Where We're Focusing in Q1: Automation, Contribution, and Data Integration

Kevin Goodwin, VP of Media Services | Seattle, WA

SEATTLE, WA - As the digital media landscape continues to evolve, performance marketing teams are having a hard time deciding where to focus. Here's what we're prioritizing:

Automation-led, Always-on Experimentation

Automation-led, always-on experimentation is key, as automated solutions including Google's Performance Max (PMAX), Meta's Advantage+ Shopping Campaigns (ASC), and Meta's Dynamic Ads for Broad Audiences (DABA) must be embraced but require constant testing to drive value. Creative, data signal, and product feed become critical elements to evaluate on a weekly/bi-weekly basis given automated solutions' reliance on these inputs.

Here are some tests performance marketers should consider in Q1:

  • ASC with product feed vs. ASC without product feed - the goal is to better understand what elements of ASC drive the most value so you can focus your team’s strategic efforts in 2023.
  • PMAX using New Customer Optimization vs. PMAX using general Purchase Optimization - the goal is to get an understanding of PMAX’s ability to drive new customers specifically.

Contribution over Attribution (Advanced Measurement)

The focus should also be on contribution over attribution (advanced measurement). Ongoing incrementality testing should be conducted to validate the business's true channel value and contribution. Budget decisioning tools and channel-level targets should be built off lift-tests, and post-purchase surveys are making a comeback.

Note: we are finding post-purchase surveys incredibly effective in evaluating social and upper-funnel performance. In a recent study, we found search takes credit (via last-click) for close to 50% of conversions that customers report as originating in social.

Closed-Loop, First-Party Data Integration

Closed-loop, first-party data integration is also essential. The goal should be to get the most accurate signal to algorithms and bolster your audience strategy. Consistent, quarterly evaluation of customer lifetime value (LTV) and cohort value should be conducted to monitor business and channel health.

My #1 recommendation: work with Google and/or Meta to pipe in your first-party new customer signal direct to platform. While Meta and Google have mechanisms to go after new customers, their data is 50-70% accurate. Once you have this data pipe setup, you can run a number of interesting tests within PMAX, ASC, DABA, and all campaigns.

Finally, don’t forget about TikTok! TikTok CPMs still represent a meaningful arbitrage opportunity - if it makes sense for your business, we strongly recommend a 2-3 month test in H1 2023.

With these strategies in mind and staying up-to-date on the latest insights, media teams can improve their reach and effectiveness and hit their desired performance goals.

About New Engen

New Engen is a performance marketing agency helping brands find breakthroughs to unlock and accelerate growth. Born digital, tech-forward, and performance-driven, we lean on a data-driven, agile approach to marketing strategy and creative development to help brands outpace their competitors and stay ahead of the ever-evolving digital ecosystem. New Engen is based in Seattle.

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