Sprout Social’s 2023 In-Depth Report: Key Takeaways

Table of Contents

What’s Hot

Sprout Social’s 2023 State of Social Media Report

When it comes to social media, Sprout Social basically wrote the book on the subject. Literally.

They’re one of the leading social media management platforms in the world, and they recently released their annual report on social trends, insights, and predictions for the future.

There were some key takeaways for marketers to take note of.

Fun Fact: 80% of business leaders expect their social media budget to increase in the coming years.

According to Sprout Social, about 40% of the businesses surveyed expect their social media budgets to ramp up by a full 50%.

More facts for you:

  • 96% of businesses agree that companies must continue to invest in social media marketing to be successful
  • 96% of CEOs agree social media is integral to capturing customer sentiment and feedback about products or services
  • Virtually all business leaders surveyed view social media data and insights to have a profound positive impact on top business priorities. These include building brand reputation, understanding customers and improving competitive positioning.
  • Business Leaders surveyed outlined the following challenges that they think are preventing companies from more effectively using social media data and insights to inform business decision making:

And what’s more… 95% of companies must rely more heavily on social media data and insights to inform business decisions outside of marketing.

The report goes on and on, but the gist of it is that social media is absolutely vital to your business’s success in the coming years. Not just advertising, but engaging.

Meet your audience where they live.

Social media is more than just a channel for lead gen, it’s an opportunity to learn about your customers and turn them into raving fans.

Plus, it’s cheaper (and easier) to get them to like your page and follow you on the platform than it is to get them to click out to your website.

I highly recommend you read the entire Sprout Social report.

That being said, social media presents a whole new world of challenges. Challenges that we can solve for you.

META’s Performance Marketing Summit | Key Takeaways

The world of lead generation may be growing, but Meta remains one of the most important channels for both paid and organic new leads. So it’s worth paying attention when they share new info for advertisers.

That’s why we were paying close attention to the key highlights they shared in their annual Performance Marketing Summit in May – especially updates to their Performance 5 Best Practices.

The Performance 5 framework is based on five actionable best practices that increase your per- formance when using Facebook’s ads products around the company’s focuses. In other words, do these 5 simple things and your campaigns should perform better.

1. Simplify your account structure and put ad creative in one central campaign

For years we’ve all created numerous campaigns for testing and running ads. But Facebook’s focus on AI means less is more. This is actually the most important strategy that Facebook recommends for advertisers. Putting all your creatives in one place means the AI can do more, faster. Facebook’s example notes a company with multiple ad sets targeting specific interest audiences who consolidated their initial setup of 69 ad sets down to 15. After doing so, they saw 41% more purchases at a 1.2x higher return on ad spend.

2. Use automation tools to optimize campaigns

Facebook’s automation tools let you create more dynamic workflows for your ad campaigns without needing to invest additional budget, resources and time. Meta lets advertisers automate their entire setup through tools like Advantage+ shopping campaigns or the audience, creative and placement of their ad. According to Meta, using these tools significantly improves campaign results. In their example, Ogee, a clean beauty company, tested Advantage + shopping campaigns, which resulted in a 28% increase in ROAS and a 25% decrease in customer acquisition costs.

3. Differentiate your creative by audience

This one should be nothing new for our readers – make sure your content is specific to your audience to get better results! Meta takes it a step further. As they put it, “marketers can use creative as a new approach to targeting with distinct messages that resonate with different customer needs or interests. To get started marketers can diversify their ads by concept, the message and visuals of an ad, or the ad type, such as a video ad placed in Reels or working with a creator for a partnership ad.”

4. Utilize the Conversion API to improve campaign performance and measurement

We’ve discussed Meta’s Conversions API in past issues of the C2C. Meta is pushing it hard for good reason: businesses can create a direct connection between their marketing data and Meta to improve campaign performance and measurement. Better tracking, better attribution, better targeting.

