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TikTok Smart Performance Campaigns: What you should know


TikTok’s Smart Performance Campaign (SPC) is a fully automated solution that lets advertisers target their audience automatically using the platform’s machine learning-based system.

On TikTok, ad content matters more than targeting. 

TikTok’s algorithm is incredibly powerful in matching content to user activity for organic and paid content. 

If your content isn’t adapted to the platform, precise targeting in an ad set won’t achieve the desired results.

Why should you try TikTok’s Smart Performance Campaigns?

With this campaign, you have more time to focus on creating the ad content – optimizing the time spent creating one or more ad sets. 

SPC reduces campaign creation time by 26%, according to TikTok.

The campaign is available for website conversions or app-install campaigns, focusing entirely on the conversion objective.

Tips for setting up a TikTok Smart Performance Campaign

Start with installing TikTok pixel on your website for proper tracking. This will help the platform’s algorithms move from quantity to quality.

Implementing just the Complete Payment or Complete Registration event is not enough.

The more events you implement correctly, the greater the chances the Smart Performance Campaign will bring you more valuable results. 

When it comes to audience targeting, you don’t have many options aside from Location and Preferred Language. However, you can only exclude audiences when you click Advanced Settings. 

Many advertisers prefer to target broad audiences. We decided to do the opposite and excluded buyers from the last 30 days in one campaign. After doing so, its conversion rate increased by over 1.4%.

Selecting the creative is a crucial element of your SPC. You can add up to 30 TikTok ads. Test the format, which can be a Spark Ad or a Video Ad. 

From our tests, Spark Ads perform over 72% better than regularly uploaded videos, and they also help boost the client’s organic TikTok account.


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The Call-to-Action tab is set to dynamic by default. TikTok even suggests keeping this setting to maximize campaign performance. 

But for many businesses, some calls to action may be completely irrelevant, so you should eliminate those unsuitable for your client.

The last important setting is choosing the destination, either a website URL or a TikTok Instant Page, where you can create a more creative design for your client’s product.

Once you’re done setting up your SPC, make sure it collects enough data – after 3-4 weeks, you can start drawing conclusions. 

From the Campaigns tab, select your Smart Performance Campaign, and then click on View Data

There, you will find useful advertising data, such as key metrics (conversions, cost/conversions, conversion rate, and more). 

While you can’t exclude certain age segments in SPC, TikTok will push your ads toward the most suitable users in each segment.

In the case study below, you’ll see that results were similar in terms of CPA for more age segments, although the volume was different.

SPC Detailed Analysis 800x261

How to optimize your TikTok Smart Performance Campaign

While there are fewer levers to pull, you still have the option to:

  • Optimize at the ad content level.
  • Eliminate underperforming videos.
  • Test new ones. 
  • Add negative keywords to your campaign (soon).

Never leave just one video in your Smart Performance Campaign. The more content you have, the longer you can extend its lifespan.

You can include up to 30 videos in one SPC, but pay attention to the budget. If you’re running on a limited budget, you may want to reduce the number of creatives to allow your videos to gather enough data. 

While SPC performed better than regular campaigns in 80% of the accounts we tested, that doesn’t mean you should give up on standard campaigns. SPC also provides good insights that you can use in standard campaigns for more testing.

The Audience tab provides enough data for you to create a buyer persona to target in other types of campaigns. 

TikTok - Purchase intention

You might want to keep your eyes on the View Data tab because you can optimize based on search keywords. 

Tiktok Search ads

TikTok search ads are now available, and the SPC is the first type of campaign to share insights about keywords used by your audience to interact with your brand. 

Even though this is not yet available for all TikTok Ads accounts, you will soon have the option to add irrelevant keywords as negative keywords.

Build your historical conversion data to make the most of TikTok Smart Performance Campaigns

Accounts without a significant conversion tracking history may find it hard to see results with SPC. 

TikTok’s algorithms are powerful but need time to understand audiences who converted, what content they consume, and so on. 

SPC yielded good results on accounts with a history of at least 100-200 conversions in the last 30 days before campaign creation. 

So don’t rush! Grow your account with regular conversion campaigns, then test the Smart Performance Campaign.

Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.



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