Marketing Cloud Deep Dive: Ad Studio

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This is a podcast episode titled, Marketing Cloud Deep Dive: Ad Studio. The summary for this episode is: In this episode of "In the Cloud Podcast," hosts Bobby and Cole take a deep dive into all things Ad Studio. Learn tips, tricks, and best practices for this platform.
Overview of Episode
00:47 MIN
Accessing Ad Studio
00:45 MIN
Ad Studio Features
02:25 MIN
Integrating Ad Studio with Journey Builder
01:49 MIN
Lookalike Customer
01:03 MIN
Retargeting Customers
00:51 MIN

Speaker 1: Welcome to the In the Clouds Podcast. In the Clouds is a Marketing Cloud podcast powered by Lev, the most influential marketing- focused Salesforce Consultancy in the world. Lev is customer experience- obsessed, and podcast host, Bobby Tichy and Cole Fisher, have partnered with some of the world's most well- known brands to help them master meaningful one- on- one connection with their customers. In this podcast, they'll combine strategy and deep technical expertise to share best practices, how- to's and real- life use cases and solutions for the world's top brands using Salesforce products today.

Bobby Tichy: inaudible In The Clouds Podcast. I'm Bobby Tichy on [ inaudible 00:00:48]. I think we should change up the intro.

Cole Fisher: What do you have in mind?

Bobby Tichy: Well, I've always really enjoyed a-

Cole Fisher: Like a theme song?

Bobby Tichy: No, not like a theme song, like the-

Cole Fisher: A beat box, you come in freestyle.

Bobby Tichy: Can you beat box?

Cole Fisher: No, not really.

Bobby Tichy: That's pretty good. I can't. I just sound like Donald Duck. But no, I always really liked... and I think they still have it, but I haven't listened to the actual radio in a long time, of like," 50 past the hour, coming up next, journey. Stay tuned."

Cole Fisher: Weekly top 40.

Bobby Tichy: There you go. Yeah. We could do something like that. I don't know.

Cole Fisher: We have to really class it up.

Bobby Tichy: I know. In the Clouds podcast, coming at you live from Indianapolis, Indiana. But anyway, thanks for joining us today guys. We're going to focus on Ad Studio and really deep dive into the Ad Studio product within the Marketing Cloud suite. So, for those of you who haven't heard of Ad Studio or haven't used it at all yet, we're going to go through, first, just a high level overview and the features that are included. We'll talk through a couple of use cases, including some customers that we've worked with, that have seen it work well and how they were using it. And then also, talk through available channels that comes through. And then also, how do we get started? So, let's say that you're brand new to Ad Studio, maybe you just bought it from Salesforce or you've had it for a while and you're looking at implementing it for the first time, what are some things to keep in mind? What are some good audiences to start with? Based on data that you have. So Cole, you dig into the overview and high level features and those types of things.

Cole Fisher: Yeah. So, Advertising Studio itself, really can be served as a standalone platform. So you can go through Salesforce, purchase Advertising Studio as a standalone product and integrate it into your digital marketing suite and whatever else you're actually doing, with digital marketing, or you can actually purchase, and most commonly, purchase it with Marketing Cloud itself, where it integrates into journey builder, the contact data model, and actually, it also serves to integrate with Pardot CRM. So, if you happen to not be a Marketing Cloud customer, but you are more on the B2B side, leveraging Pardot and core Sales or Service Cloud, then you can also be leveraging Ad Studio.

Bobby Tichy: The Marketing Cloud play is definitely the one that's most popular, where we're using our email and mobile data to drive, retargeting and ads there. And then, the second portion that you mentioned around Pardot, has become really popular over the last year or so, because for those who have Sales Cloud or Service Cloud, that's already integrated to Pardot and then we just create or build the connector to the Marketing Cloud side, then they're able to use all of that for retargeting things like leads or people like that.

