Facebook Updates For Authors [Feb. 23]

Facebook UpdatesThis week I sat in on a Facebook Blueprint webinar and listened to Rick Mulready’s Q & A podcast and learned a couple important points of emphasis about Facebook ads I’d like to pass on.

Retargeting Ads

For those of you that use Facebook’s retargeting ad feature by embedding the conversion pixel on a landing page or web page and then using that to generate a custom audience, just a heads up here. Facebook is now flagging accounts that have specific language around retargeting such as “I noticed you checked out such and such.” According to Facebook, this implies to the user that you have been tracking their behavior which is a huge no-no in Facebook’s privacy culture. Instead of using the words you and your, Facebook wants advertisers to concentrate on the product.

Ad Review Process

In addition to reviewing your ad for copy, image, and so forth, Facebook is also checking out any landing page or web page you are sending people to in order to check for compliance with their advertising policies. Just be aware that if you get an ad rejected, it may have to do with your landing page so check their ad policies here.

Ad Placements

Paid traffic and Facebook expert Rick Mulready now recommends that advertisers test the “All Placements” automated option for placing ads rather than breaking out specific options for targeting such as mobile or newsfeed. Mulready claims that there is evidence Facebook’s algorithms are getting much better at attracting traffic to your ads in all locations. Part of this had to do with the new Facebook page layout and part to increasingly sophisticated algorithms. He encourages advertisers to test that option for maximum results.

How To Increase Your Budget

Mulready and other Facebooks experts have always advocated that incremental increases in successful ads will always bring the best results. He recommends budget increases of 25% or less and then giving ads a few days “in the new pool” to see results. Because of Facebook’s sophisticated ad value formula, too much of a budget increase puts your ad in a new competitive category with other advertisers and initiates a new process for a relevance score. Also audience targeting just goes back to square one which may result in poor ad results.

A couple quick reminders:
  • Always remember: never tweak an ad already running. Copy the ad and start a new run. Tweaking an existing ad confuses the ad algorithms.
  • If your ad is not performing well or quits delivering it is because Facebook cannot find an “opportunity” to deliver your ad under the guidelines you have stipulated. Just because you choose an audience and put in a budget does not guarantee ad delivery. You are in competition with all the other advertisers for that audience. Keep in mind the competition for advertising spots these days is staggering.
  • Make sure you have a Facebook pixel installed on your website so Facebook can be gathering data on your website visitors to form future audiences for your ads. The key to ads in the future is going to be targeting. The more you can target “warm audiences” or people that are already aware of you, the better results you will have.

  • Rick Pack

    This is great information and I appreciate the time, Chris, that you put into this response!

  • Chris Syme

    Yes Rick. I take all my advice on targeting and budget from Rick Mulready and Amy Porterfield–they are two of the go-to experts on Facebook ads and you can bank on their advice. They have a whole cohort of people constantly running and testing ads at various price points in many different sectors and have been at it since Facebook started. They are also very informed on all the latest algorithm changes. Rick suggests that budgets not be increased by anything more than 10% at a time and then giving that new budget time to “set” before doing any more changes. He (and everyone else that knows Facebook ads) always recommend never changing anything in the creative (image, copy, etc), targeting, or delivery as that is what causes algorithm confusion. To change those elements, run another ad against the present ad (A & B testing) to see which one works better. Only change one element at a time to see if that triggers upward movement. In all the ad tests I have run, I always increase the budget on the best test ad without duplicating and running another ad. Also keep in mind that you cannot change your budget type (daily or lifetime) without creating a new ad set.

  • Rick Pack

    Thank you for this great post. Some claim that adjusting the budget in any way resets the algorithm. I believe you are saying that as far as you know, the algorithm only resets with respect to budget adjustments if the increase / decrease moves the ad to a new competitive category. Is that correct?