T: @DuaneBrown

What I Learned After Spending $15,000 On Programmatic


Late November 2015 I started running programmatic with Adgorithms based in Europe. I picked them because they had a good reputation, financially stable and I liked the people I had been talking with during the initial opening talks. Read my pieces on 5 Questions To Ask Your Next Programmatic Vendor, which was a post I came up with as I was vetting different vendors.

After spending 6 weeks and $15,000 dollars attemping to get a long term strategy up and running. I came away with some major lessons that will shape how I look at programmatic advertising and my experiences going forward with the medium. A big cavet is I wanted to keep programmatic in-house and not outsource to an agency like The Exchange Labs.

See what you’ll be working with from your vendor. I had to push Adgorithms to give me access to a dashboard and this should have been a bigger red flag, if they hadn’t said early on that not all ads would run through their technology stack. Like many vendors they run some ads through a third-party platform. Making sure the dashboard has the metric you’d want to see from CTR & CPC to CPA based on your pixel firing on your site. Also make sure you like how the dashboard looks and is easy for you to use.

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Advertising on Instagram in 2016


With a community of more than 400M, Instagram is one of the world’s largest mobile ads platforms.

There are more than a few places to learn the basic of advertising on Instagram. If you’ve done advertising on Facebook, then you know the Facebook Power Editor all too well. The same interface is used for Instagram.

I wanted to mention a couple important features that make it different than advertising on Facebook but not at the sametime. Beyond it being a visual platform and mobile first before Facebook way.

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How To Build a Custom Report In Google Analytics

Google Analytics Custom Report

Last months we talked about running paid search globally while staying a nimble team. Once you’ve launched a global account, you’re going to want to optimize & lower your CPA while growing your business.

One way I like to optimize a global adwords account is by building custom reports in Google Analytics. Custom reports can present different data sets and show:

  • Which country is driving the most conversions
  • What times of day are converting e.g dayparting opportunities
  • What days of the week are we losing market share
  • Month over month or year over year comparisons
  • Which products are selling / country

These are just some of the options when building a custom report in Google Analytics. Anytime I’ve said I wish I could see X or slice data by a third or fourth dimension in Google Analytics, custom reports has saved the day. This is especially true if you’re not a fan of pivot tables or don’t want to download thousands of rows of data.

We’re going to take a look at the first option on my list above; which country is driving the most conversions. It’s a basic report but a key one since we can’t easily get that data in AdWords. I deliberately chose not to add each country, outside our top markets, in our global adwords account as I wanted to save time and I wasn’t sure what countries would perform well. Below is what the standard custom report would look like.

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How Do You Create Delightful Remarketing In 2015?

I had the honour and pleasure of speaking at MozCon this past week. My topic was Delightful Remarketing and how you can do it too. It was very well received by the crowd based on feedback and the number of people I spoke to over the next 72 hours. Notes for each slide blow.Slide 1
Opening slide
Slide 2
Remarketing is about connecting with visitors to your website who may not have made an immediate purchase. By targeting ads in front of a defined audience that had previously visited your website.Now when I explain remarking to most people. I get this reaction…Slide 3
A lot of people find remarketing creepy and weird. They don’t get why they are seeing those ads around the internet…. let alone how to make them stop. I don’t think that has to be the case, delightful remarketing. Read more…

AdWords Cross Account Conversions for My Client Centre (MCC)


This isn’t a new feature, though it seems Google AdWords is starting to promote some of its lesser known features they think advertisers can use to make managing multiple AdWords accounts easier. Just a few weeks ago they reannounced Data Drive Attribution at Google I/Q and now I got a note for Cross-Account Conversions (set-up) in my account.

The idea behind AdWords Cross Account Conversions is that you’ll have one conversion tag for tracking your conversions across all your AdWords accounts instead of having a unique tag for each AdWords account you manage, which is great as I’ve 15 accounts broken down by country and one tag is better than 15.

You need to create your conversion tag(s) as you’d normally do (in your MCC) and then upload it to your site. Once you pass your look back window (default 30 days) for your old tags, you can remove the old tags and just keep the new one up. The reason you don’t want to remove the old conversion tags right away after putting the new ones up is you might miss out on conversions from people who came to your site in the last few weeks.

As a side note, you should look into getting Google Tag Manager setup, if you’re not currently using it.