CTRs for my Hurricane Irene Ads on Facebook

By Ian Fernando

First of all, I hope is well with whoever was effected by Hurricane Irene. I know there are still a lot of people without power and communities still flooded. I wish you and your families all the best.

While news stations and radios are creating hype around Hurricane Irene, I thought to myself - can I help people by promoting something relevant? I called up several advertisers and I was unable to get a specific offer I wanted created. So I went over to Clickbank to see if there was something I can promote. There was.

I was a bit reluctant to even push a Clickbank product because I personally tested Clickbank products on Facebook and it doesn't do so well. Also there was also another reason why my ads didn't work, I'll get into that in a bit. I found 2 info products about surviving during an event like a hurricane. It had high gravity and it looked very promising. I also found another ebook about the top foods you need to survive during a hurricane.

These 2 info products looked very promising, as teh data provided by Clickbank looked. So I decided to push them on Facebook. The reason for choosing Facebook Ads as a traffic source is because I imagined a lot of people would want to see how their relatives and friends are doing during this event.

Here are my demographics I targeted:

  • United States - Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, Connecticut
  • Age 30 and Older
  • Categories: Parent, Engaged, Baby Boomers, Parents with kids 3-19 years.
  • Additional Categories: Charity Causes, Health and Well Being, Outdoor Activities, Traveling
  • Total target: 4,098,180

With a frequency of 1.6, I was able to get a decent amount of clicks to my ads. My ads took a while to get approved and I only ran the campaign for just a bit to see what kind of reach and clicks I would get. I wanted to see if users are willing enough to take out their credit card to learn how to survive.

Here are my CTRs for my ads:

Things I could have done to improve this campaign:

  • Started this campaign 1 week prior to the event instead of 24 hours
  • Created borders around the images
  • Split test different variations of the image with border color and size
  • Whitelabel the CB page with custom LP and Order button

The first bullet, is probably the best because 24 hours users are in frantic mode. I also was thinking users would be in such an emotional state they would want to find out how to help their family in anyways possible. It backfired and learned my lesson here. Everyone is in a mode where they want to make sure they have everything, this ebook would have probably helped users prior to the event. Have I started this campaign 1 week ago, it may have converted well. My reasoning is users are in a mode where they are still uncertain and are probably doing research on how to make the best during this extreme weather.

That was a lesson learned for sure. I personally didn't see much relative ads during Irene, so there was no competition at all that I saw.

Ian Fernando
Involved in the internet space since 2002 and have been through the ups and downs of this online industry. I am a traveling digital nomad, media buyer, online strategist, and many more online titles.

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