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Meta has provided some new stats on the effectiveness of its Advantage+ AI-guided ad campaigns, which have become a bigger focus for the app in the wake of Apple’s iOS 14 update.

With Meta having fewer user insights to go on, it’s reverted its efforts to machine learning, and building more effective targeting systems based on systematic intelligence. That’s seen many performance advertisers praising the results of Advantage+ campaigns – and according to Meta, they are indeed driving better performance.

In the fourth quarter of 2022, advertisers saw over 20% more conversions than in the year before [while] recent tests have found that advertisers who use Advantage+ shopping campaigns are seeing a 32% increase in return on ad spend.”

Definitely, the tide has shifted in this respect, with more and more big advertisers noting that Advantage+ targeting – which essentially automates the entire process – producing great results.

With Advantage+ shopping campaigns, an advertiser just needs to set their business objective, target country, advertising creative, and budget. Then, our AI systems do the rest: optimizing to find the right person, with the right message, at the right time.”

That does come with some inherent risks – or at least, perceived flaws. Some advertisers have expressed concern that the process takes too much control out of their hands which feels problematic in regards to reaching the right audience.

But the results speak for themselves:

Advantage+ shopping campaigns are making some of our newer products like Reels ads and Shops ads perform even better. But don’t just take our word for it. The proof is in the pudding as they say or maybe in this case, the cookie dough. Doughp, a small business that makes and sells pints of cookie dough, has been using Shops ads with Advantage+ shopping campaigns to reach new customers and boost their sales. Kelsey Moreira, Doughp’s founder, told us that this combination of products made her ad campaigns truly a “set it and forget it” strategy. It’s been so successful that Doughp ended up shifting their budget away from other channels to Advantage+ shopping campaigns.”

It’s impossible to say whether Advantage+ campaigns will work for all brands, and there will always be advertisers who need that extra control to ensure that their ad spend is going where they want it to go. But it may be worth experimenting with – the process is simple, and could enable you to focus your time and effort on other things, as opposed to monitoring your daily ad spend, and refining your creative.

Meta also notes that it’s looking to add more AI elements, like Advantage+ creative standard enhancements.

“It uses AI to help advertisers automatically apply small enhancements – like adjusting brightness, aspect ratios and text placement – to improve the performance of creative. In a recent test, we found ads that used standard enhancements delivered 14% more incremental purchases per dollar spent.”

At some stage, Meta may be able to facilitate the whole process for you, optimizing your content and targeting, without much intervention from you at all.

In fact, Meta also recently filed a patent for a video analysis system that would be able to predict the virality of video clips.

Meta virality patent

As per Patent Drop:

Using a machine learning model trained on videos from a ‘social networking system’, Meta’s system can predict user ‘retention rate’, or if and how long a user will watch a piece of content, giving it a rating of ‘poor’ through to ‘excellent’. The system bases these rankings on things like video and audio quality, video metadata, and audience and user data. Meta also noted that the system may be able to predict other indicators of success, like comments, shares, or other engagement.”

Again, that feels like a step too far, right? Surely you can’t just flick a switch and have automated systems optimize your creative, then maximize your ad reach and results, without your intervention.

It seems that is where Meta is headed. And while creativity will always play a big part, there are aspects, like audience targeting, where it does seem like Meta’s systems can provide significant assistance.

Worth testing, at the least.

You can read more about Advantage+ Shopping Campaigns here.