7 Ways to Make Sure Your Facebook Ad Creative Guarantees Clicks

Ok you’ve done it.

You’ve convinced the owner, or upper management of your company that Facebook ads are going to bring in so much new business that they can buy a company yacht and sail around the world while the team operates its headquarters from the stern of the “Maid O’ Sails”.

Sounds magical, right?

Alright fine. I’m embellishing a bit.

But you gotta do what you gotta do to convince non-marketers of the incredible opportunity that Facebook ads gives businesses in all industries. The opportunity, or advantage, is especially high in medium-sized cities like Syracuse, NY or Cary, NC, due to low competition from local small businesses. 

You can really kill it right now if you are smart about targeting with your Facebook ads. But as businesses of all sizes catch on, that advantage is quickly diminishing. 

Now is the time to invest in Facebook Advertising if your company has not already. 

BUT, you need to make sure one thing is very clear: just buying Facebook ads isn’t the thing that will bring results. The creative–you know, pictures, videos and copy–is what will buy your company a unicorn office-yacht.

best facebook ads

 

Ok, I’m done with the yacht-thing. But you get my point (I hope).

In order for your Facebook ad campaigns to generate actual results while maintaining a positive ROI, you need to have a great mix of math and art.

In this article I’m going to focus on the art piece because that’s where most businesses fail and lose boat loads of money.

So let’s get started…

Understand specific problems of specific people—focus your Facebook Ad creative on solving that problem

This seems obvious, but don’t overlook its impact on every dollar you spend from here on out. 

If every letter you type, and every photo you take doesn’t have a direct relation to a very specific person, you are less likely to get the results you want.

So do your homework. 

Don’t just blanket your audience and say “we want to target 25-34 year old women in Chicago”. Chances are really slim that you will be able to produce creative that will engage all of the different types of women in that audience (There are 1,490,909 of them, we checked).

how to use facebook ad manager

Instead, build out very specific audiences by creating a persona:

“Ashley”

  • 27 year old women 
  • Lives in Buffalo Grove, IL
  • Likes gardening
  • Owns their home
  • Earns $75k
  • Single 

By building out a very specific audience persona like “Ashley”, you can now figure out how your company can solve her very specific problems.

If you do your research, you might find that people like Ashley often have trouble finding the time to garden in their busy schedules. 

If your product happens to be able to help her make gardening less time-consuming, you can produce creative that shows her exactly how you can solve that problem.

You can start by gathering a real life story from a current customer like Ashley.  Create some great copy like: “Join 367 other busy gardeners like Ashley who have grown beautiful gardens in just 7 minutes per day using this.”

Then you pair that with a very engaging, short video that shows exactly how your product can help someone like Ashley spend just 7-minutes per day to grow a beautiful flourishing garden.

Boom *mic drop*.

I know, easier said than done. But that’s why companies like you, hire companies like us. 

Boost or Promote posts to find the most engaging creative

PPE stands for Page Post Engagement BTW (calling all acronym police!)

Page Post Engagement Ads are great for building social proof and gaining awareness (and eventually, sales).

Basically: instead of paying for clicks, conversions or reach, you are paying for likes, comments, shares or views.  When you are running PPE Ads, you are trying to get people to love you.

But money will only get you there, you can’t buy love. 

how facebook ads can increase sales
Hey everyone, can I play?

Just like every single other type of advertising—creative is the variable.

So let’s talk about how to make sure you have the best possible creative before you go H.A.M. on your marketing budget.

First, you want to create a bunch of images to share on your Facebook page. Once you share them, boost each of them with $5-$20 for a day, maybe two.

If you already have a large Facebook community, boost them to your followers—if not, then promote them to a lookalike community or people that are interested in your industry.

Then watch to see which one gets the most likes, comments or shares. 

The 1 or 2 that are outliers and get good engagement, are the ones that you will convert into PPE Ads. 

When split testing Facebook ad creative, test no more than one variable at a time

Ok, so above we came up with one potential ad designed to target one specific persona (Ashley).  But how do you know this is the perfect presentation to get someone like Ashley to either engage or buy?

I’ll answer for you: you don’t.

And also, we don’t. In fact; no one knows because creative is subjective. 

This commercial makes absolutely no sense. And it boosted Cadbury’s sales by 9%

If making people love your videos and pictures on the first try was easy, then we would all be sharing videos like this on our iPhones and watching the greenbacks roll in.

Not quite that easy.

What we can do is split test (or A/B test) the creative to find out what the market thinks about our creative.

But be careful not to test too many variations, because Facebook’s Ad algorithm might not give a “diamond-in-the-rough” a chance.

Let me explain.

