Black Friday & Cyber Monday are here! Kevin & Jason take you through the Black Friday deal they are running that got them a 15x ROAS with their Facebook Ads. Kevin goes into detail about how to bring customers through the hot, warm, & cold sales funnel.
This is a direct transcript. Please forgive any grammar or spelling errors.
Kevin: You’ll think I’m crazy because it seems like it might be a little bit complicated, but there is kind of a method to my madness.
Jason: One just don’t have the history and the ammunition and the list and all those kinds of things.
Kevin: When you have enough data, when you have enough history and your pixel and things like that, you almost don’t even need interests,
Jen: you’re listening to eCommerce Uncensored with Kevin Monell and Jason Caruso.
Kevin: Hey everyone. And thank you for joining us on another episode of eCommerce Uncensored. My name’s Kevin Monell and I’m here with
Jason: Jason Caruso
Kevin: and it is serious crunch time with Black Friday, Cyber Monday coming
up here soon, Jason and, um, I didn’t want to mention that, but yes, I’m going away. How are we going to get,
Jason: who’s going to fire us this year.
Kevin: We’re going to have to start getting used to that. Jason, I’m going away during Black Friday. Everything’s going to be fine. I still work when I’m away.
Jason: The good news is though Kevin is that my mother and, uh, my wife said to me today, uh, cause they want to go away. When I get back from my golf trip, like, you know, Friday night into Saturday night and it’s black Friday. And, uh, so, you know, cause I’m going away this week and then there’ll be, I’ll be back next week. So they said to me like, well, is it going to be okay for black Friday, cyber Monday? I said, well, aside from Kevin handling all that, first of all, second of all, all the work is done like this week. So like next week, it’s kind of just like any like problems that come up.
Kevin: It’s nice to them to think about you like that though. I like. Yeah.
Jason: I mean, they were, they were, you know, they were, they know that that’s a busy time of year.
Kevin: Um, it’s super smart for us to like, just put our vacations, like just, back-to-back just leading during the right the
Jason: most, the busiest time of year for, for ecommerce stores. First of course, but Hey, um, you know, it today, we’re going to do something a little bit different because you and I were supposed to get on a call and talk about one of our clients, um, Black Friday, Cyber Monday. The strategy you were going to just tell me what’s going on because I’m going away this week. You’re going away next week. And I need to kind of know what’s happening while you’re gone, just in case I have to jump in and delegate it back to you. Um, but really good at that too. Yeah. Um, but so w w what we decided to do is like, instead of like having two calls, We decided to kind of double it was your idea to double, double the call, like, so like kill two birds with one stone. So to speak where we can talk about the project and sort of make it like a.
Kevin: Yeah, I’m on episode and I’m not anticipating anything going wrong, but I think we both should have like a, an eye on it and you know, who knows what can happen? You know, I was actually just cause we had this conversation about, you know, the checklist of things to get ready and, um, Budgets, you know, I, I messaged our client that we’re going to talk about, you know, the other day, I’m like, let’s make sure you have your backup payments in place. Let’s make sure there’s no restrictions on your, on your payment methods or anything like that. So like in the middle of this thing, nothing goes down and we don’t get interrupted because we know that like, if that happens, if your ads go down, uh, it could screw up the whole, the whole system, the whole, like you, you get this roll going as the days go by because it’s very. It’s not a good strategy. You run Facebook ads for two weeks and then shut them off. This is a very, it’s an interesting situation. And that’s, that’s what it is. So it’s not optimal for Facebook to optimize an ad. That’s going to run for only two weeks. Right. You usually a long period of time.