Cole Fisher: And definitely not to neglect all of the above option, where, if you have a B2B and B2C components and you're leveraging Pardot and Marketing Cloud separately for those, Ad Studio could still work across both. Yes, speed is there. So, still a fully integrated on B2B or B2C options.

Bobby Tichy: Yeah, we've seen that work really well across the two in different audiences or different retargeting, based on the different platforms or based on the team that might be using it. The main features of Ad Studio, for those of you who don't know, to summarize it, I would say, it's a way to re- target your first party data and utilize it to target people on social and search. So, for example, lookalike audiences are extremely popular, where you can take your known audience, let's say it's your best customers, and send that data over to Facebook, over to Google, and they'll do a customer match and find people that are just like those customers and push your ad to those folks. Another element is retargeting. So let's say that Cole used a consumer at client X, but he hasn't bought in a while and he hasn't opened or clicked on an email in a while, we could re- target him on one of the social platforms and then lead capture as well, which is where we're able to actually capture leads and bring them directly into Marketing Cloud, from Facebook, for example. So let's say I deploy an ad to Facebook, I create a forum there and my integration mechanism is that lead capture element, that will bring people directly into Marketing Cloud, which then allows them to go on to journeys.

Cole Fisher: Yeah. And a lot of these options are, I just feel like, really low hanging fruit and quick accelerated growth. So for retargeting, for instance, what we're actually doing is, is Ad Studio is not actually passing any PII, Marketing Cloud is not passing any PII over to Facebook or Google for instance. And so, they're using actually the top of line 32 bit encryption to pass some information which Facebook then takes in, or Google or any ad partner is actually taking within their platform and searching for those users. And so, you may pass an audience where they see more than a 90% match, but no PII is being exchanged, so it's perfectly clean, it's all very personal information friendly. And so, we're never really even flirting with that line.

Bobby Tichy: For sure. And then, the other element too, on that point about channels, the channels that we do have available to us, to use with an Ad Studio where it connects to, natively are Google, Facebook and Instagram, under the one Facebook umbrella, since they bought Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Twitter, and then also Social Studio, the social feature within Marketing Cloud which allows you to integrate the different capabilities on the social side, such as social case. So if we wanted to suppress certain people who are in a case audience at the moment or anything like that on the Service Cloud side, we're able to use there too. I think the other big feature, I would say, that people use it for, is on the suppression side. So, for example, we don't want to spend ad dollars to our best customers. We already know that they're going to buy our product or products or be interested in our products. So we want to use this ad dollars to people who may not know about us or who may have retreated or haven't bought from us in quite some time. So suppressions are really big too. The other way that Ad Studio integrates, on the Marketing Cloud side specifically, is with Audience Studio or DMP. So what we can do is, we can use Audience Studio, essentially, as our segmentation engine. And with all the data we've got there, we can build out a particular audience and then send that data back to Marketing Cloud for those known first party data elements that we have. And that will match up on the subscriber ID. So something to keep in mind there, again, no PII information lives in DMP or in Audience Studio. So when it comes over to Marketing Cloud, it'll be you using that subscriber ID and then you can match up to the subscribers based on the subscriber ID, directly in Marketing Cloud.

Cole Fisher: And another really important feature is Ad Studio's ability to integrate directly into Journey Builder. So in this instance in Marketing Cloud, if you have customer journeys already set up and perhaps, it might be something like a re- engagement journey, where you're targeting folks that have 180 days or something like that, out from any types of engagement with you or they're not opening emails, those audiences, as Journey Builder goes and makes decisions, it can recognize that this person is now fallen off as an active subscriber or what we would define as an active subscriber, and so we can re- target them with ads. And there are actually a number of cases where we're seeing advertisers see higher engagement from non- subscribers than they do actually from subscribers. So, not only is in this journey case or in any journey, so even if it's cart abandonment or something to that nature, where we have a certain product or we have a certain campaign that we're targeting to them, having touch point in email is healthy enough, but having additional touch points such as, obviously in this case advertising, typically has substantially higher engagement. I know there was one, and I believe it was scotch and soda Pernod brand, actually had a case where they had a million subscribers or so, and of the email openers, they saw an 18% open rate, which is pretty standard. Of ads, they saw engagement rates at a similar level, but then those that were exposed to ads and email as well, which was about 16% of the entire population, were 22% more likely to actually make a purchase, in that study. And this is really common and we've seen those types of numbers over and over, where that multi- touch capability is a fantastic advantage. And so, integrating into journey, as a secondary touch to email, is worth its weight and goal, for sure.

