Over-Tested Ads: The Silent Killers

🛒 Exploring The Hidden Pitfall of Over-Testing Ads

Howdy Readers 🥰 


In this newsletter, you’ll find

🧪 The Hidden Pitfall of Over-Testing Ads

📱 Is Social Media the New Google? Generational Shifts in Search Behavior

🛡️ Google Guides Advertisers on Data Privacy Compliance

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🧪 The Hidden Pitfall of Over-Testing Ads
Insights from Deividas Tokaris

Testing is crucial, but over-testing can hurt your ad performance.

Wait, what?

We all know about the importance of testing. But people need to talk about its impact. The reality is that most tests fail. Advertisers with the highest success rates outbid the competition.

So, how do you navigate this?

Two approaches:

  1. Test more and kill faster.

  2. Test less but with higher quality.

Finding the balance is key.

  1. Allocate 20% of Budget for Creative Testing

    • Dedicate a fifth of your ad budget to testing new creatives. It ensures you have room for innovation without risking too much.

  2. Turn Off 50/50 Tests with Low Performance

    • If a test isn’t performing, don’t hesitate to shut it down. Be swift in making decisions to save resources.

  3. 80/20 Split Between Variation and New Ideas

    • Focus 80% on variations of successful ads and 20% on entirely new concepts. This keeps a steady flow of proven ideas with room for fresh innovation.

  4. Copy Competitors and Do Better

    • Analyze what’s working for competitors and improve on it. This approach saves time and leverages existing successful strategies.

  5. Kill Tests at 1x Checkout CPA

    • If a test hits your target cost per acquisition without scaling, cut it. This prevents over-investing in low-potential ads.

  6. Test on the Same Audiences

    • Maintain consistency by testing on the same audience segments. It provides reliable data and insights.

  7. Remember: Testing is Not Scaling

    • The goal of testing is to find a setup that works for scaling. Once you identify a successful strategy, consolidate and scale up.

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The Takeaway:

Testing is about balance. Too much can drain resources, while too little stifles innovation. The objective is to find what works and scale it effectively.

What percentage of your budget do you spend on testing?


📱 Is Social Media the New Google? Generational Shifts in Search Behavior

In 2024, internet usage has shifted from desktops to mobile devices, altering how people engage with content and commerce online. A Talker Research study reveals that social media platforms like TikTok and Facebook Marketplace are becoming primary tools for search and shopping, particularly among younger generations.

The Breakdown:

  • Generational Shift: Generation Z uses Google 25% less than Generation X, favoring social media for searches. 46% of Gen Z primarily use social media for information, compared to 35% of Millennials.

  • Mobile-First Access: One-third of Americans now access the internet exclusively via smartphones. Among Millennials, 39% use only their phones, while 40% of Gen Z rely primarily on mobile devices.

  • Brand Discovery: Social media plays a crucial role in brand discovery. 24% of users find new brands daily on these platforms, with 44% of Gen Z discovering new brands daily and 33% weekly.

  • Search Preferences: TikTok has surpassed Instagram for business searches, with 40% of Gen Z using it for “Hair and Makeup” and “Gift Ideas.” On Instagram, “Fashion Brands” is the top search category at 12%. On Facebook, “News and Current Affairs” and “Recipe and Meal Ideas” are the most searched topics. Google remains the go-to for “Restaurants and Bars” at 81%.


  • Convenience and Engagement: 29% of people prefer social media for searches due to convenience. Social media platforms offer quick, engaging, and personalized results, often favored over traditional search engines.

  • Impact of Potential TikTok Ban: 35% of Gen Z and 26% of Millennials say a TikTok ban would significantly affect how they access information, highlighting the platform’s importance in their daily digital routines.

The evolving preferences in search behavior highlight a trend toward more interactive and dynamic digital experiences. Embracing these changes is crucial for maintaining relevance and effectively reaching diverse consumer bases.


🛡️ Google Guides Advertisers on Data Privacy Compliance
Insights from Search Engine Journal

Google Ads has informed U.S. advertisers about upcoming changes in data privacy due to new state laws taking effect this year. These changes focus on user privacy and data handling, known as “Restricted Data Processing” (RDP), which Google introduced in 2019.

The Breakdown:

  • New State Laws: Florida, Texas, Oregon, Montana, and Colorado are implementing new privacy law provisions.

  • Colorado Privacy Act: Colorado will enforce its Universal Opt-Out Mechanism (UOOM), affecting data processing practices.

Google’s Compliance Measures:

  • Updated Terms: Google is updating data processing and protection terms for Google Ads and Analytics to align with new state laws. Advertisers who have already agreed to these terms need not take further action.

  • RDP Functionality: Google will act as a service provider, enabling RDP in relevant states and expanding as more states enact privacy laws.

  • Universal Opt-Out Mechanism (UOOM): In Colorado, Google will respond to Global Privacy Control (GPC) signals to opt users out of ad targeting, sales data, and data sharing.

Impact on Advertisers:

  • Less Personalized Ads: Increased opt-out options will reduce personalized ad targeting, affecting ad inventory and bidding strategies.

  • Customer Match Impact: Match rates for Customer Match and Remarketing lists will decline due to user consent requirements and the inability to track users who opt out or are not logged into their Google accounts.

  • Performance Reporting Fluctuations: Advertisers may see volatility in metrics like conversions, ROAS, and CPA, necessitating a shift from relying solely on hard numbers for strategic decisions.

Google’s updates aim to help advertisers navigate the evolving data privacy laws, emphasizing the importance of compliance. Advertisers must stay informed and adaptable to maintain effective campaign performance amidst changing regulations.


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🧷Advertising next to controversial news articles is as effective as next to "safe" topics. Stagwell's "Future of News Study" shows purchase intent for ads near controversial topics ranges from 65% to 72%, similar to safe topics.

📔Facebook is evolving to focus on young adults and advanced AI capabilities. With over 40 million young adult users in the US and Canada, the platform aims to facilitate social discovery, improve video experiences, and support creators.


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Ad Testing: Budget Strategies