March 30, 2020

How Facebook Ads really convert – mini case study

We’re at crisis point in the Drummond household. What could have caused said crisis? A coughing fit? A shortage of toilet paper?


We’ve run out of ground coffee.


The shops don’t have any of course, because now everyone else is also at home, drinking coffee. It’s no longer just me having a secret daytime affair with the Nespresso machine.

So on and off all day I’ve been thinking… where can I get coffee?

About 20 minutes ago, inspiration struck. I remembered a Facebook ad I had seen for Pact Coffee, offering me 2 bags of ground coffee for £10. A bit steep for normal circumstances, but these are desperate times. This was the ad:

Pact coffee ad

Why did I see this Facebook ad? I don’t know for certain. It’s not a remarketing ad – I’ve never been on their website before today. I do remember receiving a flyer a few years ago with a Naked Wines delivery, so they could be targeting me because I like Naked Wines.

As is the way with Facebook ads, you can’t find the ad when you actually want it. So instead I did a Google brand search for ‘pact coffee’, clicked on the organic listing and signed up directly.

In Pact Coffee’s Google Analytics statistics, I’ll look like an organic search visitor. Organic search will take the credit for my order. When in fact, I was only using Google search because I couldn’t find the Facebook ad I had seen.

Technically Facebook may assign some credit to the ad as a view-through conversion, because I viewed the Facebook ad and converted later via a different channel. But in fact, the Facebook ad was much more than an ‘assist’. If I hadn’t have seen the Facebook ad, I’d have never done the brand search for ‘pact coffee’.

This is not an isolated example. Many purchases happen this way. Even in B2B, a Facebook ad can act as a visual prompt or nudge. You won’t see many direct ‘last click’ conversions, but the impact is real.

According to Jonathan, all his ‘big player’ PPC clients are on Google AND Facebook for this reason. The whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

Something to think about.

Rob Drummond

Rob Drummond runs the Maze Marketing Podcast and Maze Mastery. Rob specialises in content production, ad creation, storytelling and CRM systems. He has two published books, Magnetic Expertise and Simple Story Selling, affordable on Amazon.