Ok so, inside Facebook Ads Manager we have campaigns, which include ad sets, which include ads:

facebook ads campaign structure

The “campaign” refers to the goals and budget of your campaign. The ad sets includes your audience and targeting parameters. And the ads are the creative.  

For the sake of this chat we’re having, we want to split test the ad creative. Plus Consumer Acquisition found that Images are responsible for 75-90% of ad performance–so stay with me.

Since we want to test the creative, we are looking at images/video, headlines, descriptions and ad copy.

If we were to test 3 different images/videos, 3 different headlines, 3 different descriptions and 3 different versions of ad copy, it would look something like the chart below.

split testing facebook ads
My head hurts.

Before I dive into the massive cluster f*** that this will present to you, it’s important to note something. 

Facebook’s Ad Algorithm needs to achieve about 50 events (based on your campaign goals) in about 7 days in order to give you accurate split test data. 

But this is for each ad.

This means that if you have 81 different ads (based on our chart above), each ad needs to get 50 events to collect the most accurate data.

**81 times…50…carry the…..THAT’S 4,050 EVENTS 🤯 

facebook ad testing
Breathe, just breathe.

Can you imagine the budget you would need to try to achieve that? Yea me either.

So instead, let’s just test one thing at a time. 

Here’s how you do it:

Since images are the most important factor in ad performance, we want to start there.  Keep it simple–get your creative team to design three ad images to test (or videos if you want awareness).

Then write the same copy across all ads and let it run for a week. 

how to a b test facebook ad creative

example of split test ad images by Minted.

After you get some data you can sink your teeth into, select the best performing image, and run another Facebook split test changing up the headlines instead.

Using this process you can trickle your budget into the best performing ad, before you go for the home run.  

Make separate ad creative for each specific persona you want to target 

My wife and I both like Crossfit, but she likes and follows different people than I do—so why would brands target us with the same exact content?

Seems like a no-brainer, but brands are getting overwhelmed and are just “checking the box” when it comes to creative content. 

Almost every brand has more than one type of person you are targeting.

A baby appliance brand could have the following potential customers:

  • New moms
  • New dads
  • Parents of new parents
  • Friends of new parents
  • Family members of new parents
  • Parents having a second or third child

Now, conventional strategy is to make ads that target all of these audiences at the same time in a general way, or to pick your most valuable audience and just target them.

But if your ready to really do some damage, we need to go deep on each audience and speak to them directly.

This is where the magic happens. 

facebook creative
Yes, like unicorn magic.

The problem most brands come across is figuring out how to make the creative for each audience efficiently.

They think it will be too expensive.

And it can be, but it doesn’t need to be.

Here is the most efficient content strategy we’ve ever used; and it works.

Hire influencers in each demographic to create the content for you and share it with their audience. 

The results are amazing:

  • You find great partners to help you do market and product research
  • You get brand awareness with potential customers 
  • You get great content to use in your ad campaigns
  • You can do this with hundreds of influencers at once
  • The cost is either only the cost of your product, or COGS + a small influencer fee

So if you commit and do this right, you should have plenty of targeted creative for each campaign you setup (one campaign for each audience to start).

Then, inside these campaigns, you can test 2-3 different ads to find the best performer.

But the best part is, you are finding the best performer across 6 different audiences, so you get 6x the growth you would have if you just ran one ad campaign to everyone.

Note: if you don’t have a large budget, start with just one audience. But DO NOT blanket the entire group. 

Use video for more eyeballs on your brand

So you want thousands of people to see you brand? Run video ads.

You want people to love your brand? Run great stories as video ads.

On Facebook, viewers spend on average 5x longer looking at your videos than an image. 

So, imagine they are scrolling through Facebook or Instagram and they stop to watch your video. In the first 2 seconds, one of two things will happen:

  1. They will lose interest because it’s not interesting enough to stop what they are searching for.
  2. You’ve made an impactful video that delivers something valuable, and they keep watching.

Obviously we all are aiming for #2, and if you understand how to make great content, you will get vastly better reach and engagement than a standard image.

Psychologist Daniel Berlyne, one of the most important figures in the 20th century study of curiosity identified a main form of human curiosity as epistemic.

This type of curiosity is described as a drive aimed “not only at obtaining access to information-bearing stimulation, capable of dispelling uncertainties of the moment, but also at acquiring knowledge”

So when someone is scrolling through their news feed on Facebook or Instagram and they see a video start playing, there is a high likelihood that they will give it a few seconds to evaluate if will make their life better.

This is an example of why we constantly advise people that creative is the single most important factor to successful marketing.

And that will never change unless the robots take over the human race and enslave us to clean their house.

Which I’m pretty sure is already happening because the most advanced robot in the world can’t even vacuum yet

how to successfully use facebook ad creative.jpg

…and I’m pretty sure Marie Kondo is secretly a robot.

marie kondo

So the moral of the story is that video is the best type of Facebook ad creative for awareness, reach and engagement. 

