Creating Useful Facebook Ads

By: Dave Nicosia

November 22, 2016

As mentioned in an earlier blog post, 72% of adults in the US visit Facebook at least once a day. Which means that marketing on this site is clearly important.

Unfortunately, organic reach for pages, especially new ones, has dropped significantly with more recent evolutions of Facebook’s newsfeed algorithm. This makes it extremely difficult for businesses to use their Facebook pages to build followings from the ground up.

But we have good news: There is another way!

If you have the money, it is a great idea to make Facebook ads for promotions. If you don’t, you probably should earmark some money for it.

There are two main kinds of Facebook ads:

  • Promoted posts
  • Regular Ads

So what’s the difference?

Promoted posts are a (usually successful) existing post that you made on your page that you turned into an ad. Some good uses of this feature would be limited edition giveaways or sales and promoting recent news. The boosted nature of the post has a time and reach limit, both of which are dependent upon how much you spend to promote the post.

The upside to this is that it uses your existing posts to create the ad. It simply gives an individual post a larger audience than it was given organically. The downside is that you cannot change out images and/or copy to allow the most potential.

On the other hand, a regular ad is very much like a Facebook post, but you create it from scratch. The downside is that you can’t use what posts you already have. But the upside to using the regular ad manager is that you can create multiple iterations of an ad to make sure that it is as successful as possible.

That concept is at the core of successful Facebook ad campaigns. You have to create multiple versions of the ad with multiple images and different copy to figure out what gives you the best ad performance, which you measure with the click through rate (CTR).


The ones that don’t work, you deactivate. The better your ads perform, the lower the cost of each click! So successful campaigns are significantly less expensive.

Once you have a set of successful ads, create an entirely new campaign with them, shutting down your old one. Soon, the cost per click will go down and you can begin to see if the clicks are generating the results you desire for your company such as more site visitors or higher rates of sales.

You also have to make sure that you’re not just making multiple generic ads. Different demographics of people are going to be interested in different things so your ads have to accommodate that. If you’re selling shoes, like Zappos for example, you are going to need a different ad for a woman aged 35 than you would for a man in his 50’s.

If you’re selling shoes, you are going to need a different ad for a woman aged 35 than you would for a man in his 50’s.


So how do you get successful Facebook ads?

One word:


Your image choices are the most important part of your Facebook ad. To optimize your Facebook ad, you have to test anywhere from 10-30 different related images, then test different versions of the best to find the most well liked images.

**TIP** You can use some text on your images. However, Facebook requires that you not cover more than 20% of the image in text. So think about the most important things you want to say, and find a way to incorporate your images.

Once you have optimized your images, you can start on your copy.

While the copy is less important, it’s still important and you need to optimize it the best you can. Make sure it is tied to your visual! That can help bring success to the ad and tie it all together.

Make sure that your copy connects to your audience, just like your images. You will speak to a college aged person differently than you would a person in their thirties.

Don’t try to send multiple messages. Keep it to one message and one call to action. Otherwise you will overwhelm your reader.

You can also use time to create a sense of urgency. Use phrases such as “Now,” “Today,” “Soon,” or “This week.” You can also use phrases like “only” to create urgency.

Creating well crafted Facebook ads can help elevate your brand and extend your reach. With the large number of people who use Facebook daily, making your brand stand out in the plethora of ads seen every day is of vital importance.