Jason: It’s, it’s really the, the more time you give them the better they perform. Right? So like, if you just give them two weeks, you know, It’s not a lot of time to, to do their things or to speak. And you know, this time of year is really comes down to data and allowing having your, you know, the pixel giving the pixel enough data to work with. And that’s really all this is all about is just data like, um, and you know, I don’t think that we’re gonna have any problems, Kevin, but what I do anticipate happening when you’re gone. Is maybe Kim or somebody from the Revair team coming to me and asking me, like, what do I think about maybe like adjusting the offer or adjusting something. I need to know what’s going on
Kevin: in order to do that. And so they have some really lofty goals for this year and who knows we could be scaling up at that time. So maybe going in and adjusting budgets and things like that. So. So another part of this, uh, getting ready for black Friday is making sure that your ads are, we mentioned this in our checklist also is making sure that your ads are kind of in the system and approved and ready to go and scheduled out ahead of time. So that’s kind of like what I’m doing. So by the time you guys hear this episode, which is going to be the Thursday, you know, week before Thanksgiving, our ads are going to be approved, they’re going to be scheduled and they’re just going to be waiting to go. So we’re not gonna have to worry about any of that stuff. And so that’s why like today, My plan. I outlined all the structure. Cause I went back to last year’s Black Friday and do these, the structure that I have here. We got a, like an average ROAS of like 15 and that’s and I would, the way I structured this, as I structured in three buckets, like I create a campaign for cold audiences, warm audiences, and then hot audiences is how I kind of labeled them.
Jason: Now let me ask you a question. I am not, I don’t want to say that. I’m, I’m not, uh, I don’t want to say that I’m against the cold, a warm hot funnel thing, right? That was like the big craze. I just haven’t yet seen evidence personally. And we’ve worked at a lot of brands. I haven’t really seen evidence of that process working the way that everybody intends on it working. But what I do notice is that when you break them up into threes, you can see a little bit easier what’s happening, right? Like you can kind of see which one of your buckets, as you say, is, is doing the heavy lifting. We’re running ads for ourselves right now, Kevin, uh, for the journal and every day they perform differently and each of the buckets or the interests or the no interest or whatever I’m doing or what we’re doing, it changes from day to day. So have you seen any evidence of that? Working.
Kevin: I think the biggest thing is, is the control. Cause I know you like the control, you hate the campaign, budget optimization and all that. You want to be able to see what’s working, even though you’re just saying right now that you’ve never seen that work, but you don’t want to.
Jason: No, no. I’m saying that like, like that process, like to me, it’s like, it’s a long process from cold to warm, to hot, you know, now I, I think. It’s it’s a lot more, that process is a lot more viable for gigantic companies who are at scale. And they’re trying to find new ways to bring in customers or new, you know, people on the fringe of their audience. But for the most part, like most of us, you know, with businesses, you know, under whatever 10, 15 million. I just, haven’t seen that, that work as it’s intended cold, then bring them to warm, then bring them to hot and then sell them. It’s just a long process.
Kevin: Well, I don’t think it’s, I don’t usually, I don’t really use it as like a process to like bring them through a funnel necessarily because I it’s not like, because actually I actually speak to them all the same. All the ads are exactly. Th the videos are the same. The text is the same. I use it more to like, make sure that I’m bringing new people in. Like, so for instance, like my cold audiences, I’ll just, I’ll just start laying this out for you right now. Cause I’ll, you’ll begin to understand kind of what my thought process is. And I think as we go through, you’re like, you’ll think I’m crazy because it seems like it might be a little bit complicated, but there is kind of a method to my madness. So I start with the cold audience and why. Break them apart from everything else is like, so that I can ensure that I’m using my budget to bring brand new people in. And I’m not getting that overlap because if you like, I do a look like audience, which is my, one of my ad sets that I do in my cold audience. So I do look likes for people who have added to cart, initiated checkout or purchased. And also my Cleevio list because as you know, you can sync up your Klayvio lists with a Facebook audience so I can bring. The people who are on my Klaviyo list and I can make look likes of those people. So that’s like one ad set right there, lookalikes, and you know, it depends on what you’re doing. You can have any kind of lookalikes that you want, but I do have a specific ad set for just look likes. And then I have a, just an interest based ad set that I try to make as broad as possible.
