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The importance of avoiding campaign overlap between ad types

Facebook Gaming highlights the importance of separating your approach to Automated App Ads (AAA) and Manual App Ads
The importance of avoiding campaign overlap between ad types
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Domy Brici, a data scientist, with Facebook Gaming at Meta, explains why duplicating campaigns across Automated App Ads and Manual App ads can reduce the effectiveness of campaigns and increase costs.

Automated App Ads (AAA) provide a simplified campaign setup, driven by powerful machine learning. It delivers the highest performing creative to the most relevant audience on the most effective placement.

Although AAA has a simplified setup, it can still compete for the same auction with Manual App ads when multiple ad sets from the same account are running concurrently in AAA versus Manual App ads.

We have been sharing for some time that running the same campaign setup concurrently in AAA vs Manual app ads is not a best practice. In this article, we'll explain why it’s so important to avoid that.

How do we define auction overlap for AAA?
Overlap may exist when ad set A competes in a set of auctions with other ad sets in some of those auctions.

For AAA, we define overlap with Manual App ad sets as when AAA ad set A runs concurrently in the auction with Manual App ad sets which share the same account and they have the same objective, optimisation goal, operating system and target the same audiences.

Auction overlap between AAA vs Manual App ads may lead to delivery limits for AAA ad sets

Recent research shows that there is a strong relationship between auction overlap and cost-per-mille (CPM), meaning that running the same campaign setup concurrently in AAA vs Manual App ads negatively impacts performance for AAA, leading to an increase in CPM.

Running the same campaign setup concurrently may have an impact across all optimisation goals, but we have seen, in particular, for an app installs optimisation goal, that CPMs increase surprisingly at a low overlap.

Avoid setting AAA ad sets concurrently with Manual App ads and test which strategy works best for you

We understand that audience overlap can be something unavoidable due to certain business circumstances, but our advice is to avoid as much overlap as possible to help stabilise performance for AAA.

Here are some recommendations of what you can do to diversify and avoid overlap with AAA:

Setup and optimisation:

  • Avoid running the same country and optimisation on your AAA and business as usual (BAU) campaigns concurrently as overlap can harm performance.
  • Use a mix of optimisations to drive long term performance across a suite of key performance indicators (KPIs)  such as value optimisation (VO), app event optimisation (AEO) & mobile app install (MAI).
  • To start, opt for a low-cost bid without a bid cap. Bid cap helps to control costs but may limit results by narrowing opportunities over time. It constantly needs to be adjusted to ensure performance continuity.
  • Set up your campaign budget to cover at least 50 conversions per week.


  • Group countries that have the same KPI.
    Make sure your audience selection is over four million for mobile app installs and less than six million for value optimisation.


  • Consider uploading a mix of different aspect ratios.
  • Refresh creatives two to four times a month. Increase this frequency if you are scaling your budget.
  • Batch multiple creative edits at once to minimise resetting the learning phase.
  • Only remove creatives that are not performing well after reaching your creative limit.

Here are some testing considerations and a snipped of how to evaluate AAA vs BAU:

  • Try merging the audience together under the same ad set then test which strategy matches your business goal, ensuring that you are not running the same campaign set up in AAA and Manual App ads concurrently.
  • Ensure you have enough budget to cover 100 conversions and make sure to guarantee 88 x CPI per day for SKAN campaigns.
  • Choose a target country with at least four million users and make sure your non-test campaigns are not targeting the same audience on your tests.
  • Take advantage of AAA creative automation and maximise the number of creatives per ad set. Use at least 20 static and video creatives per ad set with different aspect ratios to deliver to all placements.
  • Ensure both cells in the testing design have the same set up except for the test variables.

For more information on Automated App Ads and the ways in which they can help you to achieve more with less, visit the Facebook Gaming webpage here.