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Short Flight, Big Budget - How to Maximize Quick Hitting Campaigns

Digital media may move fast, but as many marketers know, it can take some time for campaigns to actually begin to spend. So what do you do when you only have a finite amount of time to knock it out of the park? Follow these steps to make sure you keep your spend in check, and hit your KPIs. 


There are a few key steps to  take in a high spend, short time-frame Facebook campaigns. Some use cases for this strategy include flash sales, pop-up events, or livestream campaigns. 

  • First, identify your overall Facebook budget and set this value as your spending limit, which can be implemented at the campaign level. 
  • With this safeguard in place, turn off “Campaign Budget Optimization”, allowing you to create ad set level budgets that will pave the way for quicker spends. In order to spend aggressively and drive high volume in only a few hours, set these ad set level budgets significantly higher than overall intended spend. 
  • Next, adjust the ad sets bidding strategy from “standard” to “accelerated”. Be wary that accelerated bidding can increase the cost of results. It is necessary in a situation where a large spend is occurring in only a few hours. If your flight length is longer than 3-4 hours, consider switching back to “standard”. 
  • As Facebook does not allow for the use of “Lowest Cost” bidding in combination with accelerated bidding, you’ll need to manually set bids at the Ad Set level. Set these 3-5x higher than a regular campaign bidding strategy to encourage strong volume. 
  • Finally, set the appropriate start time/end time at the ad set level. 

With these high ad set budgets, and a campaign spend limit safeguard, Facebook has been tricked (in a good way). 

The campaign will drive strong volume quickly, as the platform tries to adhere to the high ad set budgets. Use these budgets to prioritize certain ad groups by setting higher limits on your priority targeting. 



To implement these campaigns on Twitter, there are a few key steps to keep in mind:  

  • Identify your overall Twitter budget, and set this as the “total budget” at the campaign level 
  • Set the appropriate start time/end time at the campaign level. 
  • Use both “autobidding” and “accelerated” bidding in short flight situations.”Autobidding” will allow Twitter to optimize the bidding strategy on an auction by auction basis, and in combination with accelerated bidding will push the platform to serve high volume. 

Twitter can be a great tool to drive a quick, high impact social campaign around a marketing initiative. The platform is particularly well suited for targeting real-time interest, using options like keyword targeting. For example, executing a livestream campaign for “Artist X”, and targeting ads to users tweeting about “Artist X”, “Artist X Livestream”, “#ArtistX”, etc. 



The Google Display Network is a powerful tool to quickly raise awareness across a large user base and it may be a priority to drive strong Google Display volume during short flight campaigns. However, when it comes to large budgets in small time frames, exercise caution with Google ads. 

  • Unlike Facebook and Twitter, Google Display campaigns cannot be set up with a campaign total budget. The only option for these campaigns is to set a daily spending limit.
  • Google Display campaigns with aggressive bids are prone to spending past their daily budget. Per Google’s terms of service, campaigns can spend 2x their daily budget, and advertisers will be charged for this overspend unless it is over their monthly charging limit (the average number of days in a month multiplied by your average daily budget). 
  • If you are intending to include this component in a campaign, be sure to set your daily budget to half of your intended spend, as a precaution against overspend. 

With the factors in mind, it’s best to not rely on Google Display for driving strong volume in short flight times. Google Display is a lever better suited for even spending across multi-day flights. 


Final Tips 

These strategies will enable you to build out effective, punchy paid marketing campaigns around your next initiative. It’s important to keep in mind that these short campaigns will ultimately perform best if you can monitor in real time. It is increasingly difficult to do so with shorter flights, as ad platforms can only display incoming impressions/clicks so quickly. 

1-2 hour flight campaigns may provide more limited time for response, so triple check your bidding strategies, budgets, and spending limits are all in line with your goals. You also want to make sure that you adjust your KPI goals accordingly. You’ll inevitably see higher CPLCs, for example, in a campaign spending a week's worth of budget in only a few hours. Consider combating this rise in cost by broadening your targeting, allowing a wider user based and more efficient CPMs.

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