Almost what we’re learning from what we’re doing in the journalist. Like when you have enough data, when you’ve have enough history and your pixel and things like that, you almost don’t even need interests. You could just broaden it. And that’s what the purpose of that is, is to make it as broad as possible to bring new cold people. And then I use these new, um, this year, which is something I didn’t use last year is I used some of the new Shopify features that they have, which have these Shopify audiences that are just starting to get rolled out. I don’t think everybody has access to them yet, but Shopify is rolling out these Facebook audiences so they can create from their platform, create audiences for you and your Facebook.
And what they do is they, they look at their buyers, they look at your buyers, they look at all their network of Shopify buyers and they can make audiences based on those, which I think is going to be a little bit of a game changer because it really shows, especially with the Facebook stuff that’s going on and how Facebook can see the data like they used to and see the events that they used to using that I think is kind of like a workaround to, you know, hit more people now.
To ensure that I get new people into this campaign, into these, uh, into these ads. I also exclude my other lists. So I exclude people who have purchased in the last 180 days. I exclude people who have added to cart over the last 180 days, initiated checkout pretty much the people who have interacted with my company in any kind of. So people, I get rid of the people who have already have awareness around the brand. That way I can ensure that there’s no overlap and I’m bringing brand new people in because when you do these audiences, like a lookalike audience or an interest audience, or these Shopify audiences, those people who have already interacted with your company are in those audiences. Does that make sense?
Kevin: Then they’re not new that way. If I’m spending a thousand dollars a day on my cold campaign, I know that I’m spending thousands a thousand dollars a day on a cold audience. I’m not then spending it to show it to because Facebook has that frequency. So it’ll show your ad in that campaign to the person more than once you don’t have to necessarily retarget them. They’ll just continue to show it to those people in those audiences. So good. So far, so good. Jason makes sense. Yeah, that’s fine with me. So then I have a. I have the warm side. I move over to the warm campaign. And let me just look at this real quick, because I wrote something down here wrong in my notes. So my warm campaign kind of is like the middle of the road engagement with the company. So it’s not people who have, you know, added to cart or on my list. People who have just engaged with the company. So. Video views. So a lot of our ads all year long, we run a lot of influencer video ads. So I take all the people who have watched our videos to 75%, pretty highly engaged people. 75% of a video view is pretty highly engaged over the last 180 days. And again, speaking of the, Hunter’s a little bit broad though, that’s a little broad, it’s broad, but it’s still warm. They know who we are. They’ve heard of us. And, and just the side note on all of these. You’ll hear that I do 180 days, which is the maximum window of audiences. Cause I kind of like, normally I wouldn’t do that black Friday, cyber Monday. Normally I do like a 14 to a 30 day window because it’s, it’s more of a highly engaged person. It’s they’re closer. But now that people are in that mindset of black Friday, cyber Monday, I open it up to all the people who have done it over the last 180 days. So I got video views to 75%, just traffic to the website. Over the last hundred 80 days. And I also do the Facebook and Instagram engagement that has happened over the last 180 days. Now, again, with this list, with this campaign, I then exclude any other glass on your drink of water. I’m talking more than I usually do. You’re not used to this again with this list, with this campaign, I then. The hot campaign people. So the people who have highly engaged with the company, which is the people who have added to the car over 180 days, initiated checkout or purchased in the last 180 days, as well as some of my Klaviyo lists. So I make sure that my warm campaign doesn’t overlap into my hot campaign. And you see how it’s not really, I’m not really moving them down the funnel. I’m just making sure that my campaigns are hitting the people that I want them to hit. And. The people that are in the other campaign, you see how that, that’s kind of what I’m doing. It’s not, it’s not as much, like, as I think your first thought was like, it’s a funnel. Like I’m moving them down. Like I’m speaking to them one way then in this one, I’m speaking to them a different way. And then I’m like, kind of moving them down. This was just a structure to make sure I’m using my budgets efficiently.
