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Last week guest host Amy Bishop inquired about Favorite FB objective, Account structure to follow and more. Hosted by Julie F Bacchini, this week’s PPCChat session was inspired in part by last week’s chat. It was focused on Facebook Ad Creative, specific requirements, variables to test in ad creative and more.

Q1: Do you utilize one type of Facebook ad creative more than others? If so, why?


GIFS. The reason why? They’re easier than video but still stop scrolls and grab attention. Start with gifs/fast paced slideshows if you don’t have video resources. Barrier to entry is LOW. @markpgus

Video definitely. That pivot to video thing showed up in a big way for my clients. Awareness, store visit, apps, engagement, it’s video video video. @JuliaVyse

Video for sure. We’re also having a pretty big push for video – so much cheaper. @DarthSamk

I should do more video because, as @JuliaVyse said, it’s usually the most effective. But images are easier to get up and running, so that’s what I use most. @stevegibsonppc

We usually start with static ad unit as that’s what a client as access too. Video or Gifs can be harder to get but we work with each client to make it happen. can take time. @duanebrown

I prefer to work with video and especially vertical video. It’s convenient, it allows for full screen takeovers on mobile, you can group by video % views, and it’s typically more engaging. More video, the better. @RyBen3

Stews, soups and I have my final 3 trips of the year next month. I loved summer as a kid and as I get older, I find I love Autumn even more. Not having time off in the summer changes the game.@duanebrown

Am trying to get more video and pseudo video in the mix…@NeptuneMoon

Still images just by nature of the beast– easiest to get created and at scale. However, my preferred is a mix of assets, including video and images. Adding a quick animation to an image can really improve CTR & overall engagement. @nicoleinabox

Just that: that creative determines performance. That you can’t half-ass it and expect it to work.@stevegibsonppc

We tend to use images and image carousels, but we’ve been exploring some video assets here and there.@marccxmedia


Q2: Do you have a process or specific requirements you share with clients when they want to start running Facebook advertising re: ad creative?


CREATIVE WILL MAKE OR BREAK YOUR EFFORTS! I try to make it very clear that a bad ad just won’t work. -Focus on Selling Propositions -Show Don’t Tell – Draw Attention to Key Copy With Emojis.  @markpgus

No real specific process. Try and get as many different types of resources as possible and let them know our rec’s – most clients are pretty open to listening/letting us test though. @DarthSamk

Not a particular process because different clients, different creative teams. But I share specs and suggestions for sure. @JuliaVyse

Making use we understand our USP, target market and that we have ad copy to go with creative. Also based on our account audit, answer any questions before we get stated. @duanebrown

I find the challenge is clients who have enough video assets. Usually, long form video (4 minutes or longer) is best & I cut the content up in a ‘worst-case scenario’. I like to answer questions customers have in the content. It enhances customer learning phases. @RyBen3

I always bring up, right from the beginning, how intensive Facebook is when it comes to fresh creative. It is not like any other place they’ve advertised before in this regard and they generally, really have no idea what to expect. @NeptuneMoon

Usually explain that there are a lot of options because they are bound to see something mid build out that they will want to do. Best thing is get ahead, so options, and have confidence in your initial ad ideas. @zmste

We have a creative best practice one-sheeter that outlines specs & best practices for all the major ad types/creative on FB. During initial strategy, we also try to be consultative on how to best apply that towards their brand. @nicoleinabox

I share the specs, 20% text rule & suggest that creative must give a fair indication of the product or service being advertised.  @bufoting

None in particular. The clients have been good about providing additional new images as needed.@marccxmedia


Q3: Have you found a specific cadence that generally works for Facebook ad creative in your accounts? What is the sample size of impressions you consider before deciding on performance of an ad’s creative?


I look at spend vs ATC, IC and purchase numbers. At some point the numbers just don’t work. With our Canadian clients, I find larger audience sizes matter more then our USA clients as we cam only sale LAL so far in a small country. @duanebrown

I have found it depends on audience size a lot too – smaller the audience, the more frequent the creative changes you need (fatigue is faster). Agree on engagement being the best proxy for when to switch out ads. @NeptuneMoon

I haven’t found a perfect cadence, but I have finally given up on relevancy/creative freshness score. Just look at engagement and make your decision based on user interaction. @JuliaVyse

CBO has created a bad scenario of impressions being strangled because one audiences are larger than the others taking the lion share of budget. I usually have one campaign setup for testing with the best audience driving 1-2 ads. @zmste

I’ve noticed for real estate, having building elevation in the creative gives more CTR & conversions as compared to including interiors. 1000 impressions woykd be a fair sample size to test performance imo. @bufoting

We keep an eye on what generates leads, and we’re regularly testing different audiences.@marccxmedia


Q4: What is the best length for videos in ads in your experience? What has performed well (or not so well) in accounts you’ve worked on?


In most of my accounts, shorter videos perform best ON ENGINE. However, if Conversions are the goal, I’ve found in some instances, longer videos have seen better ON SITE engagement once the user clicks– in many instances, higher conversion rate. @nicoleinabox

Typically around 30 seconds has performed best. I may be saying that because that’s where most of the video creative we receive falls though – any shorter and you’re not weeding out audiences as well. @DarthSamk

Make your ads at least 15 seconds… The reason is because that’s a full ThruPlay (FBs new video metric). If you cut it shorter than that, you aren’t getting as much data as possible/building a quality audience through Video Views. @markpgus

short. like really short. disappointingly short. 6s-15s, anything longer and it’s better for YT or FB Watch. @JuliaVyse


Q5: Have you found that different types of ad creative work better or worse with different campaign objectives on Facebook?


