Facebook Ads Case Study: Cinemagraph vs. Still Image Ads

Flixel Cinemagraphs lead to 16x better results

Businesses of all sizes face the challenge of producing engaging creative that helps them stand out, captivates their audience, and drives results in their digital advertising and social media. Capturing and holding the limited attention spans of audiences is difficult. It takes truly unique, vivid, and mesmerizing content to extend a brand’s reach and storytelling to online audiences. At the same time, businesses, including small-medium sized businesses (SMBs), need to be mindful of their content production, marketing, and acquisition costs.

So the question is: how do businesses strike a balance between great creative, lowering costs, and driving growth in their digital ads strategy?

Facebook Ads Case Study with Cinemagraphs: Giftagram

Toronto startup Giftagram offers users a simple way to purchase thoughtful, unique gifts by a simple tap of a button. Their mobile app, available on both iOS and Android devices, allows customers to browse through a carefully curated selection of specialty items that they can purchase and send directly to whomever they’d like.

Giftagram’s customers are tech-savvy, live in urban areas, and tend to have busy careers. They are broken down into 3 segments:

  • Procrastinator: You know these individuals; the ones who leave everything to the last minute. They need a solution to help bail them out for Mother’s Day, birthdays, and other occasions.
  • Trendy: The hip early adopters. This customer segment loves to search for the hottest, unique gifts that are available exclusively in select places.
  • Client-Oriented: We are talking about the business all-stars who love to go the extra mile and share a thoughtful token of appreciation with their clients.

Giftagram knew their audience well, and wanted to create a stronger relationship with them while lowering costs. With their eyes set on sharing their brand story and growing their customer base, Giftagram looked to test new strategies that would help them drive growth at a lower cost. Learning about the thumb-stopping power of cinemagraphs, Giftagram decided to test them on Facebook.

The most appealing thing about a cinemagraph is as a marketer, it’s so great to be able to get people to stop as they are scrolling through their Facebook feeds and their Instagram feeds. There’s so much content out there in this day and age,” said Michael Irvine, Marketing Manager at Giftagram. “The fact that a cinemagraph allows you to take something that should be moving and just stop it entirely causes people’s brains to just kind of have a ‘What’s going on moment?’”

Facebook Ads Campaign Objectives

Giftagram Facebook Ads Case Study Cinemagraph

Giftagram had an opportunity to accentuate the products they sell through their app with vivid motions, and therefore tell a stronger brand story using cinemagraphs. They also wanted to drive app installs on iOS devices across the United States and Canada at lower costs.

Facebook Ads Campaign Scope: Facebook Targeting and Duration

With a deep understanding of their most valuable user base, the campaign used lookalike audiences on Facebook to target prospective customers similar to their existing customers. The campaign ran for one month.

Facebook Ads Case Study Results

The cinemagraph ad resulted in tremendous cost efficiencies for Giftagram compared to their previous still image ads. By using cinemagraphs as their creative, they saw a 190% increase in their return on ad spend, demonstrating the value mesmerizing cinemagraphs add to a campaign. Giftagram also achieved a 61% decrease in cost per app install over a 28 day attribution window, and an 11% increase in install rate.

We saw a significant uptake in every trackable metric on Facebook as a result of using cinemagraphs,” said Michael. “They were clearly so intrigued by the content in the ad that they were willing to follow through with that extra step and go ahead and download.” 

Giftagram shared a stronger brand story with their cinemagraph ad, inviting audience members to connect more deeply with the company. As a result, Giftagram saw a 16 times increase in their engagement, demonstrating that the cinemagraph ad resonated more with their audience than previous still image ads.

Michael noted the enthusiasm amongst user engagement as well. “What we saw is that [the cinemagraph ad] led to a ton of comments where people were like “What’s going on?” “This is so cool” and they were sharing it with their friends. That’s probably what I liked the most about it.” 

Giftagram’s Cinemagraph Future

The successful cinemagraph campaign encouraged Giftagram to identify new opportunities for cinemagraphs in their content and advertising strategies on Facebook. They are now experimenting with cinemagraphs more and are looking to transform some of their still image-based campaigns with cinemagraphs.

Michael even sees a larger emotional hook that can be brought to life in future campaigns. “I think we would love to use cinemagraphs to bring in the human element of gift giving going forward,” he described. “I think there’s a huge opportunity to improve on our ads campaigns by bringing some emotion into them.”

App marketers all over the world should take heed. Your competitors are probably already using cinemagraphs to drive their costs down.

Download the case study document here.

(Marketing Specialist at Flixel)

Mehek crafts words, content, events and more for Flixel. She firmly believes that life is not life without a little spice, which is why she adds Sriracha to everything.


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