Facebook Ads: types of campaigns and their structure

Maria S.

Written by Maria S.

In early 2014 Facebook modified the way in which its advertising campaigns were to be configured, to introduce a new organisation, that is currently still in use. It’s worth our time to stop and understand how this new structuring works, in order to shape our own campaigns accordingly, and to get the best possible performance our of the available budget. On the other hand, the platform allows us to set up several types of campaigns with different characteristics, depending on what we want to achieve with our ads.

In this post we are going to explain in detail how these Facebook Ads campaigns with a three-level structure work, and what are the 10 advertising campaign goals you can launch on Facebook.

Facebook Ads campaign structure by levels

Facebook advertising campaigns are structured into three configuration levels. This enables us, on one hand, to organise our different ads in an ordered manner, and on the other, to make comparative tests to discover which configuration is the most suitable one.

  • Campaign: a Facebook Ads campaign pursues the same advertising goal, defined by the type of campaign we’ve chosen, and we will explore it more in detail later in this post (to get more “Likes” on our page, more conversions on our website, etc.).
  • Ad group: this level groups ads and we can choose where in the platform we want our ad to be displayed, we allocate a budget to it, create a posting schedule and segment our audience. In other words, we establish our target, location and bid.
  • Advertisement: the ad is the embodiment of what the audience will see. That is, the ad designs and their content (text, images, videos, links, and call to action buttons).

Facebook Ads campaignsThe best way to understand these three levels is through a practical case. For example, we have an online clothing store that sells clothes for men and women. In this scenario (in an oversimplified manner) our Facebook Ads campaign structure would look like this:

  1. Campaign aiming to increase your website’s sales.
  2. We would create two ad groups, one of which is aimed at male customers, and the other at female customers.
  3. We would create at least two ads for each ad group. In ads directed to women, the message and the picture would reference female clothing, and its link would point to the appropriate section in the online store. As for ads segmented for men, would focus on the male audience and link to the men’s section in the online store. We would try at least two different ads in each group with small variations, like, for example, we can use photographs of two different clothing items, to see which one users find more attractive.

Sponsored ad on Facebook example

Facebook Ads example

As we can see, this structure by levels allows us to perform A/B tests, which in turn helps us to continue refining our campaign, keeping only those ads and ad groups that generate the most conversions. This way we will get the best performance out of our investment in advertising.

Types of campaigns available on Facebook Ads

There are several different types of campaigns, based on the goal you are aiming to achieve. The first step in the configuration of a campaign should be the definition of this goal. At the moment, Facebook Ads allows you to choose between 10 different campaign types:

To promote your posts:

Facebook Ads for promoting postsThis campaign type gives greater visibility to some of your post updates on your Facebook page. This way you get more social responses, through which you may, on one hand, increase your follower count (“Likes” to your Facebook page), and on the other hand, you can encourage interaction with your post in different ways: new comments, more likes or reactions, more views if it’s a video post, or more shares of your status update.

To promote your page:

Getting more likes to your Facebook pageHere the goal is to increase the number of followers who subscribe to your page. Also known as ‘fans’ or ‘likes’. This kind of ads is frequently used for status reasons: a page with a high follower count is usually perceived by users as a page with higher authority. Nevertheless, it is essential to segment the campaign correctly, so that these new fans are people who are indeed interested in what you are offering, otherwise you’ll just be getting people who simply click on the “Like” button of the ad, but will never bother to interact with your page, and thus you will end up damaging your EdgeRank.

To attract people to your website:

Attracting more traffic with Facebook AdsThese campaigns try and get more quality traffic to your website. For that reason, when setting up your campaign, you must enter your website’s URL address. If you want the ad to be displayed on the newsfeed for both mobile and desktop devices, it’s mandatory to associate it to a fan page. Thanks to this, your ad will be displayed as a status update, but unlike others, it will link to your website. If you don’t connect it to a Facebook page, the ad will only be available as a banner on the right-hand side of the computer.

To increase your website’s conversions:

Get more conversions on your website with Facebook AdsThe goal of these ads is to get users to perform specific actions on your website, that is, to get them to convert. When setting up your ad, you will need to enter the website on which you want conversions to be measured. Facebook allows to choose between different conversion types: payments, sign ups, potential customers, visits to key pages, placing items in a shopping cart, amongst others. The platform will generate a conversion pixel that must be entered into pages where you expect users to perform the action, in the section header of the HTML.

To increase your app installs:

Facebook Ads to increase app installsThis type of campaigns aims to increase the number of app downloads. The appearance of the ad, as with other campaign types, is that of a status update, but when users click on it, they will be taken to the app store.

It is recommended to segment this campaign type by smartphone users only (Android or iOS, depending on the app availability for either of these platforms), and even to refine the ads by phone model, to ensure that the person who sees the ad owns a device on which the app can be run. Moreover, you can choose the campaign to be displayed on mobile devices only, to make sure that when a target user sees the ad, they are using their phone and can download the app.

To increase interaction on your app:

Using Facebook Ads to increase app interactionAs opposed to previously mentioned types of ads, this one intends to convince the user to perform a specific action on the app store, for example, review the app. In this case, the link of your ad can point to different sections of the store.

For that reason, depending on what you’re looking for, you must segment the campaign by people who have already downloaded the app (if you want reviews), or who didn’t (for example, if you want to get users to sign up). Additionally, you should keep in mind the same segmentation criteria you’ve seen in the previous campaign type.

To reach people in the proximity of your business:

Reaching users near your business with Facebook AdsThis kind of campaigns is based on your target audience’s location. You want your ad to impact people who are located near your business. For this purpose, the segmentation is set up by adding your facilities’ address, and by establishing the desired range of action.

Moreover, you can also add a “Getting here” button as a call to action. When a user clicks on this button, they will receive instructions as to how to get to your business facilities.

To get more attendees to come to your event:

To get more attendees with Facebook AdsThis campaign works in a similar way to promoting posts, but instead of boosting visibility of status updates, it increases visibility of Events.

For this type of campaign, it’s very important to segment your audience based on their location, taking into account the magnitude of your event, and the maximum distance a person would be willing to travel in order to attend to it.

To get people to request your offer:

Get offer requests with Facebook AdsAs with the previous scenario, this campaign type increases visibility of Offers. In order to set up this ad, first you need to publish the offer on your Facebook page, with an expiration date, and if applicable, with a quantity limit, too. This kind of updates and ads will also carry the “Get offer” button.

In case of businesses with physical stores, we recommend segmenting the campaign by location, to reach people who are nearby.

To increase video views:

Get more video views with Facebook AdsWe are well aware of the power of videos in advertising. For that reason, this campaign type is very interesting if you want to improve the brand image of your business.

When setting up your campaign, you will be required to upload your video ad. It shouldn’t be longer than 45 minutes, or exceed 1,75 GB in size (you can see all the tech specs for uploading videos here).

Moreover, remember that the video’s thumbnail picture must comply with Facebook’s advertising guidelines.

Lastly, it is recommended to activate a call to action button. Facebook allows you to choose between “Buy”, “Book”, “More information”, “Sign up”, “Download” and “See more”.

In summary, being familiar with Facebook Ads campaign structure will enable us to improve our budget control and to enrich our advertising campaign, becoming aware of which options convert more at every level. On the other hand, we must keep in mind that Facebook Ads campaign types are based on the goal we want to accomplish, which reminds us that strategy must always prevail over the tool in use. Knowing about different types of ads provided by the platform will help us to choose that, which is better aligned with our business goals.

Maria S.
Autor: Maria S.

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