It can be really tricky to scale ads quickly enough, especially during a live launch. And here’s the thing: There’s a right way and a wrong way. (If you’ve ever run ads and had an UNsuccessful day one, you know this well! Every day after is harder and harder to catch up.)

This episode is all about the ART of scaling. I’m sharing my team’s tips + tricks for scaling ads quickly (i.e. during a 3- or 7-day live launch). We’ll cover:

  • The campaign planning process we use for our clients
  • The KEY to starting ahead on Day One
  • How to read the numbers (and NOT your emotions)
  • One client launch that required 300 ad sets in 3 days!

Listen to this episode BEFORE you launch ads and you’ll be 10 steps ahead. And, if you have any “a-ha!” moments from this episode, share your takeaways on IG stories and tag @emilyhirsh for a shoutout!

Key Points:
[1:58] Step 1 happens way before ads go live (+you’re likely forgetting to do this completely)
[3:25] The key here is… (And listen carefully!)
[4:26] What you need to know about your BUDGET.
[7:48] Step 2 is the hardest part: Can you be aggressive + act with urgency?
[9:07] REMEMBER: Marketing is about the numbers (i.e. don’t make an emotional decision)
[10:28] “We made 300 *new* ad sets in 3 days!” (If you’re trying to scale with 10 ad sets, you’re not trying hard enough.)

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Episode Transcripts:

I’m super excited about today’s episode. Today, I’m going to talk to you guys about how to scale your ads fast. People come to me with this question all the time, because one of the … Believe it or not, if you’re a beginner, you’re going to listen to this and say, “Wow, I wish that was my problem,” but a big problem a lot of people have is scaling their ads. They’re able to get them to a certain level and then scaling them fast enough is really hard, or big enough if they want, or fast enough, especially when you’re dealing with things like a seven-day promo window for a live webinar or a three-day promo window. If you have not a lot of time for promotion, that makes it even harder to scale your ads, and we have some tips and tricks over here at Team Hirsh, because we often work with pretty big budgets or tight timeframes, and it’s like an art on how you scale ads. So I’m going to go through that today, and, hopefully it will help you guys next time that you have to scale ads.

First of all, the very first thing that is so, so crucial and is a huge mistake people make isn’t actually when the ads go live, it’s beforehand, and it’s the pre-planning that needs to go into every campaign. On our team, we have what we call a campaign planner. It’s a spreadsheet that we basically plan … Let’s say it’s a launch. We have a tab for each phase of the launch. Let’s start with the webinar. We would have a webinar promotion. We would then plan out, in that campaign planner, all the audiences that we’re going to target and the whole budget that we have to work with.

Let’s say we have a $5,000 budget to work with for the seven-day promo window. We’ve dealt with budgets of $30,000 or more in seven days, which is really hard to do that, to get that level in that short amount of time. If you’ve ever done it before, you totally know what I’m talking about. So, okay, we have a total budget of $5,000. Then, we have to break down all of the ad sets and say, “What do we have to start with on day one if we can only scale 25% every day?” Let’s assume that. We usually go lower. We usually say, “What if we can only scale 10-15% a day?” It depends on the budget, how big we start, but because you can’t just say, “Okay, this ad’s doing great at $25 a day. Let’s just make it $100 a day.” You can only add about 25-30% to the ad set without making it go crazy.

The key here is, and I’m going to say this very clearly, and listen to me, the key here is to have your pre-planning so that you know out the gate, on day one of your promotion, how much money you have to spend to reach your goals, which means you need to have a campaign planner where you know, “How many ad sets in my campaign do I need to have to reach that goal?” Because if you have to spend $1,000 a day, then five ad sets at $25 each is not going to get you there. You need to have enough audiences and versions built in from day one, out the gate to go big enough. And I have seen it happen way too many times, and to be transparent, I’ve seen it happen on our team before, where we were not aggressive enough on day one, and it took us two days to catch up and a ton of work because if you go out the gate with the not right amount of aggression and planning, you’re behind from the second you start your ads, and it’s very stressful in a live launch with a big budget.

Your first step to scaling ads fast is pre-planning and being able to know exactly what your budget you need to spend on day one is and your total budget that you need to spend within the seven days. Obviously, you can’t predict exactly how much you’re going to be able to scale each day, and our goal is to probably scale as much as we can, but you can’t predict that without it starting because you don’t know how it’s going to perform, so you need to know your day one budget, how many ad sets are you starting with with a starting budget to get you to that budget … If you’re starting with 25 ad sets at $5 a day, that’s your first daily budget.

Does it match? Is it enough? Do you need to have 30 ad sets instead? Then, what’s your full weekly budget, so you know how much you need to scale by total. Of course, that should all be worked into your sales goals. If it was for a webinar, it should be how many registrants do you need times the average cost per registrant you think you’re going to pay, and there’s your budget. That’s the first thing before even starting the ads.

Then, the next thing is checking your ads multiple times a day and adding audiences and versions very aggressively. It’s super important here, and I say checking multiple times a day because I’m assuming we’re working with a pretty big budget. If you’re working with a $100 a day budget, you probably don’t have to check multiple times a day. When we have clients in live launches spending even $5,000 in a week, but $5,000, $10,000, $30,000 in a week, we’re in their account for 3+ to 4 hours a day scaling because it’s that much work. You’re checking your ads multiple times a day because you have to make decisions fast. You have to turn things off that aren’t converting. You have to add audiences that would be converting. You have to add … Let’s say you start your campaign. The audience targeting Female Entrepreneur Association is converting amazing, well below threshold, but it’s only been four hours, so you can’t scale that ad yet because it’s just started. But you see, wow, cost per click is good, it’s getting good webinar registrations.