5. Measure your campaign with Conversion Lift, A/B testing and marketing mix modeling

This last recommendation builds on Meta’s Conversions API. After all, defining success is all about tracking your results. Conversion Lift measures the incremental impact of your ads and split tests. marketing mix modeling to quantify the value of your results, and A/B testing to compare the efficacy of different strategies.

It’s not rocket science, right?

Simplify your creatives, automate your campaigns, hone in on your messaging, track, and measure your conversions.

Meta’s new suite of tools makes it easier than ever to lower your campaign costs with this approach (at least until their next Performance Summit).

As always, if you need a little help, that’s what we’re here for.

Just email charlie@strikepointmedia.com and we’ll help you every step of the way.

MORE Facebook Platform Updates…

There’s a few other nuggets worth noting about Facebook.

Detailed Audience Expansion (DTE) is being transitioned to become a mandatory option on performance-driven campaigns. This means that if we select “Investor” as an audience, Facebook could now automatically expand that audience to “Stocks” or “WSJ” as it sees fit. A performance- driven campaign is anything that runs to a landing page with an optimization event.

Other (Small) Changes From Facebook

  • Facebook will now notify you when audiences are too small to run traffic to (Previously, FB would attempt to run traffic to any audience size)
  • When running lead forms, you can now include date of birth as a question
  • The “Active History” view now contains more details about who made changes to campaigns (good for audits)
  • Targeting restrictions have been loosened on “special category” campaigns. Meta now opened up some of the targeting options that were previously not allowed. This includes some Demographic and Behavior targeting.

Facebook has tons of tools to help your campaign. Using those tools well can be all the difference between a profitable campaign and one that does nothing but lose you money.

Ad Creative Highlight: New Carousel Strategy Slashes CPL by 27%

We’re all familiar with carousel ads … you take a handful of images and place them in a rotation style display ad.

Carousel ads can be effective, but they can also plateau. As was the case with our Power of Options campaign for Paradigm. After seeing decent CPLs on our carousel ads but no buyers (while also seeing a decline in performance of our traditional video ad format) we decided to mix it up a bit.

Our media buyers tested out a new style where we placed our previously top performing video creative on the “cover” frame of our static carousel ad.

The result?

We saw CPL drop by 27%, attendance rate shot up by 79%, and our buyer rate increased by 14x! (Versus the Original Carousel)

Why did this happen?

That’s the big question. Is this format more engaging for the audience? Are we getting better placements on FB vs. our typical video ads? Is it providing more information than the videos alone?

One thing we do know is that these results are too good not to keep testing. And as we get more conclusive results, our C2C readers will be the first to know, so stay tuned!

Tech Spotlight

The power of technology is seriously incredible. All it takes is one right tool to launch your marketing forward over whatever hump you’ve been stuck on.

Foreplay 2.0

Foreplay is a perfect example. It lets you save, organize and share advertising inspiration from high converting Facebook & TikTok ads.

We love this tool, especially with their new 2.0 update.

With their new 2.0 update, Foreplay introduced a “brand” profile so their AI and Machine Learning technology can understand your branding guidelines, including brand colors, fonts, music genres, voice, personality, tagline, mission statement, website, social media handles, and more.

Now, it gives the AI and Machine Learning tech the ability to write out well-versed scripts and storyboards more in line with your brand.

You can save ads for inspiration, and use AI to make a “brief” based on the saved ads you want to replicate.


Tolstoy is a phenomenal tool you should be using if you’re not already.

It’s a fantastic new video software that lets you create interactive video quizzes – these could be used in lead generation efforts or to better enhance your customer experience.

Tolstoy’s platform lets you take your audience on a personalized customer journey in video format. Whether that be a landing page video that’s tailored to specific audiences or demographics, it could be used for quiz funnels, answer FAQ’s,

It could also be great for surveying your audience, better understanding their preferences and tailoring it to them.

