Brand-building while driving direct response can sometimes be difficult to match-up, as you look to maximize immediate sales, while also establishing your brand presence.
Should you focus more on one or the other element - or is there a way to effectively establish your brand, and build your online audience, while also staying focused on immediate conversions?
According to Facebook, this is a common challenge that brands face:
"Many advertisers today struggle to balance short-term sales activation with long-term brand growth. And while both are critical to marketing success, traditionally these strategies have been viewed as distinct. Often performance marketing/DR and brand teams are in their own silos, with their own budgets and their own distinct - and perhaps conflicting - goals and priorities."
But the two goals don't have to operate in isolation. To provide more insight on this, Facebook recently conducted a study of 35 campaigns, with 34 advertisers across 10 verticals, in order to glean best practice tips on brand-building, in conjunction with direct response.
As you can see here, Facebook says that the key to driving brand awareness through direct response campaigns lies in optimizing campaigns for mobile.
"Advertisers who build creative assets for mobile experiences see better performance across areas such as brand awareness, brand familiarity and ad recall."
Given the high usage of Facebook's apps on mobile devices, this makes sense, in terms of grabbing attention with your campaigns. But effective branding, in particular, requires a dedicated effort, which is critically important to note.
"In the study, 57% of the brands saw brand awareness uplifts for their competitors as well as for themselves. A key reason for this was lack of branding: In the absence of a distinctive, recognizable and mnemonic visual ID, the entire product category was lifted. In other words, failing to showcase the brand identity benefits the most salient brand in the category more often than not."
So when you're creating campaigns focused on product, if you do share an effective ad, that will likely benefit your competitors as well, unless you're effectively branding your content. That's why the above note on strong branding is important - establishing your brand identity early on will help create brand recognition, while using an established color palette or presentation format will further distinguish your business from others in your niche.
This is an important, valuable note for your campaigns. It may seem like up-front branding is not as important, but the logic here makes sense. If you highlight your product benefits, without branding, you're essentially running a product ad - but if you want to build your brand, you need to also be working to establish that identity - and you need to do so early, in order to maximize that linkage.
These are some good tips to keep in mind, and the notes on brand-building in line with DR will provide further strategic considerations in your planning.
You can read Facebook's full "value of performance branding" report here.