Creative testing: Why is the control so hard to beat?

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30-second summary: Facebook’s split-tests appear to maintain a creative history for the control ad. This gives the control a significant advantage with Impressions Per Thousand (IPM) testing. Facebook can also group variations with a similar look and feel to the control. So similar-looking ads may also start with a higher IPM. Creative concepts that are visually very different from the control do not share a creative history. IPMs for these variations tend to start near zero. New, “out of the box” visual concepts may require more impressions for Facebook to quantify their performance. High-performance creative is a rare thing for social advertising. In our experience, after spending over $3 billion dollars driving UA across Facebook and Google, usually only one out of twenty ads can beat the “best performing control” (the top ad). If a piece of creative doesn’t outperform the best video, you lose money running it. Losers are killed quickly, and winners are scaled to the moon. The reality is, a vast majority of ads fail. The chart below shows the results of over 17,100 different ads. Spend is distributed based on ad performance. As you can see, out of those 17,000 ads, only a handful drove a majority of the spend. The high failure rate of most creative shapes creative strategy, budgets and ad testing methodology. If you can’t test ads quickly and affordably, your campaign’s financial performance is likely to suffer from a lot of non-converting spend. But testing alone isn’t enough. You also must generate enough original creative concepts to fuel testing and uncover winners. Over the years, we’ve found that 19 out of 20 ads fail (5% success rate), you don’t just need one new creative: You need 20 new original ideas or more to sustain performance and scale! And you need all that new creative fast because creative fatigues quickly. You may need 20 new creative concepts every month, or possibly even every week depending on your ad spend and how your title monetizes (IAA or IAP). The more spend you run through your account, the more likely it is that your ad’s performance will decline. So, we test a lot of creative. In fact, we produce and test more than 100,000 videos and images yearly for our clients! But we don’t just test a lot of new creative ideas. We also optimize our creative testing methodology. That might sound a little “meta,” …

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Should You Test That? When to Engage in SEO Split Tests

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Posted by Portent This blog was written by Tim Mehta, a former Conversion Rate Optimization Strategist with Portent, Inc. Running A/B/n experiments (aka “Split Tests”) to improve your search engine rankings has been in the SEO toolkit for longer than many would think. Moz actually published an article back in 2015 broaching the subject, which is a great summary of how you can run these tests. What I want to cover here is understanding the right times to run an SEO split-test, and not how you should be running them. I run a CRO program at an agency that’s well-known for SEO. The SEO team brings me in when they are preparing to run an SEO split-test to ensure we are following best practices when it comes to experimentation. This has given me the chance to see how SEOs are currently approaching split-testing, and where we can improve upon the …

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Should You Test That? When to Engage in SEO Split Tests

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Posted by Portent This blog was written by Tim Mehta, a former Conversion Rate Optimization Strategist with Portent, Inc. Running A/B/n experiments (aka “Split Tests”) to improve your search engine rankings has been in the SEO toolkit for longer than many would think. Moz actually published an article back in 2015 broaching the subject, which is a great summary of how you can run these tests. What I want to cover here is understanding the right times to run an SEO split-test, and not how you should be running them. I run a CRO program at an agency that’s well-known for SEO. The SEO team brings me in when they are preparing to run an SEO split-test to ensure we are following best practices when it comes to experimentation. This has given me the chance to see how SEOs are currently approaching split-testing, and where we can improve upon the …

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How to Use Events to Optimize Your Facebook And Google Ads

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Your website is bustling with activity. Visitors are constantly interacting with it. But are you taking full advantage of everything that’s happening on your website for your paid marketing? Every interaction a visitor has with your website… a pageview, a click… can be used to better understand your audience . And when you understand your audience you can target them in a smarter way, and get more bang for your buck from your paid campaigns on Facebook and Google. Both Facebook and Google refer to these user interactions as Events . They allow you to track them using a tracking code installed on your website. What Are Events ? Events are user interactions that don’t involve loading another page on your website. In e-commerce, the prime example of an event is Add to Cart. Another event can be filling out a field in a form, as opposed to a form …

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How to Get Quick Results With SEO Sprints: The DriveSafe Case Study

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Posted by ChristopherHofman Currently, many businesses face challenging times and are moving their SEO budget to disciplines which offer quicker wins. But you can also create instant results with SEO, and it can be done on a small budget even when you are up against bigger players in your industry. In this blog post I will show you my framework to do SEO sprints. I will show you how you can use Google’s ability to index and rank faster to your advantage. Later, you will be presented with a case study, where we used SEO sprints for a chain of opticians. The result: an increase in bookings of vision tests of 73%. But first, let's have a look at the layout on page one of Google (for most queries). Google never took SEOs into account when designing for the user. As a result, their transformation over the last few years …

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A definitive guide to video marketing 2020: Stats, strategies, and challenges

