After two months in my digital marketing role, it was game time! The company I work for who is responsible for WONDER, the indie music discovery platform, was now launching the service as an app on both iOS and Android. As Wonder already has a substantial following on its web platform, it was of our best interest for the app to perform well too. On what I thought was going to be a regular Monday, I walked into the office, only to have my boss inform me that I had a week until the launch of the app. I was given the task of preparing my first campaign to attract user downloads.
I’m going to be honest, at this point, although I’ve researched copious amounts into online advertising, I’d never actually set up a real life online campaign before. I’ve had experience with setting up dummy campaigns as practices, but this time I was using real money… Which definitely was daunting. Using The Social Media Examiner as my guide, I was able to easily come to terms with best practices for preparing this campaign.
Whilst creating the campaign I made sure to document the process for future reference. But I also thought that it could turn it into another exciting blog post!
Follow along as I guide you through each step I took when setting up my first digital marketing campaign.
Step one: Analytics, research and more analytics
In my opinion, the foundation of any campaign is its targeting. Without the right user targeting, you’re obviously not going to get your message across to the right people. Thankfully, our best friends at Google have blessed us with the glorious tool of Google Analytics. Using analytics, I was able to uncover existing user demographics from Wonders web platform and find trends in its dominate audience. Analytics allowed me to find what the average age, gender, geographical location, interests and session times were for Wonders already existing users. From this information, I was then able to identify who exactly it was that I was going to be targeting for this campaign.
Step Two: Choosing your platform
Choosing your advertising platform is an important decision that should reflect who exactly it is that you’re aiming to target. You see, different platforms host different niches of users. A good example is the nature of advertising through LinkedIn vs advertising through Twitter. You see LinkedIn is renowned for hosting a social network of professional users looking to connect through business, where as social platforms such as Twitter are best suited for users looking to engage in fun, social content. As this particular campaign was targeted towards younger users, it was most effective to use Twitter, Facebook and Instagram as our advertising vehicles.
Step three: Budget
I won’t go into great detail about this campaign’s budget, however, I feel as though it’s important to touch base on some budgeting factors. After choosing my social platforms, I’d decided to split my budget evenly three ways between each site. This would allow me to uncover which network would provide the best results overall. Not only is it important to set an overall advertising budget for a campaign, but it’s also essential to set a daily maximum ad spend. I will also note that it’s detrimental to your campaign to optimize your budget spend in the correct way. But what on earth is budget optimization you might ask? Budget optimization is essentially how your campaigns budget will be spent each day while it’s live. Some common methods of optimization include:
- Cost Per Impressions (CPM) – The process of paying a certain amount for every 1000 impressions your campaign reaches.
- Cost Per Click (CPC) – Optimizing your ads to only be charged for when a user you’ve targeted actually clicks on your ad.
- Cost per install (CPI) – Optimizing your budget spend for users actually installing your ad.
As the goal for my campaign was to increase app installs for Wonder, I had obviously chosen to optimize our campaign for app installs.
Step four: Messaging
Now that I know who I was targeting, I had to figure out how I was going to win them over. Referring back to my last blog about social media coordinating, I highlighted that effective messaging plays a major role in getting the best engagement out of your target audience. When on social media, most users are not openly searching for your particular product/service, hence the importance of being able to easily grab your audience’s attention with the right messaging.
When scripting the messaging for your ad, there are two fields of text that you must account for; the text you can add within your ads image, and the text within your ads copy. If you’re looking to utilize imagery in your campaign, I’d personally recommend that you make use of having a catchy summary of your copy inside your ad image. However, it is important to also note that for some networks, you’re allowed no more than 20% of your whole image to be text.
Now amongst the three different three social platforms that I was advertising across, I did also choose to run A/B testing with two variants of text copy. I chose to do this in order to find the most effective message for each target audience on each channel. Alongside this, I was required to display two separate images for each message, one hosting an Android device and the other of an Apple device. The result… Rushing around trying to setup copious ad variants.
Step five: Design
So now I’ve got all of my targeting information, budget selections and messaging alterations ready to go… GREAT! The next phase was to collaborate with our in-house graphic design team to make my vision a beautiful reality. At this point, I do also just want to take a quick moment to say that if you’re ever working with a designer, always have your image specs ready prior to engaging with them… It makes their life a whole lot easier!
But after all of my setup work, as well as working with the designers, I could now create the final version of my ads in the ads manager. Here’s just one variation of our ad ran on Facebook.
Step six: It’s go time
So after all of the time spent perfecting your campaigns set-up, there’ll finally come a time where you can push the go button on your promoted ad. And my dear lord, it’s a sweet, sweet feeling… I assure you.
Step seven: Measure, record, adjust
So your ad’s gone live now, congratulations!!! Now you can just sit back, relax and watch it drive results for itself… Is what I would be saying on opposite day! Although your initial work is complete, an essential part of your campaign is still to come. Each day it’s essential to check up on your ads, record their current results and make adjustments accordingly to help increase target engagements. Throughout this campaign I found myself having to turn off one variation of copy messaging as it was under-performing in comparison to the more dominant alteration.
After the completion of the campaign, I did also spend some serious time recording all of the results from each individual ad. By doing this it provided me with valuable information as to what worked well and what improvements could be made for future campaigns.
Although my first campaign was quite an immense challenge to set up due to the amount of ad variables I ran, and the short time frame given, I had an absolute blast creating it. I learned so much about digital advertising and how a digital marketer can capitalize on medium to drive leads and brand awareness. If you enjoyed this blog, I’d love for nothing more than to have you subscribe to check out more posts like this in the near future.