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How Can Online Advertisers Test Creative In Their Facebook Ads?

Written by: Carolyn Berk, Content Marketing Associate

It doesn’t matter if you work in ecommerce, gaming or any other industry; if you’re investing in online advertising, you’ll want to guarantee that your money is going towards the best ads possible. So how can you determine which of your ads will get you the most bang for your buck? The answer lies in creative testing.

What is creative testing?

Creative testing is a way to compare ads to see which image and copy combinations are best suited to drive your desired results. It’s similar to how you would use A/B testing to compare the performance of different web page designs. With creative testing, you can optimize your ad campaigns so that the best performing ads receive the bulk of your budget.

How should you set up a creative test?

There are four things to consider before you begin:

oneChoose a performance metric that you’ll use to judge ad performance, like CPA or CTR. Also determine what your threshold for success will be. For example, you could consider a successful ad to be anything with a CTR above 0.050.

twoDetermine which audience will serve as the test group. A broad audience won’t deliver helpful testing results, so be sure to choose a small, targeted group by using audience segments from the combined process of creating ads through an Ad Plan or Ad Builder.

threeAllocate a total budget amount for testing and set the duration for the test. Keep in mind that quicker testing can return flimsy results that aren’t solid enough to be conclusive. We suggest testing for longer periods of time so you can be confident that the results are strong enough to make an informed decision.

fourDecide how many ads you want to test at a time (we recommend 5-10), the order that you want to test the ads (for example, you can start by testing the oldest ads first, then work up to newer ads) and how many winners, or most successful ads, that you want at the end of testing (we suggest choosing 3).

Now you’re ready to start comparing ads to determine which are the best at achieving the desired results. Because doing this manually can be time consuming and overwhelming, we recommend using advertising automation software like Nanigans which will streamline the creative testing process for you.

How does creative testing work?

Creative Testing Screen Shot

Our automated creative testing begins by comparing groups of ads to determine which ads in that set are the best at achieving your goal. The least successful ads are paused down so you won’t waste your budget pushing them out, and another ad in the queue replaces it. This pattern repeats itself until the testing process whittles down the group to the winning ads that were best at achieving your goal.

Once the test has determined which ad creative elements are the most successful, it’s a good idea to also push those winning ads out to all audiences beyond your small testing group.

What are some creative testing best practices?

  • Don’t run winning ads forever. Eventually you should switch them out with fresh creative and start the testing process all over again.
  • Stop Loss can also help you identify and pause down ads which aren’t helping you meet your defined yield goal or are exceeding your target CPA.

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