Things to check when campaign performance suddenly changed

  • Updated

Various factors affect the campaign performance. RTB market, where our machine bids for each impression in real-time dynamically changes, and it can be difficult to find an understandable cause of performance change.

Nevertheless, we brought checklists to help you investigate the possible causes and find ways to improve. If you don't find any insight from this article, check the action items to improve the performance.



Changes in budget size or setting options can cause changes in campaign performance.
  • As budgets change, campaign performance can change temporarily to achieve performance in line with the changed budget. It is necessary to wait until the performance stabilizes for a certain period of time after the change. To minimize the impact, change the budget to within 30%.
  • If target CPI or target CPC is selected as the Bid control priority when setting up a campaign, it is critical to set the appropriate target cost considering the market price and the app you want to promote. If you've changed the target CPI or CPC, our machine learning model needs a learning period to meet that goal. And if you set a target cost that is too low for the market price, your budget may not be spent. If you don't know the proper CPI and CPC for the market and your app, use the Budget as the Bid control priority first and check the actual CPI and CPC.



If you've changed traffic target settings or have set up campaigns to target a certain segment of traffic, performance changes depending on the market situation for the targeted traffic.

  • Under the Advanced Settings section on the campaign settings page, you can configure LAT targeting and SKAdNetwork traffic targeting (iOS only). We highly recommend to use default option including all LAT and SKAN traffics. This is because the campaign performance may change if the market condition for the targeted traffic changes.  

  • If the Traffic Control feature is set up for the ad groups, campaign performance may decrease due to the limited pool of target audiences to reach. 



If new creatives are added or excluded, performance such as CPI and CPA may change temporarily. For more information on the relationship between creative and performance, see FAQs about creative management.
  • If you add new creatives, our machine learning model needs to obtain data to determine the performance of the new creatives. As a result, part of the campaign budget can be used for the learning process, which can reduce performance in a short term. Therefore, it's recommended to avoid putting too many new creatives at once. And after putting the creatives, please wait for the performance to be stabilized by securing sufficient data for learning.

  • If top-performing creatives have been excluded for reasons such as promotion schedules, the overall performance of the campaign may change significantly. If you can't add the creatives again, we recommend developing new creatives with messaging and/or concepts similar to the top-performing creatives.

  • You can set start and end date for a creative group using a scheduling feature. Campaign performance may change drastically if top-performing creatives are deactivated due to the schedule. Refer to the Creative Group Status article to check if creatives are active or inactive.


Postback and MMP configurations

All required MMP event postbacks must be shared with Moloco and conversions must be attributed successfully to make the most out of our model based on the accurate data. Therefore, any changes in MMP attribution settings, postback settings, and integration can result in significant performance changes. Check the following items. If you need to reset the settings, you can refer to the Partner Integration document.

  • The key to achieve the full potential of machine learning is to get as much quality data as possible. Therefore, it is recommended using a view-through tracking link and allowing probabilistic matching for smooth learning and optimization. In addition, set up the same attribution window as other media. If MMP settings such as view-through attribution, probabilistic matching, and attribution window are changed, campaign performance may suddenly change as well.

  • If postback event transmission has been interrupted or degraded due to changes in MMP event integration or an issue in the data communication, campaign performance will be decreased because of insufficient data for learning. Make sure that all required event postbacks are being sent well to Moloco by checking numbers on Moloco's postback dashboard.

  • If the parameters or macros in the tracking link changed to the wrong value or if the path containing the app's information is incorrect, the campaign performance may appear to be reduced because the performance cannot be properly measured, and in the long run, it also adversely affects machine learning. Check the changed tracking link following the tracking link guide.



Targets limit the audience to show your advertisement. And if you change the target of an ongoing campaign, the campaign will need additional learning and optimization process. Hence, setting or changing targets can affect advertising performance.

  • If you are using multiple targets for a campaign or an ad group, check how the target conditions operate. If multiple targets are set up in an ad group, we only expose ads to users who meet all of the target conditions (AND conditions), resulting in very few target users with low performance. Let's say you want to target users who meet condition A or condition B. Create two ad groups and set one target condition for each ad group, or, select Users who meet Any of the following criteria in the Custom Audience setting on the target creation page.

  • If you've changed the target settings used for the ad group, that can affect campaign efficiency.
  • Apple's privacy policy has increased bid requests without IDFA on iOS. Even if you run a re-engagement campaign with the IDFA you have previously secured, campaign performance may decrease with targeting constraints if users change devices or more users upgrade to iOS version 14.5 or higher.


Frequently asked questions

Why does my campaign spend lower than the set budget with target CPI mode?

When a campaign targets CPI mode, our models will adjust spending to best meet that target CPI. If the actual CPI is lower than the target CPI, the campaign might take advantage of the opportunity and exhaust the budget quickly. If the actual CPI is higher than the target CPI, the campaign will spend less.

If you always want to spend the full daily budget, select the campaign's bid priority as Budget rather than Target CPI.


Why is the spending so small for the specific inventories although the performance is good?

In real-time bidding (RTB), spending is heavily influenced by supply, demand, and competition. Spend in a high-performing inventory might be low because the number of app users in the inventory is very small, or because the campaign's target cost is too low. Moloco's machine learning engine will automatically adjust to the situation to get you the best results.


The CPI has significantly increased while running ROAS optimization campaign. How can I lower the CPI?

ROAS optimization campaign bids more flexibly and aggressively for users expected to have high ROAS. For this reason, a ROAS optimization campaign's CPI is usually higher than a CPI optimization campaign. However, if you think the CPI is too high, you can operate install optimization and ROAS optimization campaigns at the same time. This way, you can control CPI and ROAS by adjusting the budget allocation between the two campaigns.


Why is my iOS re-engagement campaign spend inconsistent?

It is common for iOS re-engagement campaigns to spend inconsistently, mainly because Limit Ad Tracking (LAT) makes it difficult to target a large number of iOS device users. To successfully run an iOS re-engagement campaign, you should be ideally targeting at least 100,000 users. 

Aside from a small target audience, other common reasons for inconsistent ad spend include invalid target settings such as adding non-overlapping targets or using outdated user lists. 

In the event that your campaign fails to display on the intended inventories immediately following campaign activation, you are encouraged to wait at least 3 business days before reaching out to your Moloco representative. Generally, relaxing your target settings should help achieve the desired ad spend amount. 

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