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Daily Crunch: Facebook is acquiring Giphy

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Facebook acquires a popular GIF search engine, video game sales see major growth and Sorrentino reports promising results for a COVID-19 treatment.

Here’s your Daily Crunch for May 15, 2020.

1. Facebook to acquire Giphy in a deal reportedly worth $400 million

Facebook will acquire Giphy, the web-based animated GIF search engine and platform provider. The company confirmed the deal but isn’t disclosing the terms; Axios reports that it’s worth around $400 million.

Giphy has grown to be a central source for shareable, high-engagement content, and its animated response GIFs are available across Facebook’s platforms, as well as through other social apps and services. Most notably, Giphy provides built-in search and sticker functions for Facebook’s Instagram, and it will continue to operate in that capacity.

2. US video game sales have record quarter, as consumers stay at home

New numbers from NPD confirm what we’ve known for a while: The first quarter of 2020 was a very good one for gaming companies. The new report notes that sales hit a record $10.86 billion in the U.S. between January and March of this year, marking a 9% increase over a year prior.

3. Sorrento finds a coronavirus antibody that blocks viral infection 100% in preclinical lab experiments

Therapeutics company Sorrento has made what it says could be a breakthrough in potential treatment of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that leads to COVID-19. The company released details of its preclinical research on Friday, announcing that it has found an antibody that provides “100% inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 virus infection of healthy cells after four days incubation.”

4. Indian food delivery startup Zomato cuts 13% of workforce

The 11-year-old firm did not disclose the exact number of people it was letting go, but the number is above 500. A Zomato spokesperson told TechCrunch that the startup employs about 4,000 people and the layoff impacts its workforce globally.

5. Big VCs stacked billions in Q1 while smaller firms saw their haul shrink

New data out today details how U.S.-based VCs fared in Q1 2020, giving us a window into how flush the financial class of startup land was as it headed into the COVID-19 era. The short answer is that big funds raised lots of cash, while smaller funds appear to have put in a somewhat lackluster quarter. (Extra Crunch membership required.)

6. Why did Apple buy NextVR?

At face value, this acquisition seems a little strange for Apple — the company has been pushing full-throttle on mobile AR, largely eschewing public activity or interest in the VR world. But virtual reality might feel like a safer investment at the moment.

7. WeWork and SoftBank unveil the first 14 startups in their Emerge accelerator for underrepresented founders

It’s an equity-free, eight-week program that includes workshops, access to mentors from SoftBank and the WeWork community and sessions with SoftBank executives. It all culminates in a showcase event for investors and SoftBank partners.

The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 9am Pacific, you can subscribe here.

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5 Effective Ways to Run Facebook Ads A/B Tests

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Facebook Ads A/B Tests or split tests help them try different versions of ads with various campaign elements. This process helps them arrive at the best version for the organization’s target. 

A/B Tests offer a vast pool of resources to try out various versions. You may get caught up and lose your way to arriving at the best version in a limited time. To better understand this topic you can read the Facebook ad testing guide. Here are five effective ways to run Facebook Ads A/B Tests-

1) Start with the minimal number of variables

This approach will help you analyze the impact of a variable much better. The lesser the variables, the better will be the relevant results and more conclusive. Once you have various versions, you will need to run them through the A/B Significance Test to determine if the test results are valid.

2) The second way is to select the correct structure. 

There are two structures in A/B tests. One is a single ad test, and the other is multiple single variation ad sets. All the variations will go under one ad set in the first structure. Each variation will be under a separate ad set in the second one. Out of the two, the second one works out to be better and gives better results.

3) Use of spreadsheets is important to stay organized. 

These spreadsheets help collect and analyze data to get meaningful insights and arrive at data-backed decisions.

4) Do target advertising and set realistic time goals. 

One approach is to choose an entirely new set of audiences. Also, the data pool should be vast and not the same as some existing campaigns. The reason for choosing a different audience is that Facebook may mix up your ads and give contaminated output. 

Another approach to choosing the right audience is to pick geography. It works better, especially when you have business in a particular region.   

It’s also essential to set a realistic timeline for your testing. Facebook suggests one should run a test for at least four days, but you can choose to run the test for up to 30 days.   

5) Set an ideal budget. 

The concept of a perfect budget is subjective. But, you can fix it yourself, or Facebook can do that for you based on your testing data. A large part of the test budget is spent on avoiding audience duplication. If the same audience sees variations, it could affect the test results.

Besides these top five effective ideas, you will need to take a few more action points to make the testing process efficient. Make sure you put the website’s domain link and not the landing page link in the ad, as that doesn’t look good. Put appropriate Call To Action Button, such as ‘Learn More,’ ‘Buy Now,’ etc. It’s also important to see how your ad is coming across on various electronic gadgets- mobile, tablets, etc.

Another strategy that works is trying to engage the customer. You may add social engagement buttons such as ‘Like’ or ‘Comment.’ Use high-resolution images as they work better with the customers. Low-quality, highly edited images are often not liked and trusted by the consumers.

You can learn more about the audience behavior patterns with A/B test results. Conducting these tests on Facebook streamlines the entire process and makes it smooth for you. With the test results, advertisers and marketers can work on the creatives they need to utilize.

To sum it up, you can run an effective A/B test campaign within the specified budget. You don’t need to spend massive amounts to get your advertisement right. You’ll make the correct assumptions about the performance of variations with a good understanding of business and consumers.

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