Then, you take that audience, and if you don’t already have this, you take any other creative version that you would have, meaning different ad copy, images, or video, and you send it to that audience, to the Female Entrepreneur Association audience. Female Entrepreneur Association audience is pretty big. If your audience is small, if it’s a couple thousand, even 5,000, 10,000, that’s going to be hard to do because you’re going to cap out. You’re going to only be able to reach that many people, but for audiences that are thousands or millions, if you have a lookalike audience that out of the gate or in the first day is doing well, you better send every option to that lookalike audience because you have only so much that you can scale the one ad set that’s doing well. You need to instantly see, that audience to that creative version is doing well, so I need to send it all around to new places, because I already know it’s winning.

In the first day, we’re turning off things that aren’t working, and we’re adding budget and scaling things that are, but we’re also adding ad sets based on the data we’re getting back. So when see versions are doing well, or we see audiences that are doing well, we’re adding more versions to those audiences, or more audiences to that version, if that makes sense. I’m not trying to get too technical, but it’s very fast decisions are being made.

Here’s the other thing. You have to be aggressive, and you have to act urgently. And I have to literally train this into my team, and so I know for you, it would be hard. If you’re running your own ads, usually people have this attachment to the money, and it’s an emotional decision, like, “Oh, my gosh,” especially right before a launch. You’re putting all this money out to get these webinar registrants in before you get your sales. It’s stressful. Look at it and remove that emotion, and look at it only from a numbers perspective because, every day, you have already decided here’s my budget for seven days. You’re not going to go over that budget.
Here’s my budget. Here’s my cost per lead threshold that I’m willing to pay. Is it $7 or $8 for a webinar, $5, whatever it was. You have that number. Here’s what I need to spend in the seven-day promotion window, and here’s about what I need to spend daily. You already have those numbers, so everything is just all your decisions are being made off of those numbers, not like, “Oh, my gosh, the money, the money, it’s emotional.” You’re just trying to meet those numbers, and you’re turning things off that are not meeting your threshold, you’re scaling things that are, you’re adding things in to get to your daily budget based on how much you had to turn off and on, and you have to act with serious urgency. It’s a lot of work. This is why people pay us to do this because, seriously, it is like an art to be able to scale like this.

We’ve managed multi-multimillion dollar launches, and we’ve had, like I said, campaigns with a 30 to even, I think the most was maybe $50,000 in seven days, might have been more, and that’s a multi-person that’s in there multiple times a day. It’s intense. Be aggressive, be urgent, and make decisions with your scaling based off of numbers. Always go back to numbers. Marketing is numbers. It’s data. It’s not emotion, and it always needs to be backed by that. Everything we do is backed by those numbers.

The other thing, and the last thing I want to mention is have a lot of creative options. Overall, the mistake that I see people make when they scale is, one, they don’t go out the gate aggressive enough, and they don’t do pre-planning. Then, two, they don’t have enough creative or audience options. They come to me and they’re like, “Hey, can you look in this webinar campaign? I just couldn’t get my webinar registrants over a couple hundred,” and I go in there and there’s 10 ad sets, and I’m like, “That was your problem because you did not …” There are so many audience options, and it takes time to find them, and then there’s also creative options. You can have all different pairs of image and copy and video and headlines and Instagram and InstaStory, so many versions.

We have a client launching right now, and we went through our process, and on the first day, everything was converting really high, so we’re like, “Okay. Hands on deck. We’ve got to get the conversion down. We’ve got to put audiences out there.” In three days’ time, we’ve gotten it down to our goal, but in three days’ time, we made 300 ad sets to get to the goal because we had to turn things off so fast and on, and so we had to have so many options, and there is so many options for targeting, between lookalike audiences and interest audiences and your warm audience and your data that you have to leverage.
If you come to me and say you couldn’t scale a campaign with 10 or even 25 ad sets, I’m like, “You didn’t try hard enough because there’s way too many options that you didn’t have included in there,” and going back to the first thing, pre-planning is important, so have three to five different creative versions ready, meaning different copy and images paired together, ready to go before you launch so that you can just pull that and push it out there.

In summary, how to scale your ads fast: plan, plan, be intentional with the data, and then be aggressive and act with urgency. And it’s a lot of work. It’s a lot of work to scale ads, but you can do it, and a lot of times, people, they just didn’t put in the time, I guess, that would be required, but also the pre-planning is probably the biggest thing because if you start your campaign and you have three ad sets at $10 a day, and you think you want to spend $5,000 in a week, it’s going to be really hard to not press live on that campaign out the gate with as many ad sets as you needed, because you plan it with your campaign planner to hit your daily budget on the first day and hit your lead goal and make decisions from there.
If you don’t want to do this yourself and you’d like to work and apply to work with Team Hirsh, we are only taking a few spots. We actually just overhauled our process of accepting clients, as well, so it’s very intentional who we bring on. It’s an application. It’s not just an automatic let in, because we want to continue to have 100% client retention rate. If you go to HelpMyStrategy.com, you can apply to work with Team Hirsh, and if you are the right fit and we feel like we can help you crush it in your next launch or with your evergreen campaigns, we would love to do that.