Videos & Blogs

How to Create Effective Facebook Video Ads

If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video must be worth tens of thousands of words, right? On Facebook, the answer is ‘yes!’ It’s no news that video content on Facebook is hot and it’s a great way to capture attention, build brand awareness, drive traffic and ultimately get more business. So, how can you make the most of advertising on Facebook using video ads?


Let’s start with pre-recorded videos. According to Facebook, here are six key elements to running a great video Facebook ad. It’s really the little things that count:

  1. Start with your most captivating elements. Hook people with your most engaging content. Choose attention-grabbing video thumbnails. Begin your video with stunning shots of your products and vivid backgrounds.
  2. Incorporate brand identity early. Ads with brand and messaging in the first 10 seconds can effectively reach 3x more people.
  3. Use engaging post copy. Add interesting, provocative, or surprising post copy to complement the ad. You want to grab them right away.
  4. Tell your story visually. Build your story with images so your message can be understood without sound. Use text and graphics to help deliver your message. Communicate with text overlay, typographic treatments and graphics to tell the most important parts of your story so people can read your message loud and clear. You can also try adding subtitles to the ad.
  5. Try captions. Facebook’s automated captioning tool can make this easy for marketers in the US and Canada. Internal tests show that captioned video ads increase video view time by an average of 12.5% We also recommend using for video transcription.
  6. Frame your visual story. Remember, the screen size is smaller, so bring your story forward visually to help drive attention and clarity of the message. Focus on key frames that will catch viewers’ eyes and strengthen your message. Try playing with dimensions or moving between the foreground and background of your scene. One video editing program I recommend is

Something to keep in mind with video – is that many people do not watch an entire video. I know I’ve done that – clicked on something only to get distracted or bored and click away. According to Social Media Examiner, here are some of the common causes for low audience retention:

  • Including an intro
  • Using logos or credits at the beginning
  • Trying to tell too much in the video
  • Having a person talking to the camera without context

To create an effective video ad, you need to make an impact in the first few seconds. Show viewers something that will make them curious so they want to watch what happens next.


What about ad targeting with Facebook video ads?

Now that you have created video ads you can then view the response and run ads based on people who have watched 10 seconds of your video or more, you can see how many minutes they viewed and much more.

See below for an example of how you do that – you can go into any video (recorded or Facebook Live) on your business Page to view your analytics. You can then see how long people watched and run targeted ads based on that number.

Video example

Video example

For me, I experimented with simply boosting this post by only $5.00. Small investment, but from that boost I had increased the reach to over 5,000 people (see below.)

Video example after a small boost

Video example after a small boost

I have found that boosting a video for a small amount of money increases the reach, and then I can go and create a secondary ad based on how long someone watches a video. You can create a custom audience just based on how long someone has watched your previous videos!

Check out the video targeting you can do!

Check out the video targeting you can do!

When it comes to Facebook Live, I’ve tend to found that longer video is better. You tend to have more people tune in live when you are on live for more than 10 minutes and the data that you can pull from Facebook Live video to do ad targeting is pretty incredible. If you haven’t checked out our post on Facebook Live – this is definitely a must read!

Looking for inspiration? Check out Facebook’s video studio with awesome video ad examples! Also check out our blog post from last week sharing more insights on Facebook advertising.


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