How to Design a Facebook Ad Your Worst Enemy Will Click On

by Robert Katai

Facebook is the most used social media platform in the world. It has been popular since its launch and it continues to be at the top of its “food chain”.

There are over 2 billion monthly active users on Facebook. Almost one and half billion users are active daily on the social media platform. If this is not a good enough reason to start marketing on it, I don’t know what is. Moreover, almost 40 percent of them like or follow a Facebook page that belongs to a brand, expecting to hear news from them or learn about special offers.

Finally, keep in mind that at least 1/3 of the active users on Facebook engage with brands regularly, with more than 5 billion comments left on pages each month.

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Is Facebook Advertising Worth it?

Well, there are several sources that would swear on behalf of Facebook’s effectiveness. One report published by Adobe several years ago got our attention for the first time, claiming that Facebook Ads CTR is up to at least 25% by the year with CPC spikes of over 40% during the holidays. The same source suggests that along with the CPM increase, the Facebook advertising ROI grows as well, up to a staggering 58%.

62% of the today’s marketers admit that Facebook is their most important social media. And, it is important for both, content marketing and paid advertising as well. In fact, over 90 percent of marketers use Facebook advertising regularly.

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Is it worth it?

Well, everything depends on how effective you are at creating ads. You need to attract an audience and sell your story and in order to do that, you will need inspiration and a lot of research. In fact, this is our main topic for this article and starting from the following chapters, I will try to shed some light on this issue and offer some solutions.

How to Start Up Your First Campaign

I will go fast through this process and get back to the topic of interest in just a few sentences. Let’s recap everything you need in order to start your first Facebook advertising campaign:

  1.       A Facebook account
  2.       Go to Facebook Ads Manager interface and start configuring your first campaign. The platform offers a pretty good and thorough help guide on every step to undertake here, starting with budget allocation and up to the publishing of your first ads.

facebook ad design


  1.       Choose your objectives, your demographics and the type of ads you want to publish.
  2.       Adjust your budget to the needs of your campaign. Facebook ads run on a bidding platform. This means that the costs will depend on which keywords you want to use and how popular they are amongst Facebook’s marketers and advertisers.
  3.       Create your banners, brainstorm for attractive copy texts and calls to action before publishing.
  1.       Analyse your results and use the data for your future campaigns.

Facebook Ad Design

Yeah, I know, it’s really hard to grasp the idea of designing an infallible advertisement but if you really put your mind into it, you can be surprised at what you can achieve with medium efforts.

Here is some valuable advice that should help improve your results:

1. Capture the audience’s attention with visuals

Use images. Use them on your posts and especially on your banners. Use images that stand out.

People react better to images than they do to text. And it is not hard to understand why. A visual is able to transmit a message instantly and, if chosen wisely, it can also trigger instant emotions. Even the shortest copy text takes a few seconds to be read and understand. The image is instantly readable and understandable.

Visuals are better than audio content too. When people hear information, they are able to remember only ten percents of the audio message three days later. On the other hand, they retain 65% of the same information if it was distributed via images instead of sound.

It’s not surprising at all that even on text-based social media platforms, such as Twitter, posts paired with images receive 150% more reposts than those with only text. Facebook, on the other hand, is a visual-based network and as a consequence, the importance of this type of content becomes even greater.

2. Use only graphics that are relevant to your audience

Every new advertising campaign starts with a market study. And, this market study includes a serious and thorough study on audience, demographics, habits, hobby’s, interests and so on.

Consequently, you need to deliver an ad that instantly transmits a message. And, you need to transmit a relevant message to your campaign. Here’s an example from Jasper’s Market:

facebook ad design


Consumer Acquisition has found out that images are responsible for 75% to 90% of your ad performance. This is why it’s important to test your ads over and over again and constantly adjust your visuals to the audience.

The easiest way to do this is to keep all your designs in one place and if possible, keep all your raw materials and drafts together. This way, you can get back to each one of your ads and adjust as you go with your campaign.

