Facebook Ads Features The Experts Gush About

Marketing Feb 7, 2018 43 minutes read

Table of contents

    Are Facebook Ads right for you? Probably — the Facebook Ads product has a solution for pretty much every type of marketer.

    Are you a big fan of video? They have that.  Do you focus on brand initiatives? Got that. What about retargeting? They are pretty much the best at that. Heck, they can even help you capture email addresses from within the Facebook interface, so you don’t even need to use a landing page.

    There is no other ad platform that can cover all these use cases so well. It’s no wonder that both agencies and small businesses consider Facebook ads to be more effective than boosting posts, so much so that 80% of their budget is spent on ads, and 20% on post boosts, according to Databox’s recent study on Facebook ads.

    But, with those capabilities comes plenty of complexity. The Facebook ads interface is notoriously difficult to navigate, and some of the best features are buried deep in the product. And if you don’t know where to look, you can’t come up with creative ways to use these features.ko

    So, before you start thinking about your strategy for creating a Facebook Ad, you need to understand all your options. We asked expert Facebook advertisers from the Databox Partner Program and beyond to share their favorite features, and how they use them in their own campaigns. Here is what they said.

    If you are unsure if Facebook Ads are a good fit for your business, check out our framework that shows when Facebook Ads can work.

    Favorite Tactics

    Demographic Targeting

    Facebook has thousands of data points on every user that can be applied in both B2B and B2C scenarios. You can ensure that people that see your ad will actually be qualified to buy your product, as opposed to ads shown on search engine result pages (SERPs) like Google Adwords, where you can only estimate search intent.

    Melissa Mannozzi
    Underground Creative Group

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Targeting

    Why I Love It: Like Google, Facebook allows targeting by location and demographics. But, it also helps narrow your audience even further by behaviors and interests, as well as:

    • Custom audiences (like previous traffic to your website) and
    • Look-alike audiences (like users with similarities to your current customer base or web visitors).

    Facebook collects over 10,000 user data points so your audience can be extremely and insanely accurate.

    Ryan VanDenabeele
    Impulse Creative

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Obviously the targeting capabilities of Facebook Ads are extremely powerful. That, and the Lead Ads ad style is a favorite because it has proven to get good results with lead generation, and it connects to HubSpot well.

    Why I Love It: The targeting aspect: Being able to create an audience of just about anything…home value range, job title, zip codes, interests, net worth, and so on is incredibly valuable to our clients. It puts our content in front of the right people. This helps to increase conversion rates and campaign ROI.

    Lead Ads: While this ad style is more expensive, it gets great results. It keeps people on Facebook and allows them to convert quickly and even helps by filling in information for them. That lead information can then be automatically synced with a HubSpot list, giving us the ability to nurture quickly and automatically. This ad style also can be created natively in HubSpot, giving us even more control of information and reporting.

    Richard Wood
    Six & Flow

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: The company selector tool in Audience Creation

    Why I Love It: This is a little-known option that sits within the demographic selection tools when creating audiences.

    The reason I love it is that it can, to a very high degree of accuracy, give you a data selections based on where a person works and what their role job title is (amongst others).

    This is hugely applicable when it comes to our ABM and B2B inbound activity for a number of our clients. A key part of ABM marketing is identifying key decision makers but also their influencing sphere of peers within any company. The CFO may hold the purse strings, but you will still need to convince the people around them that your product will benefit them too. Using the company selector tool and persona-focused inbound content you can ensure that relevant messaging is delivered to those influencers.

    It may take 10,000 impressions over weeks at a time but when that director says to their team, “I have a new product I want to try” and the team responds, “Hey, I know them too, they did a great blog on ……”, the recognition will only help to reinforce the decision-making process, making ABM and inbound much more impactful.

    Chris McGovern
    Presh Marketing Solutions

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Account Targeting

    Why I Love It: We focus primarily on B2B clients, so being able to target specific accounts is a major benefit for Facebook Ad Manager. For account-based campaigns, we simply add the target accounts to the criteria (under Demographics > Employer). To target the deal decision makers and influencers, we then add another filter to exclude all individuals who do not have a specific job title (under Demographics > Job Title).

    Jo Shaer

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: All the different audience types

    Why I Love It: The ability to create targeted audiences is particularly important these days. It’s called native advertising for a reason. Your business needs to show viewers the same sort of updates they would like, comment and share if it was coming from their friends… not shout at them about why they should BUY YOUR STUFF!

    The announcement about Facebook removing business posts from personal news feeds really sets the cat amongst the pigeons.

    I love being able to create custom audiences around website visits or engagement with the Facebook page or posts or videos. And being able to add in different interests/ behaviors/job titles as either ORs or ANDs. Having the option to add these different layers gives you the flexibility to reach the people that are most likely to want to see your content in their news feed.

    Martin Woods
    Indigoextra Ltd

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom targeting by interest

    Why I Love It: As someone who manages international campaigns, the custom targeting Facebook provides is ideal. It’s easy to target a specific country or region, and also choose from a range of careers or interests for each advert, so you can make sure that it reaches the right target audience.