This is how Strikepoint is thinking about using this platform… See how your team can use it and let us know the results!

Copy Corner

Finding the “Sweet Spot” for Your Marketing Message

(Courtesy of the legendary Gary Halbert)

When it comes to writing winning copy, your goal is always to find the “sweet spot” that connects with your readers on an emotional level and gets them to lean into your message. You need three things to make this happen:


You need to know what the market wants without guessing, and that should be at a very deep emotional level that defies most marketing efforts.


You need to know how to express what the market wants in the most emotionally compelling way possible.


You need to put that message in front of them in the way they like to consume it.

Here’s a perfect example:

This ad ran in newspapers at a time when access to TV programs online wasn’t so readily available as it is today.

There was no Netflix or Hulu. The only way to watch anything was (gasp) cable!

But then an inventor from China created a computer program that allowed what the headline says. He commissioned Gary Halbert to write the ad, which sold millions of dollars of this program on a continuity basis.

Why it worked: Everyone wanted free cable, and now it was finally possible (to an extent). It wasn’t too good to be true because the internet was a technological marvel. And it wasn’t a grandiose promise. It was just making something people deeply wanted available.

Here’s another great example:

It sold vacant land in “the best place on earth for a human being to live.” Everyone who wanted to live in such a place and had the money would be intrigued. It worked so well that they supposedly sold every last lot.

Why it worked: The Function of Seduction. You didn’t know what the best place was until about a third of the way into the ad.

By the time you got there, you were sold… even if… you couldn’t afford it.

One last example for you…

This is the headline for a 1” x 7.5” ad that Halbert ran in Investor’s Business Daily. The ad cost under $1,000 dollars on each insertion and pulled in an average of $60,000 PER WEEK as part of the entire promotion.

To be clear, this ad would not be compliant by today’s standards. However, at the time, the results promised were actually possible, so it worked.

Why did it work: Because that’s what traders want! Halbert knew this not because he “brainstormed” his way into knowing… but… because he actually became a prop trader for a year and “lived among” these traders. This promotion made him tens of millions of dollars.

It’s worth noting that not a single one of these ads had a single image in them. Yet, they literally sold tens of millions of dollars worth of products.

That’s what happens when you hit the sweet spot!

Moral of the story:

  • Know your audience
  • Understand what they want
  • Keep your message simple

What’s Hot At Strikepoint

It’s another wonderful month in the world of Strikepoint!

The company keeps growing, including two new hires this past month who our clients will get to know extremely well in the near future:

  • Parker Erickson – Social Media Manager
  • Samantha Friedman – Marketing Specialist

But with all the success and growth, two new hires (no matter how awesome they are) don’t quite
fill all the needs. We’re still looking for several positions, including:

  • Digital Marketing Media Buying Director
  • Google/YouTube Media Buyer

If you or someone you know is interested and would be a good fit for SPM, just click this link to start the application process!

Even though we’re continuing to grow, we’re still finding time to create valuable new content for you guys. This month, we really pulled back the curtain with some ridiculously strong posts to boost your funnels.

If you’re stuck on funnels or PPC ads, these posts will give you a much needed boost.

And even if everything is working for you, give them a read to get some extra insights!

Lastly, we want to give a HUGE shoutout to our Rockstar of Q2, Senior Media Buyer Chris Jensen!

Chris has been running point
on all Google search accounts, and is one of the most reliable, responsive, people we’ve ever met.

We can always rely on him and trust him to do what’s best for our pod and client goals.

He really is a true rockstar, always pushing for the best results for himself, the agency, and above all, our clients.

Congratulations Chris, and thanks for all you do!

That’s it for this month’s issue of the C2C Report! As always, if you have a question, or if there’s anything you’d like to see more of or have us focus on (or that we can do better), please shoot me an email and let me know directly.

Jeremy Blossom
CEO, Strikepoint Media

P.S. Subscribe to our YouTube channel if you want more regular content and guidance for free.


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