Let’s suppose you can hire Seth Godin and Clotaire Rapaille (the two greatest marketers alive.) They work hard to tell you what’s your ideal audience and how to connect with them.

Then you hire Christopher Hughe to run a Facebook Ads campaign, and you get an extraordinary 50% conversion rate (1 out of 2 people who saw your ads became a paid customer.)

Unfortunately, it won’t play like that. You can have the best experts in the world, and you are still dealing with real people (or bots!) You cannot predict what they would like or do.

Defensive programming was invented for this very reason: “software might be misused actively to reveal bugs“… misused by people.

You can create the best ice cream ad that no one can’t resist to click, but eventually, it won’t be enough.

You will need a Defensive Optimization strategy.

Anomaly detection is a good place to start with. For example, if you usually get one transaction per hour, and you didn’t get any in the past hour, it could be that your landing page is down, or there is an issue with the payment gateway. You can set up an uptime tool that will check your domains, and make you sure you are not bleeding money.

If you are running a campaign on Facebook, you can identify countries where the conversion cost is high, remove them or allocate less budget. You can monitor your cost to reach people daily to detect anomalies in your targeting, ads or on the channel.

Anything that can help you to save costs, regardless of how good is your targeting and creative, will help to improve the conversion rate, and increase the profits.


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Leo Celis