    Michael J Schiemer
    Schiemer Consulting

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Targeting Competitors’ Page Followers

    Why I Love It: This is pretty simple, but if you want to snag customers from your competitors, go after the accounts that already follow them.

    When you are targeting your custom audience, under “Interests” choose your competitor’s page (or multiple pages). You already know they’re interested in your product or service and hopefully, you can show them why yours is superior.

    Katie Green
    HeadsUp Marketing

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Audience selection

    Why I Love It: Facebook’s audience selection tools give you detailed targeting options. You choose how specific your ad reach is, down to user behaviors, website visitors, or commonalities among buyers.

    This is my favorite capability by FAR! I love that Facebook gives you the power to be as detailed as you want, with features like Custom Audiences made up from your own contact list or Lookalike Audiences that pull characteristics from current customers to find similar people. Facebook’s audience selection tools make it easy to build campaigns that target exactly who you’re trying to reach. In my opinion, this Facebook Ads capability has something for everyone, whether you’re a novice advertiser or you’ve been creating ad campaigns for decades.

    Admir Rusidovic

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Targeting Options

    Why I Love It: Having the ability to instantly send our marketing message to our ideal customers is just out of this world. My marketing career started in the early 2000s. This was the time when the main method of marketing was via press, tv adverts, radio and leaflets. Each advert would take around 2 to 4 weeks to complete. To make matters worse, most publishers wanted our clients to sign up for a minimum of 4 weeks using the same advert.

    If the advert didn’t perform well, we had two options open to us. We cut our losses and start over again. Or we wait and correct the problems 4 weeks down the line.

    Today, with Facebook Ads we can make changes within minutes; we can start a new marketing campaign in seconds; and we can adjust and split test with ease.

    On top of this, Facebook allows us to target specific customers. We can target our local customers, customers passing through our area or even by age.

    Josh Sturgeon

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Hyper-Local Geo-Targeting

    Why I Love It: Few people realize how much opportunity there is on Facebook for B2B marketing. One of our favorite “hacks” helps us land clients at conferences… without ever going.

    In fact, as we detailed in a recent blog post, this strategy helped us land a Fortune 500 lead at a conference that was happening 2,000 miles away.

    Here’s how it works:

    • Target a campaign with a tight radius (1mi) around the conference center
    • Choose a reach objective to maximize delivery (optional)
    • Facebook can detect when people are traveling – choose this option in the locations drop down menu. (This helps weed out people who simply live within the 1mi radius you’re targeting and stay focused on conference attendees.)
    • Speak DIRECTLY to conference goers in your ad copy; call out the conference by name. Get creative here.

    Half the time, people who attend conferences are mindlessly scrolling through Facebook during a keynote or a break out session. So you can get visibility on par with vendors who paid $xx,xxx for a booth at the conference, for less than $50.

    Now, multiply this strategy across the dozens of events in your industry and VOILA! — you just saved tens of thousands of dollars in marketing spend and never left the comfort of your office.

    Kate Silva
    Primitive Social

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Behavioral targeting.

    Why I Love It: I love behavior targeting because you can reach people based on objectives, device habits, buying history and more! This capability, determined by a ton of different purchasing factors, has proven to be extremely useful.

    Marcus Miller
    Bowler Hat

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Targeting

    Why I Love It: Demographics, locations, interests, behaviors – it’s just so powerful. Like all good marketing, though, it’s important to make sure that the platform and targeting is a good fit for your requirements. And of course, ensuring the message you deliver is enticing and on-point.

    For example, if you are a wedding venue that wants to raise awareness, you can target the recently engaged.  Want to promote your wedding venue to the recently engaged? To make it enticing, host a champagne open-house evening. Make it fun. Start the relationship in a positive way and you will reap the rewards.

    Lisa Morgan
    Laire Group Marketing

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Zip Code Targeting

    Why I Love It: Some of our clients’ services are strictly limited by location. For example, our dentists only market to potential and existing patients close to their office’s geographic location. During our onboarding process, we identify client personas with zip code specifications for the most accurate ad placements. This way, we ensure every dollar of our Facebook advertising budget is spent on reaching the most accurate Facebook users.

    Custom Audiences

    If you use the Facebook Pixel on your own domain, you can track which pages your visitors have seen, then feed that information back to Facebook. When that same visitor logs into their Facebook account, you can target them with a customized ad based on the information they have already seen. It is similar to retargeting strategies from traditional display ads, except you know much more about the demographics of the ad viewer.

    Steve James
    Stream Creative

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom Audiences

    Why I Love It: Creating Custom Audiences in Facebook is extremely powerful and should be one of your first steps when setting up your campaigns and testing audiences. This allows you to reach people who have a relationship with your business already, whether they are existing customers, prospects or people who have interacted with your business on Facebook or other platforms. Start with uploading your email list to create a custom audience and then also build custom audiences around your site activity for starters. We use these audiences for all of our campaigns that are intended for our warm audiences.

