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Your Quick Guide to Facebook Sponsored Posts

Facebook Sponsored Posts help brands reach more people, connect to the right people, and drive particular actions. With a variety of ad formats and a never-ending combination of audience targeting amongst the platform’s 1.47 billion users, Facebook provides opportunities for brand messaging unlike anything else.

The Anatomy of a Facebook Ad

Facebook Account: With the right level of access from page owners, you can promote an ad from the page of your choice. The page name and profile picture will show in the top left corner of the ad.

Post Text: This is the lengthiest section of text in the ad (125 characters recommended), which shows at the top above the image/video. The Post Text should include the majority of your story – what are you promoting? What benefits can the consumer expect? Why should they buy, sign up, watch more, or download?

Creative(s): Depending on the ad format you choose, you can have 1 image/video or up to 10 images/videos that scroll in a carousel ad. Keep in mind, shorter is better for Facebook video ads – under 30 seconds is recommended.

Headline(s): The headline stands out the most and should be the most compelling copy in the ad. It should be clear & concise but catch users’ attention as they scroll through their Facebook feeds. Keep headlines to 25 characters to ensure your copy will not be cut off on mobile devices. If using a carousel ad, you will have multiple 40-character headlines that correspond to each image or video.

Description Text(s): This text is the smaller copy that displays below the headline (or headlines for carousel ads). It is optional but provides additional opportunities to tell your brand’s story. Description text can be very useful, but it is limited to 30 characters for most ad formats and 20 characters for carousel ads.

Call-to-Action Button: There are multiple clickable components in an ad that will drive users to your specified destination – the image, the headline/description text, and the CTA button. You can choose from a predefined list of button options such as ‘Learn More,’ ‘Donate Now,’ and ‘See Menu.’ Including a button encourages people to take particular actions from your ad.

Example of a Facebook Promoted Post using Vert

To Boost or Promote?

Boosting: Boosting offers a simplified way to expand your post’s reach. This allows you to quickly amplify a post by choosing a target audience, timeframe, and budget right from your page. Boosting is really intended for awareness and engagement goals, but it can also be used to get people to your site if your Facebook post includes a website link.

Promoting: Promoting a post, on the other hand, provides more robust options for objectives, targeting, and ad formats/placements. You can promote a post through Facebook’s Ads Manager using the full suite of ad options. Objectives span from brand awareness to app installs to store visits and more. By promoting a post, you have access to all targeting categories and the ability to combine them in order to find the audience most relevant to your brand. This also opens the door to more creative and placement options that are not available through Boosting, such as specific call-to-action buttons and in-stream video ads.

When promoting a Facebook post, you will start by creating a Campaign. This is where you will choose the objective. In your campaign, you will create an Ad Set (or Ad Sets) which houses all targeting, budget, and timing details. Finally, you will create your Ad(s) within your ad sets.

Measuring Success

When creating goals or reporting on campaign performance, make sure you have the most relevant and most recent sources for benchmarking. Averages will change depending on the industry and the ad format. Because digital media is constantly changing, try to stick to sources within the last year. If your goal is to drive traffic to your website, you could use click-through rate and cost-per-click benchmarks or cost per landing page view for comparison. For an app install goal, look for cost-per-install benchmarks for your particular device type (iOS or Android) – and so on and so forth.

Facebook Advertising Bechmark Report with CTR by Industry Chart

Now that you are a Facebook ads expert, test combinations of formats, creative, audiences, and more to find what works best for you or your client!