By Erin | | in Marketing

Perfecting Your Ad Placement 

So, you know you can choose where your ads are shown, right? Facebook and their affiliate platforms have released a variety of new placement options in 2018.

From Instagram Stories to Messenger Inbox, there are more ad placement options than ever before!  Our Klypsters have compiled some hints and tips to help your business understand ad placement best practices for your social strategy. 

Why Should I Care?

Innovation and updates to popular digital platforms offer more ad placement options, formats and more advanced targeting to improve digital marketing outcomes. These changes allow ads to be placed in online spaces in which consumers are not used to being exposed to ads.  A poor placement strategy can lead to wasted ad spend or worse, possible consumer annoyance.  Keep reading for our tips and tricks on perfecting the art of placement! 


Facebook Ad Placement Strategy and Tips

As digital advertising has evolved and innovated in recent years, so too have ad placement options. Skyscraper and Banner ads have become “old-school”, as social networking sites introduce a variety of new formats for digital advertisers. Facebook has transformed into one of the biggest advertising platforms in the world, offering a unique online environment wherein users are encouraged to “share” and interact with “friends”.

Most marketers know to take Facebook recommended features with a grain of salt.  Facebook tends to promote and recommend their newest features, but it’s best to test these for yourself.    The same healthy skepticism is necessary when creating new Ad Sets, as Facebook will recommend “Automatic Placements”.  While this may seem to be an easy option, our Klypsters recommend taking control of your placements so you can later optimise based on results.  Luckily, Facebook offers advertisers the option to "Edit Placements" when creating new Ad Sets. 

You can choose between the following, as well as Suggested Videos, In-Stream Videos and Stories.

News Feed:  This is a very popular placement option, available for both desktop and mobile and every objective offered by Facebook.  So whether you’re aiming to generate leads or increase awareness, this placement is a great starting place.  Newsfeed ads are very versatile and appear in the highest traffic area of the Facebook website and app, making them a great choice for traffic and awareness campaigns. 

Right Column:  The right column placement displays your ad in the right-hand column of the Facebook News Feed, and is only visible on desktop.  While this placement supports a wide range of objectives, many marketers choose to omit right column placement.  This is due to the lower CTR typical of this placement type, and the emergence of mobile as the device of choice for social media usage.  In 2018, Sensis found that 74% of people use smartphones to access social media over laptops, tablets and other devices.  

Instant Articles: These ads are displayed on articles which are easily loaded by Facebook, often sitting between paragraphs within the article. This placement supports popular objectives including traffic, conversions and engagement.   You may consider applying block lists or category exclusions to ad sets using this placement to avoid your ad and brand being associated with particular topics. 

Audience Network:  This placement provides advertisers the opportunity to extend reach beyond Facebook, and into other mobile apps and websites.  Appearing in banner, native and interstitial formats, ads utilising the audience network placement are most effective in increasing traffic and reducing CPC.  The limitation with this placement, as with Instant Articles, is the lack of control advertisers have over which websites or apps host their ads. As recommended for Instant Article placement, the use of blocklists and category exclusions may benefit the performance of your ads when using the Audience Network placement. 

Marketplace:  Marketplace placement is relatively new to Facebook, and displays ads when someone browses Marketplace in the Facebook app on their phone.  Ads in Marketplace will also show in News Feed, as it is not yet possible to select the Marketplace alone. This placement option is effective when targeting a remarketing audience, as your audience may be continuing their search in the Marketplace.  The Marketplace may also be particularly effective for local businesses, provided locational targeting is refined. 


Messenger Ad Placement Strategy and Tips

Facebook now allows advertisers the option to place ads in Messenger Inbox or to deliver ads as Messages.

Messenger ads are best used to directly communicate with an audience, to encourage users to start a conversation or to remind them about a product.   These placements support the “Message” objective offered by Facebook, which prompts users to start or continue a conversation with a brand.  You can expect to see lots of changes in this space, as Facebook Messenger Bots become more prevalent. 

While this is another touchpoint for advertisers, the use of Inbox placement may backfire. Facebook’s Messenger function is perceived as a "private online space" due to the personal messaging nature of the tool, much like an email inbox. Ads are frequently placed in public spaces, both online and otherwise. However, research indicates that people will lose trust in a brand if they invade their “private” online space. 

A good way to avoid negative consumer attitudes towards your Messenger ads is to consider the context.  Inbox placements can be successful with remarketing audiences, as people who already engage with your business are less likely to perceive ads as “intrusive”.   


Instagram Ad Placement Strategy and Tips

Instagram is a must for brands with great visual content.  The platform boasts over 500 million users, and 72% say they have purchased a product they’ve seen on the app.  This makes Instagram a great additional placement option, particularly for brands aiming to target young people.  Instagram offers two placement options:

Feed: The Instagram Feed placement is similar to the humble Facebook News Feed, giving advertisers the option to use static imagery, video or multiple images/videos in a carousel format.  This placement is great for brand awareness, engagement and video view objectives.  

Stories:  Instagram stories are designed as constantly scrolling content, supporting both video and static imagery.   This ad placement occurs between stories of people you follow and tends to “blend in” with user-generated organic content when done well.  Advertisers may struggle with the aspect ratio of this placement, as content often needs to be custom designed to be engaging to users.  This is expected to be a major growth area for advertisers, with updates already occurring.  


Start by considering the objective of your campaign and narrow down placement options that make sense to your brand.  Throughout the campaign, you can check on the progress of your ads by placement and optimise your ad spend by filtering out ineffective placement options.  So next time you’re setting up a Facebook campaign, be sure to select the “Edit Placements” options when editing your ad sets, because placement matters!   


Learn More

Want to delve deeper into the world of placements? Here are some great links!

Facebook Ad Placements Infographic 

Facebook Ad Placement Optimisation

Instagram Ads Guide