    Our second favorite feature is Lookalike Audiences. Lookalike audiences provide us the opportunity to expand our audiences in our campaigns and reach more people based on either our warm audiences with similar demographics/interest/behaviors. This audience feature has been incredibly helpful in campaigns that promote offline events for our clients and for our own marketing conference.

    Derek Kinzer
    Lone Fir Creative

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom Audiences

    Why I Love It: Custom Audiences are how we supercharge our inbound marketing campaigns. Right content at the right time… Ring a bell? Yes, heard it a million times. With this, you can cater your content offers accordingly. Facebook custom audiences help you move faster.

    For example, for the top-of-funnel, upload a list of your customers to create a lookalike audience. From there you can get more granular, but the awareness stage is a great place to serve up blogs, freebies, etc. With custom audiences, you can then re-market to everyone who has read those specific blog pages using Lead Ad offers including infographics, ebooks, etc. lead ads, to get them to opt-in to your marketing.  Once they are opted-in, you can target all of those leads with a legitimate bottom-of-the-funnel offer that wouldn’t appeal to the people who don’t know you yet.

    This isn’t the only way to use custom  audiences, though. With Custom Audiences, you can step up your re-marketing/nurturing with highly intelligent targeting and segmenting based on engagement, specific pages visited or not visited, time spent on your website, current customers, the list goes on.

    Gil David
    Run DMG

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom audiences

    Why I Love It: I love custom audiences because they allow you an almost limitless amount of targeting options. Especially for retargeting based on numerous metrics for web visits, specific page visits, people who engaged with your page, people who watched a certain % of your videos, uploading your customer email lists…and more.

    General interest targeting only scratches the surface but creating cold and warm custom audiences is, for me, where all the real returns come from in Facebook Ads.

    Dylan Niehoff
    True North Strategy

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom Audiences

    Why I Love It: Facebook’s Custom Audiences allows you to target all of the users that you already have a relationship with, including your customers. My favorite aspect of this feature is being able to send highly targeted ads to multiple Website Custom Audiences. If you know how to setup your onsite tracking pixel with custom events, then the possibilities are endless. It essentially gives you the power to isolate and retarget any segment of traffic that you can imagine. Some of my favorite audience ‘recipes’ to prepare are targeting By UTM Parameter, By Time Spent & By Referrer Parameter.

    The first one allows us to retarget visitors more precisely by using the information from the initial campaign, offer, hook & ad creative. The second one, time spent, allows us to price discriminate & alter the follow-up strategy for those that were least interested, somewhat interested & very interested, but did not convert. And third, Referrer Parameter, allows us to do the same by treating visitors differently based on traffic source to account for their awareness, state of mind & level of intent (i.e. Social vs Seach/SEM vs PPC). Things can get really fun once you start to leverage & combine some of these powerful, unique dimensions. Before you do that, remember that you first need to make sure that your tracking pixel is configured correctly!

    Michelle Morgan
    Clix Marketing

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: The Facebook Audience Overlap Tool

    Why I Love It: This tool is relatively hidden in the ads interface and, in my opinion, goes woefully unused by most advertisers. Aside from all the amazing bells and whistles in the Facebook Ads platform (and there are many), it’s still important to follow best practices for social advertising.

    Unlike search, it’s extremely easy to oversaturate an audience and bombard them with ads on social. The Audience Overlap Tool helps you avoid the sneakiest way you’re overstaying your welcome with your customers: serving them ads from multiple audiences without knowing it.

    Once you’ve created all of your amazing target audiences on Facebook in the campaign creation stage, you can use the Audience Overlap Tool to see how these audiences compare to each other and get a percentage breakdown of how much one audience overlaps with another. From that insight, you’ll be able to reshape your audiences to make them mutually exclusive and avoid serving ads from multiple ad groups to the same user.

    Dennis Seymour

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Facebook Remarketing and Instagram Stories Ads

    Why I Love It: Personally, retargeting/re-marketing is always one of my favorites. It’s cheap, it targets specifically the people that yo want and if you play your cards right with the ad, you’ll have them coming back and doing the action you want.

    Instagram Stories ads are one of the things I’m experimenting with now and loving. The results are amazing so far — simply because of the lack of competition — but let’s see, maybe it won’t work forever. Only time will tell.

    Michael Rand
    Market Veep

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom Audiences

    Why I Love It: You can create a custom audience using your existing customer data, like emails and phone numbers. Facebook describes a custom audience as “a type of audience you can create made up of your existing customers,” but you don’t just have to target customers.

    You can also create a custom audience that’s based on how contacts use and interact with your website, as long as you use Facebook’s Custom Audience Pixel installed. That’s where Facebook Ads get really useful (and where they start acting a bit like Big Brother).

    You can target contacts who viewed specific pages, contacts who have abandoned their shopping cart, or even contacts who haven’t visited your site in a long time. Your Facebook ads will “follow” these contacts while they’re browsing on Facebook, so you always know your ads are reaching the right audience.

    Ali Parmelee
    THINK creative group

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Specific Retargeting

    Why I Love It: Micro retargeting, without a doubt, is the most powerful feature of Facebook Ads. The specificity of their retargeting options is mind-boggling.