Bobby Tichy: Yeah. The cross channel targeting and keeping that content consistent is really valuable, obviously in the scotch and soda example. And then, the other area where it's really valuable, Ad Studio, is on the acquisition front. So obviously we're getting to target people that we would have otherwise not known about, but not only that, we're able to take the people that we know are great customers and then we're also able to filter off of that, based on what we do in Facebook. So, for example, another Pernod brand, Malibu Rum, they decided to target a segment of music event attendees. So, what they did was, they took everyone from, who had liked their Malibu Rum Facebook page, along with any other rum pages under the Pernod brand or umbrella, and then also had an interest in music events that Malibu Rum was sponsoring. So what they did was, they then built lookalike audiences based off of these people to find like people, and then they used that lead capture, that we talked about earlier, to inject those directly into a journey within Marketing Cloud. So that way, we're deploying the target audience we want from Marketing Cloud, that's going directly into Facebook. When people show they have some interest, that's coming directly back in to Marketing Cloud and were getting put down a journey. And they did this over a period of 10 days, they had over 1300 new leads, new records that came in from this campaign specifically, and the open rates on those emails, the engagement, was astronomical compared to what it normally has, between 43 and 77% across those different emails, really need to see all those different elements and how it changed over time.

Cole Fisher: Yeah. And I think lookalikes tend to be one of the most valuable uses in Ad Studio. Lookalikes, you mentioned retargeting and suppression as well, but retargeting, in that example, we touched on this a little bit earlier, but when we're retargeting customers, a lot of the times, so we will bring up that example of re- engagement journeys, especially in that type of example, all we've established, sometimes, in a re- engagement journey, is that, this user, this subscriber, is just no longer active in email or email is just not the channel for them. Even though they may have signed up, six months of dormancy has led us to believe that they're just not an email subscriber anymore, or we're just not hitting the inbox properly, or that they've moved on. But this user is still out there and we actually know their data can identify them via ads and we can identify them with Facebook and Google.

Bobby Tichy: So as we go to actually implement this solution itself in Ad Studio, there are a couple things to keep in mind, and some of them you'll find consistent with implementing Marketing Cloud in general. If we're just looking at Ad Studio, not looking at any of the other channels that may be included there, the other part of that is having, first, is the data. So, if we don't have data integrated into Marketing Cloud already, that's going to be the first portion of it and is going to be important to have coming in. So if we don't have email integrated or anything like that, we'll want to have, whatever our CRM is, Sales Cloud or Service Cloud, or even if it's a non Salesforce product, addition to any other data sources that would be important or pertinent to have, the biggest element there would be, what are the use cases we have for these lookalikes or for retargeting or for suppression. Wherever that data lives, we need to make sure that's integrated. So, integrating data is going to be monumental and really important, as we look to implement. Once we have that data in Marketing Cloud, we're going to model it, just like they we would on email, through data extensions. And on the Ad Studio side, we use those same data extensions as audiences. So, whether we want to set up automations or put people down certain journeys using those data extensions as our audience criteria, we sure can. And then after that, within Ad Studio, the configuration is fairly straightforward, under the administration element is where you'll configure your actual social accounts and wherever you want to integrate this data to. And then, everything from that studio side is deployed in the audience, whether it's Facebook or Google, you'll decide the fields that you have in Marketing Cloud that match up to those. So, the more you have the better, obviously, because the better people you'll have, it's pretty straight forward from there. So biggest elements, certainly, getting the data in. If you're already set up on Marketing Cloud, it's a fairly straightforward setup. If it's your first foray and it's a standalone, then there's some additional work that you'll want to plan for and timing and effort, on that front as well. And typically when we think about, there are always going to be audiences that we recommend that you start with. We talked about three main core elements across lookalikes, retargeting and suppression.

