Are you running Facebook ads?
Do you want to improve the performance of your next campaign?
By looking at some of the best Facebook ads you’ll be able to take inspiration, as well as actionable ad creative insights to use for your own campaigns.
In this post, we'll look at some Facebook ad best practices by examining 11 real-world examples we can learn from.
Measuring Facebook ad effectiveness
Before we examine each of the ad examples, it’s worth noting that without access to the Ads Manager dashboard for each of the advertisers, we don’t know the specific metrics of the ads such as Relevance Score or other key metrics, so we can’t do an in-depth data analysis.
We can, however, take notes from what they've done right, and how they've put together compelling, attractive ad content.
Ad Example #1 – Bluehost
This ad gets it right on so many levels. Used in the middle of the sales funnel, to reduce cart abandonment, Bluehost drives people who've previously added to cart to return to the website and complete their purchase.
Why it works
Compelling copy - The question at the start reminds someone that they're in the middle of a decision about building their website. The second line hits the low-cost barrier to entry to using their service - "only $2.95". This is followed by social proof: "trusted by millions".
Eye-catching visuals - What makes this ad even more effective is the use of video. Video is currently the best performing type content, with over 100 million hours watched every day on Facebook. The video reinforces the social proof mentioned in the ad copy referencing different business owners.
Clear link title, description & CTA - The link title below the video - “Launch Your Website Today” - is clear and direct, implying that this ad is for you to take the final action to launch your website. The link description below the link title reinforces social proof, again linked to the ad copy and video. It also highlights another benefit of joining - getting a free domain. The CTA of the ad ('Shop Now') is in keeping with the whole tone of the ad to finalize your buying decision and launch your site.
Ad Example #2 Simba
In this ad, UK mattress company Simba utilizes the carousel ad format with short, feature-rich videos and a single image to market their Hybrid Mattress.
Why it works
Curious copy - The single sentence copy not only grabs the attention by building curiosity, but the overall shortness pushes the target audience to consume the carousel cards which highlight the product features.
Striking visuals - What makes this a particularly excellent ad is the use of attention-grabbing video, particularly in the first carousel card. The short looping videos make it more immersive and engaging than regular images. Finally, the use of a single image in the second to last carousel card (not seen above) breaks the expectation of another video and effectively draws attention to the 100-day trial offer.
Carousel title & CTA - Each of the carousel card titles highlights either a consumer benefit or a specific feature of the product, and they're short and concise enough to ensure they're not cut off on mobile News Feed ad placement. The 'Shop Now' CTA reinforces the desired purchasing mindset.
Ad Example #3 – MOZ
This ad from MOZ, for their video series 'Whiteboard Friday', is all about choosing a domain name. It’s a great example of top-of-funnel content that delivers value to the target audience, and in doing so, builds recognition and authority for MOZ the brand, and their CEO Rand Fishkin.
Why it works
Questioning copy - Starting the copy with a question related to the video brings puts the topic front-of-mind for the target audience. It also builds curiosity in what the answers to the question might be. The second line of the copy features a call to action ('Learn more') which gets the target audience to stay and watch the rest of the video (as its auto playing). It also references the title of the video series, helping to build further brand awareness.
Unique visuals - Another excellent use of video - instead of the usual to-camera piece with a floating head, the use of the Whiteboard makes it feel like you’re being taught at school. This is a much longer video than our first example, which goes more in-depth and educates the target audience about key rules for choosing a domain name.
Ad Example #4 – Kit & Kin
Another excellent use of the carousel ad format, this time from eco baby brand Kit & Kin.This retargeting ad specifically promotes a 25% off discount on their Eco nappies to encourage a first purchase.
Why it works
Benefit based copy - The first line of the copy makes it clear that this ad is a promotion - specifically a 25% off discount deal. It also clearly states the discount code ('FB25') that someone needs to use to take advantage of the offer. After that, the second paragraph states a feature of the product, and goes on to describe the benefit - “drier babies for happier mums and dads”. The final line highlights another product feature, the print on the nappies, and the aesthetic benefit to the buyer.
Product images - The images in the carousel aren’t just of the product on its own, as that would be boring. Instead they’ve used lifestyle-based product images so the target audience can see what the product looks like when it’s being used.
Carousel title & CTA - The first carousel title reiterates the offer in the ad, reminding the target audience that they can get 25% off. The cards that follow are all interconnected by referencing the characters of the animals printed on the product, and utilize relevant emojis to stand out even more. The 'Shop Now' CTA reminds the user that they're in a buying mind-set, and that there is a discount to be had on the product.
Ad Example #5 – Shopify
This ad from Shopify checks all the right boxes. Used at the top-of-funnel, this ad helps build brand awareness, whilst delivering value to the target audience.
Why it works
Punchy copy - This short, snappy copy excels at triggering curiosity with three one-word questions, then bridges the curiosity gap by providing the answers in the content that’s being promoted. Audiences would ideally be enticed with the knowledge that they're already using one of the loyalty ideas mentioned - either discounts, contents or VIP status - but are they doing it right or are there more effective ways. This article provides the answers. They’ve got my click.