Use static images or graphics for engagement or clicks 

Now that I just got done explaining that video will turn your Facebook ads into unicorns (until the robots come), let’s talk about when static images might serve you better.

If you want people to click through to a landing page and video isn’t the best way to go. Remember when we talked about people stopping to watch your video if it’s interesting? 

Well, there is a definite a limit on how many times you can distract someone. 

Getting them to stop to watch your video AND click through to your website AND read your sales page or surf your products, well, it’s highly unlikely.

The key to being successful with Facebook ad creative, is to stay focused.

Facebook advertising made easy
I want them to watch my video, and like my post, and click on my ad, and sign up for my…squIRREL!”

So if your #1 goal is to get someone to click-through to your landing page, then make sure everything maps to that.  You want to impact them as quickly as you can, and limit the actions they have to take before clicking on that “Learn More” or “Buy Now” button. 

A viewer can make an initial decision in about 1/10th of a second which means if you distract them with anything else, your chances could start to go way down, or completely disappear.

It might sound like I’m contradicting myself from my explanation of why video works. But remember: they work in different ways for completely different goals.

In the general sense, video is best for top of funnel awareness when you are trying to impress or engage someone for the first time.

It’s great for telling a story.

Images are best if someone already knows you, and you are trying to get them to perform a specific action. 

Of course there are plenty of images will win you fans as well.

facebook advertising ideas
I literally stared at this image for 3 minutes.

Get a professional copywriter to write your Facebook ads

This is my last tip, and it is not a small one.

I believe that although pictures and video will grab someone’s attention, copy will seal the deal on their decision.

It’s the ending of the story started by a great video or image.

It’s where you can instruct the viewer on what they should do next.

Way too many times I see Facebook ads that just state what something is, and it frustrates me because it’s such a wasted opportunity.

facebook product ad example

If you post a picture of a blue pair of running shoes, then why would you put “Blue Track Runners” in the ad description? I’m pretty sure most people will know they are looking at blue track shoes.

Instead, tell the end of that story — “Run more miles with smiles in our new ultralight runners.”

David Olgivy once said, “The more you tell, the more you sell.”

Here is a good example of how Dollar Shave Club told a mini-story with minimal copy to get Gillette users curious as to why they are better:

engaging facebook ad creative

So apply this to you Facebook ads, even if you have one line of space; tell the best truthful story you can with that space.

Wrapping it up

Remember, anyone can click “Promote” on a Facebook ad, but the creative included in that ad is what makes magic.

Far too often brands runs Facebook ads, get poor results and chock it up that “Facebook ads don’t work for my business”. But one thing is for sure, Facebook ads work—there are thousands of case studies out there showing that they do. 

The ticket to getting amazing results from your Facebook ads lies in the creative. 

Follow these 7 steps to make sure that your Facebook ad creative gets the results it deserves.

  1. Make sure it so,few a problem
  2. Boost your posts to find the most engaging creative 
  3. Split-test only 1 creative variable at a time 
  4. Use separate creative for each audience you target
  5. Use video for more awareness and reach
  6. Use images for more engagement or clicks
  7. Spend more time on your copy

Don’t cut corners with your Facebook ad creative, it’s the equivalent of flushing money down the drain.

How You’re Missing Out on Facebook Advertising & Facebook Marketing

There are almost 1.5 Billion people on Facebook. Nearly 1 Billion visit there every single day. That does not mean success on Facebook is easy. The noise and competition make it more difficult for brands. Most brands are on Facebook simply because they know that’s where they have to be. Few however understand how to best utilize it. With social media changing seemingly everyday, it’s important to not only understand the trends but how to plan for the future. The platform offers a number of ways businesses can take advantage of Facebook advertising and Facebook marketing.

New school Facebook success is buried in an old school secret.

What are Brands Doing Wrong

Focusing on Fans

Building a fanbase is not wrong, it’s the way these brands go about it. They are focusing on quantity and price over quality. To build the base they want, these brands are running contests and poorly targeted ads to people who probably won’t buy from them.

Focusing on Reach

At the top of the list, brands want as many fans for as little money as possible. Their thought process is simple, “who cares about quality!”. Then, when it comes time to measure, they focus on reach.

This is an issue.

The problem is, more often than not, these brands aren’t building a quality fan base in the first place. Because of this, the reach isn’t going to be great. The other problem is that their reach really isn’t a metric worth noting. It’s the ACTIONS THAT FOLLOW.

Focusing on Engagement

Now that a brand has a fanbase of people who really don’t care, they follow a metric that isn’t great, engagement. More often than not, brands realize that reach doesn’t tell them everything – They want engagement. Since it’s the likes, comments and shares they tell them how much people love them, they start sharing photos. Lots of photos and lots of videos. This causes another shift in focus to whether people are engaging with their content or not.

