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Are you still using onsite metrics and engagement rates to drive and measure brand awareness on Facebook? If so, it’s time to change tactics.

What is Brand Awareness Optimization?

Late last year, Facebook announced the launch of Brand Awareness Optimization (BAO). The purpose of Brand Awareness Optimization, Facebook said, was “to help advertisers find the audiences most likely to recall their ads”.

But why do those audiences matter?

Because almost a decade of studies in collaboration with Nielsen have shown that ad recall is a more effective measure of brand lift than onsite metrics such as cost-per-like or cost-per-engagement.

So what drives ad recall? And how can we as marketers learn to optimize on it?

Years of accumulative data combined with the Facebook-Nielsen research revealed a fascinating result: Rather than clicks or engagements, reach and dwell time proved to be the most predictable factors determining positive ad recall across all verticals.

Enter Brand Awareness Optimization: Facebook’s solution to optimizing and measuring brand awareness campaigns in a way that aligns with advertiser business objectives. Brand Awareness Optimization allows you to optimize by both reach and dwell time, with the aim of increasing brand recall amongst your target audience. So ads are served to a higher reach (new users are more likely to see them, rather than those who have already been served) and to users who show a higher likelihood of dwelling on the content.

Brand-Awareness-Optimization

Image courtesy of Facebook for Developers

Control your frequency

A great feature of Brand Awareness Ads is the increased control over Frequency. Advertisers can ensure that a user will not be served an ad for up to 3 months. This means that you can run extended Reach and Frequency campaigns alongside Direct Response campaigns, without over-serving ads to the same users. Brand Awareness Campaigns can also run for extended periods without overwhelming your target audience.

What about reporting?

Brand Awareness is measured by a new primary reporting metric: Estimated Ad Recall Lift.

“This is an estimate of the ad recall lift an advertiser is expected to gain,” says Facebook for Developers. “It represents the incremental increase in the number of people we expect to remember seeing an ad in a Brand Awareness Optimization campaign.”

Estimated Ad Recall Lift is calculated by a combination of ad recall and dwell time. The formula enables an advertiser to predict the recall of a campaign. This allows for amazing agility – you can abort a campaign which predicts a low recall, and increase budgets on campaigns which are showing a higher recall.

When should you use Brand Awareness Optimization?

Reach and Frequency ads are not designed for direct response campaigns such as app downloads or immediate sales. They are created specifically for brand awareness campaigns and to increase lift at a large scale.

How does the costing work?

The Reach and Frequency campaign costs are based on a CPM bidding model. Costs are determined largely by your target audience, the timing of your campaign and the platform on which you choose to deliver (mobile, desktop and Instagram all vary considerably).

Brand Awareness Optimization Ads provide a comprehensive solution to reaching target audiences across multiple screens. According to Facebook, Reach and Frequency Buying can provide a “predictability and control that advertisers desire with a scale, targeting, and accuracy that no other platform can match”.
Might be worth a try.

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