Why Creative Matters | Straight Facqts Ep. 2

Why Creative Matters

Welcome to Episode 2 of Straight Facqts! Today, we’re listing down the many reasons why creative matters in Paid Social. Let’s get right to it!

Hey, what’s going on? My name is Gabe and today we’re going to talk about why creative is so impactful for Paid Social and how it makes the difference between you scaling and burning cash on these platforms.

By the way, we’re specifically going over metrics primarily for Meta. However, these are going to be applicable across other platforms. Whether it’s TikTok, Twitter, or LinkedIn, Paid Social is going to have a similar way where the audience digests the content and advertisers can be able to optimize that audience engagement.

Simply put for creative, when we get down to the numbers, there is an auction place that happens every time and with real time bidding. Not actual RTB (this is not programmatic advertising) but every time there is an impression that becomes available, there’s an auction place that goes on where you’ll have a multitude of different advertisers bidding for that spot.

“The first tier of the audience’s attention is going to be that creative.”

Let me pull up three elements that are built into that process. There is the Advertiser’s Bid — this is within the auction place. There is the Estimated Action Rate and then there is the User Value, and that is going to build into what the total value is.

Now on a later episode, we can dive deeper into what this actual auction place is. That’s not necessarily the focus of this conversation, but the creative can have over a 50% impact on the Estimated Action Rates that the user is going to have.

Furthermore, for that user value, it can have over a 10% impact by your creative, which is then going to increase the value of your chances to have placements for that impression as comparison to the rest of your competition.

So, if you are providing a high value creative, you can be able to leapfrog your competition to get those optimal placements. Now, when we’re talking about 50%+ for Estimated Action Rates and 10% for User Value, it could be a little hard to truly understand the capability.

One example and one case study that we’ve had (Facebook actually made a case study for our performance) is we switched the creative with a company called Infusionsoft. They are a small business CRM. And just by switching the creative, we were able to lower their Cost Per Lead by 70% overnight. That is an indication about why creative is so impactful.

Why is it impactful within the auction place? It’s just the way the audiences digest content. So, the first tier of the audience’s attention is going to be that creative.

“If you put that messaging in the image or within the first three seconds of your video, I guarantee you are going to get a lot more people who will be aware of what the benefit is.”

When we say creative, we’re talking about images or video. That’s the very first thing the audience is going to pay attention to. That’s what they’re going to be digesting first.

The second is the headline. Third is the copy, now called primary text, which is located above the creative. Fourth is going to be who the actual advertiser is. Then the fifth is the audience engagement.

One joke that I always like to be able to tell is, whatever messaging that you need to get across or whatever the audience needs to know, don’t put it in the primary text. Especially where you have to click “See More” to be able to see the long paragraphs of what’s being said.

I’ve always joked that you can be able to put “Click on this ad and get a million dollars just by signing up” in the primary text and the vast majority of people are just not going to be aware of it.

However, if you put that messaging in the image or within the first three seconds of your video, I guarantee you are going to get a lot more people who will be aware of what the benefit is. Specifically, of them becoming a millionaire just by submitting their lead information.

That’s where you put your messaging front and center. That’s where the audience digests it.

“You need to have optimal creative because you need to stop as many of those thumbs from scrolling and actually get them to click on your ad.”

This is the nature of how audiences consume on these platforms. If you don’t put it on the creative, you can’t expect them to see it on the headline or to read the primary text.

I’m not saying it’s a bad idea to have long formed copy on the primary text. However, you shouldn’t go “I really hope they read this because once they do, they’re going to convert.” Most likely, they’re not going to read it.

It’s just the nature of the game because if you don’t have it in the creative, you’re greatly increasing the chances of somebody scrolling right past and watching that cute puppy video.

Hence, you need to have optimal creative because you need to stop as many of those thumbs from scrolling and actually get them to click on your ad. Predominantly, 90% to 95% of your ads are going to be mobile.

Therefore, you need to have a mobile mindset and we’ll get that later on a podcast too and dive into exactly what a mobile mindset means.

“Facebook themselves has an 86% confidence that campaigns with mixed assets will drive better performance.”

Like I said, we’re talking about creative. We’re not just talking about images or video. We’re talking about both. In fact, Facebook themselves has an 86% confidence that campaigns with mixed assets will drive better performance. And the reason why is you’re going to give a wider array of creative experiences based on where the audience’s particular mindset is at that particular time.

If you have video, that’s typically going to be optimal. However, there are going to be times where images are more optimal too. This is where I’d like to break down how audiences consume.

So, typically videos are going to anchor your performance. If an audience has the time to watch a video and go deeper within your brand and digest a 15-32 second ad, that’s going to mean more top tier placements.

Of course, it’s going to be more ideal for you to get a top tier placement. If the audience is more likely to consume video, that’s really going to drive your performance. Still, there is a time and place for images.

As your audience is quickly scrolling into the abyss, they’re already down a mile or two scrolling. They don’t have time to watch a video. They don’t have time to spend 30 seconds digesting your brand.

However, they do still care to some degree and if you’re able to deliver a creative where they’re instantaneously able to grasp the benefit of why they should care, then that is an optimal placement or a good placement. That’s what images do.

In short, images are good cheap placements.

“Typically, short form (video) is best because about 70% of the audience consumes on short form media based off of their particular mindset.”

Now when someone’s scrolling, they’re not spending too much time. If you’ll notice, images have lower CPMs and they also have lower Clickthrough Rates. Although, they are optimal when the audience needs to quickly understand why they should click on the ad.

For instance, if you put your best video on there and they’re not going to give it three to five seconds, they’re just going to scroll past it. That’s a waste of placements. But with images, that is more optimal.

