How Fabletics Is Using AI to Build Better Digital Ads
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Artificial intelligence is helping brands streamline processes across all their operations. From building better buyer personas and gaining clearer insights into their audiences to better ad targeting and more, AI is one of the most exciting technologies to emerge from the Industry 4.0 revolution.
In the world of online retail, huge volumes of data are naturally generated on consumers from their social media activity and web browsing behavior. This data is the price people pay for a largely free-to-use internet, and most are happy to do so - as long as their data is handled responsibly. Social media advertising is an effective method brands can use to reach their audience - and the analysis of consumer data and leveraging the insights it grants is a critical part of this process.
Female sports clothes brand Fabletics is using artificial intelligence software to better understand its customers and present them with better advertising.
As a membership-based brand, Fabletics charges a subscription fee. The fee grants credits to members which can be redeemed against exclusive discounts. As such, the company's marketing direction is pointed firmly in the direction of new customer acquisition.
With average memberships lasting between seven and 18 months, the need to constantly acquire new members is incredibly important. However, Fabletics' ability to achieve this rests heavily on the content it produces, and it's only by making top quality content that this can be achieved.
With content being so important to Fabletics' customer acquisition strategy, it needed a way to create thousands of pieces in a short space of time. It also needed those ads to match the requirements for Facebook formatting so elements such as images would display properly.
Using Smartly.io's artificial intelligence-powered platform, Fabletics is able to automatically pull images and videos from its product catalog and then integrate them into its ad templates. Thanks to the powerful AI software at work, this process is managed entirely by electronic means and makes sure ads are always formatted correctly.
Fabletics can then choose between allowing Facebook's own targeting power to make sure those ads get in front of the right people or turn to the AI software to help in this regard too. Using the intelligent automation technology, Fabletics can choose a goal - acquire members or drive sales, for example - and set a budget for the campaign, after which the AI is able to test various ad configurations and find the optimal budget distribution for the set goal.
"Because the tool lets [Fabletics] quickly create a number of ads, including video ads, it can use the tool to test how consumers respond to elements within the ads, such as multiple products within one video," said Senior Director for Paid Social Media at TechStyle, Fabletics parent company, Aubrie Richey. "That's enabled the retailer to run A/B tests to determine which elements shoppers respond to. It can then tweak its video templates based on shoppers' actions."
The artificial intelligence platform is also able to help create content for Instagram and Facebook Stories - enabling Fabletics to ramp up its advertising spend on these features as well.
Fabletics is also using Pattern89's artificial intelligence-powered planner to get new insights into the micro and macro trends which are driving sales and signups from its ads.
Using the software, Fabletics can discover the trends which are influencing success across other brands in the same space, carry out deep analytics on specific sets of ads, and find the best broad and granular creative elements which have the best chance of moving customers through the sales funnel.
"Being able to learn about ad trends, both specifically and broadly, is important to [Fabletics]. Planner's flexibility allowed each of their many users the ability to dive deep, stay broad and refine criteria with a click of a button," said Pattern89. "While [Fabletics] already used extensive naming conventions to dimensionalize and identify trends in their creative, Planner helped them go deeper than they thought possible. It quickly unlocked new insights that boosted ad performance."
The combination of these two innovative AI platforms is helping Fabletics create ad content which hits current trends, stays within budgetary restraints, and is more likely to resonate with social media audiences around the globe - driving more sales and membership signups for the brand.
With around 30 percent of its ads now being created by the platform, Fabletics can keep pace with the rapid change of online trends and its own product catalog. Thanks to artificial intelligence, the fashion brand has seen its Facebook clickthrough rate almost double in a very short space of time.
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