Week 4: Setting Up a Conversion Ad (Sept 16 | 42m)


  • The Conversion objective allows you to optimize for a specific action (in this case, clicking on a button that takes people to Amazon). There are a ton of potential advantages over Traffic ads here, but the four highlighted in the video are:
    • Can track actual purchases from the ads (if you’re selling direct from your own website’s store; not possible for books you’re selling on Amazon and other retailers)
    • The pixel (tracking code) sends data back to TikTok about who’s taking that action (here, clicking on the button) and TikTok can optimize the ads to find more people like this. This allows TikTok to take a very large, broad audience and find the relevant people in the audience.
    • Better test of conversion than the Traffic ads because people have to click twice: on the ad, then on the button. If the ad isn’t relevant / isn’t engaging, then people won’t click on the button. This is obviously not a 1:1 proxy for actual conversion, but if the ad couldn’t get them to click on a button on a landing page, it would be very unlikely to get someone to buy on Amazon.
    • Much more granular data which allows you to test more accurately / faster.


There are multiple ways to set up a conversion event depending on whether you’ve set up your pixel yet or not. You don’t have to set up a new pixel every time you set up an event; you can click on the pixel you’ve already set up and just set up a new event.

  1. Make sure to have a privacy policy / contact info in footer; make sure site in general is compliant with TikTok’s rules
  2. Create landing page (example here: Drop Dead Landing page)
  3. Go to Assets > Events and click Set Up Web Events
  4. Create your pixel and give it a name.
  5. Install pixel on your site (I used the Insert Headers and Footers WordPress plugin)
  6. Once the pixel is installed, go back to the Assets > Events page and click on the pixel.
  7. Click Add Events > TikTok Pixel > Manually Install Pixel Code
  8. Select Event Builder and then click next if you’ve already installed the pixel (you don’t need to install it again)
  9. Choose your Event’s trigger
    • A URL Keyword event triggers when people hit a specific page on your site. You could use this for tracking purchases (enter the confirmation page URL) or subscribers (enter the thank you page URL) you’re getting from the ads.
    • A Web Element event triggers when people take a specific action on a page. You could use this for tracking button clicks, like I’m doing in the video.
  10. For a Web Element, enter the landing page URL and then select the element you want tracked (in this case, the button). Also assign an Event Type based on what you’re optimizing for: for a button click, either “Button Clicks” or “View Content” would work.
  11. Once this is all set up, go to Assets > Events > and click on your pixel’s name. Then go to Test Events and make sure the new Conversion Event is tracking properly. (not shown in video above)

Note: “View Content” wasn’t appearing as an option in the video because I had already created that event earlier in the week.

That’s it. Now when you choose the conversion objective during campaign setup, you can select your newly created event. The ad will then optimize for whatever action you’ve told TikTok to track. In the example above, that’s clicking on the button at the bottom of the page.


A simple trick for increasing adherence / execution: make clear, easy to remember / follow rules. I’ve been doing a lot of research and information gathering over the past 3 weeks. I had more than enough material to work with a few days into Week 1, so seeing as we’re a bit past that, I’ve implemented a straightforward rule for the next 3-ish weeks (through Oct 7): no watching informational content (outside workout, Excel, and guitar-related things).

To date in this series, I’ve been largely focused on passive learning (listening to a podcast, watching course, reading a book etc. but not actually doing anything with the material). This contrasts with active learning (implementing and taking action, e.g., by following along from resources that are designed to be followed step-by-step as references). The former type of learning is often possible while doing the dishes or cooking dinner. The latter demands 100% attention and active effort.

Obviously, passive information gathering can become active learning; all one has to do is simply look at their notes and start implementing. That’s what will happen here, in part, after all. But often the notes gather dust for months or years. Even weeks is far too long when the time to implementation could have been days, hours, or even just minutes (e.g., as you were consuming the resource). The shorter you can make the gap between getting / finding a quality idea and testing it, the faster your marketing progress is going to be thanks to a shortened feedback loop. That doesn’t always make immediate implementation better, of course. But there should be a bias toward rapid action with ads, since you can implement most ideas almost immediately.

So while reading / hearing about the common elements between 50 winning creatives can give you a general direction regarding where to start, making just 5 creatives, even if 4 of them are horrible, will teach you 10x more. That’s probably conservative, because just reading / listening to something, while it feels like you know more, actually increases your knowledge level little. It’s the implementation where you learn pretty much everything.

That’s the “why” behind this particular rule. Let’s talk a little more about its structure.

The three exceptions to the rule above are made for step-by-step instructional materials that can be actively implemented. I haven’t done much learning in any of these three areas recently, but one thing about rules (particularly if you tend to resist authority / structure) is it’s easy to suddenly find yourself extremely eager to do a bunch of things simply because they are no longer allowed. Then you quickly break your rule and it falls apart.

Always consider the true objective of what you’re trying to accomplish, rather than being super-rigid. People like to brag on Instagram about their super-Spartan and intense routines / rules / productivity habits, but most of this stuff is impractical nonsense. Even if they adhere to it (which most don’t), they’ve failed, because the productivity technique is just a means to an end, not the end itself.

In other words, the goal isn’t to make yourself miserable or “punish” yourself for previous “bad” / inefficient / ineffective behavior. It’s also not to impress other people; the “I stopped consuming all content and just went into straight Terminator-style execution mode” makes for a much sexier case study or social media post. But the only thing that actually matters is getting the actual outcome that you want.

Here, I’m trying to dramatically increase the number of creatives I’m testing so that I can (hopefully) sell books with the TikTok Ads. Since I keep gravitating toward passive information gathering (and have plenty of notes), the rule is structured to eliminate this (temporarily). But active information gathering in certain areas where it’s applied immediately would still be useful; getting rid of this would be overly stringent. By allowing practical exceptions, you can dramatically increase the effectiveness of a rule (which is really just measured by whether or not it helps you achieve the outcome you wanted).