For this purpose, I always use Bannersnack as my main tool for ad design. The online tool allows you to create complete sets of banners and other types of relevant visuals. It comes with a Facebook banner template which should ease your work considerably. And everything you create and publish with Bannersnack is being saved automatically and stored in the cloud, available from your own account interface. It’s easy to get back to your previous work this way, get inspired from all the templates and stock images that are at your disposal and adjust old banners or create new ones in just a few minutes.

facebook ad design


3. Use high contrasts

The most important thing, except for the actual selection of your images, is how you construct the ad, visually. Here’s a piece of advice: Don’t be boring! Try to surprise your audience with the visual impact of your advertisement. What is the simplest way to do it? Use high contrast colours! Be loud, be explosive but try and do it without overreaching.

Take a look at the following example from Nike:

facebook ad design


Remember my advice about not overreaching? Let’s clarify the statement and explain what I have tried to say here.

Visual ads have come a long way since the days of the annoying brightly coloured GIF banners. However, the above example teaches us something quite important in this industry. Bright colours and high contrasts can help you attract attention should you use them wisely and without ceding to the temptation of overcrowding. You don’t need a rainbow of colours. One or two will suffice.

4. Trigger positive emotions

Everyone reacts differently to an image or a text. However, if you know your audience, you should know what types of images they like, what stories and visuals trigger positive emotions and attract immediately.

There are many ways in which you can play at the emotional level. For instance, young people will react to bright colors, funny drawings, concerts, other people having fun etc. Mature audiences, on the other hand, may react to images depicting happy families, outdoor activities and so on. Almost all audiences will react positively to images that transmit strong social messages on the other hand.

Take a look at the following Facebook ad published by Eventbrite:

Here, we have an image that tells the happy story of a group of people enjoying an event, most probably a concert. And, it’s the main emotion that a company such as Eventbrite needs to transmit. They do it perfectly and they do it with just a simple image without the need for inspirational ad copy text.

5. Be credible. Always

When you are designing your ads it’s important to pay attention to details. However, it is vital to be truthful and not to lie to your customers. If you are promoting something, try not to oversell your products and services with incorrect prices or “too-good-to-be-true” offers.

Here’s an example from BlueHost:

facebook ad design

Their message is simple, easy to comprehend and accurate for the time the ad was published. However, should they have advertised something like…

“Launch your website today and start making millions!”

Do you think somebody would have clicked on it? Do you think there are enough targeted customers that actually believe cheap hosting and a WordPress website will make them rich overnight?

I don’t think so.

Now, think about how detrimental it would be to advertise a lie. Or, how detrimental it would be to advertise a service or a product with features that don’t exist.

What Other Options Are There?

Sometimes, it may not be enough to just advertise your business or services. In order to show consistency and to engage actively with the audience, you might need a content marketing strategy as well. What can you do on Facebook to achieve maximum results?

In short, there are three basic things that are important here:

  1.       Post regularly relevant information to your audience. Content is important in marketing and anything you post on Facebook can make a difference as long as you do it consistently. Facebook’s algorithms may change from time to time but one thing remains unchanged: as long as you experiment with different types of content, you will not fail.
  2.       Engage with your online community. It’s not enough to distribute valuable content and attractive ads. As long as you are strategizing on a social media platform, you should always keep in mind that people are here mostly for communication. Engage actively with your audience, fans and critics. Respond to their comments, answer their questions.
  3.       Join/create Facebook groups. Nowadays, Groups can outperform traditional Facebook pages by 60 percent. More and more people are using them in order to engage with their peers. The same applies to businesses and marketers who know that Groups are a perfect medium to engage with people who share specific interests.


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Facebook is the most popular social media platform and it cannot be ignored by marketers regardless of their industry.

As powerful as content marketing is, there will be times when you decide that your strategy should also include paid advertising. Your success in this area, however, depends on your ability to create attractive and inspiring ads, choose your images and brainstorm for infallible copy and calls to action.

What do you think about the above strategies? What other advice would you give to designing the best Facebook ads possible? Leave a comment!

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Guest Author
Robert Katai is the content marketing manager at Bannersnack, a professional banner creation app for marketers & small business owners. He's passionate about content marketing and social media. His work has been featured in The Next Web, AdWeek, CrazyEgg blog and The Content Marketing Institute.

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