How Bombas Unlocked Growth by Diversifying Their Media Mix

Lina Hagström Jun 01 2021 4 PM | 3 min read

The apparel brand Bombas is committed to crafting comfort clothing, while helping countless homeless individuals across the US. For every sold item, they donate an item to someone affected by homelessness.

As Bombas grows and evolves, their media buying strategy continues to evolves as well, and who better to help us understand the nuances of this than Michael Mctighe who is Senior Marketing Manager of Paid Social at Bombas.

We had the unique opportunity to chat with Michael and pick his brain on all things Bombas and social advertising. 

How to Unlock Growth on Paid Social  

When looking back at Bombas social advertising journey, they focused mainly Facebook and Instagram advertising. When asked how and why their approach to media buying evolved, Michael explained that their main goal was to unlock incremental growth on paid social, benefit from the evolving digital landscape, and to simplify their attribution model. By diversifying their media mix and introducing new channels, Bombas was able to target and acquire net new customers. 

Building A Strategy For Incremental Audience Acquisition

Michael says that they started off by identifying where the majority of Bombas’ marketing budget was allocated and which channels and placements were being ignored. Michael believes that just because the platform isn’t spending doesn’t mean there aren’t additional opportunities there, especially for a brand like Bombas that has a broad product market fit.

Established platform data is good for predicting outcomes but not for discovering avenues of additional acquisition. Thus, Bombas ran a Stories only campaign - they treated it as its own channel within the Facebook ecosystem for acquiring a younger incremental audience - and ran it in parallel with other campaigns. They used internal attributions to evaluate and validate platform data and then optimized on sight. Stories are now an instrumental part of the Bombas media buying strategy and their biggest avenue of growth - think a growth trajectory of 300% year on year.

Creating and Learning

For Michael, the difference between creatives for new and existing channels  is that of night and day. He considers testing the biggest factor for success on any platform. While testing campaigns on existing channels can draw from a data-backed foundation of knowledge, for new platforms he recommends leaning into best practices for each channel.

It is key to contain and encourage creativity within the parameters of what is native to the channel. He references their success with their Snapchat campaign: what was initially a 4-week pressure test plan raked interest that validated a 5x increase in budget by the end of it. 

To Diversify Is to Test

Michael believes in the adage of not putting all your eggs in one basket and while testing is key, it is key to test with a clear plan of action. Ask yourself what success looks like and, more importantly, ask yourself what failure looks like.

What happens when testing goes wrong? The worst thing you can do is pull the plug, according to Michael. He advises strongly against any reactionary move and instead encourages establishing guard-rails before testing: establish what you’re trying to accomplish and who your customer is. If all goes well, you’ll end up with invaluable data to lean into.

Last Piece of Advice from Bombas 

Micheal considers Snapchat a vital avenue of growth based on the investments made by the platform in tech and e-commerce; there's a lot of room to run and grow for any company on the platform. He is also optimistic about exploring Tik Tok as a new platform and its bite sized consumption model.

The greatest takeaway from this conversation has to be that as platforms and media consumption patterns and metrics evolve, so must the media planning for any company trying to scale and create impact - watch the full conversation here! 😎

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Lina Hagström

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