Unfortunately, this is flimsy at best as well. Engagement doesn’t tell us much since you invest in engagement. It is impossible to build anything long-term with comments, likes, shares and whatever other clicks you’re looking at.

Focusing on Sales

This little section is for the brands that look at only one thing, the bottom line. They want sales and once they have sales, they want more sales and the number of sales is how they measure their success.

No one likes being sold to, especially if it’s constant. Let’s be honest, it’s annoying. Additionally, if you’re selling to the wrong people, don’t expect much, if any success.

What Should Brands Do?

Looking at it from a 30,000 foot view, they should be building an audience of people who actually care about them. They should also be creating a ton of helpful content, investing in their website and driving people to it. Brands should also be building that website traffic to help build their Facebook audience which, in turn, will help drive more traffic, which drives more fans, which drives more sales.

Let’s take a closer look, of what your brand should be doing, step by step.

Invest in Your Website

While we’ve been talking about Facebook, your website is paramount in your success on Facebook. Before jumping to Facebook, be sure your website is exactly how it needs to be. Get the branding down, make sure it’s mobile responsive and know your voice. What’s more is to assign resources to creating quality content. This is important because it does take time brainstorming, creating, editing and promoting. On top of that, content creation is always on going.

Create Helpful Content

Answer someone’s questions, solve a problem and create helpful content that people actually care about. The best way to do this is to keep your target audience in mind. Make a list of all the questions they have related to your niche or problems that your products and services solves. Your customer service and sales team will be your biggest assets here. These questions are the cornerstones of your blog content with your most commonly asked questions as the titles of the blog posts.

The large majority of your posts will have nothing to do with your product. For example, if you are a business loan company, talking points like:

  • How much revenue do you need to get a loan?
  • What information is required to get a loan?
  • What type of loan should I get?

Share the Content

Fair warning, if your business is like the brands we’ve been talking about, when you write this content, your traffic won’t be bad, it will be terribly bad. Unfortunately, early on, there’s no way to avoid it. Reason being is we’re in the process of building your foundation.

Share your content on Facebook, even if you don’t have a ton of fans, or very few fans that don’t care about you. Share it. Be sure however, it is high quality and interesting. Try to start a conversation with it and inspire the audience to read. You have other channels you can communicate with your audience, like maybe email, share it there too.

Promote the Content

You want a big audience to see your content right? The best way to do this is by paying to reach people who will see value in your content. Spend a little money ($5.00-$10.00/day for 3-5 days can be huge) to not only share with your own fan base, but to an audience with related interests. You can do this simply by using Facebook’s Ad Platform. Using this, you’re able to target people based on lifestyle, location, buying histories and even income.

Create a Website Custom Audience and Target it

Now that we are driving traffic to the website, if you haven’t yet, it’s time to create a Website Custom Audience. While this is something that should have been done when the website was created, there’s no reason to worry because it’s only valuable when traffic comes in.

When you start promoting your content, many people will ignore it, but there will be those who will click so it’s important that we capture them. Create a Website Custom Audience of all website visitors during the past 6 months. Doing this ensures the audience will be as big as possible while being relevant enough to want to reach them again.

By using Website Custom Audiences, those who clicked your ad are now added to an audience that you can target later. As the website traffic increases, so does the Website Custom Audience. As the Website Custom Audience grows, you can start spending more money targeting a more specific audience.

Build Your Email List

At this point, we’ve been driving traffic to your website by sharing and promoting quality content. Additionally, your Website Custom Audience is growing as is your fan base. Now, we need to build your email list. You’ve been creating quality content but now we can package some of that content (maybe into an ebook?).

Share this lead machine with your fans. Continue to promote it to your fans and your website custom audience. You could even go further and have an opt-in widget on your site.

Sell Your Stuff

We have the quality content that your target audience wants and you’re using that content to drive people from Facebook to your website. Remarketing is working great with those who have been to your website to build your fan case and you’re even building an email list.

Time to sell!

You’ve got an email list, make sure to email those people regarding your product/service. Also, you have a relevant audience of website visitors, target those fans with ads that sell your product or service. You could even target your prior website visitors who aren’t fans.

When website traffic is good, it opens the door for more opportunities such as targeting website visitors based on specific pages they’ve visited.

Conclusion

This is not a short-term process. Create, share and promote quality content. The more content you create the more content you can promote. The more content you promote, the more traffic you drive. The more traffic you drive, the more relevant people you can target to read more content, join your email list but most importantly, buy stuff! Take advantage of Facebook advertising and Facebook marketing, the ROI you will see, if done correctly will provide you with tons of benefits.