Cole Fisher: Do we want to dive in to what each of those would look like?

Bobby Tichy: Yeah, for sure.

Cole Fisher: Because, I feel like... So lookalikes, we're already identifying our best customers and so, what we're doing is, we're segregating certain criteria that we want to send over to Facebook or Google or wherever. And what needs to happen is a mapping of the fields of what you want to look after. So, if I'm looking at a certain age demographic, if I start looking at certain geo locations that I want to target, I'm identifying, essentially which any business will already have, who are the best customers or where are we seeing the most conversions? Now granted this is iterative as always. It's like marketing, it's never going to be done, we're still always collecting data on what that is. And that customer, that person or whatever it might be, is constantly being updated, but we're updating that as well with feeds to Google or Facebook or wherever. Actually, those audiences are being updated every day. So as we receive more data on what that ideal customer looks like, we're updating that with our audiences that we're choosing to target. So these are our most engaged subscribers, are most likely to convert customers. So lookalikes tends to be, especially for acquisition, the number one use case for Ad Studio.

Bobby Tichy: And then we also got retargeting. So, typically audiences in retargeting is done in tandem, but we do have some customers that just use retargeting, because they haven't really started or are having trouble on the acquisition front. Not trouble, but don't need it quite yet. And so, this could be an area where customers are lapsed. So if we're looking for our best customers and lookalikes, we might be looking for lapsed customers or unengaged subscribers, on the retargeting front. So typically, those are two different audiences, if we've got that order or purchase data or history in Marketing Cloud. And then, on the unengaged subscribers, typically it's a rolling 90 days, for example. And like Cole mentioned, we have this automater update each day or each week, whatever cadence we want. So that way we're always getting the most recent data into that Studio Audience to make sure that we're updating our audiences and targeting the right way.

Cole Fisher: And we touched on this, when we were working with unengaged subscribers, it's kind of silly when we think about some of these email journey sometimes. When we're looking after unengaged subscribers, our first notion is to email them and see if they'll engage. But if they've gone six months, a lot of the times, these single channel email journeys, to say," Hey, you're not opening our emails. Would you like to open more emails? Would you like to stay a part of our subscriber base?" It's intuitive really, when we thinking about it, because we've already established that they're no longer opening emails. So introducing this second medium, second channel, to approach them. And actually, a number of customers see higher engagement from ads for customers that are no longer subscribers, past subscribers, than they do with current subscribers who are more apt to open their emails.

Bobby Tichy: Especially when we think about the whole, right channel, right message at the right time, where not everybody is focusing on their email at this point, it could be that they're more focused on mobile or they're more focused on social. So finding where those people are and capturing where we're engaging with them and stopping, to your point, like on the email front, the channel, or messaging to them on the channel that they're not engaging on.

Cole Fisher: Ultimately, it sounds like when we throw more channels into this, we're throwing in more spin, but ultimately we're throwing an optimized spin. We're throwing in more intelligently used channels that we're leveraging. And so, if we're establishing the fact that they're no longer opening emails, okay, let's stop emailing them, that's pretty simple. Let's save our time and money and not email them and just go after ads and see how they react to that, ads on social. But then at the same time, the third use case this brings us to, is suppression. And that's, again, another optimizing strategy for us. Maybe I've got an abandoned cart or abandoned browse journey or something like that going on, and I want to send this item that they have in their cart, in the middle of their Facebook stream, as they're going through, and see this item and can convert. But if I actually already know that somebody's converted on this, then I can say, I'm going to suppress them from this audience. Or if I know that that they're engaging in a more valuable life cycle right now, if they're looking at other products and I probably don't want to spend more money on them on lower level products or products that are priced lower, or even if they have a service case open, I certainly don't want to be bombarding them with more emails and ads when they have a complaint actively lodged with our service case system. So I'm going to want to suppress them and, again, save my time and money and resources from needless expenditure.