    Of course, they offer the basic retargeting options for website engagement. But when you start diving into how specific you can be with retargeting, you can target time spent on site, people who have purchased a specific color product, cross and upsell to people who have purchased a complimentary product and more.

    Then there’s retargeting people who have watched a specific amount of your videos, or who visited your website between 10 and 30 days ago, or some pages but not others, etc. and creating custom audiences from those specific behaviors.

    Katherine Chalhoub
    Web Profits

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Dynamic Product Ads

    Why I Love It: I love that you can re-engage website visitors on Facebook with ads about specific products they’re genuinely interested in. The contribution of this ads feature overall to our e-commerce campaigns has been ridiculously effective and now rivals the typically stellar results of our Google Adwords campaigns.

    Adam Connell
    Blogging Wizard

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom Audiences

    Why I Love It: Custom audiences allow us to place a pixel on a webpage using a snippet of code. We can then serve ads directly to people that landed on that page.

    This provides us with a great re-marketing tool since so many people use Facebook. And while there are a number of ways these can be used, one of my favorite ways to use them is to promote content from our blog.

    This means that everyone who clicks on our ad will already be aware of our website. This leads to higher click-through rates. And it allows us to reach visitors that didn’t subscribe to our email list the first time they visited – now we’ve got another chance to wow them with the quality of our content & offer them a free download in exchange for joining our email list.

    Adam Riemer
    Adam Riemer Marketing, LLC.

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom Audiences

    Why I Love It: Using custom audiences, you can simply take people who haven’t filled out a form all the way and market back to them. But, you can also have complementary companies place your pixel on their thank you page and then cross promote with you. And, you can upload email lists to further your exposure during important sales or branding times. It’s a feature that is not used nearly enough or in enough ways by most marketers.

    Chris Lee

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Retargeting.

    Why I Love It: Retargeting can be extremely profitable. Basically, you’re able to target everyone who’s visited your website.

    My blog gets a lot of first-time visitors, whether it be from search engines, referral links, or social media. My on-site conversion rate across all my pages is around 5%.

    One of the biggest drivers of this is my dedicated opt-in landing page, which has no other purpose but to get people to subscribe to my email list. That page converts at around 60%.

    With retargeting ads, I’m able to target all the cold visitors who’ve visited my site and direct them specifically to that landing page. The leads are warmer than if I were to just target people by interest or demographic, and the conversion rates are through the roof. You can also upload your existing email subscribers and tell Facebook to exclude them from seeing the ad.

    Combine that with an evergreen sales funnel, and you can really start to run retargeting ads at a really great profit margin.

    Dan Quirk
    Salsa Labs

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Pixel Tracking

    Why I Love It: Facebook’s tracking pixel allows nonprofits/users to specifically target Facebook ads to people who have visited their pages and websites. A major benefit of the pixel is the ability to track the number of leads generated from a particular campaign.

    Michael Ugino

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Dynamic Product Ads

    Why I Love It: It’s one of the easiest and most profitable campaigns you can set up, since it allows you to retarget users that visited your products, but didn’t purchase them. Rather than retargeting them with a generic ad about your brand, you can retarget them with the products that they were interested in – which is why it results in such a high ROAS (Return on Ad Spend).

    Danny Starr
    Cyan Solutions

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom Audiences

    Why I Love It: We love being able to upload our clients’ email lists and use that to create custom audiences for paid campaigns. We find that a well-coordinated campaign across email, organic Facebook, paid Facebook and Instagram to be really effective.

    Damian Leonard
    Roland Dransfield

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Retargeting

    Why I Love It: My favorite feature of Facebook Ads is the effectiveness of retargeting. Your best leads are those who have already visited your site, so to feature on their Facebook daily is great from a sales perspective, and can also really increase a company’s brand awareness. It’s a win-win.

    Lookalike Audiences

    This is perhaps Facebook’s most innovative feature. You can upload a list of email addresses from existing customers, and Facebook will discover traits that most have in common. You can then serve an ad to Facebook users with similar characteristics and even control the level of similarity, based on how many clicks you want per day.

    Kristin Kimmons

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Lookalike Audiences

    Why I Love It: Lookalike audiences allows me to target prospects that are very similar to my current customers. I get a broad, yet effective reach.

    Robert Johns

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Lookalike Audiences

    Why I Love It: It’s incredibly useful because it lets you broaden your reach and advertise to prospects who you might have otherwise missed. Facebook, through machine learning, can take information you already know about customers and prospects, and use it to develop new audiences that look similar to them.

    Ben Wynkoop
    Ben Wynkoop Marketing

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Lookalike Audiences

    Why I Love It: While I love the how Facebook pixel identifies the best users to target within your ad set to target the objective you selected, lookalike audiences provide additional data to help Facebook identify ideal users. I did this by creating a lookalike audience by uploading my existing email list (who converted for the same goal you are trying to achieve) and Facebook will find common traits among each user who has a Facebook account tied to their email address.

