Carolyn Bollaci

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How to Use DCO for Successful Direct Response Campaigns

Since last year, I've seen tremendous growth in the use of Dynamic Creative Optimization (DCO) in the digital advertising industry. Creating individual ads that take advantage of user-level audience data is time consuming and prohibitively expensive for most brands, but DCO streamlines this process and improves ad performance at the same time. Therefore it's no surprise that DCO is increasingly popular amongst the agencies and advertisers.

Here are 7 practical tips on how one can create an effective direct response campaign using DCO:

  1. Monitor campaigns early and test continually in order to make sure that your objectives are achievable with the current creative. When a campaign meets a given objective, set a higher goal and continue to make incremental changes towards it.

  2. Follow your audience through the funnel with conversion tags. The correct tags can provide insight into how well your campaign is driving users down the funnel into the advertiser's desired outcome.

  3. Tailor your retargeting campaigns to dynamically adapt to how far down the desired path the user reached in the ad. For a typical e-commerce site, dynamic ads using DCO can send different dynamic creative to engage users at different points of the site's conversion funnels - enticing users with featured items if they browsed the home page but went no further, or a different creative reminding them of items they have abandoned in their shopping cart.

  4. Be selective when choosing which elements to make dynamic; introducing too many creative variations at once will make determining actionable insights difficult. Focus first on targeting dynamic products, promotions, and calls-to-action. Once you have a baseline for dynamic content performance, test creative elements such as colour, layout, or animation.

  5. Take advantage of demographic and behavioural segmentation when available from publisher partners; many offer this data to advertisers and it can be implemented into dynamic campaigns to further target creative for the demographics of each publisher.

  6. Product based retargeting, or retargeting ads based on products a person previously viewed, is one of the most effective tactics available to dynamic creative campaigns. A few guidelines: focus on retargeting high value products, differentiate the products slightly (within the same category), and consider adding a time delay (anywhere between an hour to a day is considered standard).

  7. Carry personalized messaging from the ad to the landing page by using different dynamic URL parameters in the click-through link to create matching creative in the landing page. In addition, leverage dynamic information to send prospects closer to the point of conversion. For example, a movie ticketing site could use geo-targeting to deep-link prospects to theatre locations nearby.

DCO has helped local advertisers such as Zuji and Tourism Australia to not only achieve outstanding campaign performance. Furthermore, DCO allows campaigns to efficiently cut down on the production time and cost while still being able to target the right audience with relevant messages.

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