Jason: Yeah. I mean, I. I like the thought process in that. And I think it keeps it nice and clean. And I also think that it allows you to kind of see what’s working and what’s not. And the other, the other thing is, you know, uh, it also allows us or you, or whoever’s managing the, the, the account. Like if, if. Let’s just say all three of them are working together, but one of them isn’t working, you know, you can, although I don’t recommend this because we’ve turned things off and changed the dynamic of how all of it works. But you can say like, look, okay, this is not really doing anything for us. We’re kind of just spending money on it, especially if it’s like the hot people, because if the hot people aren’t buying. Now, you know, you got a problem, maybe it’s a messaging thing. Maybe it’s an offer thing, whatever. So it allows you to kind of see, you know, what’s bringing in people what, bringing in the sales, which bringing in the clicks and, and that kind of stuff. And I liked that. I like to see where everything is coming from, because then it allows me to understand, because like Facebook wants you to like, stack all this shit together, but then like, you don’t know what’s happening. Like what’s working, what’s not working. Is it, is it the lookalike audiences? Is it this audience? Like. I like doing it like that. Cause I can clearly see what’s going on and uh, you know, we
Kevin: Can learn yeah. And when you’re trying to break up budgets and you get now, you get to the, to the hot campaign. That’s the last kind of level to, this is the people who have added to the cart over the last hundred days. Remember, these are the people that I excluded in the other campaign. People who have added the car over the last a hundred days. People who have initiated checkout in the last 180 days, which really kind of overlap because you have to add the cart to initiate checkout, but it just make sure that they’re in there. And then I bring in my Klaviyo profiles, like I have a all profiles, not suppressed list. Non-buyers that are. You know, they have really good engagement on their email, but they’ve been getting our emails. They’ve been seeing us regularly. So I consider them like a hotter audience. Now, the point of that is that, um, it’s these hotter camp, this hotter campaign is a much smaller audience compared to, you know, your millions and millions of cold people. So you have to allocate budget appropriately. to smaller audience. It’s just because you’re just gonna, and I look at it now and I’m seeing like, we ran this structure last year in our frequency on the hot was like 11, which is really high. So when I look at that, like I could have spent less budget there and more budget to bring, you know, new people in instead, because that audience is just broader. Now it’s a very clear to me how this work like. It’s late. It’s like the cold, the cold campaign got an almost 11 X return. The warm got a 15 and a half row has, and the hot got a 21. And you can see how it gradually got higher because obviously the more engaged people. Performed better, but it just gives you that clear picture, structuring that, structuring it this way. And then, you know, you use campaign budget optimization and you break, I break the ad sets up so that the audiences I talk about, like, I don’t necessarily stack them all in one ad set. So for instance, in my cold campaign, I have two ad sets. I have the lookalikes and I have the interests. Then I let Facebook optimize those. You know, my overall budget between those two ads and then my. I have my warm campaign. I have the traffic, I have the engagement and I have the video views in each, in their own ad set, because then I can then look at those performances individually. And those were basically all the same, but Facebook will serve it up to whichever one of those groups is performing the best. No, just
Jason: what I understand, what you’re doing here. You will, you are basically going to leave three campaigns on during the duration of black Friday, cyber Monday. Those three campaigns will stay on the entire time. And if anything, underperforms or outperforms or whatever, you’ll just either add a new ad set, add a new ad, but those campaigns will always just stay on, basically.
