A new study is out from Adaptly, Facebook, and Refinery29 finding that sequencing ads that take individual consumers "down the marketing funnel" gets better results than a simple sustained call-to-action message delivered over the same period of time.
In their research, the personalized, sequenced ads increased overall view-throughs by 87% and conversions by 56%.
“As fundamental as this question is, it’s amazing that so little has been published on the topic of sequencing vs. sustained messaging,” said Adaptly CEO Nikhil Sethi. "And although the research findings might sound like an obvious outcome, some advertisers may find it counterintuitive to elongate a campaign as a way to more gradually bring their audience through the purchase funnel, rather than more immediately delivering a call-to-action. But we have proven that this classic brand-building approach is both effective and efficient, even for direct response advertising.”
Facebook research director Daniel Slotwiner said, "Beyond traditional media, digital mediums offer a unique opportunity to bring individual consumers down the marketing funnel by serving ads in sequence. They also enable marketers to have more control over the frequency and pacing of their messages on a person-by-person basis. This type of targeting enables advertisers to leverage their existing customer relationship management (CRM) databases to find potentially high-value consumers. On Facebook, for example, where people express their unique identities, brands can target their audiences precisely, and tailor their interactions with people in a way that can build lasting and powerful impressions."
The report looks at a Facebook campaign Adaptly ran for Refinery29. It used Facebook Custom Audiences with the client's best email subscribers, and built a lookalike audience of over 2 million people. The audience was split into three groups.
The first group was shown a "top of the funnel" ad with a brand message, then a "middle of the funnel" ad for consideration, and a "bottom of the funnel" ad for the call-to-action. These three ads were sequenced over the course of twelve days.
Another group of a similar size was targeted with 3 call-to-action ads for four days each. The third group was the control group, who was not shown any ads from the client.
When each ad was compared individually, the "consideration" creative generated the most view-through and engagement with the landing page. The first call-to-action ad in the test which consisted of all call-to-action ads came in second. The call-to-action ad in the sequenced group tied with the second call-to-action ad in the sustained call-to-action group.
Those who saw all three of the ads in the sequence group, however, converted at higher rates than those who saw 1 or 2 of the ads.
“Quality and engagement are critical when developing a customer-base with real lifetime value,” said Refinery29 chief revenue officer Melissa Goidel. “By telling the Refinery29 story during the acquisition process, and building awareness and consideration before driving to conversion, we were able to increase our return-on-investment and ultimately acquire a more informed and qualified subscriber.”
You can find the full report here.
Images via Adaptly