution in excluding sites from your campaigns because content and market changes may rapidly change the value of a site's traffic.

Highlighted

TanmayMathur

Community Manager

12-09-2016

Best Practices for Search Campaigns: Write Effective Text Ad Copy for Search Networks

General Requirements for All Search Engines

Note:  See each search engine's policy on acceptable ad copy for the full requirements.

  • Use proper grammar, punctuation, and spelling.

  • All wide characters and double-byte characters reduce the number of characters permitted per line.

  • Capitalizing the first letter in each word of your ad is allowed. But a word can't appear in all capital letters to draw attention, unless that is how a term is trademarked. For example, "MAC" is allowed for a MAC brand ad, but "NEW" is not allowed.

  • Exclamation points are prohibited in headlines/titles, but they are allowed in description line(s).

  • Special characters such as @,~,\, ^,>,< are prohibited.

  • Shortcuts, or the use of symbols to replace words, are prohibited. For example, you can't use "U" to replace "you," or "@" to replace "at. 

  • Superlative phrases, such as "Best"' or "#1," are prohibited unless this distinction has been verified by a third party and the verification is clearly displayed on your website.

  • Use trademark terms only if your client owns the trademarks in question, and the trademarked items must be visible on the landing page.
     

  • Inappropriate language is prohibited.

Recommendations for Effective Ads

Headlines/Titles

  • Write powerful headlines to attract potential customers.

  • Include keywords in your headline, because that's what most people are looking for. [1]

  • For some types of product, include pricing in the headline.

Description/Body

  • Write content that is specific, clearly communicates your intent, and compels the user to click the ad and visit your site.

  • Include the product, service, and other details (such as promotions) in the description/body.

  • Always include a call to action in the text, such as "View," "Check out," "Order," or "Sign up," to increase the click-through rate.

Overall Ad

  • Get to the point fast: include the most relevant information about the business first.

  • Relate your ad to offers that are on the landing page to help users complete the sales cycle.

  • Use phrases like "Free Shipping," "Easy Returns," "Free Exchanges and In-store Returns," and "Free gifts," to increase the click-through rate.

  • If you are offering a discount, include the specific amount or percentage of the discount (such as "20% off" or "Save $20 on first purchase).

  • If possible, use the keyword both in the headline/title and in both lines of the description/body. [1]

  • Be sensitive to how the advertiser wants its brand to be perceived. For example, an advertiser may not want the word "cheap" to show up in its ads.

  • Write more than one ad per ad group, and test the results.

  • Research what the competitors are doing. Look at the top ads for a space (at sites like www.spyfu.com) and try to understand which ads are working.

[1] If you use keyword insertion, use the correct capitalization for the insertion code:

{keyword:default} = lawn mowers

{Keyword:default} = Lawn mowers

{KeyWord:default} = Lawn Mowers

{KEYWord:default}= LAWN Mowers (which is allowed only if "LAWN" is a brand)

{KeyWORD:default} = Lawn MOWERS (which is allowed only if "MOWERS" is a brand)

{KEYWORD:default} = LAWN MOWERS  (which is allowed only if "LAWN MOWERS" is a brand)

Highlighted

TanmayMathur

Community Manager

15-09-2016

Best Practices for Social Campaigns: Create Effective Social Network Ads

(Facebook) General Requirements for Facebook Ads

         

Notes:

Facebook's editorial process may take up to 24 hours.

The following are just some of Facebook's requirements. See Facebook's advertising policies at https://www.facebook.com/help/adpolicy for the full requirements.

  • Exclamation points are prohibited in ad titles.

  • Ads can't offer incentives to viewers for clicking on the ad.

  • If an ad includes a price, discount, or free offer, the ad must clearly state what actions are required to qualify for the offer, and the landing page must clearly and accurately offer the exact deal the ad has displayed.

  • Ads can't require viewers to submit personally identifiable information (such as name, date of birth, telephone number, social security number, physical address, or email address) on the landing page or in the ad, except to enable an e-commerce transaction when the ad and landing page clearly indicate that a product is being sold.

  • Ads must not contain audio that plays automatically, without a user's interaction. Any automated animation must cease after 15 seconds and must not replay.

  • Landing pages can't generate pop-up windows.

  • Images used in ad units that will appear in user news feeds can contain no more than 20% text. Text in product shots (real photos of products in real-life situations) doesn't count toward the 20% limit.

Recommendations for Effective Ads

  • Design compelling ads specifically for a social network audience. The content should be different from that used to attract search users.

  • The image is the most important element for social ads, followed by the title, and then the body text. Use images and text, and keep the text short.

  • Ask questions. Question marks in the title or body text increase the click-through rate.

  • Include a time prompt, such as "Now," or "for a limited time" to increase the click-through rate.

  • Emphasize discounts, free offers, and promotional offers, but avoid using percent signs (%) or the word "percent."

  • Use the third person (he/she/they, his/her/their) instead of the first person (I, me) or second person (you, our) when possible for the best response.

  • Sell benefits, not features, and include a clear call to action.

  • Be conscious of using messaging that your audience will find hip and current, without being too trendy. Avoid actually using words like "hip," "cool," and "trendy."

  • Use colorful images.

  • Make sure images are not frightening, or the audience may be deterred from clicking the ad.

  • Avoid using faces in ads unless they are of celebrities or other people well-known to the audience and who are endorsing your product.

  • Keep ads fresh by replacing ad copy and images frequently, and make sure that the ads are noticeably varied.

  • Run 3-10 ads per campaign.

  • Bid according to the value delivered. Make sure you understand the impact of cross-channel marketing.