Kevin: Yeah. Yeah. And most likely. If something’s not performing, if you S if you do the campaign budget, budget optimization, and one of the ad sets is not performing Facebook should be not serving as much traffic to that ad set. They should be using the other ones. It’s pushing more budget to the other ones. So if the lookalikes aren’t. No, it’s going to take my interest in my Shopify list and it’s going to push more money to those. That’s the way it’s intended. That’s the, what they say is it works. But when I look at this, it was kind of like an even split and like, they were all working. I mean, and, um, this is for like the structures we’re focusing on like one product we’re focusing on a hero product, and then I have. Another campaign, which is, is just like a dynamic product ads, which handles all their other products. Cause they have like these, you know, accessories and haircare products that they sell as well. And I just retarget like all the customers that they have. And I just use these dynamic product ads to show them other products because they’re running an offer on those products as well. So that’s kind of like a, a side project that kind of just runs as well. But, um, yeah, I mean, that’s, that’s pretty much it, I mean, last year we just let it run and it just, I just kept an eye on it and it just killed it again. I said that like 15 row has amongst these three campaigns. Awesome.
Jason: Okay. Now that’s the Facebook stress. In terms of email, because email is a big part of all this as well.
Kevin: I was thinking about that too. I was like, you got to remember too, we’re we’re running ads on different channels as well. You know, we’re we got Google as well. That’s going to be retargeting them on the shot and shopping. We have, uh, you know, brand awareness ads on Google and email, of course, like we’re going to be emailing a lot.
Jason: Yeah. One thing that I think. Oh, I’d like everybody to, you know, make sure they, they understand is that we’re not testing offers at this time. Right. Like we have an offer. We know we’ve kind of just used something similar to last year because we know it kind of works and. We’re not going to be testing various offers, right?
Kevin: Yeah. We, well, we’ve actually been running this offer. We’ve been testing this over, over the last two weeks we’ve been doing that. We may have mentioned this on a previous podcast, you know, giving your, uh, early access to your email list. Testing offers on your email list, seeing how they run. And we, you know, we found a high converting offer that really works, and we’re just gonna use that.
Jason: And what I’m saying is you’re not going to change offers. Like on different platforms and seeing which one works better. We’re not, we’re not doing that.
Kevin: No, none of that. No, we’re we’re past that stage. Um, and it’s, you mentioned email it’s like face our Facebook ads were a little bit slow leading up to black Friday, but as soon as we started sending these emails with the offers in it, like you could see a total difference in our Facebook ads. So it’s, it’s a clear indication that like all these different channels. Are are helping everything. So it’s like, you need all these pieces in place and working together in order for this to be the most successful. I think
Jason: That’s like the biggest challenge has like for a new business. Cause you know, we, you and I talk about this a lot. When we talk about like creating new businesses is like day one, you just don’t have the history and the ammunition and the list and all those kinds of things. To take advantage of some of these things that we’re talking about, right? Like you kind of have to, and that’s why like starting slow and, and being methodical about growing a business and not being impatient and thinking that the business is going to go from zero to 20 million overnight, you know, there is a process that you have to go through and, uh, you know, this particular brand, you know, Revair. We’ve been with them for a really long time. And we’ve been kind of helping or working with them since almost like year. What two of them being in business?
Kevin: Something. Yeah, they were in business for a year, I think before we started with them. Yeah, yeah.
Jason: For like a year. And, uh, so we’ve gone through this with them where like, what we can do today with their brand is so much different than what we could do two or three
Kevin: Years ago. Yeah. It’s like, we’re sitting here talking about this structure and I’m thinking about a big, this was never, it was never this easy. I’m not gonna say it’s easy, but like, it wasn’t so clear. It wasn’t when you first started, it was like, there was a runway to get to this point. Yeah. Well, because
Jason: we didn’t know what . The, like we’ve we figured out the offers. I mean, I remember to this day we were in the office and we were like talking to them about like the price point. We thought that the product needed to be at, to sell and then like, You know, we had this offer that was killing it and they wanted to change it for cyber Monday. We’re like w why it’s, it’s working, you know, um, I remember that day we were in, we were in our new office, like the executive office. You remember that?
