Facebook advertising has been a key feature of digital marketing strategies for years and, thanks to the platform’s large and diverse audience, that’s not going to change any time soon.
Whilst Facebook can be one of the most lucrative ways to target your key audience demographics, the main drawback is that what worked for you during one ad campaign may not work for you again. Why? Because Facebook ad trends come and go quickly.
If you want to ensure that your Facebook ad campaigns are a success, it’s important to keep on top of current trends and understand what’s proving popular with your target audience.
With that in mind, we’ve put together the five key Facebook ad trends to watch out for.
Facebook ads are paid-for messages and posts that businesses can post on Facebook in order to reach target markets.
Facebook ads are created by the business (or their marketing team at least) and are presented in the brand’s tone of voice and branding. They are then integrated into the Facebook feed of your target audience.
Facebook ads can take on various forms including images, videos, and carousels.
One of the biggest pros of Facebook ads is that they are integrated naturally into users’ feeds. In today’s online world, people are so accustomed to seeing ads as they scroll that they barely register if a post is organic or paid-for.
Using Facebook ads as part of your wider social media and digital marketing strategy comes with various benefits.
Facebook’s reach is huge! The platform has almost 3 billion active users – that’s a lot of people who could see your brand’s ads!
Some of the key benefits of utilizing Facebook ads are:
Reach new audiences – Facebook ads allow you to target new users who don’t already follow and engage with your page, making them a great way of getting your message in front of new eyes.
Grow brand awareness – The more times a user sees your brand online, the greater their brand awareness will be. Facebook ads are perfect for boosting your brand awareness by ensuring you are constantly appearing on your target audience’s feed.
Hyper-target your audience – Facebook has some of the most specific targeting tools available on any platform. You can target your ads to specific demographics and refine details such as age, gender, location, and hobbies and interests.
Grow your social media audience – Facebook ads are also a great way of boosting the number of followers your page has. If you target your ads correctly, you’ll be able to encourage people to follow you or like your page if they enjoyed the content of the ad.
Using Facebook ads can be just one of the many components of your wider strategy for growing online.
So, what Facebook ad trends should you be looking out for?
Short-form video is king of the social media content world and it looks set to keep its crown.
With the major growth of Tik Tok and Instagram reels, both of which are focused on short-form video content, Facebook is determined not to be left behind.
The platform is now prioritizing short-form video content and pushing it into more and more users’ feeds.
The fact is that users are more likely to engage with video content than static imagery.
If you decide to utilize short-form video content within your ads, it’s important to note that Facebook makes videos soundless by default. Users have to actively choose to turn the sound on, so make sure your message can be portrayed through the visuals, too.
The only downside to short-form video content is that users have formed the habit of quickly scrolling from one video to the next, so try to grab their attention in the first 3 seconds of your video to make sure it’s a success.
Facebook ads have always been a relatively affordable way to target users online. They come with various budget and pricing options.
However, the cost of Facebook ads has been rising year on year, and that’s only set to continue. Why? Supply and demand.
Whilst there are more businesses than ever wanting to run Facebook ad campaigns (an estimated 7 million compared to 4 million in 2016) the number of users to target isn’t growing at the same rate.
To ensure their ads remain relevant and competitive, therefore, Facebook has no choice but to set ad rates higher.
Whilst ad costs will rise, it won’t be a drastic increase, providing you’ve accounted for it within your digital marketing budget. The lifetime value you receive should far outweigh any initial cost.
We all know how important having a mobile-friendly website is and your Facebook ads are no different.
In fact, a whopping 93% of Facebook’s ad revenue comes from mobile users so you may as well disregard desktop entirely when planning your ad campaign.
The big difference between mobile and desktop ads is the layout and content. Whilst desktop ads will feature a headline and description under the image/video, mobile ads usually just include a URL and headline.
With that in mind, you need to ensure that you’re writing your ads to target mobile users with catchy and informative headlines. Don’t rely on the copy in your description to do all the work when a mobile user won’t even see it!
The biggest mistake businesses make when creating their ads for mobile is that they forget to format their images correctly. An image or video formatted for a desktop will appear very differently (and not in a good way) on a mobile device.
Keeping these seemingly small details at the forefront of your mind when creating your ads will give you the best possible chance of success.
The Facebook news feed is arguably one of the social media platform’s trademark features.
Thanks to the popularity of Snapchat and Instagram stories for short-form, time-limited content, however, Facebook is shifting its focus towards Facebook stories.
Facebook stories are full-screen photos and videos that are available to view for 24 hours. Users have to actively click on the story to view it and when they do, photos appear for five seconds whilst videos play for 20.
When it comes to creating content for Facebook story ads, the platform itself recommends you use a mixture of mobile-shot content (e.g. content that looks more natural and ad-hoc) and studio-shot content (e.g. more polished and professional photos and videos) in order to get the best results.
Facebook has also added new features to story ads including the ability to add a poll that users can vote in, making the ads interactive and a great way to uncover audience sentiment.
You no longer need a futuristic-looking headset to experience augmented reality, in fact, Facebook now offers brands the chance to use Augmented Reality (AR) within their ads.
Currently, only certain brands have access to Facebook’s augmented reality software but they’re expected to roll it out for everyone.
Augmented reality ads allow users to fully engage and interact with a brand’s products.
Popular examples of augmented reality Facebook ads include the ability for a customer to “try on” different shades of lipstick to choose which one suits them best, or “sit inside” a new car to get the feeling of taking it on a test drive.
Augmented reality is set to become a key part of marketing strategies across websites and social media platforms, so incorporating it into your Facebook ads is a great way to stay ahead of the competition.
As you can see, Facebook ad trends will focus on short-form content, video, and mobile users.
Facebook ads can be one of the most beneficial ways of advertising your business, with such a diverse and large audience and incredibly specific targeting options, some brands even choose to focus all of their online advertising purely on Facebook.
To recap, the five key trends to look out for and utilize in your Facebook ad strategy are:
- Short-form video
- Mobile optimization
- Facebook story ads
- Augmented reality ads
- The rise in cost
Staying ahead of the trends when planning Facebook ad campaigns is important. Like we said at the start of this article, what worked for you once may not work for you again if trends and preferences have changed.
If you incorporate these five trends into your strategy though, we’re confident your Facebook ads will be a success.
Don’t forget to let us know in the comments what you think and if you’ve noticed any other Facebook ad trends yet this year!
Facebook ads are posts and messages that brands create and pay to have appear in users’ news feeds. Brands are able to target these ads to specific demographics based on their aims, budgets, and target markets.
Story ads are full-screen images and videos that are available to view for just 24 hours. Images will play for five seconds and videos for 20. They will usually appear in their own panel at the top of a news feed and users will click on them to view them.
Regular ads, however, will appear in a user’s news feed as they scroll down through content.
The cost of Facebook ads is set to rise this year thanks to supply and demand. Although the platform has around 3 billion active users, the number of users isn’t growing at the same rate as the number of businesses who want to use Facebook ads. The platform, therefore, has to increase costs to ensure ads are still competitive and effective.