Facebook ads are one of the most popular pay-per-click (PPC) ad platforms, and for good reason. Facebook’s audience is large and diverse, ad engagement is fairly high overall, and the targeting options are impressive—with plenty of room for creativity.
It’s easy for businesses to get caught in the trap of getting comfortable with a single ad format that works well for them. They stick to the single-image newsfeed post, and occasionally switch up the image or text. If you’re looking to grow your business, however, you’d benefit most from using several different types of Facebook ads to do so.
Different ad formats and ad types offer different benefits, and in this post we’re going to look at four that businesses shouldn’t overlook.
Bonus: Download a free guide that teaches you how to turn Facebook traffic into sales in four simple steps using Hootsuite.
1. Video Ads
Video ads can convey a large amount of information in a way that is quick, concise, and engaging. Which would you rather do: watch a one-minute video, or read a minute’s worth of plain text?
If you’re like 59 percent of executives and 80 percent of consumers, you’d rather watch the video.
Video ads are great for building brand awareness. An introduction video that’s designed to appeal to customers in the discovery stage of the digital sales funnel can be one of the best ways to grab attention.
There’s no pressure to convert the audience right away either. All you need them to do is watch the video. Later on, you can run a retargeting ad from the audience that watched the video up to a certain point, and show them an offer ad or lead ad.
2. Lead ads
Lead ads are one of our favorite Facebook ad features. They started out as mobile-only placements, but now are available for desktop placements, too. When users click on a lead ad, a lead form will pop up. Facebook automatically fills in as much information for the user as possible (often with name, email address, and potentially phone number), making it exceptionally easy for users to convert on both mobile and desktop.
Lead Ads are ideal for pushing users into the consideration stage. They allow you to gain a lead’s contact information so you can then nurture them with email campaigns and retargeted Facebook ads.
Lead Ads can only be created from the “Lead Generation” objective. They’re most effective with an audience that is somewhat familiar with you, so using them as part of a retargeting campaign for an audience of past site visitors or those who watched your video are a good way to go. This will keep your relevance score and CTR high, and CPA as low as possible.
For more on this check out our post Using Facebook Lead Ads to Grow Your Business—7 Smart Ideas.
3. Offer Ads
Offer ads, in my opinion, are underused. I’ve only seen three or four in my newsfeed ever. But they can be incredibly effective when used in the right circumstances.
When shown to audiences who are tiptoeing between the consideration and purchase stages, offers might be the best nudge towards conversion. Offer ads can be used to convert tentative buyers, as well as to promote and push sales of new products. You can create offers for everything from free shipping on your first purchase to a deluxe sample of a new product with each order.
Offers are a feature that must be enabled. They can be found under the Ad Set category when creating your Facebook ads.
You can customize your offer extensively, including:
- Coming up with any offer you’d like
- Setting end dates and times that the offer can be used
- Enabling the offer for online only, or for online and in-store redemption
- Whether you want individualized or group promo codes (with individualized codes being easier to track and control)
- Disabling sharing buttons
- Adding terms and conditions
4. Carousel ads
Carousel ads can be useful at all stages of the digital sales funnel, with a number of different use cases. They can be used on both Facebook and Instagram ads, containing both images and videos (though videos will be square instead of landscape or portrait views). They have significantly higher CTRs, and often at much lower CPAs than most other ad formats.
When shown to audiences towards the beginning of the digital sales funnel, carousel ads should focus on showing off different products, or features that makes your products and services unique. This allows you to get your message across to users quickly, showing them why your brand is superior and generating demand for your product.
When you’re using carousel ads to increase conversions among warmer audiences, you have several options. You can still use the carousel ads to highlight features that make your product superior—this will still be effective.
You can also use retargeting to show a combination of products that will be most relevant to users based on their past purchase history. Did they buy an iPhone? Show them the iPhone otterbox case, the earbuds, the workout belt, and a screen protector. By showing complementary products, you can both drive further purchases and increase the average purchase value.
While many focus on the extensive targeting features Facebook ad offers as the platform’s biggest asset—which in many ways it is—the diverse ad formats and placements should also be taken into account. Brands and businesses can appeal to audience members in different stages of the digital sales funnel with the most effective messages and mediums possible, using ads types that are best suited for each individual goal. By getting creative and using a combination of different ad types and placements, businesses will be able to grow their businesses more efficiently through Facebook Ads.
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