    Gabriel Marguglio
    Nextiny Marketing

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Lookalike Audiences

    Why I Love It: A Lookalike Audience is a way to reach new people who are likely to be interested in your business because they’re similar to your ideal customers. You import a list of your current best customers and Facebook will show your ad to new people like those. This is a great way to find new leads. When combined with a full funnel Facebook Ad strategy, this works very well.

    Aaron Agius
    Louder Online

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Lookalike audiences overlayed with interest targeting

    Why I Love It: I find that a lot of Facebook advertisers take Lookalike Audiences at face value. I used to run them as-is, but eventually, I realized that they are just Facebook’s best guess. When you start pairing Lookalike Audiences with another layer of qualification – interest targeting, in this case – you’re able to hone in on the subscribers that are actually likely to convert (not just the ones Facebook is guessing will turn into your customers).

    If you haven’t done interest targeting yet, start there. Figure out which stated interests give you the best results. Then, start overlaying that data on top of your Lookalike Audiences. That’ll help you better qualify ad recipients so that you aren’t wasting spend on people who may share superficial similarities with your existing audience, but who won’t actually drive any performance.

    Blake Micola

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom audience and Lookalike targeting

    Why I Love It: Lookalike targeting is a Facebook ad technique which consists of reaching an audience similar to an advertiser’s customers. The original profile of audience is determined via CRM data or website behaviors and is then matched against anonymous user pools to create ‘more of the same’ clientele.

    Lookalike audiences allow you to build new audiences using an established source audience such as people who have viewed your website, video or previously purchased from you.

    Andrew Allsop
    Wunderkind Agency

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Lookalike Audiences

    Why I Love It: For me, Lookalike Audiences are Facebook’s secret weapon. They allow you to create an entirely new audience of people who have similar attributes to a source audience of your choosing. You can choose the degree of similarity the new Lookalike Audience has to your source audience, so a 1% lookalike audience is the most similar, 3% slightly less so and 5% even less similar, and so on.

    As someone who works with a lot of B2B businesses, it’s sometimes difficult narrowing down my audience using Facebook’s demographic and interest targeting. But most B2B companies have email lists of customers, prospects and leads.

    I’ll upload these to create custom audiences (another great tool, especially when integrated and managed with a marketing automation tool) then create a Lookalike Audience based on these lists.

    This then gives me up to 5 million users on the Facebook Ad platform who have similar attributes to my customers. There’s probably a whole lot of machine learning and algorithmic power going on, and I’ve found that it’s much more effective than any audience I can create with my human abilities.

    I’ll then put these audiences into a funnel, and take them from awareness with blogs and videos, right the way through to lead and purchase.

    A/B Testing

    In many cases, Facebook will automatically run split tests on your behalf to determine your top performing ad variant.  In other situations, if you want to layer multiple ways of segmenting your audience, for example, you will need to run the test yourself. But you will have plenty of data available to analyze your results.

    Deepa Venkataraman
    Vajra Global Consulting Services LLP

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Split Testing

    Why I Love It: Split Testing is an ingenious way to figure out where and how you should invest your marketing and advertising efforts.

    Quite often, we come across dilemmas regarding the approach, color scheme, tone and language of our ad copies. Split testing resolves this issue by providing an opportunity to showcase all the possibilities and then go with the best performing ad version. It’s the best way of cutting short lengthy and often debate-heavy brainstorming meetings.

    One of our clients working in the education sector was not completely sure of how the brand must communicate with its audience – fun or sophisticated, vibrant or monochrome, loud or subtle – so many options. We suggested split testing which worked wonders for the brand. This experiment not only gave them an identity to maintain but also managed to bring out the brand objective in the best possible manner.

    Rachel Orn
    Posse Social Media

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Built-in Facebook Ad A/B Testing

    Why I Love It: A/B testing is a common statistical practice for many industries, and Facebook has made it simpler for businesses to test different variables on ads. A/B testing isn’t limited to novice marketers – larger brands still practice this testing method (test, test, and test again).

    With the click of a button, Facebook now lets you test audiences, creatives, delivery optimization, and more. For example, if you’re selling insurance to business owners, you can test an ad against a millennial entrepreneurial audience vs. a Gen X audience to see what resonates and adjust your approach accordingly. Results are provided in a concise report that is easy to break down and understand. A/B testing provides important data that will help you understand what your audience finds valuable and interesting, or on the flip side of that, what they find to be the opposite of interesting.

    Luke Severn
    Kaufer DMC

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Relevance Score.

    Why I Love It: Similar to quality score with Google AdWords, relevance score provides us with a single data point to illustrate whether or not we need to adjust our ad strategy and whether or not to continue to produce similar ads in the future if the quality score of our current ads is high.

    For instance, if I create an ad about interview tips for my recruiting client, and the relevance score is high and the cost-per-click is low, I know I can produce similar ads in the future targeted at that audience.

    Athena Bond
    Evo Strategies

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Facebook’s Dynamic Creative feature

    Why I Love It: Facebook’s Dynamic Creative tool automatically delivers the best combinations of your ad creative assets. It runs different combinations of your ad components (images, videos, titles, descriptions, and calls to action [CTAs]) across your target audience to determine which combinations produce the best results.

