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Unscrambling Facebook Ads

Facebook Ads are a great tool for brands because they can reach a large yet targeted audience. From increasing brand awareness to optimizing web traffic, companies are using the many different ad objectives on Facebook more frequently. At first, the function of each type of Facebook Ad may seem intimidating. Here is a simple way to distinguish the different ad objectives currently offered by Facebook.

Facebook Ads are divided into two price options: “auction” vs. “reach and frequency.” Auction means you will bid to reach your audience for the lowest possible price, while reach and frequency requires you to pay a fixed price to predictably reach an audience. Since each of the different ad objectives that are in the reach and frequency segment are also included in the auction segment, we will be focusing on the auction objectives, which are divided into three categories.

Objective #1: Awareness

The first campaign objective is Awareness, which means that your brand’s goal is to make consumers aware of its name and the purpose it serves. Within this objective, there are two subcategories:

Brand Awareness

If your goal is to drive brand recognition and recall, this is the objective for you. A Brand Awareness ad will show your targeted audience something that is creative and memorable. The success of this type of ad is measured by estimated ad recall lift (or the number of people likely to remember your ad), and ad recall lift per dollar spent. Brands use these ads to become top-of-mind when the consumer is thinking about its product or service. AXE, for example, successfully used this objective to reposition its brand and attract a more mature audience.


The Reach ad’s objective is to speak to as many people as possible. This is great option if you are a brand that’s looking to expand your audience, and targeting can be used to limit who your ad will be served to. The success of these ads is measured by number of impressions and the CPM (cost per 1,000 people reached). Le Creuset Israel, a French kitchenware company, utilized Reach ads to promote its products to as many people as possible in a new market.

Objective #2: Consideration

The second campaign objective is Consideration. This means that your goal is to make people contemplate purchasing your product or service. Within this category, there are five subcategories:


Traffic ads are a great way to drive consumers to a brand’s website. This can then lead to sales or even just a better understanding of the company’s products and services. The success of these ads is measured by website clicks and their click-through-rate. For this objective, a Facebook Pixel helps track and measure success.


There are three options under the Engagement objective:

  • Post Engagement, which boosts specific posts on your Facebook page and is measured by the number of engagements (likes, comments, shares) that the post receives. This type of ad will include interesting imagery and copy to encourage consumers to engage with the post.
  • Page Likes, which overall promote a brand’s Facebook page and are measured by how many new people “like” the page at the end of the campaign. These ads will appear looking like post engagement ads, but will include a “‘Like’ page” button.
  • Event Responses, which are great for promoting a specific event or for driving ticket sales. This ad will include the basic event information in a way that will encourage people to consider attending. Overall, the Engagement advertising objective is used by businesses looking to spark conversation and engage with consumers in a way that increases the brand’s social media credibility.

App Installs

If your brand has an app, this would be a beneficial tool for you to use. It enables you to reach people who are most likely to download and utilize your app through targeting. This can then translate to ROI for your business. App Install ads are measured by how many people end up downloading your app. Look at how 8fit utilized the App Installs objective to increase its fitness app’s number of downloads.

Video Views

Ever wonder why you see so many video advertisements when scrolling through Facebook? Video View ads may be the culprit. This objective is great for promoting footage and raising brand awareness so that consumers consider your brand when ready to make a purchase. It is best measured by how many views and impressions your video receives. The most successful Video Views campaigns use creativity to resonate with consumers.

Lead Generation

Lead Generation ads are perfect if you represent a brand and want to find out the contact information of potential consumers. Although it is up to you to take the next step and reach out to those people, Lead Generation ads can generate promising leads, providing you use the correct targeting. For instance, Baked NYC effectively used lead ads to boost email subscriptions and encourage people to order its Thanksgiving pies.

Objective #3: Conversion

The third and final campaign objective option is Conversion. Brands will use this if the goal is for consumers to respond to the ad in a way that leads to sales. This category has three subcategories:


The goal of Conversion ads is to get people to take action on your website or app, such as making a purchase. The Facebook Pixel mentioned previously will help track and measure success here as well. An example of how to utilize this ad objective is Little Trendsetter, which used Conversions ads to promote its online store.

Product Catalog Sales

Think of this type of campaign as Facebook’s version of those catalogs you receive in the mail. If a business wants to use this ad to drive sales, it will need to compile a list of its products, prices, URLs, and other product attributes so that consumers can take the next step and make the purchase. Click here to learn more about how to create a product catalog.

Store Visits

If foot traffic is your goal, this ad objective is for you. Store Visit ads are used to promote brick-and-mortar locations by targeting nearby people. A good way to track the success of these ads is to measure the increase in store visits from before the ads started running in comparison to during and after. Another way is to include an offer or coupon that only people that saw the Facebook Ad would know about.


Although Facebook Ad objectives may seem confusing at first glance, you will become more comfortable and get to understand them the more often you use them. You will also start to see that although there are different ad objectives listed, many of them overlap and can be used interchangeably for the same end goal. 

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