Bobby Tichy: Yeah. The whole optimization front, I think is where people get a lot of value from, as well, obviously, acquisition, retargeting. But the amount of money that you're able to save from being smart with your ad dollars versus spraying and preying, has helped quite a bit. So, hopefully that overview of Ad Studio helps in what it can do, what its purpose is, the different feature sets and how to implement along the way. I think we're ready for completely unrelated.

Cole Fisher: We are. Seeing that you just had quite a long road trip, what is it, Austin to Terre Haute? What is that?

Bobby Tichy: It's 16 hours.

Cole Fisher: 16 hours. That's hell on earth to a lot of people. I actually love road trips, personal.

Bobby Tichy: Oh, we had a great time.

Cole Fisher: There are certain necessities on a road trip, beyond just water and air. For me there are certain snacks, go- to and what you got to have. So what are your go- to's? What is the bare necessity of a road trip?

Bobby Tichy: The snacks are harder. The drinks, coffee, for sure.

Cole Fisher: That's cheating. I like dozing off, it keeps it exciting.

Bobby Tichy: Coffee, water, energy drinks.

Cole Fisher: How many energy drinks?

Bobby Tichy: I don't discriminate, I like all energy drinks. Yeah. I'm not partial, really, to one or the other.

Cole Fisher: As long as it keeps your hands shaking and gearing on the wheel.

Bobby Tichy: The bigger the whole it builds in my heart, the better. So the more jittery, the better. I'm trying to think. The first thing that comes to mind are Muddy Buddies with checks mixed Muddy Buddies are-

Cole Fisher: Are Muddy Buddies what they call the Poppy Channel inaudible made?

Bobby Tichy: Yes. Same thing. And then, any kind of candy. So Skittles, Sour Patch Kids, Gummy Bears, love all that, Beef Jerky.

Cole Fisher: Got to have a Beef Jerky. I feel like Beef Jerky is about as necessary as tires on the road trip.

Bobby Tichy: But the only problem is, if I eat too much Beef Jerky, then I have to drink a lot, and then I got to pee and stop.

Cole Fisher: It's 16 hours. You got time.

Bobby Tichy: So I think on this last, we only stopped, I think, four times over 16 hours, with three dogs. So we did pretty good. The first leg we went four and a half hours. We left at seven at night and we didn't stop until 11: 30. What about you?

Cole Fisher: My go- to drink is Big Red. I don't know what it is, its like a nostalgia-

Bobby Tichy: Underrated.

Cole Fisher: ...and it's delicious. I just might add. But yeah, if I were on a 16 hour road trip, it would not be uncommon for me to hammer back a few Big Reds on the way.

Bobby Tichy: On that same note, are you a fan of cream soda?

Cole Fisher: Actually, I'm quasi pro cream soda, but it's just, it feels not as delicious version of Big Red to me.

Bobby Tichy: Yeah. I feel like-

Cole Fisher: So I can't hate on. I think Barks is good, but it's not Big Red.

Bobby Tichy: I love IVC cream soda. I used to think I was drinking beer when I was 12. I get a six pack in the bottles.

Cole Fisher: Put in a little brown bag.

Bobby Tichy: Yeah. All right. Well, thanks guys for joining and we'll catch you next time.


In this episode of "In the Cloud Podcast," hosts Bobby and Cole take a deep dive into all things Ad Studio. Learn tips, tricks, and best practices for this platform.