5-13-2016 (2)

Facebook advertising sounds pretty simple at first, but when you start to create a new campaign you’re immediately asked to pick from one of the 11 different types of ads available.

Woah! 11 different types of ads is overwhelming even for experienced advertisers!  If you’re just getting started, then facing the decision to pick the ad type could easily stop you in your tracks.

That’s why in this article, I’m going to simplify the ad selection process.  My goal is make this as easy as possible so you can get past this first, critical step and get on your way to launching your campaign.

First, we can cut down your options considerably by dividing the 11 ad types into two categories:

  1. Engagement Ads
  2. Direct Response Ads


What Are Engagement Ads?

You can think of Engagement Advertising like networking...The goal is to make a great impression and then get permission to follow up later.


The goal of Engagement ads is, you guessed it, to get engagement on your ads. :)  By engagement, I mean Facebook Likes, Shares, Comments and Click-throughs to your website.

Why would you want to invest in ads to purely get engagement?  

That’s a great question and here are the 2 primary reasons:

  1. Make a positive first impression with your prospective customer, which will help improve conversion rates in the future.  Remember, you only get one chance to make a great first impression.
  2. Gain “permission” to continue to market to your prospective customer, which allows you to display ads in the future.  This is not exactly permission-based marketing, but when someone interacts with your ads, then they are essentially telling Facebook that they would like to continue to receive ads from your business.


You can think of Engagement Advertising like networking.  When you’re attending a networking event you’re not looking to sell at the event.  Instead, you’re looking to connect with people who could be customers in the future.  The goal is to make a great impression and then get permission to follow up later. 

The same is true with Engagement Ads.

With this in mind, let’s take a closer look at which ad types in Facebook are geared toward engagement…

Which Facebook Ad Types Are For Engagement?

You only have 3 options if you’re looking to set up an Engagement Ad campaign.  I told you we would simplify this for you! :)

Here are the 3 Engagement Ad types:

  1. Page Post Engagement.  These ads are also known as “boosted posts.”  Facebook will automatically optimize your bidding to maximize how many people will engage with your post.
  2. Page Likes.  These ads include a button for users to “Like” your Facebook page.  Again, the goal is not to sell, but to make a good first impression and then follow up with your followers later to make a sale.
  3. Video Views.  Some of the most popular posts on Facebook are videos so if you have the ability to produce a video, then these can be very effective.


Of course, you’re not going to generate many sales if all you do is invest in Engagement Ads… You eventually have to sell, which brings us to the next category of ads…

What Are Direct Response Ads?

Direct Response ads are focused on generating leads and sales (aka a response).  For example, ads with buttons that say “Shop Now” or “Sign Up” are Direct Response ads.  

This is a critical distinction that not only limits which Facebook ad types you use, but also influences the copy and images you use.  As you can imagine, your Engagement Ads will likely look different from your Direct Response ads, and vice versa.  

Now that you understand the two different categories of ads, let’s look at which Facebook ad types are geared toward getting a response….


Which Facebook Ad Types Are For Direct Response?

Since 3 ad types were for engagement, we’re left with 8 options for direct response.  However, 2 of them are only for mobile apps.  So unless you have a mobile app, you can ignore the App Installs and App Engagement ad types.

That leaves us with the following 6 options:

  1. Clicks to Website.  As the name suggests, the goal of these ads is to get people to click through to your website.  That’s a step in the right direction, but ideally with direct response we want the goal to be a lead or sale, which us to the 2nd option…
  2. Website Conversions.  The goal of these ads is to get a conversion (lead or sale) on your website.
  3. Local Awareness. With Local Awareness ads, you can include a call-to-action button to drive phone calls, private messages (aka online chat), driving directions, or to learn more by visiting your website.
  4. Offer Claims. These ads allow you to promote special offers that people can claim by clicking the “Get Offer” button in the ad.
  5. Lead Generation. With Lead Generation ads, any business can easily create an ad campaign to drive leads (even if you don’t have a website!).  These ads seamlessly collect contact information without the user ever leaving Facebook.
  6. Event Responses. If you’re promoting an upcoming event, then Event Response ads can help you drive more registrations.

Still not sure which direct response ad type is right for you?  

If you can, then I recommend Website Conversions because you’ll have the most control over your ad campaign.  For example, you’ll be able to customize your landing page and use your own webforms so contact information is saved correctly in your existing CRM (customer relationship management) system.

Choosing the right ad type is just one of the many steps to creating a successful Facebook ad campaign.  To learn the complete, step-by-step process, register for our upcoming live training…

How To Create Facebook Ads That Actually Generate Leads & Sales



Register now for this 90-minute online workshop and learn exactly how to create Facebook Ads that don’t just get “Likes”… but actually generate leads and customers for your business.

Join us on Thursday, May 19th 2016 from 12:00pm-1:30pm EST.

Click here to learn more and register.