I am STOKED for you to meet today’s guest, Cody Plofker.

Cody is a marketer, operator, and investor in some of the fastest growing DTC brands.

Now the CMO of Jones Road Beauty, Cody got his itch for marketing after opening up his own strength and conditioning facility with his wife.

Let’s dive in to the performance marketing GEMS Cody dropped on The Marketing Millennials Podcast, in his own liiiightly edited words.

1. How to create a great ad:

You need a strong brand, good economics, and a great product. You have to start with that.

Then it’s really about letting the algorithm and AI do a lot of the media buying work for you in terms of targeting, bidding, and knowing who to go after. 

The next steps just come down to being a really good marketer.

Creative strategy is super important. How can you make the best content that people actually want to watch? Don’t create an ad where you’re just telling stories or educating people, build one where you’re creating offers.

Then your focus should be on different funnels, especially testing different types of landing pages. 

That’s where success has to come from, instead of the old school media buying tactics where 5 years ago, none of that stuff mattered and you could still succeed with ads.

Now, that’s not possible at all. 

2. Greatest media buying challenge today:

It’s really important for a lot of businesses to understand, Facebook ads are still the most important, profitable, and efficient acquisition platform. 

There is just a little different playbook now. Nowadays media buying is more expensive. 

It’s really difficult for small businesses because with post iOS, there’s so much less data. 

For those small businesses, the challenge is the algorithm and the machine doesn’t have as many signals to go off of because they’re not able to pass back post iOS from the server.

It’s becoming increasingly difficult to decipher whether performance decreased post iOS, attribution decreased, or has the ability to show performance in the platform decreased?

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3. What a modern marketer needs to understand:

A modern marketer today needs to understand finance. 

They need to work very closely with their finance and operations team to see how changes to their ad account, whether their spend or efficiency are actually impacting the bottom line. That’s number one.

Facebook is going to be the majority of your spend, so it’s important to know weekly cash flow. 

Then you want to look at blended numbers like marketing efficiency ratio (MER), which is revenue from new customers divided by ad spend. You also need to know the blended cost per acquisition. Those two are the most important. 

If those look good, you should be pretty happy. 

Next thing is, don’t look at in-platform Facebook metrics, use an attribution platform like Northbeam. It’s the best tool out there. 

Use a one day click window in North Beam. This allows you to have the most conservative estimate. 

If something is good on a one day click window you can be confident that it’s getting viewed through attribution.

4. Diagnosing an underperforming channel:

Let’s say you notice that either Facebook or TikTok results are going down. 

You have to identify is it CPMs, click through rates, or conversion rates? It could be all of them. 

Then you need to know if it is isolated to you or are other people seeing this across the industry?

That will tell you if something is broken on your end versus, there’s a war going on or people are pulling back because of a potential recession. 

Use a tool called VAS where you can see competitor data.

Let’s say your cost per purchase was down 5% this week, but the market as a whole was down 10%, you quickly can solve that issue of whether it was an issue on your end or not.

What has been happening recently with TikTok is your numbers on a creative will start dying out. You’ll see CPA go up, followed by click through rate dropping, and then you might see things like average watch time go down.

That just tells you, you need to produce some new variations or completely new ads.

5. Why performance marketing only gets you so far:

Performance marketing only gets you so far. 

With SaaS there’s such a reliance on performance marketing, which causes a lot of businesses to plateau. 

They get to a point where performance marketing can only take them so far that it’s like running on a treadmill.

If you’re constantly running offers or discounts and emailing your customers to upsell them as much as possible, you’re eroding value. 

You’re eroding brand equity. Really what you’re doing is sacrificing future revenue for revenue for today. 

You can run a big sale today, run ads for that sale, and it’s going to look great.

But you have to see further and recognize it’s not necessarily going to be the thing that’s best for your business long term.

A solution to this issue would be developing some level of content creation as a core competency. That extends to B2B SaaS as well as it does for DTC brands.”

Daniel Murray
Daniel Murray
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