Random image - The image is an interesting one, as it appears to be rather random on first glance. Its impact is enough to pattern interrupt someone scrolling in their News Feed, but on further analysis there’s a nostalgic feel to the ad, in that as a kid, ice cream used to be a treat or reward, and this links to the focus of the article - reward programs.
Solid title & CTA - The listicle style article grabs the attention using a specific number at the start. The ad also features the CTA 'Learn more', which is the exact thing someone will do when they read all about the creative ideas around customer loyalty programs.
Ad Example #6 – Gousto
This ad from meal delivery company Gousto immediately caught my attention when it appeared in my News Feed. It mixes value based video content with a direct response discount promotion.
Why it works
Emoji copy - The first line states the percentage discount and its applicability - you don’t just get a discount on your first box, but also on your second. The three lines that follow are all benefit driven, highlighting the wide range of choice - the free and flexible delivery option and the ease of use to follow the recipe cards to make the meals. In addition to this, the use of emojis at the start and end of each line of copy grabs the attention of the target audience.
Short Video - The short, sub-60 second video demonstrates how easy it is to cook one of the recipes available in the meal boxes.
CTA - The 'Order Now' CTA is consistent with the tone of the ad, in that it’s a direct response ad first and a content ad second.
Ad Example #7 – Feelunique.com
This ad from beauty brand feelunique.com promotes a flash sale on Kerastase. It features a large image for maximum impact in the News Feed, compared to regular link ads.
Why it works
Urgent copy - The first line builds scarcity, implying that the product will be selling fast and it’s a race to get your hands on one. The second line tells you the percentage discount available and the specific product it relates to. The final line features the call to action, with a Google tracking link to the product page.
Product image - The ad features a four-segment image for maximum impact. The top segment reiterates the offer mentioned in the copy, the second segment is a full-width product based lifestyle image and the third and fourth are more product based lifestyle images.
Ad Example #8 – Two Become One
Another excellent example of a retargeting ad, using a mixture of direct response messaging from the video and testimonial based copy. The video introduces the business owner and the testimonial adds social proof to the ad.
Why it works
Testimonial copy - The testimonial used in the first part of the copy hits four specific customer insights: 1) The customer had confidence in the business, 2) The product offering was unique 3) The customer was happy with the end product and 4) They would recommend the service.
Using testimonials in your ad copy is one of the most effective ways to build trust and encourage potential customers to take action.
The second half of the copy features the call-to-action giving users specific instructions on how to get in contact with the business.
Introduction video - The video introduces the business owner, and adds a “face” to the business - which can be important, as people are increasingly looking to do business with other people (not faceless corporations). The video takes place in their showroom and goes on to state the specific service they offer, and features a call to action at the end of the video.
Ad Example #9 – Larson & Jennings
This ad from watch brand Larsson & Jennings takes an interesting approach to a discount promotion, with an element of exclusivity, and the use of scarcity to drive the target audience to take action.
Why it works
Exclusive copy - The ad copy is positioned with an element of exclusivity (the condition that you need to create an account to take advantage of the offer) and the impression of scarcity (the sale period between the 1st and the 5th of September) which demands immediate action from the target audience.
Product image - As the promotion is tied to a particular product it makes sense to use a product image. Again, as in the Kit & Kin example, the product image displays the product in use, as opposed to a boring image of the product on its own.
Link title & CTA - The first section of the link title stresses the exclusive element of the offer (“Private Sale”). This is followed by the reiteration of the discount percentage, and the specific product on offer. The CTA is not the expected 'Shop Now' that we’ve seen in other ads for product promotions, but rather 'Sign Up', relating to the action required before the user can take advantage of the offer.
Takeaways you can apply to your own ads
When it comes to ad copy, ask yourself the following questions when writing your next Facebook ad:
- What’s a question that will bring the content of your ad to the top-of-mind of your target audience?
- Do you have a customer’s testimonial you can use to add an element of social proof to your ads?
- What are the customer benefits of the product or service you’re advertising? Identify the benefit as opposed to just features as customers buy the benefits of a product or service.
Right now video is the best performing content type on Facebook, which is why many of the ad examples in this post feature a video. Take advantage of the increased level of engagement on video content, and the subsequent undervalued cost per video view, which means you can generate thousands of views from small ad budgets.
If you want your target audience to take a specific action, don’t forget to tell them to do so. The key to correctly using CTAs in your ads is to keep them consistent between what your target audience will read in the ad copy, the link or carousel card title, and the specific CTA button that you use. The same goes for when they visit the web page you're linking to in your ad.
When it comes to measuring great ads, ad effectiveness can be broken into three parts – the copy, the visuals and the call-to-action.
It’s important to make sure there’s consistency between the three ad elements, otherwise your target audience might misunderstand your ad - and as a result, it won’t have the desired impact.
A version of this post was first published on Charlie Lawrance's's blog.