crossroadsI love the saying, “There aren’t any expert marketers, only experts in testing.” What worked yesterday in digital marketing may not perform today. This is especially true with Facebook as the advertising landscape sees huge changes from year to year. This is a point I always drive home to my clients. Test, analyze, and retest, and eventually you will end up with a killer strategy. Then, do it again…

In the spirit of testing, I want to revisit an old subject; oCPM v. CPA bidding on mobile app install ads. Facebook is no doubt tweaking these algos. Mobile app install ads are obviously key to Facebook’s strategy for the future, especially in light of the recent unveiling of the Audience Network.

For this test, we ran 2 ads with identical creatives, targeting, and budgets. The only factor we tested was the bid type, one with oCPM and the other with CPA. I expected to find similar performance between the two. However, I was a little surprised by the results:


We have a clear winner here. 43% savings on an install simply by switching the bid type is the reason we continue to test everything. This data tells me two things: 1) Facebook still has some work to do before their ad products are ready for amateurs to completely manage their own campaigns (efficiently); and 2) we should anticipate further tweaking as Facebook’s mobile ad offerings continue to evolve.

The point is simple: as performance marketers, we must continue to test and leverage stats to our advantage.

What are some factors where you have found that most affect performance?


  1. Kacper Gorski June 9th, 2014


    Thank you for running the test,
    unfortunately numbers presented here are to small to deduct anything.

    If you throw a symetric coin 93 times up it will be normal to get 34 times side A and 59 times side B.

    That’s just a math, you need bigger numbers :|


  2. ridhi shrma August 30th, 2014

    i just want to know which one is better ocpm or cpa

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Eric Duchek
Eric Duchek is resident Facebook campaign whisperer at Optilly where he brings years of performance marketing experience and a data driven testing mantra to drive ROI. When he's not A/B testing every factor imaginable, Eric also has an incredible passion for the tech industry and social media. On weekends you can find him either on a bike or skis, somewhere in California. Tweeting from @ericduchek