What to Know About Facebook’s Reversal of the Campaign Budget Optimization Requirement

Facebook sources have confirmed that there will no longer be a required migration to Campaign Budget Optimization.

The forced migration was originally slated for last year. The deadline was pushed to early this year, then to September and now appears to be on hold indefinitely.

“Mandatory CBO has been scrapped for the time being.” – Facebook representative

The statement comes after the last one that CBO would be required of all campaigns by September of this year.

What is Campaign Budget Optimization (CBO)?

Referred to as “CBO,” this method of budget allocation was introduced to Facebook last year.

Historically, daily budgets were usually input at the ad set level in Facebook Ads.

CBO moves budget allocation to the parent level of the Campaign, and empowers Facebook to distribute the budget among the ad sets within it.

Ad Sets can carry a spend cap to limit how much of the budget is distributed to it.

Industry Sentiment Towards CBO

There have been mixed feelings among Facebook Ads experts, citing some success in accounts, with failure in others.

The looming deadline to make everything CBO was weighing on media managers who were struggling to make it work.

While there wasn’t a dislike of the idea or option of CBO, the mandatory nature of it felt short-sighted to many professionals.

The deadline for it being mandatory had also been pushed out from their original goal date last year, which signaled trouble to Facebook Ads users.

When It Works and When It Doesn’t

“We’ve seen that CBO has become more stable and better performing on prospecting traffic. It’s become a good option, specifically when scaling, to diversify traffic sources coming into your funnel,” said Andrew Foxwell. Foxwell runs a Facebook Advertising agency, and provides courses to train media buyers on running Facebook Ads.

David Herrmann, another paid social expert weighed in, “From an e-commerce standpoint CBO has been a valuable tool to take the guesswork off which audiences will work for performance.”

He stops short of praising it in every situation, however.

“It has its downsides in relation to seasons such as Black Friday, when you’re trying to push and scale every lever you can push on audiences,” he continued. “[Sometimes] you know you certainly can get more out of [those audiences] by pushing them individually at the ad set level.”

There is consensus among both that it consistently works well for e-commerce, but not as well in other verticals.

“My reaction to them pushing it back is they realized that it just doesn’t work in 100% of cases and while from a FB data science perspective it made sense to push it on all accounts, there’s a reality of how it actually works from a media buyers perspective,” commented Foxwell.

Foxwell is in a good position to comment on patterns, with a successful course specifically on CBO giving him insight into many situations. They have trained over 200 students.

“The biggest piece of feedback from those students is the introduction of CBO to prospecting, even to the same audiences used in an ad set budget format, can have an immediate positive impact on ROAS and CPA,” – Andrew Foxwell

At the time of this writing, there has still been no official statement issued by Facebook Ads on the matter, but representatives on accounts are consistently reporting this change.

Image credit: Susan Wenograd