  • Continuously test ad copy, images, and landing pages (whether they are external websites or Facebook pages/events/applications).

Highlighted

TanmayMathur

Community Manager

21-09-2016

Best Practices for Search Campaigns: Create Effective Ads for Content Networks

General Requirements for Text Ads on All Search Engines

Note:  See each search engine's policy on acceptable ad copy for the full requirements.

  • Use proper grammar, punctuation, and spelling.

  • All wide characters and double-byte characters reduce the number of characters permitted per line.

  • Capitalizing the first letter in each word of your ad is allowed. But a word can't appear in all capital letters to draw attention, unless that is how a term is trademarked. For example, "MAC" is allowed for a MAC brand ad, but "NEW" is prohibited.

  • Exclamation points are prohibited in headlines/titles, but they are allowed in description line(s).

  • Special characters such as @,~,\, ^,>,< are prohibited.

  • Shortcuts, or the use of symbols to replace words, are prohibited. For example, you can't use "U" to replace "you," or "@" to replace "at.
     

  • Superlative phrases, such as "Best' or "#1," are prohibited unless this distinction has been verified by a third party and the verification is clearly displayed on your website.

  • Use trademark terms only if your client owns the trademarks in question, and the trademarked items must be visible on the landing page.

  • Inappropriate language is prohibited.

Recommendations for Effective Ads

  • Create ad copy that is designed for the intended audience.

  • Create ads that are specific, clearly communicate your intent, and compel the user to click the ad and visit your site.

  • Include the product, service, and other details (such as promotions) within the ad. For some types of products, include pricing in the ad. If you are offering a discount, include the specific amount or percentage of the discount (such as "20% off" or "Save $20 on first purchase).

  • Include keywords in the ad, but avoid keyword insertion.

  • Use phrases like "Free Shipping," "Easy Returns," "Free Exchanges and In-store Returns," and "Free gifts," to increase the click-through rate.

  • Always include a call to action, such as "View," "Check out," "Order," or "Sign up," to increase the click-through rate. If you're using an image ad, include the call to action on a button linking to your website; if you're using a rich media ad, include the call to action in an early frame.

  • Relate your ad to offers that are on the landing page to help users complete the sales cycle.

  • Control content performance using site exclusion, as prudent.

  • Create more than one ad per ad group, and test the results.

  • Research what the competitors are doing. Look at the top ads for a space (at sites like www.spyfu.com) and try to understand which ads are working.

Highlighted

TanmayMathur

Community Manager

02-10-2016

Best Practices: Optimize the Website Landing Pages

To improve user experience and improve conversion rates, it's important to optimize the landing pages for your ads by creating different layouts and messaging, and then testing their performance. Landing page testing should be a continuous initiative for any advertiser.

Note:  Adobe provides landing page testing services at no cost for advertisers with full-service contracts.

Design Effective Landing Pages

The following are some guidelines for designing landing pages that will provide a positive user experience.

  • Keep the message consistent with the ad copy. For search ads, the page title tag and the ad's main headline ideally should contain the keyword phrase used in the user's search query.

  • A landing page should have only one goal, so include only one actionable item (such as a "Buy Now" or "Sign Up" button, or other element that the user has to interact with to initiate a conversion). For example, if the goal is to collect visitor information for a lead aggregator, don’t include a newsletter sign-up on the landing page. Similarly, if the goal is to sign up the visitor for a free trial, don’t provide a button for the free trial and another button for the full subscription; convert your free trial sign-ups at another time.

  • Place the actionable element on the page “above the fold” so the user can see it without having to scroll down the page.

  • Use good page design; a good design can immediately engender trust, a sense of familiarity, and credibility. Customize your form buttons to make them more noticeable; don’t just use the standard browser-generated button with the word “Submit” on it. Use a two-column layout, with the actionable item in the main column and supporting information in the second column.

  • Provide credibility and security indicators. Logos and seals help reduce visitor anxiety. These include Verisign, BBB logo, eTrust, HackerSafe, satisfaction guarantees, money back offers, and so on. Include a privacy statement whenever information is being collected. Place these indicators as close to the actionable item as possible.

  • Offer an incentive, such as free shipping, a free gift, a product discount, or a free white paper or ebook. A visitor hitting a landing page is shopping around and needs an incentive to stay on a page and complete the offer. The incentive should be one of the most notable items on the page.

  • When the goal is to collect information from the visitor using forms, use only the form fields that are absolutely necessary. The fewer the number of fields, the more likely the user is to fill them out and submit the form.

  • If the conversion process has multiple phases (more than one step or page visit), keep the phases to a minimum.

  • The more anxiety users have about buying a product (for example, because it has a high price or is complex) the more effective long copy will be, so provide more information. For products that cause little anxiety, or offers for free subscriptions or free services, short copy is more effective.

  • Include keyword-rich content on the page. Make headlines text, not images, and use proper title, meta description and meta keyword tags. This will help improve a page’s quality score and allow you to get higher ad positions within the sponsored lists on a search engine results page and a lower cost per click.

  • Be careful when using testimonials. Any testimonial should feel real; a testimonial that sounds generic or fake and is accompanied by an obvious stock portrait will harm the page more than help it. A proven approach is to include a message, image, and signature from someone high up in the company (such as the company’s president, head of product development, or director of consumer research) offering the product or service.

  • For search campaigns and Facebook ad sets, validate the landing pages in your destination URLs using campaign bulksheets.

Test the Impact of Landing Pages

To see the impact of changing the landing page (when everything else is constant), run the Ad Variation Report, which includes the display URL and the destination URL for each ad.