Users, cookies and misleading conversion attribution

Have you ever felt that an advertiser is following you? It’s very common, specially after you show some kind of interest for a product. Say you are going on vacations to Berlin and at some moment you were looking for a place to stay in Airbnb. “Forgot it”, you think. “I found a cheaper hotel in and I don’t need a place to stay anymore”. Nevertheless, Airbnb doesn’t know that happened and they will keep showing ads to everyone that at some moment got interested for a reservation. There is where the advertiser starts following you. Let’s see how this works.

If you read the post on Google Analytics a few weeks ago, you may know you can track user behavior in our website, by using a Javascript Google Analytics Tracking Code (GATC) that tracks events and conversions within your website. For instance, correctly installed, we may know how many people are at this exact moment in my website or how many of them purchased a product in the last 30 days, in case we are an eCommerce.

A similar approach is used by social media and search advertisers. Just like GATC, Facebook has a Pixel code we can install so we know what happened during a visit to our website, which products did users visit, if they added a product to a cart and if they ended purchasing the product (or not). Continue reading

Placements, devices and social media advertising

One confusing thing when talking to someone about online advertising for the first time is the question: where are my ads going to be displayed? It’s hard to explain because probably you can mention platforms (Facebook? Google Search? Twitter? – Mobile? Desktop?) but the complexity is more related to at what exact moment and in which placements your ad will have the chance of being shown, generating impressions, clicks, views or whatever KPI we are working on. By the way, what is a KPI?

Let’s just start by saying the definition of KPI: Key Performance Indicator. This is important for two reasons. First of all, because it will define what you consider success (or not). What is success for your business? Getting likes? I don’t think so. But if it was, the number of likes would be your KPI. Think that probably is more relevant the number of leads or new clients, for example. Or it can also be number of new App Installs you drove.

Let’s mention some KPIs:

  • Clicks
  • Impressions
  • Conversions
  • Leads
  • Video Views
  • App Installs
  • etc.
This was important to mention because according to the KPI you decide to work with, you will better understand what a placement is. For example, Snapchat is not the best place to generate clicks. Probably is better for generating video views. Or it wouldn’t be accurate to use Pinterest to generate Leads. Probably it’s better to actually sell products. And Instagram for sure is an excellent platform to promote your new app. At the end of the day, people using Instagram are already using their mobile phone and they are just one click away from a new app install.

Continue reading