In a campaign to increase online holiday gift sales, the ecommerce sock company tested running video ads in Instagram Stories and saw a 2.4X higher conversion rate.

Socks with a mission

Bombas is a comfort-focused apparel brand that has refined the everyday sock, focusing on comfort, design and function. Its founders started the company after learning that socks are the most requested clothing item at homeless shelters, and now donate a pair for every pair sold.


higher return on ad spend with Stories


lower cost per action with Stories


higher conversion rate with Stories

During the 2019 holiday shopping season, we tested running ads in Stories to promote our new collection. We chose the concepts from high-performing slideshows and evolved the creative to fit the behavior of the platform. In just 15 seconds we were able to tell a memorable story that our audience could identify with, while proving the need for mobile-first campaigns.
Boosting holiday gift sales

Bombas wanted to run ads in Stories to understand how well this placement could drive online gift purchases over the winter holidays.

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Learning about Stories

Ads in the Stories placement capture more attention because they appear in a full-screen vertical environment, which corresponds to the way people hold their phones. For this campaign, Bombas tested ads in Stories using the conversion objective.

In the initial phase of a conversion campaign, Facebook’s machine-learning algorithm randomly delivers ads to people to see how their behaviors lead to purchases. After a number of conversions, the system begins to identify how to optimize for them. Advertisers should then continue to test and learn what works, as the campaign will continue to evolve.

To that end, Bombas first created a separate ad set for the Stories placement and optimized towards one-day click and one-day view (which target people more likely to take action in the first 24 hours of seeing an ad). Stories had typically skewed toward view-through conversions in the past―allowing Facebook’s algorithm to optimize for people who saw an ad for a product and bought it, without ever clicking the ad. But by optimizing towards both clicks and view, Bombas achieved enough optimized conversions to get out of the learning phase quickly.

During the campaign, Bombas ran video ads showing festive winter holiday scenes, such as people decorating trees and wrapping gifts while wearing cozy socks. Bombas built the ads following mobile-first best practices, including prominently featuring brand elements and using text overlays that made the action understandable for people viewing with their sound off. A “Shop Now” button linked to the brand’s website.

Bombas delivered the ads in Instagram Stories, Facebook Stories and Messenger Stories to a broad audience of US adults aged 18 and over, and used automatic advanced matching to attribute online sales back to specific purchasers. According to Bombas, the results of this December 6‒19, 2019 holiday campaign revealed:

  • 46% higher return on ad spend with Stories

  • 34% lower cost per action with Stories

  • 2.4X higher conversion rate with Stories

This campaign unlocked Stories as a placement and introduced us to a younger audience. Since launching the campaign in December, Stories is our single biggest area of growth in 2020 with a 600% year-over-year growth rate.