    Before the introduction of this feature, you had to create fully formed ads individually and test them manually to find the most effective ad creative and the best ad-to-audience fit. Dynamic Creative automatically randomizes ad variations for you, making it easy to show the right ads to people.

    It’s best used for direct-response product- or service-based ads. You can easily test multiple ad images or videos, alongside up to five copy, headline, news feed link descriptions, and CTAs to find the combination that delivers the best results for your business.

    Lead Conversion

    Facebook Ads assist with multiple conversions throughout the buyer’s journey. Lead Ads allow visitors to download an offer without leaving Facebook. They do not need to click the link to the landing page… fill out your form… and finally get their content in their inbox. They can get it immediately through a prefilled form.

    And, it integrates directly with many popular marketing automation tools and CRMs. If you already track leads in dynamic lists with a tool such as HubSpot, you can use the Facebook Ads integration to automatically serve them ads that move them towards becoming a customer.

    Jake Fisher
    Bridges Strategies

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Sync HubSpot Smartlists with Facebook Custom Audiences

    Why I Love It: We target relevant Facebook ads to leads in our HubSpot database by syncing HubSpot Smartlists with Facebook Custom Audiences. In the past we have used a SaaS service called LeadsBridges to do the integration, however, my team tells me that this is now best done with the HubSpot-built integration with Facebook Ads.

    James Robert Lay
    Digital Growth Institute

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Using Facebook Ads to amplify content and offers

    Why I Love It: We use Facebook Ads tied to HubSpot lists to amplify content for ourselves and our clients based on their digital behavior. This tactic has helped improve CTR because of relevancy while also getting more longterm value of out content like blog articles and ebooks. Before we used to publish a blog article, send an email, and then move on. Now we can come back and use that article, again and again, to guide prospects through the different stages of the buying journey.

    Kevin Fabisiak
    Big Sea

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Lead Ads

    Why I Love It: Facebook’s Lead Ads feature gives users the ability to create forms within Facebook’s social media platform to collect user data through a variety of default or custom questions.

    Why is this awesome for advertisers? Simple. You take away a step in potentially losing a lead. Rather than send your audience to your website to fill out a form, they can do it right then and there in Facebook. It gets even easier with Facebook’s ability to auto-fill many pertinent fields for the audience using the data they’ve entered on their personal profiles.

    Utilizing the Lead Ads feature presented a massive boost for one of our clients, who owns a chain of family entertainment centers. Prior to using Lead Ads, we were running a conversion campaign for the audience to claim a discount on the next birthday they planned at one of the centers, and while the campaign was succeeding, it wasn’t in the volume we anticipated. Enter Facebook Lead Ads. With the creation of a new ad funnel focusing on birthday party booking, we created a new Lead Ad campaign to capture leads directly from Facebook and the results were astounding.

    We went from 56 leads generated from Facebook in October, to 425 in November. From those 425 leads, 260 clicked through to the thank you page on the Lead Ad form and 131 of those who clicked through submitted the form on the thank you page, representing the next step in the funnel.

    Facebook Lead Ads also integrate with the HubSpot CRM (which we use) and has made the transition of leads into eail marketing automation workflows seamless and completely automatic. This feature is invaluable and a fantastic way to generate new leads while keeping the customer experience simple and satisfying.

    Jessica Ting

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Facebook Lead Ads

    Why I Love It: With Facebook Lead Ads, Facebook users can click on a call-to-action button that directs them to fill in a form with their basic contact information. Users can fill out the form without leaving the Facebook site, and often their information is pre-filled out using their profile information, making it very easy for users to quickly fill out the form. With lead ads, my team is able to help clients get leads directly from Facebook. With the previous Facebook ad types, we would be able to analyze views, engagement, and CTRs, but now being able to generate lists of leads is very powerful!

    Harris Schachter
    OptimizePrime, LLC

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Lead Ads

    Why I Love It: I love lead ads because the cost per conversion is extremely low! It is a great way to engage potential prospects with a lower barrier to entry because the information on the lead forms come straight from a Facebook profile, rather than requiring the prospect to fill it out like a traditional form. Additionally, the prospects don’t leave the Facebook network in order to submit their information, further reducing the effort in converting. It’s a great way to collect leads and re-engage through other channels or remarketing.

    Matthew Creswick
    The B2B Marketing Lab

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: HubSpot Integration for live smart list targetting

    Why I Love It: It’s great because it allows you to set up some smart criteria of contacts from within a tool like HubSpot, and target that audience based on whether they are on the list. No manual uploading or updating the list – it automatically updates based on your set criteria.

    Todd Laire
    Laire Group Marketing

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Facebook Lead Ads Integration with HubSpot

    Why I Love It: With HubSpot’s Facebook Lead Ads integration, we can create ads using creatives from our HubSpot File Manager and all of Facebook’s existing Lead Ads tools without leaving our HubSpot account. Then, when we get submissions on our ads, the leads are AUTOMATICALLY added to our (or our clients’) CRM. It saves so much time and helps with our contact segmentation and follow up. Then we can set up email workflows to automatically send when a contact is added from the Facebook ad to your contact list for instant follow up and lead nurturing. It’s a match made in heaven.