So, you want to deliver that wide array based on where the audience is. Then the market’s going to even that out by giving you a lower CPM and lower Clickthrough Rate.

Because of that lower CPM rate, that’s going to offset the lower Clickthrough Rate, which is then going to give you a decent to high level performance or it’s certainly going to be able to supplement your video, assuming that both are using good to best practices.

You also want to have a wide array of different types of creatives as well. Typically, short form (video) is best because about 70% of the audience consumes on short form media based off of their particular mindset. But we all have long form mindsets too.

There’s that mindset that we currently have or the time availability that we have, which Facebook is going to be able to identify when we have more time for long form.

“Creative is the most impactful variable that an advertiser has manual control over.”

You also want to have a wide range of long form video. Generally, a minute, maybe even two minutes where it’s not going to be your champion creative, but it’s certainly going to supplement performance for when audiences are more likely to be able to engage.

Having that creative is going to be more optimal for how the audience is consuming at that particular moment, which is then going to boost your performance.

So, really the reason why creative is so impactful is because it’s the number one variable that an audience has. It’s the number one variable that catches their attention and gets them digesting your ad. And, simply put, it’s the most impactful variable that an advertiser has manual control over.

“Essentially, your lead quality is a reflection of what your creative is.”

Creative is also going to be your best control of who your target audience is. So, say if your video calls attention to plumbers, then that is going to incline more plumbers to engage with the ad.

Facebook or Meta will identify this and then further send your video to most people who are likely to engage with it based off previous days, who are going to be plumbers.

That can increase your ability to target your audience by calling them out. Essentially, your lead quality is a reflection of what your creative is.

In summary, those are all reasons why creative is so impactful and it really does make the difference in terms of performance.

So, if you look at it from a bell curve of performance and if you want to have that elite “I’m scaling with Facebook,” then you need to have the best performing videos and images.

If you don’t, say everything else is the same and you just changed it and put in a bad video and a bad image, guess what’s going to happen to your performance? You are going to be burning cash — straight cash, homie.

So, if you’re complaining about not being profitable and not being able to scale, it’s time to look at your ads straight in the eye and ask yourself: “Are these good?”

And if they’re not, most likely that is why you’re not getting an optimal Cost Per Lead. There are other reasons why you’re not able to scale, and there could even be some down funnel issues that you can be able to improve on. However, I would say creative’s typically going to be the number one reason.

Ad Review: Skincare Brands

Now on to our next section, we are going to rank three different videos based on their performance with Paid Social. Let’s go!

By the way, I have not looked at these videos at all and I have purposely not done so to give you my authentic read.

Eucerin Ad

I don’t even know the name or how to pronounce this. It’s, oh man, Eucerin. This is authentic, baby. That’s my best. I think it’s Eucerin.

It’s good. “Help prevent dry skin” — so, opening frame. It tells the benefits and then “dermatologist recommended.” Guess who we see behind them? We see a dermatologist. So, that visual is backing up the copy very well. We see them using it and then we see their brand product.

The one thing I wish I could have seen, is just a smile. Can’t we see a face? That will probably give it a little bit of a lift but overall that is picky.

And by the way, it’s much easier to critique than to create, so much kudos to every creator out there. My job is easy in comparison to what you had to do.

All right, CeraVe, let’s get into it.

CeraVe Ad

Okay. There’s no captions here. On social feeds, 85% of the people (on Meta) watch with the sound off. That’s going to be a little bit different on stories and also on TikTok.

Nevertheless, adding captions is super easy and they’re not doing it which can give them an obvious lift in their performance. You can tell this wasn’t specifically made for Paid Social or if it was, best practices were just not known.

By the way, watching videos with the sound off is great as well. It lets you know, does the visual tell a story or should we put captions in there? I typically feel you should think of captions first, but it gives you a good understanding of how the audience is digesting it.

It’s okay. The one thing is, I wish that they had a little bit more context where you can see the rubbing in the skin. Like my eyes go “they’re talking about the product, they’re talking about the product” and then it just goes away. I mean, I guess someone’s checking the amounts and maybe they’re getting better or they’re worse. I don’t know.

We didn’t see a before picture. So, I don’t really know what they’re checking. It’s okay. I would definitely put the first video higher.

Did I ruin the ending that CeraVe is not going to be the champion? Possibly.

All right now, number three. Aveeno, let’s get into it!

Aveeno Ad

So, it starts and one scene says “wish it was.” Why would you say that? That is the copy that you’re showing the audience and their imagination is limitless now. Like “wish it was better?” or “wish it worked?” That copy there sucks. Truth.

I don’t use Aveeno. Apologies. Maybe I should. There’s a lot of things I need to step my game up on, but when they’re saying “I only wish there was a version for face,” they’re pushing branding for people who are already familiar with the product. But they’re not telling us the advantages of what the original product was.

And I believe that’s the position that they should have if they’re looking for new customers because if you’re not familiar with the brand or you just don’t use the brand, you don’t even know why you should switch.

So, this is only made for people who are already using the Aveeno product before. To add to that, the benefits that they’re highlighting later in the video are not strong benefits.

“24-hour moisture” — good. You can have a stronger visual, but then someone’s just talking about it. “Lightweight” — that’s kind of a weak visual behind it. For “soft,” it’s not the strongest visual. There could be a better visual as to why. It’s okay.

Final Rankings

If I had to rank the three, the first one would be the one I can’t pronounce, Eucerin. This is followed by Aveeno and then CeraVe. But yeah, that’s how we would break them down.

Let us know if there’s anything that you would disagree with. Am I hating too much on CeraVe or is that just how it’d be? Let us know and be sure to tune in for the next podcast. Chat later!

That’s why creative matters!

Watch the video here:


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