While cross-device campaigns offer better and more comprehensive results for advertisers than single channel campaigns, their implementation and optimization can also take up more of a campaign manager’s time if not executed efficiently. Here are five tips for running successful and headache-free cross-device campaigns:
1. Target faces, not places
Today, consumers use multiple devices and methods to shop. Your customer might use their phone to browse and add a product to their basket, compare prices on other websites via their desktop, or complete the sale on a tablet at home after doing all of the above. That’s why, when running a cross-device campaign, it is important to focus on the user’s device behavior to accurately determine how to best optimize each campaign. The best media plans don’t focus on inventory; they focus on users. Carefully examine all campaign data available to capture everything you can about your customer’s purchasing behavior and journey in order to target more effectively in the future.
2. Measure real business outcomes instead of vanity metrics
Cross-device campaigns are only as effective as the attribution model in place. Marketers typically want to know where the user last viewed (not clicked) the ad prior to the conversion, as this data provides them with rich insights that they can apply to future campaigns. For a campaign to be deemed a true success, measure the business outcomes and clearly define KPIs to measure success holistically. In order to design a cross-channel approach that addresses the complexity and diversity of today’s media landscape and consumer behaviors, “follow the user to find the conversion.” Furthermore, as users move across screens, consider the frequency in which the message is delivered to a customer (i.e. frequency capping). Frequency caps are set to ensure maximum impact and to eliminate over-exposure among a target audience to a specific message.
3. Optimize, optimize, optimize
It is a “best practice” to continuously monitor and optimize all campaign performance. Focus on key ROI metrics and use data to tweak tactics throughout the campaign to help meet goals. Avoid too many unnecessary changes however, or else efficiency will be lost. And remember to be patient, as campaigns do not deliver all at once! It is important to have a two-week testing period to gather data before considering major revisions to a campaign’s setup or strategy. Optimize to ensure all messaging is consistent and that each stage of the buying process offers an exceptional user experience so as to not lose customers on the path to conversion.
4. Learn from successes and duplicate the testing method
Test and learn from every campaign. Each campaign represents an opportunity for further improvement. To begin with, keep audience targeting as broad as possible. Start with a high bid CPM, and test one campaign at a time to pinpoint which types of campaigns are most responsive to cross-device. Once campaigns are flighting smoothly, repeat the method (rather than the creative). Repeated testing helps marketers build stronger campaigns over time based on data-driven results.
5. Use device-specific creatives to provide users with a seamless experience
Studies have shown that sequences of ads are often more effective in engaging customers than repeated call-to-action messages. They also tend to deliver much higher conversion rates. Given that mobile search is officially a way of life for most consumers in 2016, make mobile a key part of any flight. Customize creatives to each device they will be shown on to make ads more mobile-friendly. Technology might enable the most optimized, targeted ad serving in the world, but if the creative itself isn’t executed well, the campaign will fall short of its intended results.
Matthew Joyce is the Country Manager for DataXu in Australia and New Zealand. He has worked with marketers and their agencies to help them efficiently engage with consumers in Australia, the UK and the USA for over 16 years.