    Akshay Sharma
    Digital Indya

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Lead Ads

    Why I Love It: My favorite feature is the ability to connect the Lead Ads campaign with my CRM for efficient tracking.

    Video Ads

    Video delivers a higher ROI than text on Facebook, in many cases, But, one 30-second or 2-minute video is not going to magically convince viewers to buy your product. You can serve a series of videos to Facebook users based on past viewing habits. You can personally lead them down the buyer’s journey until they are very familiar with your product.

    William Avila

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: The automatic video captions capability

    Why I Love It: When you upload a video to Facebook Ads, if you don’t already have video captions, Facebook will give you the option to transcribe and add it your video automatically. It’s especially useful because it saves time for the video producer and also ensures you have text overlay for people who have their phone or computers on mute. Your message gets conveyed via text, increasing your reach.

    Darrell Evans
    Yokel Local Internet Marketing, Inc.

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Video Ads

    Why I Love It: Video ads are a powerful and cost-effective way to increase brand awareness, generate and nurture leads.

    With Facebook allowing advertisers to measure and track video view engagement, it’s easy to begin segmenting viewers by how long they’ve watched your video.

    Why is this important?

    By default, Facebook counts a view if someone watches 3 seconds of your video. Needless to say, that’s not very long to consume your message. In addition, most people watch the videos without turning on the volume (so annotations are important.)

    The key with video ads is your ability to create custom audiences based on video engagment.

    You can begin to put your audience in buckets if they watch 3 seconds, 10 seconds, 25%, 50%, 75%, 95% or 100% of your video.

    Let’s agree that someone who watched 75% or more of a video might be more likely to want to learn more about one of our events. It doesn’t mean they want to come, because maybe that video was 30-45 seconds.

    If that video is seen by 25,000 people and Facebook tells me that 4,000 watched over 75% of the video, I can now show them what I like to call a next step video (in your funnel). That may be a two minute and thirty second event overview video with testimonials from attendees. This may lead them to click the link and come to our event page to learn more.

    We can literally use a video ad for every step of the purchase journey in this case. What I love the most is that we seem to get the most reach, views and link clicks by using video ads.

    Use this Facebook Ads Video Metrics dashboard to track video completion stats in real time across all your campaigns.

    Eliseo Barbara
    MOST 2414

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: 3-Seconds Video Views

    Why I Love It: Following several months of Page Likes Campaigns to increase the brand awareness of a client, who sells LPG equipped outdoor home products in Thailand, we’ve launched a video campaign. It has reached great results in minutes watched minute, audience retention, awareness and organic page likes acquisition.

    Hasan Khan
    Eastside Co

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Targeting based on video duration

    Why I Love It: Facebook allows the opportunity for a company to target based on the duration at which a user watched a video. This is a very powerful feature, as targeting through video views provides a much higher reach at a much lower cost in comparison to any other type of conversion goal.

    Ultimately this allows a company to increase its brand awareness whilst also being able to identify how qualified a user is based on how long they watched the video for. This data can then help segment targeting, by promoting different messaging based on how interested the user is.

    For example, a Facebook user who watched a video for 30 seconds will be a much warmer lead in comparison to a user who watched a video for 3 seconds. Therefore, this cluster of audience can be targeted with a hard sell retargeting advert that will have a high chance of converting.

    This entire process gives a company high-level exposure that can then be whittled down to target high-converting users. This has been a very useful feature I have used for clothing and drink companies as videos generally have a much higher engagement. As a paid advert specialist, this is by far my most recommended strategy for high converting campaigns.

    Mobile Ads

    Over 85% of Facebook’s ad revenue comes from mobile! They are heavily incentivized to offer a suite of ad products that fit the ways that users browse on mobile. They design ad options specifically for mobile experiences.

    Justin Haywood
    Complete Agent

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Canvas

    Why I Love It: Facebook’s canvas is great because it’s essentially a mobile website that never leaves the Facebook platform, which keeps users more engaged. It is highly customizable and allows you to tell your brand’s story in a very natural way, right on Facebook.

    When a Facebook user is on a canvas, it really feels like they’re outside of Facebook and on your website. A well-designed canvas looks and feels just like a mobile website. A canvas can include videos, photo carousels, CTA buttons, etc.

    Another great feature is that you can retarget people who interact with your canvas, just like if they visited your website. You get all the features of sending traffic to your site, and don’t have to worry about slow page load times.

    ROI Tracking

    Everybody wants to know the answer to this question:

    “If I put $1000, into Facebook Ads, what I will I get?”

    But, as you set up multiple campaigns across multiple audiences, this answer becomes harder and harder to track. Fortunately, Facebook Ads tracks many data points for every single ad so you can make data-driven decisions, even if you need to dig around the interface for a few minutes.