Kevin: Yeah. And I had send out, you look, we look at it and we’re like, and we told them this year, we’re like, we’re not doing that. Nope. We’re not changing things. So we’re going to make it so that the whole thing can run during the whole black Friday. Because again, the more time you can get these ads, get Facebook to work the better. So if you’re going to run a black Friday ad for seven days and then change it to be cyber week or whatever, You’re starting over you go right back into that learning process. At least if you have like 20 days at 20 day span, you’re getting the most out of at your money, you know,
Jason: I’ve, uh, I’ve definitely, as we’ve done this more Kevin, like I’ve definitely got less obsessed about daily return on, on investment Roaz and I look at it more like, like a long-term because like, Every day is different. And some days you’re going to make money. It’s some days you aren’t, it’s just the way it is.
Kevin: Just the way your audience, your customer, your, your persona interacts with social media changes day to day.
Jason: Yeah. Like our, our journal, the journal of wildlife photography, every single Monday is bad, but we can’t turn the ad off because you’re going to start screwing things up. So we, we leave it on and I think we wouldn’t have. Couple years ago I got today. It didn’t work. That’s it. It’s gone off.
Kevin: Yeah. Let’s set schedule sort of golf on Monday. I’ll come back on Tuesday. It’ll run that. Would’ve done that. Or I would have, you would have turned it on in the morning and I would have went home and turned it off at night.
Jason: Do you remember those days? They would like, oh my God, we would, we’d be at the office. To like kids and be like, all right, we’re doing this. It was like a hundred dollars a day. We thought it was like a big deal, you know, like, oh my God, a hundred dollars. If like you would go home. And we would be at like $75 wedding,
Kevin: I’d be like, oh my God. Yeah, uh, real quick. The last thing I wanted to touch on was just the ad itself. And, um, cause I, I told you guys at the beginning that like, I kind of keep it all the same. Like I, I, the messaging is the same because I don’t during this time period, I don’t beat around the Bush. Like I don’t, like, I’m not, I’m not at the point where I’m trying to bring people in and just get them to feel good about my brand. I’m trying to sell them. You know, so I’m talking about black Friday in my ad, my creative have Black Friday cyber week all over them. And my ad text has the offer in it. Like, I it’s just, I’m not like messing around, like I’m just going right after it. And I think that’s what you have to do. I’m not, it’s not, there’s the time for brand awareness is kind of like past and now, so you have these two weeks to sell.
Jason: Yeah. And. You know, I think that’s like a, uh, a big, uh, another thing to think about is like, there is this time of year specifically, there is, there are clear lines that you don’t necessarily have during the year. Like, you know, we are now in selling mode, right? Bye. It’s like, we’re not beating around the bush. It’s like buy my shit. Exactly. Whereas like the rest of the year, there is no real hard stop or hard lines or that kind of stuff. Like it’s like whatever kind of anything goes sort of speak. Um, you know, depending
Kevin: on your, we talked about that curiosity, having everything we didn’t, we didn’t, we don’t want that really anymore. We just want to tell them what it is. It’s
Jason: it’s soundbite, but cool. Hi Kevin. I think that’s helpful for people because I think. People like, you know, they, we get on these, these podcasts, we talk about all the success we have and, you know, uh, I think sometimes it leaves a lot to people’s imagination, but you know, you basically just laid out exactly what we were doing exactly outside of the offer. I mean, the offer, like I said, you should know what your offer is by now. If you don’t, then you’re in trouble.
Kevin: Exactly. So, all right, cool. Well, um, we’re week out from Thanksgiving, so I wanted to wish everybody a happy Thanksgiving. Have a great holiday. Jason, have a great. Great. Thank you. I’ll talk to you. And then when I, when I
Jason: get back,
Kevin: you’ll be going exactly. It’s kind of nice that way. It’s going to be nice.
Jason: They wish to do that throughout the whole year. Like you go away, then I go away. Then you go away. Then I go back and forth. I forgot about a lot done will be broke.
Kevin: Thank you guys so much for listening. Make sure you subscribe to the podcast so you don’t miss anything. And as always, you can check us out at e-commerceuncensored.com and we’ll talk to you guys real soon
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