How to Build a Holiday Facebook Ad

If you’re marketing on Facebook, you likely hang out in one of two camps. You run a successful Facebook Business Page with an engaged, excited audience, or like too many businesses, your Facebook Business Page exists, but interaction is few and far between.

Facebook Advertising offers many ways to tap into those 1.47 billion people logging into Facebook each day and increase engagement on your business page, as well as drive holiday traffic and sales on your website.

Today, we’ll walk through building a simple holiday Facebook Ad from your Business Manager Ad Account.

How to Build a Facebook Ad

Step 1: Navigate to your Ad Account in Facebook Business Manager.

Step 2: Select Create.

Step 3: Select a Campaign Objective.

Facebook supplies sample marketing objectives, and then tailors next steps for you to get started.

For example, an ad aimed at increasing Local Awareness will promote your business to people who are nearby. An ad targeting App Installs will drive traffic to your app’s page in the app store to increase purchases.

We selected the marketing objective Traffic.

Step 4: Give your Ad a Campaign Name, and then, Continue.

We named our ad “Kid’s Holiday Gift Guide”.

Now, we define our ad’s target audience. There’s a ton of options on this page, so we’ll break it down into steps.

Step 5: Give your Ad Set a Name.

You can either type in a new name (you’ll see the Ad Set name in reporting, notifications, and more) or Autofill a previous Ad Set. We named our Ad Set “Kid’s Holiday Gift Guide,” because it will promote a targeted holiday gift guide for children to potential customers.

Step 6: Define where to drive traffic.

We selected Website, since our goal is to drive traffic to the retailer website. Driving traffic to a mobile or desktop app is also an option

Step 7: Define your Audience.

Defining our audience lets us select from helpful demographic and relational factors.

For our example, this holiday ad is seeking a targeted audience of moms looking to purchase children’s toys and gifts for the holidays. We broke this down into:

  • Women
  • Ages 25 – 55
  • Located in the United States
  • Parents with preschoolers (3 – 5 years), with early school-age children (6 – 8 years), and with preteens (8 – 12 years)
  • Interested in Kids Toys, Arts & Crafts, Children’s Clothing, Online Shopping

As you modify your audience, keep an eye on the visual Audience Definition in the right sidebar. Facebook captures your specifications, estimates your expected daily reach on Facebook and Instagram, and states whether the audience definition is specific or broad.

You’ll see an optional field called lookalike audience. This valuable feature increases your brand reach by using characteristics from a source audience you specify, and then finding new contacts that meet similar characteristics.

For example, your source audience may be fans of your page or contacts who visited your website (identified by adding Facebook’s tracking pixel to your website). Facebook then identifies common qualities of the contacts in the list and finds people who share those qualities in the country or countries you’re targeting.

Alternatively, you can upload a custom audience into their system (like a selection of your email contacts). Target this audience with your ad directly, or use it as the source of your lookalike audience.

You can “include” or “exclude” specific audiences, and you can also save previous audiences for future use.

Under Connections, we specify users who liked our Facebook page, app, or event, exclude these people, or reach out to their friends. We did not tap into our connections for this example.

Step 8: Define Your Ad Placements

Here, you define where your ad displays.

If you select Automatic Placements (Facebook’s recommended choice), your ad displays across a mix of Facebook’s mobile and desktop feeds, Facebook’s right hand column feed, in Instagram, and across their audience network (their family of apps and services).

You can also select Edit Placements for granular control of who sees your ad.

Step 9: Set Your Budget and Schedule

Next, you define a Daily Budget of a specified dollar amount per day, or a Lifetime Budget of the maximum amount you want to spend throughout the course of the ad.

Keep in mind, the daily budget is an average. Depending on activity, it may be higher or lower, but averages out to your daily budget.

Step 10: Format Placements

With those details out of the way, you’re ready to build the ad!

First, choose your ad format. Options include:
•  Carousel: two or more scrollable images or videos
•  Single Image
•  Single Video­
•  Slideshow: a looping video ad with up to 10 images
•  Canvas: combines images and videos for a more immersive story.

The page changes with each selection to walk you through steps to create each type of ad. We’ve selected a Single Image Ad.

Select an image for your ad and write a headline and ad copy to compel users to click. Customize the call-to-action and link the URL to drive traffic (to our website, in this case). (*This is not a real Pottery Barn Ad.)

There are lots of options to customize the experience. As you complete fields, your ad builds in the preview, on the right. Use the Right and Left arrows to toggle between ad previews, and see how it will display across different ad placements.

Don’t forget to define URL parameters in the next field. These keywords are added to the end of the URL when users click it, so you can track the ad and analyze its success.

When you’ve completed the fields, select Confirm at the bottom of the screen.

Get Started with Holiday Facebook Ads

We hope this Holiday Facebook Ads How-To gets you started trying out Facebook advertising. The platform is constantly evolving and offering marketers unique ways to target new contacts.

We recommend testing out a few simple ads to see what resonates with your audience, before diving into more advanced functionality. Take advantage of the busiest shopping season of the year by trying your hand at paid search.