August 04, 2016
Case Study

Inbound Marketing: How a paid social media campaign drew in 1,000 new YouTube subscribers in just four days

SUMMARY: To raise greater brand awareness for Olivia Rose, a natural afro hair tutorial website, the company decided to target French-speaking websites with a paid social media campaign that could draw in subscribers.

By focusing on drawing people in using YouTube videos, they were able to gain over 200,000 Facebook video views and 1,000 new followers each for both Instagram and YouTube in just four days.
by Courtney Eckerle, Managing Editor


Olivia Rose provides hair tutorials for women who have natural afro hair, according to Stephanie Thalmensy, Founder, Olivia Rose. More specifically, English and French speaking women.

“Our customers are women who have afro hair and who would like to learn about hair styling and maintenance that is specific to afro hair,” she said.


It was decided to run a Facebook and Instagram video campaign to promote the Olivia Rose YouTube channel, and to develop greater awareness around the brand.

The YouTube channel, according to Thalmensy, had been growing organically for almost two years, purely from posting quality video tutorials. The only issue was that the organic pace of the channel was a little too slow for an area the brand wanted to focus on.

She and her team wanted to see if they could improve the visibility and awareness of the channel to the right audience.


Thalmensy and her team ran paid social media campaigns using Instagram and Facebook on different languages and geographic areas for women who have natural afro hair.

The aim of the campaign was to generate traffic to the Olivia Rose YouTube channel and to convert new viewers into subscribers. The goals for this particular campaign would impact the number of video views on the channel.

The campaign began on January 10, 2016 and focused on reaching out to Oliva Rose’s niche audience on social media channels.

Step #1. Identify the objectives

To start off, Thalmensy and her team wanted to set up clear objectives. This was especially important with this being the first undertaking of its kind for the Olivia Rose brand, where the YouTube channel had only grown organically up until then.

View the Creative Sample

Click to see a larger, printable version of the chart

They decided to focus on the videos, because they were being monetized through Google’s AdSense program, and increased video views should mean increasing the advertising revenue.

Beyond that, Thalmensy listed the objectives as follows:
  • To increase the Facebook fan base

  • To increase the number of YouTube subscribers

  • To increase the number of subscribers to the Olivia Rose website

  • To increase the number of Instagram followers

Hopefully, the amount of engagement and interaction around those social media platforms would grow during this campaign as well.

Step #2. Create the ad

The ad featured a short, 20-second advertising video trailer, which was high quality and would render up to 720p (HD).

The team wanted to keep the length short, to optimize it for both Facebook and Instagram, which differ in this area — Facebook allows video content up to 30 minutes, whereas Instagram allows video content only up to 30 seconds.

View the Creative Sample

Click to see a larger, printable version of the chart

The video highlighted the niche areas of hair tutorial the brand can offer, quickly showing off different unique hairstyles, treatments and steps, which conveyed in near-snapshots the value proposition of the Olivia Rose brand. It also contained a text snippet of 90 characters, in order to pitch the video content to the prospective audience.

Additionally, the team added a call-to-action at the end, which allowed the audience to click through and watch more on the Olivia Rose YouTube channel.

Step #3. Target the paid ad audience

Thalmensy and her team began identifying how to target their specific audience through Facebook’s audience targeting.

When creating an ad with Facebook’s Power Editor, ad creation or directly in a businesses’ Facebook page, companies have the opportunity to target their ads to people based on location and demographics like age, gender, connections and interests.

There is even the possibility of targeting people based on behaviors, which are determined by what people are connected to on Facebook, such as pages, apps and events.

Since Facebook owns Instagram, the same targeting options are available for that platform as the ads created on Facebook.

Companies can also target Instagram and Facebook ads to a custom audience, which is made up of existing customers, or a lookalike audience, which shows the ad to people who are likely to be interested in your business because they’re similar to your own customers.
In the first campaign, Olivia Rose targeted French-speaking women with afros in countries outside of France.

The team utilized the analytics data from the Olivia Rose YouTube channel in order to decide which country demographics to target.

The Oliva Rose campaign targeted an audience that was:
  • Exclusively female

  • Aged between 13-40 years old

  • In French-speaking countries outside of France, such as Martinique, Guadeloupe, St. Martin and Reunion

Since those countries’ ethnic diversity is primarily of African descent, the team felt they didn’t need to specify any further within Facebook’s audience targeting capabilities.

Step #4. Adjust based on reach and engagement

It was decided by Thalmensy and her team to run the first campaign as a trial on a Sunday, to see what kind of response the targeted audience would have.

If successful it was, they decided that they would run another campaign from a Thursday to Monday.
After reviewing the performance from the first campaign, Thalmensy said, “We changed the campaign bid price and audience.”

The positive results encouraged them to extend the campaign into English-speaking countries, which included:
  • English-speaking African countries

  • English-speaking Caribbean countries

  • The United Kingdom

  • The United States and Canada

The campaign ran until January 25, and a couple of the videos — the ones that were 10- and 12-seconds long — saw 100% average completion rate for views. The 12-second video had been viewed nearly 12,000 times.


The campaign was extremely cost effective, according to Thalmensy and her team, if the video content that was produced was strong.

The organic growth that had originally fed the channel was still there, just amplified through the paid social media push, with viewers sharing videos to their own feed.

Some of the key results from this campaign were:
  • 1,758 new Instagram followers

  • 1,784 new YouTube subscribers

  • 15,647 new Facebook fans

  • 6 new blog subscribers

“We learned how to leverage content marketing efforts to amplify brand awareness. We were able to acquire over 15,000 fans to the Facebook page and video views, [and] enquiries and engagement has been increasing,” Thalmensy said of the results.

Creative Samples

YouTube page

Olivia Rose video ad


Olivia Rose

BGDM — Olivia Rose’s digital marketing agency

Related Resources

Inbound Marketing: 450% average ROI from Facebook advertising and organic content effort

Facebook Ads: How manages a $10 million strategy

Social Media Marketing: How a pharmaceutical company gained 107,000 Facebook likes in one month

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