Especially given the recent Apple iOS update that has made it more difficult to track user behavior in relation to Facebook ads, it is more important than ever to ensure your ad creative is optimized. While the guide Facebook released was specific to Gaming advertising, the templates included in the guide are great for digital marketers in any space to implement in their approach. Read on for a few key takeaways from Facebook’s new guide and how it can work for your advertising goals.
Creative Prototyping Approach
Facebook’s definition of Creative Prototyping is: “a creative and measurement framework that involves conducting structured experiments with ad creative to drive success. Creative Prototyping is not a plug-and-play, pre-testing solution but rather a framework.” This focuses advertisers on sticking to a consistent approach when testing ads, rather than making one-off decisions.
In practical terms, the Creative Prototyping approach could look like testing variables like video length and copy keywords - findings that could be implemented across all campaigns, rather than specific ad images that aren’t applicable to future campaigns. The guide suggests digital marketers focus on understanding the former variables rather than the latter, to give the advertiser the best chance at success no matter what the subject of the campaign might be. Read on for highlights of the four-step approach.
Step 1: Ask
To test your creative, you first have to decide what you want to know. Preferably, these questions will help you build foundational knowledge you can use in future campaigns. Start by listing out what you know about your ad performance and your audience and what you don’t know. From there, whittle down a few key performance indicators to test with your initial campaign. Facebook includes a pre-written worksheet to help you with your first steps in Creative Prototyping.
Step 2: Make
After step one, you’ll actually want to make your ads. Facebook recommends optimizing all advertising for mobile, regardless of your other variables. From there, isolate the creative variable you want to learn more about. Be sure to keep other variables (especially audiences) the same to ensure your takeaways are accurate and specific to the creative itself. These variables can include branding elements, copy or design style, featured products, video length, and more.
Step 3: Learn
Once you’ve run your ads, it’s time to look at the results! When gathering these results, make sure to double-check that you used the same budget, audience, ad settings, and ensure you didn’t make a lot of edits to either ad that could have changed the results. Then, take a look at the key performance indicators you laid out before running the test. What worked and what didn’t? What can you apply to future ads? Taking comprehensive notes of all of these aspects is important to the final step of the process.
Step 4: Adapt
Once you have run testing - or even better - multiple rounds of creative testing, document the takeaways into best practices to use for future ad creative. Additionally, you can use these findings to iterate your testing and dive even further into what performs well for your audiences and why. This overview was just a brief look into the 29-page guidebook laid out by Facebook, but the process is valuable no matter how far into the weeds you get with your testing. And for other best practices in digital and social media strategy, subscribe to the Dropkick Blog here!