The importance of evaluating ad creative
Here’s the thing. Amazing campaigns aren’t made in a vacuum. They’re often the product of fantastic insights that have been generated across several past campaigns, all revealing unique learnings about what serves your marketing goals and what doesn’t.
And while many marketers settle with evaluating campaigns as a whole, they usually miss something crucial: how the efficacy of individual ad creative ladders up to impact campaign success in a major way.
When you drill into the specific creative assets that comprise your campaign, whether they’re video assets, social posts, search ads or more, you can begin to uncover patterns that can drive more clicks, and ultimately, more conversions.
How to analyze specific ad creative
The first step in isolating winning ads is to compare them against your base set of ads. This will highlight the ads you’ve run that perform best in terms of low CPC (cost-per-click), low CPM (cost-per-mille) and high CTR (click through rate). Once you’ve isolated these ads, you can start to ask the following questions:
- What was unique about this ads copy (headline + body text) that made it successful?
- Was there anything special about this ads imagery that helped it resonate with the audience?
- Is the Call to Action clear on these ads? Is it sending potential buyers to a perfect location?
- Is there anything to note about the targeting of this ad? Is it casting a wide net, or is it narrowly focused on a specific audience?
With these questions answered, you can move on to the next step: adjustments.
How to adjust ads from insights with testing
Instead of taking all these new insights and applying them to every ad you run, a preferable approach is to apply some of your learnings to a specific subset of ads (roughly 20% of them), and test the results against a control group where no changes were made.
In approaching your optimizations this way, you’ll be able to isolate what really drove campaign success versus the elements that were otherwise coincidental to success. Here’s what we mean.
Let’s say you adjust the headline of an ad to mimic the success of another ad group. If you also change the image, and find that the ad performed better, which of the changes can you attribute to the success?
Instead, if you test a portion of your ads with just copy and then test a group of ads with just imagery changes, you can truly identify which shift created the most benefit.
Testing ads across different channels
Of course, the insights you glean from one channel (let’s say Google Ads) may not be applicable to another channel like TikTok Ads. In order to effectively test creative across different channels, you need to isolate elements that are consistent across both platforms. For example, while paid search and paid social differ greatly, both require a clear, strong call-to-action (CTA) that can help optimize click through rates and conversion rates.