This post is part of our Ad Academy series where we outline best practices and tips for creating ads on social media channels and using them to drive traffic to your website or generate leads. You can view the entire library of Ad Academy posts here and on the sidebar under the Ad Academy link.
Choosing the right creative for Facebook ads can be a challenge. After creating your campaign, defining your budget, and selecting the right audience and interests, it’s time to select images and copy that stand out and appeal to your target audience and drive clicks and engagement.
We’ll walk you through the steps below.
Step 1: Choosing your images
Choosing the images that will accompany your ad(s) is the first step in selecting ad creative. You should have a bank of custom branded images for this purpose, but if you don’t (or are simply interested in testing stock photos against branded images), choose from the stock photos Facebook provides at no charge.
Facebook recommends images sized 600 x 315 or larger; depending on the audience you’re targeting, keep in mind the screen resolution and size they tend to view your content on. Retina display monitors are built to showcase larger images, so if your audience frequently browses from such a device, choose your images accordingly.
- Upload a picture from your computer
- Browse your existing image library
- Find images using the Shutterstock database
You can test up to 6 images on each ad campaign. We recommend that you always test with more than one image–if there’s a chance another image will generate more engagement and clicks, why not take advantage of that?
A general rule to follow with choosing the right creative for Facebook ads: Don’t spend money chasing what you think should work. Spend money chasing what’s working the best.
And when you inevitably discover something that works even better than what you were using before, do that instead. If you follow this testing rule, you will continually improve your efforts.
Remember: If you’re using text in your images, make sure to limit the portion the text covers to 20% or less using Facebook’s image testing tool in Ads Manager. You don’t want to go through the trouble of creating and targeting an ad, only to have Facebook reject it because there is too much text in the ad image (it happens to the best of us).
Step 2: Writing effective ad copy
You have up to 90 characters. What do you write here? It depends on what you want users to do when they see your ad and who you’re directing your ad toward. You will need copy for the ad text, the headline, and the News Feed link description. (We’ll cover the headline and News Feed link description in the next section.)
Keep your ad copy short and to the point. If your brand is known for being witty, it’s fine to include some of that personality, but make sure the purpose of the ad is clear and that there’s more substance than fluff.
Here’s an example of ad copy we’ve used successfully in the past: “Friendly live receptionists. First month is free!” Notice that it’s casual, short and informative–this is what we’ve found our audience responds best to. Play around with tone and phrasing to see what your audience prefers.
Step 3: Writing headlines, News Feed link descriptions
News Feed link descriptions allows up to 90 characters and headlines allow up to 25 characters. Keep this in mind as you plan your ad. Consider also what you’ve written as the ad copy–don’t waste space repeating yourself. Use your characters to tell users more about why they should click!
One thing that separates the novice Facebook advertisers from the professionals? The level of preparation beforehand.
Have a few headlines and descriptions ready when you sit down to create your ads. This will make it much easier as you move through and create a few ads to test, and the quality and foresight of each one will be better than if you’d written them spontaneously.
Step 4: Selecting placement for your ads
Once you’ve selected the images and copy for your ads, the next step is choosing where you want your ads to be shown to the users you’ve targeted. If this is your first venture with Facebook ads, try them all. It’s the only way to know what will work for your brand!
If you’ve run Facebook ads in the past and know that Instagram and Right Column ads don’t convert for you, simply select News Feed, Mobile, and Audience Network as your ad placements.
These are the ad placements you can choose from:
- News Feed
- Mobile News Feed
- Right Column
- Audience Network
Test the results you get by tracking the success of your ads in each placement and see which placement you see the most clicks and engagement from.
Now that you’re done choosing the right creative for Facebook ads, click over to our guide to getting more likes, clicks to your website, and Facebook page engagement by spending $5 a day on Facebook ads.