Elevate Your Mobile Marketing Using Data-Driven Creative Tagging

By Lesley Walker

As the marketing industry faces a slew of privacy-related changes, creative optimization — a way to influence campaign performance without user-level data — has become a mission-critical skill for any digital brand.

Attributing successes and failures to ad creative is an effective way to drive results without user-level data. Today, we’re going to talk about one of the ways to link performance and creativity: creative tagging. As an example, we’ll use a made-up yoga and wellness app.

Why, And How, You Should Analyze Your Creative

There’s nothing wrong with trusting your designers. If you don’t, they shouldn’t be your designers. But trust is no replacement for tangible KPIs and organized workflows.

Every creative asset you spend money on should be analyzed. How many users did it attract? Were they high quality users? How did it impact the upper and the lower funnel? What made this specific asset successful? Can I use what I’ve learned from it to generate better assets in the future? These questions aren’t always easy to answer, especially without specialized tools, but answering them is of the utmost importance to the future of your marketing.

Analyzing creative assets with different yoga poses can show how small variations can have meaningful impact on creative performance.

Among the newest tools in the arsenal of Bidalgo users, our creative labels and label categories are designed to help answer these exact questions. Whereas traditional creative production focuses on successful concepts, labels and categories enable marketers and designers to drill deeper into the creative to understand what makes it succeed.

These categories work best when you have a labeling tool, but they can be utilized in manual tagging as long as you can attach KPIs to each asset you launch.


Here are some of the categories our specialists use to help clients discover the impact of creative decisions on the bottom line:

Opening Shot: People tend to make ad-related decisions very quickly, often within less than three seconds. The opening shot can be a very significant performance predictor. Category examples can include things like “logo,” “text,” “gameplay,” depending on what it is that they see when the ad begins.

Call-to-Action: Whether it’s “download now” or “don’t miss your chance,” most ads rely on their calls to action. Sometimes they are interchangeable; at other times, they aren’t. Creating a category for each CTA can help you understand if they are effective.

It’s important to know which label categories are important. In other words, you should only compare creatives when this comparison can result in actionable insights.

Motivation: Why do you want people to click on your ad? Is it because you’ve promised them something, or just because you have shown them your product? This is a core part of your ad’s message, and as with messages elsewhere, should be analyzed for performance variations.

Themes and Concepts: Distinct visual styles and thematic flourishes are yet another puzzle piece that should be tracked. The same goes for more high-level concepts. While the whole point is to go beyond the concept level into element analysis, concepts can still be helpful. Cartoony and cel-shaded styles should be pitted against full motion video; gameplay elements (if it’s a game) can compete with scripted action; voiceover ads can be separated from non-narrated ones.

Seems like beach-focused creatives are more successful than ones located in a yoga studio or in a park.

Unique Elements: Your product probably has unique elements. If it’s a game, these can be characters. If it’s a productivity tool, maybe you have an interface unlike any other. Whatever it is that can be instantly identified as belonging to your product by people familiar with it (and perhaps even those who don’t) should be tracked.

Designers & Creative Agencies: Some designers are consistently more effective than their peers in producing performance-driving creative. They’ll often be more than willing to explain their production methodology and help you design new best practices for others. You can also use tagging to assess the performance of external agencies and new hires.

It’s always important to understand who your best designer is, but how do you define “best”? Now you can.

Branding: Marketers often underestimate or overestimate the strength of their brand. Does seeing your logo prominently featured drive conversions? Or maybe it’s the showcasing of your past successes? Or does minimalistic branding work best?  How soon should your logo appear in the ad? Properly tagging the assets will help you discover which, if any, of these are true.

Production Cost: Creative production cost is an often-overlooked element of the ROI calculation. Tagging your creatives by their cost of production will show you whether the most expensive assets justify their higher cost.

These are just a few of the categories we use to identify the ingredients of successful creative assets. The more ways you have to filter creative performance, the easier it will be to remain data-driven. And while combining the best label from each category isn’t necessarily a guarantee of success, our testing shows that it does make a discernible difference in quality.

Published on September 23, 2021
Written by
Lesley Walker

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