    Tuoyo Memuduaghan
    Get Focused

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Facebook Business Manager

    Why I Love It: This is an extra housing system that gives clients as well as us access to all campaigns and events.
    Coming from working at Facebook directly, it makes reporting to clients effortless which means we can focus on the work at hand.

    Kamil Rextin
    42 Agency

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Custom Conversions & Attribution Windows

    Why I Love It: I am a huge fan of Events in Facebook (Pixel based) but sometimes in a B2B business, you don’t want to trigger every event as a lead.

    With Custom Conversions, I can track & attribute Bottom-of-the-funnel (BOFU) conversions like Demo Requests to Facebook Ads and use the Power Editor to breakdown the Cost Per Lead & Cost Per Demo from each campaign.

    For example – I am running a Middle-of-the-Funnel (MOFU) Campaign for content/ebook downloads and the prospects are coming in, engaging with content and then navigating through our website & requesting a demo.

    By creating a Custom View – I can see that Campaign A leads to X number of leads and also Z Demo Requests so it was a better campaign than the one where I only got MOFU leads.

    With attribution window comparisons, I can compare the time when someone engaged with content & when someone requested a demo – so I can make informed decision about my campaign pacing and daily budgets.

    Brad Ehney
    RUNNER Agency

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature:  “Rules.” within the interface

    Why I Love It: You can set rules up with two different objectives. One is getting notified via email when an event occurs in a campaign, ad set or ad. Or, your other option is to have Facebook take action on your behalf, such as decreasing or increasing the budget. You can also set rules to turn off the ads if they aren’t meeting their objectives. It’s a pretty powerful tool when backed up with historical data. It also helps you keep watch on frequency, so you don’t build up negative feedback. We also wrote an article on how frequency can drive up costs.


    Bryan Bowman
    eCom Underground

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Facebook Ads combined with Comment to Messenger

    Why I Love It: Our most successful list building and engagement tool in late 2017 going into 2018 has been Facebook Ads combined with the “Comment to Messenger”feature. In short, when our prospects engage with our Facebook Ads, this opens us a Messenger conversation related to the content in that Ad.

    This approach to list building and engagement is a staple of our Customer-Centric Model (as opposed to more prevalent Product-Centric Models). Knowing which Top Of Funnel content attracts our customers, combined with the engagement in Messenger allows us to highly tailor the specific products and content each customer prefers.

    Mai Molina

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: DPA

    Why I Love It: I LOVE catalog campaigns for the versatility that they offer. Hyper-segmented audiences combined with different product sets usually drive really good results.

    I consider that the majority of Facebook placements are much more visual than other paid options, so users on Facebook tend to be more impulsive when clicking on ads.

    I like creating ways to impact throughout different moments of the user’s conversion funnel. This is one of the most exciting parts of the Facebook Ads strategy for e-commence.

    One example would be creating separate sets of affordable products to impact users that have had a small interaction with your business or that still don’t know you at all, since low prices make easier for new users to interact with your brand.

    On the opposite side, I like to offer subsets of my catalog with higher prices to be shown to heavy users of my site and bid more aggressively on those as the ROI is usually higher for this segment.

    Not every user approaches the brand equally during the conversion path, so the ads, the offer and the audience should be properly analyzed and designed to accommodate each step of the journey.

    Indratek Technologies

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Collection Ads

    Why I Love It: The collection ads capability works really well for displaying a few related products in the same screen. While Products are shown in small banners, you can include a canvas display on each of them when clicking, to give a better experience to users.

    We love it because it worked pretty well with some retail clients, giving ROIs of 150%. Users like to explore products they were looking for before, and they go smoothly through the funnel if they are truly interested in what they see.

    Michael Erickson
    Search Scientists

    Favorite Facebook Ads Feature: Automated Rules

    Why I Love It: Automated rules are one of the most underutilized parts of Facebook Ads.

    Imagine being able to sit in front of your FB ads account 24/7, and scan every single ad, every single hour. Then, the moment something goes beyond your acceptable threshold, (let’s say over 50 in spend without a conversion) you could automatically pause it.

    This is the power of automated rules. I use them mainly to prevent “doomsday” ads and ad sets. Ads that will run away with spend without conversions if you let them. It keeps accounts healthy.

    Create Instant Facebook Ads ROI Reports

    You will likely need to test multiple strategies if you want to get the highest ROI from your Facebook Ads efforts. You can use automated dashboards to instantly analyze at the campaign or ad set level. Rather than exporting all your data to Excel or navigating the complex Facebook Ads interface, you can be one click away from your data. And, you can set up Alerts to get instant notifications around hitting a monthly goal or any potential errors.

    The Campaign Performance dashboard gives you a full overview of your account, and you can dig in further using these other popular templates.

    What’s your favorite Facebook ads feature? Share here or in the comments.

    Need a step-by-step process for getting started with Facebook Ads? Start here.

    Article by
    Tamara Omerovic

    Tamara is Content Editorial Manager at Databox. She is an SEO aficionado, a coffee addict, and a huge museum lover! When she's not working or writing, she enjoys visiting an art gallery, drinking her 5th coffee with her friends, or playing video games.

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