“Going viral” is rarely an accident these days. The right marketers are harnessing the power of audience shares and word of mouth to take products to new levels of profit and popularity.
At AW Asia recently we had Kris Sugatan grace the stage. She runs a team of performance advertising engineers who generated $150M in trackable revenue using primarily viral ads.
She revealed her three-step formula for turning raw content into killer ads that work for multiple industries and convert multiple demographics.
The first pillar of Kris’s formula is identifying and refining your ad’s message. It starts with “copymining” – sourcing content from reviews on places like product forums, competitor websites, Reddit, Amazon, and Clickbank.
As you find relevant pieces of copy, you add them to a spreadsheet and sort them by the motivation, value, or anxiety that the content speaks to.
2. Test 50 “Viral” Messages
When your copymining spreadsheet is full, test the top results as “pitch lines” in Facebook Ads using the following parameters:
Kris recommends Facebook for broad audience testing because it drives more consistent traffic than TikTok, and the winning concepts will be transferable across platforms.
Choose winning headlines based on performance – you want the highest click-through or conversion rate, not impressions. The one or two best performers out of your original 50 are your best chance at going viral.
Now that you have your copymining results and headline winners, you can move on to content production.
3. Fill Your Buckets
Kris and her team use a content categorization system (or “buckets”) called Themes, Epics, and Stories.
Themes are the metrics you’ll need to hit for your ad to be successful. You calculate your theme by finding the target AOV, CPC, conversion rate and ROAS on TikTok or your platform of choice.
Themes lead to Epics, which are proven ad angles like UGC, demonstration, before-and-after, etc., that have been successful over time.
When you’ve established a winning Theme, you can rotate through a variety of Epics to keep your content fresh and increase the likelihood of an ad taking off.
Finally, each Epic contains Stories that summarize that ad’s specific hook. And when those are working, you can optimize further by testing variations of the video’s opening frame.
3) The Production Machine
Kris’s team uses an Agile framework borrowed from SaaS teams to constantly iterate and leverage data to test new angles and create new ads.
The SaaS method prioritizes speed, progress, and adaptability, which makes it easier to capitalize on new trends and be in the right place at the right time with your TikTok Ads.
Bonus ⭐️ Quick Fire Tips
⭐️ Create ads that are native to the platform. Use the in-app text, editor, etc., on TikTok or your platform of choice so that your ad looks like native content.
⭐️ Milliseconds count. If you’ve ever thumbed through a social feed you know how important it is for the first image to “stop the scroll.” Hone in on that, and earn every second of attention thereafter.
⭐️ Direct response principles are evergreen. Your ad might be a hype video on TikTok or something more old-fashioned, but you’ll always need to grab your prospect’s attention, speak to their pain points, present an enticing offer, and build trust. Those essentials never go away.
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– Kristina Tina, attendee
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