Running Facebook advertising campaigns is challenging, and it can be stressful, exciting, disappointing and satisfying, depending on how the campaign is going.

 One common practice of optimizing ads is optimizing daily and measuring precisely by same-day results. It means that you will increase/decrease your budgets, pause and turn on campaigns and increase bids strictly based on how your campaigns performed today.

 Facebook Ads and their optimization algorithm are based on the difficult approach, which means that campaigns are optimized based on past performance and are impacted heavily by previous days. Every day the optimization will revisit yesterday’s data and will make new projections and changes to try to improve future performance. Facebook ads are not designed to work effectively in a single day and that’s why editing them and pausing them daily will harm your campaign’s performance. In order to better understand this concept, it’s important to understand how Facebook attributes and tracks sales. 

You can read the complete info from Facebook about how they attribute conversions. Facebook will track users for 28 days after they click or view an ad. If an ad “drives” a user to purchase based on clicking on it or viewing it, Facebook will associate that conversion with the ad. The attribution works based on the last touch model where the last ad that interacted with the user will get the credit. It makes complete sense that if Facebook is designed to track results for up to 28 days, your campaigns shouldn’t be optimized based on one day of performance. 

Optimize by longer time frames.

As most innovative marketers and the marketing officials at Facebook agree that you should optimize based on longer time frames, no one has been able to provide the most accurate time frames to optimize ads with evidence to back it up. Best way to optimize your accounts based on between six and nine days of performance depending on the ad account. There are lots of variables that could have dramatic effects on the performance of the campaigns. For examples, Let’s say your campaign has been doing well for the past few weeks and was promoting your top sellers. Then one of these top sellers will sell out and your campaign performance will drop immediately as people won’t be able to purchase the product. The conversion rate of the ad will drop, and so will the performance. Other examples that can impact your performance and might require earlier attention can be price changes of your product, negative comments on ads, or offsite website changes that can impact conversion rate.

Three, Seven, 30 days optimization method – 

Optimizing stringently based on six to nine days leaves you open to the possibility of looking at just a part of the picture. If your campaigns have performed well for the last two weeks but had a few bad days that resulted in bad performance based on a six to nine-day view, then would you turn off your ads? What if in the last six to nine days your campaigns started to show positive signs, but based on the last three weeks you lost money? How should you progress? Should you increase your bid? 

There is a simple method to provide an answer to these questions. When I optimize ads, I evaluate three-time frames, the last three days, the last seven days, and the last 30 days. The idea here is simple. Seven days will be your main time frame to optimize and your main statistic for making a change, and three and 30 days will be reference points. 

 Look for up and down trends of performance and these will help you to decide if and how you should increase spend. If you evaluate all three-time frames and your campaigns show uptrends, increase aggressively. If the three-day time frames show a downtrend, refrain from increasing your bids and budgets. If the three-day time frame is trending up, increase your bids while evaluating the seven- and 30-day performance. 

 Preferably, this method works best with large advertisers who run long-term campaigns and evaluate their campaigns based on longer time frames to maximize their budgets and performance.

How do you measure the success of a campaign?

The discussion of when and based on what time frame to optimize your ads also raises the question of how and what length do you measure the success of campaigns? Is it based on one day? One week? One month? A lifetime? If you turn off a campaign after one bad week despite it being profitable on a lifetime basis, shouldn’t it be resumed?  

Traditional marketing methods like TV or newspaper ads, you would never even think about measuring daily or sometimes weekly performance as it wouldn’t be possible. They have strictly measured the total cost per their marketing campaign and the total estimated revenue generated. That’s a proper way to measure a campaign from start to finish. Maybe that’s one of the issues with all the tremendous data that we are exposed too as modern advertisers. Maybe if we would not analyze every hour and every day, we would be more successful advertisers.  

In Summary

The methods of optimizing ads vary among advertisers. Most experts agree with that when advertising on Facebook, you should evaluate longer time frames and should not optimize by one day. Optimizing campaigns based on one day is irrelevant and it works against the basic logic of using Facebook ads. I recommend to optimize your campaigns based on six to nine days for better performance. There are different methods to evaluate and optimize your ads that maybe depending on your advertising budget and goals. Normally large spend campaigns optimize based on longer time frames which allows them to scale easily and achieve campaign growth. The question of whether a campaign’s success should be measured on a lifetime basis or a recency basis remains unsolved by many advertisers. Perhaps the obstacle of too much information in modern advertising leads to over-optimization.

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