3 Types Of Facebook Image Ads That Work

One of the major differences between Google and Facebook PPC advertising is the relative importance of images. In Facebook advertising, some experts say that certain elements of images in ads can make or break a campaign. In this article, I’ll cover images that convert well and various ways to effectively test Facebook images.

Of course, your mileage may vary. I’ve surveyed current expert opinion on leading-edge trends with Facebook ad performance, and found the work of Jennifer Sheahan from FBadsLAB to be particularly insightful. In fact, I credit many of the following tips to Jen and a recent conversation I had with her.

Before getting started, here are some general Facebook advertising tips:

1.  A sense of “urgency” works well with Facebook ads. Audiences will be more compelled to click if they don’t see your ad often and if they think the ad may not see them again. Translation: do not bid to the hilt in Facebook. Lower your impression share so ads appear less often.

2.  As with advertising on the Google display network, the goal of a Facebook ad is to distract users from other tasks and entice potential visitors to click on ads. Ads with a purpose or a clever hook work better than ads with no purpose. It’s better to tie your ad to a promotion, discount or a report with compelling information than to simply try to drive traffic to a site.

3.  Test many images at once. Experts suggest 7 to 10 images per campaign.

4.  Don’t be discouraged by low conversion rates, especially if you’re used to Google AdWords. Average conversion rates in FB are approximately 0.02%. You’re doing well if you see conversions in the 0.4% to 0.5% range.

In general, the following types of images convert best on Facebook.

Happy Women

The best types of images to use in Facebook advertising are of happy women. Women who look overjoyed, free and are looking directly at the camera convert best. Also, try images of women who joyfully have their arms in the air.

Images of woman can tie into almost any product like health nutrition, wellness, etc. Financial institutions like banks could use an image of a happy woman and tie it to the idea of getting freedom from services charges or getting freedom from a mortgage sooner.

Colorful Logos

Why do logos convert at all? Here, the key would seem to be extreme relevance and repetition over time to the most targeted audience possible. Involved in a niche sport like lacrosse? A leading lacrosse equipment maker could actually profit by simply showing you their logo every so often over a period of months or even years.

Recently, experts say logos have been converting better, and that’s likely because advertisers are getting better at implementing such strategies. Those who understand the long term benefit of building brand recall in consumers may be particularly impressed with Facebook’s ability to do this within communities of any size.

Try logos that are colorful and engaging. If your company’s logo is boring or bland, make look colorful by adding a colorful border, background or text. Definitely avoid blue and white as the colors blend too much with Facebook’s colors.

Images with text on them (calls to action) convert better than images alone. In general, ads with a “reason” convert better than ads with no reason. So don’t just tell people about your accounting services but include a reason like: 1) end of tax year special or 2) an online promotion with savings available for 3 days only.

Note: product images do not convert as well as straight up colorful logos.


These work well for presenters or a well-known person like the head of a company. In general, happy pictures where people are looking directly at the camera work best.

For example, if advertising an expert speaker, action shots of them talking with expressive hands tend to convert best. Subconsciously, people who view these pictures want to hear what the speaker is saying. Here’s an example:

Close up pictures work best so try not to cram too much into your images. A good idea is to step away from your computer and see if you can still see your image clearly in the 110 x 80 format. If not, re-size, rinse and repeat.

In subsequent articles, I’ll cover best practices related to successful Facebook headlines, ad copy and testing strategies.

Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.

Related Topics: Channel: SEM | Facebook | Paid Search Column


About The Author: was recently voted the 2013 Most influential SEM. She is the Vice President of Online Marketing Strategy at Page Zero Media where she focuses on search engine marketing strategy, landing page optimization (LPO) and conversion rate optimization (CRO).

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  • http://www.clientsforyourbiz.com Damon L. Rice

    Good info. I would be interested to know the conversion rates on the “happy women” ads considering most men that would click on this may only be looking for one thing (know what I mean?).

  • http://www.nickusborne.com/ nickusborne

    When you talk about conversion rates in point #4, do you mean clickthrough from the ad, or conversion to a final sale, registration etc?

  • http://www.directresponse.net Dave

    Urgency is a really big factor I believe when it comes to Facebook.
    Users see ads all day long and think nothing of it. They have a ping pong match between whether the ad is worth looking into or not.
    Creating the slightest bit of “Hurry! Click now!” can be a deciding factor into whether they decide to click through or not.

  • http://www.bdtechie.com Nasif Abdur Razzaque

    You will get lots of click when using a picture of a happy woman on facebook ads but did you ever thought how much the bounce rate will be ?

  • http://www.phillgeorge.me george phillip

    You can get upto 1.3% conversion rate with the right image and targetting.


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