Sequential Advertising: Improving the Effectiveness of Your Campaigns


From the moment we open our eyes and grab our phones, we're hit with a relentless onslaught of ads until we finally power down for the night. According to marketing experts, the average person sees between 4,000 and 10,000 ads in a single day.

In this sea of countless messages, how can you make sure that your ads stand out and capture the attention, retention, and engagement of the people you want to target? While narrating a story in an ad has proven to be an effective strategy, it is equally important for advertisers to determine which story to tell their audience and when to tell it.

This is where Sequential Advertising comes into play.

Quick Links

  1. What is Sequential Advertising
  2. Helpful Strategies When Applying Sequential Advertising
  3. Sequential Advertising for an Ecommerce App
  4. Pre-Registration/ Pre-Order Campaigns and Sequential Advertising
  5. Sequential Advertising and Dynamic Creative Optimization (DCO)
  6. Why Try Sequential Advertising?
  7. Case Study
  8. Bonus Tip

What is Sequential Advertising?


Sequential advertising is a storytelling technique that includes an introduction, rising action, climax, and conclusion, establishing a deeper connection between the advertiser and the target audience. The viewer is taken through a series of ad "experiences" or "chapters" that tell the story of the app, across the viewer’s different devices. The next chapter presented to the viewer depends on their position in the conversion funnel. 

Below we have highlighted several strategies that may help you when applying sequential advertising to your campaigns. 

  • Prepare your audience list

Targeting is key to sequential advertising success. The first step in deciding how to incorporate your message into your different creatives involves preparing your audience list. This then leads to the second step.

  •  Analyze segment intersection

Breaking down your audience list into different segments results in more comprehensive targeting capabilities. Segmentation can be done based on spend tiers and user behavior towards the product offered by the app.
  • Identify your key performance indicators (KPI)

Depending on your app category, campaign objectives, and historical data, identify your campaign’s KPI through metrics such as click-through rate (CTR) and install rate (IR). Based on the given KPI, the next step would be to assign the optimal frequency, taking into consideration the campaign duration as well as the number of creative ads shown per frequency.
  • Personalize your creative ads

In the cutthroat world of digital marketing, it's vital to ensure that your ad stands out above the noise and catches the attention of your target audience. One effective way to achieve this is by personalizing your creative ads. Personalization involves tailoring your ad content to the specific interests and preferences of your target audience. It is a powerful strategy that improves advertising relevance for users and increases return on investment (ROI) for advertisers. Personalized ads are based on the user’s interests and past behavior (e.g., their engagement, purchase level, etc.). This enhances the user experience and drives higher engagement rates, overall increasing the CTR.

Utilizing Sequential Advertising for an Ecommerce App

Now let’s imagine you're trying to promote your brand-new eCommerce app. Here's an example of how the sequence of messages can be used

  • Creating Awareness

A creative ad showing a call to action to prompt the user to download the app. 

  • Engagement

After the user downloads, the second chapter in the sequence might focus on encouraging the user to complete the signup process.

  • Conversion

Once the user completes the signup process, the advertiser should present to the user the third chapter in the sequence to invite the user to view products, add something to their cart, and complete the first purchase.

  • Retention

The advertiser should not stop engaging with the user after a purchase has been completed. Consistent delivery of fresh content will extend user retention. Further personalization, such as featuring curated products or seasonal discounts, is very effective at extending the relationship between the user and the app. 



Pre-Registration/ Pre-Order Campaigns and Sequential Advertising 

Pre-registration/pre-order campaigns are marketing initiatives that target potential users before the release of an app. These campaigns aim to build excitement around the upcoming app and encourage users to sign up and be notified of its launch. With Aarki, they can be run for User Acquisition (UA) or Cross-Promotion (CP) campaigns. Sequential advertising and pre-registration/ pre-order campaigns complement each other perfectly. You can learn more insights in our latest article

Sequential Advertising and Dynamic Creative Optimization (DCO)

There’s one more essential element that combines with sequential advertising to deliver an unbeatable performance, and that is Dynamic Creative Optimization (DCO).

DCO enables you to tailor and optimize the performance of your ad creative using real-time technology. A DCO campaign will have a wide selection of ad components prepared, such as backgrounds, main images, text, value propositions, calls to action, etc. Creative can include video, animation, native components, and interactive elements. Then, when an ad is served, each unique viewer is presented with a personalized ad that is more likely to capture their attention, spark interest, and ultimately lead to engagement.

DCO combined with sequential advertising results in a highly personalized ad campaign that can connect with your ideal customers at the right times, on the right devices and platforms. Together, these strategies can help to optimize the performance of your ad campaign and increase the likelihood of connecting with your ideal customers.

Why You Should Try Sequential Advertising

A sequential advertising strategy helps advertisers prevent ad fatigue among users. No matter how impressive a creative ad looks, any user will eventually grow tired of viewing the same ad. Sequential ads also increase user engagement. Exposing app users to sequential messages is like walking them down the conversion funnel, increasing the chances that they will convert while maintaining engagement. As a result, an advertiser can generate more high-lifetime value users who may also be high value purchasers.

Case Study

In one of our recent campaigns where sequential messaging was implemented, we tested multiple ads in the first frequency to understand the preferences of our target audience. Among the three creative variants, we found that the first creative performed 46% better than the second and 44% better than the third in terms of install rate (IR). The results helped identify which creative variants work best to compel our target audience to download the app. 

Bonus Tip

For a sequential advertising campaign with more than one frequency, always use the strongest design first. The strongest design can be identified through historical data and can help significantly reduce the cost of advertising as maximum attention and performance are gained during the first ad sequence.

So, to keep your app in the game, it's crucial to maintain relevance and keep your users engaged. It's worth remembering that as you boost your app's retention rates, attracting new users becomes a breeze. To learn more about how Aarki can help you succeed, leave us a message here.

Topics: Creative Insights