Bonobos fails Facebook Father’s day promotion

Bonobos LogoSorry to say for those who live in Argentina, Canada, United States, United Kingdom, Chile, France, Japan or the Netherlands, but your Father’s day was last weekend the 20th June. The reason for the confusion is that some advertisers may not have noticed or are trying to wring every last drop of value of the event.  It is fairly common to see campaigns that run past their due date over long holidays such as Christmas but it is not acceptable for business to continue to be so lazy.

Some advertisers or marketers may argue that there is a spill over after big events and they can capture this traffic now much cheaper because there is no competition.  While this is a fair argument for events like Mayday Sales, Black Friday or Boxing Day sales, you can see from the Google search trends data below that it’s almost zero.  So paying to expose your brand to zero search traffic usually means zero sales but if you have statistics please tell me I’m wrong!

Father's Day Search TrendsAfter 21st June there is almost zero web search interest in Father’s Day

I have updated the campaign tracking code to remind whoever is looking at the Google Analytics data that it’s no longer Father’s Day so feel free to click the image below to ensure there is enough traffic captured in the analytics reports. The new campaign they will be tracking from this page is “Not Fathers Day” which should set off some alarm bells if anyone is running their campaigns and actually checking the data.

Bonobos Facebook Ad

Please click the image above

While its wonderful to see a company like Bonobos running Facebook ads and also using Google Analytics campaign tagging on the URLs the issue is why wasn’t the extra step taken to ensure the campaign would stop running on Monday the 21st June? It can happen that not all the campaign budget is spent so agencies continue the campaign at the request of the client or on their on behalf but if they took just 30 seconds to add in a new creative I wouldn’t be writing this blog post.

Google AdWords

Just a note that this is not specific to Bonobos or Facebook, a simple search on Google for “Father’s Day” showed a number of ads for campaigns targeting the event.  It is possible that some of these domains might be still running on Google Grant money but they still should be ensuring they are getting value for their clicks and donations for their organisations.  It would be smarter to run a new campaign “Forget Father’s Day?” you can still make it up to him with a donation!

Google Father's Day Ads

Disclosure: Facebook and Google offer a feature to stop campaigns on a certain date as shown below

Facebook Ads Campaign Settings

Facebook Ads Calendar

Adwords Campaign Management Settings

Google Ads Calendar

Time Required: 30-45 seconds estimated including login time

So this is a reminder that it’s not really that hard to set up a campaign to run leading up to a specific event or day, but its even easier to stop that running once the day has passed and you won’t waste your money communicating to your audience that you are out of touch and don’t know what day of the week it is….

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2 comments

  1. Steven says:

    Dave, thanks for this post. I’m Steven Tartick, Marketing Manager at Bonobos. It looks like we forgot to set an end date on our Father’s Day Facebook campaign – a silly oversight we should have caught sooner. As you’ve correctly assumed, the ad didn’t perform very well after Father’s Day – just a few clicks with a mid-to-low conversion rate. The good news is we run all of our Facebook ads as CPC, so we didn’t actually waste money on them. Your suggestion to use end dates is right on – a simple way to avoid looking sloppy. Hope you had a great Father’s Day (on the 20th, of course), look forward to following your blog. -Steven

    • David says:

      Hello Steven,

      Thanks for the comment, its a common mistake and usually best practice even for long term campaigns to have a end date set at some point as the AdWords standard of year 2037 is a bit far away. You also highlight the power of running CPC campaigns, you can’t get too badly burnt with a run away campaign if caught in time, where CPM can have drastic impacts on budgets on a large audience platform like Facebook.

      I put the question about the conversion rates because ive been told of several campaigns in the past that ran their campaigns all year because the its so cheap to buy traffic outside of the key periods and they just tweak the campaign to read something like “Don’t Forget Father’s Day”. The ad message usually does something cool like a count down reminder until the next Fathers day in 2011, it also gives you better data for next years campaign, but obviously would have a much smaller daily budget.

      I’m wondering if you could drill into those who visit after Father’s day to see if there is a particular product they purchased, a geographic region they are from or maybe the Facebook Ad image used enticed them to click.

      David