Maximizing Your Facebook Advertising: Avoiding the Biggest Mistake in Attribution

When trying to measure Facebook advertising, the biggest mistake most people make is misvaluing attribution. We have to remember that attribution at best is relative because no customer journey exists in isolation. Most customer journeys are months or decades long. It’s completely unrealistic to expect any customer to buy off of the first impression of any ad for any product and most brands have multiple marketing channels.

When trying to optimize and ultimately scale our Facebook ad accounts, we have to understand that we need relative KPIs that are specific for each platform. These KPIs are determined, not only by that platform’s efficiency, but also by where it sits in the customer journey and funnel, and the impact of the channel across the media mix model.

The target CPA for Facebook should never be the target CPA for a blended view of a brand. The blended CPA for any brand will always be less than the Facebook CPA. This is because we have email and search, organic traffic and returning customers, and a dynamic marketplace of competitors and real-world conversations.

When you’re trying to scale a brand, Facebook’s target CPA needs to be weighted with respect to the overall incremental lift that it brings to more profitable channels like search and email. Using audiences like lookalikes and retargeting options will considerably increase the overlap of sales attributed to Facebook that also gets attributed to other channels. This means that the allowable Facebook CPA must be much lower than could be if we targeted only Broad.

Remember, that when we target Broad, we have the greatest incremental lift, which means that we are most effectively amplifying the volume of transactions to our other marketing channels.

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