The study measured the conversion lift from Facebook ads and search, both alone and together, and validated their incremental performance against a reporting tool and attribution model. The team built video ads and photo ads with messaging aimed at enticing potential students to learn more about CIA’s degree programs and to enroll. CIA delivered the ads in Facebook News Feed, Facebook Stories, Instagram feed and Instagram Stories to core audiences, Custom Audiences and lookalike audiences. CIA also activated campaign budget optimization, allowing Facebook to automatically distribute the budget to the top-performing ad sets in real time.
The cross-publisher conversion lift study was set up to measure how many people in a test group who saw ads on Facebook went on to submit a request for enrollment information, and how many people in a control group who did not see the Facebook ads submitted such a request. The team conducted the same measurement for ads in search by using a similar test group who saw ads there, and a control group who did not. The team repeated the measurement with test and control groups who had seen ads on both channels, and groups who did not see ads on either channel. CIA and Mason Interactive compared the results from the study to CIA’s internal reporting tool, and confirmed that CIA’s first-touch attribution model represents the incremental outcomes driven by both Facebook and search with great accuracy. CIA now feels confident about measuring its Facebook and search incremental performance with one unified reporting tool and attribution model.
CIA determined the success of its December 4–31, 2019 campaign using a Facebook cross-publisher conversion lift study, which revealed that treating Facebook and search as a unified marketing force drives even better outcomes than either platform alone.