Over the years, we’ve learned the importance of ad relevance on Facebook, Instagram, and all other platforms and thanks to the asset customization tool on Facebook, you’re about to reach a whole new level of ad relevance on this platform. Whether you advertise on the platforms mentioned or even Messenger, it’s possible to assign specific thumbnails and alter the creatives used for Stories, feed ads, and other placements.
In short, you’re now able to use one creative asset and customize it for all placements. Don’t worry, we aren’t going to encourage you to leave Ads Manager. Everything we talk about today is accessible in Ads Manager, and we’re going to break down everything you need to know.
Before anything else, we need to upload a creative for an ad. Depending on the campaign, you may take something from Instagram or Facebook, or you might upload it directly from your device.
To get started, find the ad level within the ad set of the chosen campaign. As you scroll down, you’ll see the Create Ad tab and an option to Add Media. Click on the drop-down menu and Add Video. If you aren’t looking for a video in Page Videos or Video URL, you should see the option to Upload next to the new drop-down menu.
Once the video has loaded, the screen is replaced by an ad preview panel. As you’ll see, this essentially shows how the video will look across all the different ad placements. How will it look in feeds? How does the appearance change for apps and other placements?
At this stage, you’re following the normal procedure for launching a new ad campaign. You’ll probably want to add some text and maybe even a CTA. Don’t feel pressure to add a CTA though as they aren’t always applicable. Sure, they help if you want people to click through to your website or another page. However, some campaigns are all about post engagement, and CTAs aren’t necessary here.
In this next stage, you’ll notice that the platform has automatically generated a video thumbnail. The problem for some people is that the thumbnail is taken from a random point in the video. While this seems useful and can work, there’s no guarantee that the thumbnail is an accurate reflection of the video content. For example, those who like to include memes and funny pictures might find that this meme has been chosen as the video thumbnail. Though it might bring a smile, it isn’t relevant for the campaign and the message you’re trying to convey.
If you want to change the thumbnail, click on Edit Video on the left-hand side of the page. On the new screen, click on Thumbnail and change it from Automatic to Custom. From here, you’ll see several other thumbnails that the platform has automatically generated. Since these are snapshots of the creative itself, you should find something more relevant.
You may have known about the option to edit your thumbnail, but did you know that it’s possible to adjust all ad placements using the asset customization tool? On the same page, look under the Edit Video button and there’s a drop-down list where we can customize placements. You can customize the following:
In addition to those listed, you can also customize the creative for Messenger Inbox, Instagram Stories, and other placements using the initial creative as a base. After choosing a specific placement, you’ll see options to crop, change, trim, caption, and add a text or logo overlay.
This is one of the best ways to increase ad relevance using the asset customization tool. For example, let’s imagine a three minute creative. While this works in some formats, you wouldn’t want a three-minute video on Instagram Stories. As we all know, Stories is all about short clips and images.
Within the same campaign, it’s possible to adjust the creative used for Instagram Stories. Although you could keep the video as is, you should check to see how it appears for users. We’re sure you’ve seen ads with closed captions, ad copy, CTAs, and then the video. Often, it’s too much to take in and the viewer just taps through as quickly as possible.
We can’t speak for your goals, but it’s safe to assume that you want people to pay attention to your ads rather than tapping straight through? Therefore, we recommend changing the creative for this specific placement. Remember you aren’t changing the creative for the whole campaign, just for those who are targeted on Instagram Stories. For instance, you might decide that a static image will generate the results you need rather than the full video.
To do this, select the Change option and look through your images to find an appropriate one. Once the image is selected, play around with cropping and make sure you have a good size for the ad. It’s easy enough to see how the creative looks before publishing so make sure you double-check to prevent a disaster.
Remember, this is still the same campaign which means the image ad, as an Instagram story, will still have the original text. Don’t crop so much that you lose this text, otherwise, all the viewer sees is an image with no context or explanation.
Top Tip - Try to keep all text in a video or photo within the middle section of the cropping box (1080 x 1080). If you have text at the sides, this will soon disappear when you go to crop which limits the editing opportunities.
On social media, advertising is all about real estate. With a 1080 x 1080 video, you’ll use a good amount of space on the screens of users. However, there could be opportunities to take some more, or at least utilize the space more effectively…and this is where cropping comes in.
With the Crop option on the same page, you can make small changes to the dimensions of the video for different placements. For example, you might want to put the video into 4:5 and this increases the size to 1350 x 1080 (the maximum for ads). Whenever you make changes, remember to check the preview screen to prevent publishing an ad that chops off critical details.
If you’re happy with how it looks, you’ll need to click Apply and then Save. Depending on the change, Ads Manager can take a minute or so to complete the cropping.
The beauty of the asset customization tool is that we can make changes for every single ad placement; the days of choosing a creative that works across all placements are over. Instead, we optimize the creative from every angle.
What works for each placement? How can we optimize the creative for the placement to encourage engagement and positive results? Facebook now allows us to not only ask these questions, but more importantly answers them with reflexible options. We don’t even need to leave the Ads Manager.
We recommend playing around with the asset customization tool because you can:
To finish, we have some tips for those who want to make their Facebook ads more relevant.
This might seem like a basic piece of advice, but it’s still an area where businesses go wrong. It’s impossible to make relevant ads if you don’t have a full understanding of your buyer persona. What are their biggest pain points and concerns? What life do they have? How can you help them overcome their problems? How much money do they earn? Where do they live?
You don’t need to target your whole audience with one ad campaign; instead, segment the audience according to specific demographics and other factors. This way, you create tailored ad campaigns for each segment.
Just like Google, Facebook scores ads based on relevance and several other factors. Generated by algorithms and machine learning rather than humans, you can improve your score with better ad content, ad performance, and ad feedback.
To improve relevance score on Facebook (in fact, on any advertising platform), your existing ads need to perform well. Therefore, it’s not just a case of continually creating fantastic ads. Rather, make sure the existing campaigns are performing as well as expected. With strong performance, relevance score improves and every new ad you create has a better chance of success.
Finally, implement everything you’ve learned today into your marketing strategy. With placement asset customization, you ensure that the ad is perfect for every single placement across social media (especially important with the expanding Facebook-Instagram platform!).
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