Case Study / PERFORMANCE MARKETING

Seasonality and its Impact on Paid Performance Ads

Background

PicCollage is a creativity app that allows users to create fun and playful designs combining photos, text, drawings, and stickers.
To achieve their goals, we focused on utilizing the following:

Since they had no historical Performance Marketing campaigns active in the European market, we thought it best to promote their ads in the top 3 channels for starters – Google, META and ASA to measure results and determine return on investment, leading to more efficient use of their advertising budget. We were able to target specific audiences and track the success of our campaigns, enabling refined targeting and better use of resources.

App Store Optimization (ASO) helps the app connect with its relevant audience and push the app’s unique selling points, as quality ASO can considerably boost installs, making it essential to app marketers. Furthermore, these are organic installs, often proving to be an app’s most valuable users. 

The Objective

  • General goal for Q3 in Germany: Increase in first-time downloads
    • iOS: 20% increase
    • Android: 30% increase
  • Higher sales in Germany and later in the EU
  • Quality Metric – New user conversion should not decrease

Challenge

How can we establish PicCollage as a competitive player in the Photo and Video category for the German market?

The Solution

With a greater emphasis on the app/product’s USPs, pricing and German localization, multiple creative versions were tested throughout the entire campaign period in an effort to diversify and gain insights. 

Here are the key details that we focused on to optimize installs in our initial campaign setup:

  • App install campaigns that optimize towards installs, one of our goals in the creative creation was to catch the user’s attention and make the user download the app in the first place
  • Broad targeting without gender, age, or interest targeting.

Then, we focused our creative strategy on showcasing the best and VIP features of PicCollage. Our goal was to determine which features caught the user’s interest. We tested these features in two approaches. 

  • Will it perform better in the concept of Pride and pick up the Pride month season? 
  • Or should we rather go with the generic approach so that we could use ‘always on’ during the whole year?

We highlighted trending features such as fonts and themes related to seasonal changes, like Summer Holidays and Pride Month.

In the first creative iteration, we explored the effectiveness of seasonal creatives for PicCollage as we were confident incorporating seasonal elements into our ads resonated well with our audience and led to positive results, and also trialed Carousel ads for PicCollage, as this versatile format can seize the interest of our users and deliver a captivating encounter. With each slide in the carousel advert, we aim to achieve higher user engagement and positively impact our campaign metrics.

Comparing Generic and Pride themes:

Generic Creatives:

Seasonal Creatives (Pride):

+15% more Impressions on the seasonal creatives

Whereas we had a decrease in CPI of 20%

Click Rate increased by 18% in the Pride Creatives

1. Color Scheme

Similar look and feel of the colors used in the creatives (generic vs. seasonal)

2. Seasonal Creatives

The algorithm seemed to favor the Pride creatives as it was Pride month in June. Since all the creatives are live at the same time, the system chooses to push traffic toward the seasonal creatives. Showing relevant content to the user is also obviously in the network's interest.

3. Sticker Usage

VIP element stickers and templates in the Pride category of the app were purchased more frequently than the generic stickers.

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The Results

During our short collaboration, we managed to successfully achieve our initial goals for the app, as we saw an increase in first-time downloads and a rise in ranking in the stores. 

  • Static ads with a ‘Pride theme’ stood out and yielded favorable results in terms of low-cost installations. Additionally, carousel videos in the same theme appear to perform well, although their delivery is restricted.
  • Seasonal features are more often purchased than generic stickers, thus, it makes absolute sense for PicCollage to focus on seasonal creatives to attract attention and interest in the app

Achievements

  • Since we were also testing the different features in the first place, we have found out that the feature cutout arouses interest in the users. Thus we incorporated that feature also in future creative iterations.
  • Insights: As the Pride creatives performed better than the generic creatives, for the second creative iteration, we focused on a concept that captured the summer/holiday seasonality in each creative, which also performed well in performance.

Performance in Numbers

More Impressions on the seasonal creatives

73 to 83 (+10)

Whereas we had a decrease in CPI of

8 to 6 (+2)

Click Rate increased in the Pride Creatives by

+ 8.1%

Future

  • Creatives:

    • Gender-specific targeting and testing it out with dedicated creatives
    • A/B testing different creatives, copy and targeting options

Solution

Performance Marketing

Market

Germany

Industry

Photo and Video

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