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30-second summary: Today, video marketing is a tool for building every marketing campaign, raising click-through rate, conversion rate, and memorability of the brand message. Although nearly 63% of marketers regularly use video marketing strategies, lots of them don’t know that the right ad formats and platforms can do wonders for their ad campaigns. Piling up the freshest conference insights with the customer data aggregated by SmartyAds DSP, I made a short and definitive video marketing guide specifically tailored to the year 2020. More on video marketing strategies that will work in 2020, stats, platforms, and challenges. Everyone agrees — the future of video marketing is bright and filled with innovations. Still, no one is talking about how to overcome challenges to get the most out of application strategies. What is video marketing in 2020? Today, it is a tool for building every marketing campaign, raising click-through rate, conversion rate, and …

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Title Tags SEO: When to Include Your Brand and/or Boilerplate

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Posted by Cyrus-Shepard If your websites are like most, they include a fair amount of extra "stuff" in the title tags : things like your brand name or repeating boilerplate text that appears across multiple pages. Should you include these elements in your titles automatically? To be fair, most sites do. Alternatively, could it help your SEO to actually include less information in your titles? (Or at least in specific circumstances?) We know from a handful of studies that titles of a certain length tend to perform better. A now-famous study from the engineers at Etsy showed how shorter titles performed better than longer ones . SEOs speculate that this could be because shorter titles can have more focused relevancy (by focusing on core keywords), might earn higher click-through rates, or some other reason we can't imagine. When choosing which part of a title to shorten, brand names and boilerplate …

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How Low Can #1 Go? (2020 Edition)

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Posted by Dr-Pete Being #1 on Google isn't what it used to be. Back in 2013, we analyzed 10,000 searches and found out that the average #1 ranking began at 375 pixels (px) down the page. The worst case scenario, a search for "Disney stock," pushed #1 all the way down to 976px. A lot has changed in seven years, including an explosion of rich SERP (Search Engine Results Page) features, like Featured Snippets, local packs, and video carousels. It feels like the plight of #1 is only getting worse. So, we decided to run the numbers again (over the same searches) and see if the data matches our perceptions. Is the #1 listing on Google being pushed even farther down the page? I try to let the numbers speak for themselves, but before we dig into a lot of stats, here's one that legitimately shocked me. In 2020, over …

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The 5 Best PPC Companies of 2020

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Paid advertising offers a 200% ROI . So for every dollar you spend, you get two dollars in return. It’s no surprise that nearly 80% of marketers consider PPC profitable and beneficial for their businesses. But it’s not as easy as throwing ads up, seeing what sticks, and hoping people buy from you. There’s a reason PPC agencies exist — managing countless moving parts, and continuous algorithm updates take time. Plus… none of those things are easy to stay on top of, either. To make matters worse, choosing the best PPC company for your business presents a new set of challenges. So in this article, I cover my top recommendations, characteristics to look for, and what to expect working with an agency. Let’s get started! The 5 top PPC companies in the world PPC is an exciting type of digital marketing because you can quickly and directly evaluate your investment …

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17 Actionable Content Marketing Tips For More Traffic

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This is a list of actionable content marketing tips. In fact, these same strategies helped grow my blog to 304,265 monthly visits: So if you want more traffic from every piece of content that you publish, you’ll love this list of tips, techniques and strategies. Let’s get started. 1. Publish “X vs. Y” Posts 2. Link to Social Profiles in Outreach Emails 3. Use The Animalz Revive Tool 4. Try The PBC Formula 5. Publish “Power Posts” 6. Write About Trending Topics 7. Include Native Content With Social Shares 8. Use Padlock Posts 9. Include a Keyword in Your URL 10. Add More Cuts to Your Video Content 11. Write Longer Headlines 12. Optimize Around Untapped Keywords 13. Use Blog Post Templates 14. Use Emotional Titles 15. Optimize Around Brand Keywords 16. Tell Relatable Stories in YouTube Videos 17. Write Compelling Meta Descriptions Bonus #1: Reverse Engineer Your Competition Bonus …

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How to Stay Creative With an SEO-Driven Content Strategy

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Posted by Caroline-Forsey When I first joined HubSpot's blogging team in January 2018, I loved our writing process. Once a month, we all met in a conference room with a list of ideas on Google Docs which were pitched one-by-one (intricate, I know). The process was extremely creative, iterative, and collaborative. Of course, it was also often a matter of guess-and-check. Plus, brainstorming can be a bit of a selfish process. The ideas I pitched in those meetings, I pitched in part because I wanted to write them and because I was interested in them as a reader. I could only hope our audience would be interested as well. While we developed a pulse for understanding what our readers liked from reviewing top viewed posts from the past, our process didn't enable us to develop content that matched what our potential readers wanted from us. So, just a few months …

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