I don’t like video for the Lead objective but I would still test if you have a good asset! I think it’s generally harder to have a good B2B video. Doable, but more difficult. A5: Another underrated move is your catalog. Like I said dynamic prospecting is a goldmine for Ecomm. Creating a lifestyle catalog or at least spicing it up with colored backgrounds etc is SUPER UNDERUTILIZED @markpgus

For Ecomm, Dynamic Ads usually KILL IT. However, if you have a boring catalog, mix it up with a collection ad! Get a nice lifestyle video/image and have that beautiful catalog below! @markpgus

What you sell is a big part of this question. Seen a video work well as a revenue drive for a prospecting audience for a mattress brand in an account I audited. It was VERY profitable. Some odd reason client wasn’t doing more video.@duanebrown

Traffic has been better with a RM/aware audience and solid image creative. Brand building has been great with video. Conversions – depends a bit more, don’t really have a clear winner.@DarthSamk

As much as I love video, they haven’t been the best way to drive ‘traffic’ goals. Generally speaking, Static and strong copy have been more effective on driving clicks. However, Conversion goals have been better with video.@RyBen3

not really. The type of creative *should* probably match the desired outcome, but video seems to lift all boats, at least for now. @JuliaVyse

Not in particular. Images tend to help for ecommerce-related leads.@marccxmedia


Q6: What variables do you typically test in ad creative on Facebook?


audience interests, location, conversion volume, conversion rate, prospecting vs retargeting…all kinds of things! @JuliaVyse

The most obvious things to test are still worth testing – different images, different headlines or different CTAs.@NeptuneMoon

Ad copy and creative or audiences.@duanebrown

Price inclusion and different CTA’s are variables we test in creatives. @bufoting

We test different images, different audiences (lookalikes, interests, ages, etc.), different CTA text. @marccxmedia

It really depends! Usually: CTA buttons – both on ad & on image if it makes sense. For example, in recruiting, we’ve found ‘Search Openings’ in ad creative works better than ‘Apply Now’ -Overall, we try larger swings first to see what works. @nicoleinabox

FB Ad Tests 1. Lifestyle/Product Centric 2. Long Copy/Short Copy 3. Emojis/No Emojis 4. Text on Image/Image Only. @markpgus


Q7: What is something that worked for you with ad creative that surprised you? How was it surprising?


Surprising Results NO DESCRIPTION I’m not saying this is money in the bank everytime, but if you have a really powerful video/image it can distract from what you want them to take away! @markpgus

a colleague noticed that two creatives we ran each worked better with opposite audiences. It surprised me as they were both prospecting to one relatively modest pool, but the proof was in the pudding. so to speak.@JuliaVyse

I was surprised that “selfie” or front facing camera video performed just as well in some cases as a professional video. People want authenticity in ads and that ad success proved that. People can relate more with it. @RyBen3

Tend to get too caught up in a whole new video/image – @NeptuneMoon and @markpgus both touched on it but putting an extra 10 minutes on a description can change things more than I realize. Ask a few people around the office and get some new ideas coming in. @DarthSamk


Q8: Any “lessons learned” type of advice you’d like to share regarding Facebook ad creative?


This is tough for a lot of us… But… If you’re going to run a stock image you might want to reconsider running FB ads. I’m not saying it can’t work, but I’m saying the chances of it not working is high. A B2B ad with people in a meeting room… no stop…@markpgus

The text to image ratio on Facebook applies to your video thumbnails. Make/choose a thumbnail with limited text! @JuliaVyse


Q9: What are the biggest challenges you face when it comes to creative assets when advertising on Facebook?


Having enough assets available to make series of ads that can be ready to run is the biggest challenge for me with FB creative. I will reiterate that clients are truly not prepared for the breakneck pace that ads need to change there. @NeptuneMoon

Same problem when I needed banner ads back in the day for Google. Getting the right assets made is never easy. Not everyone moves at the same pace. Trying to build a plan and process for this is not easy. Not everyone moves at same pace. @duanebrown

No surprise – just getting enough new, quality creative to run. @DarthSamk

getting them created. the cost of good creative is major, and tho FB has some creative support, it’s not always on brand and can cut out the creative team. It’s the production baby.@JuliaVyse

Having enough. I feel like I am quite demanding on creative to produce new assets all the time. The fresher your creative, the more you can learn. The more you learn, the better you know what works & can stop spending on stuff that doesn’t. @RyBen3

We’ve had some image creatives that needed to be updated because they had too much text included in the image. That’s the latest challenge that comes to mind. @marccxmedia

Biggest challenge is getting the freaking assets!!!! I’ve been doing a lot of work with an agency that has this figured out to a science. Each client they take on depending on management fee is alloted “creative points” to spend internally to get ads designed. @markpgus


Q10: What do you wish you understood better about how ad creative impacts Facebook advertising performance?


What the impact ACTUALLY is. I’ve been told to ignore relevance score, and then use it. To focus on Thru-Play, but then also engagement. make up your minds jerks! give me a damn benchmark! @JuliaVyse


Q11: What do you wish clients understood better about how ad creative impacts Facebook advertising performance? 


That ads here are not shown because someone took at active step asking to be shown ads about X – you’re ads are interfering with their primary purpose on FB. Remember that and design accordingly! @NeptuneMoon

That creative costs money. While it’s good that people recognize that they need to spend money on ads they think that hiring a digital ads company means the ads are included… Did Don Draper front the creative costs so they could run a billboard… NO. @markpgus

Some client need to learn if it’s not working and even if the change is not 100% on brand. Make the change and give it a test. What worked 18 months ago is different then today. @duanebrown


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