Best Practices: Optimizing for Brand Awareness & Engagement

Why should I use Engagement campaigns?

Engagement campaigns should be used if you want to improve Brand Awareness and create conversation with users on Facebook.


How can I be successful with my Engagement campaigns?

Optimization is an iterative process. Repeating this process lets you maximize your return on investment (ROI) efficiently and effectively:

  1. Structure your campaigns using the Facebook Best Practice guidelines
  2. Analyze your data
  3. Make changes as needed based on your learnings

Key factors to consider when optimizing Engagement campaigns are:

  • Campaign structure to set up on Facebook
  • Targeting utilized on the posts and ads
  • Placements and bid types selected
  • Using your learnings to refine your campaign settings

1. Start by planning your campaign structure

Start by planning your campaign structure at each level - Campaign, Ad Set, Ad - and identify what aspects you want to test. You should consider testing variations in your Targeting, Placement, Bidding, and Creatives.

Facebook Ad Structure by Adparlor

An example of a well structured campaign on Facebook:

  Contains Defined at this level
Campaign "Brand Awareness" Campaign Objective e.g. "Post Engagements"
Ad Sets (segmented by targeting demographics) "UK Males 18-24" 
"UK Females 18-24" 
"UK Males 25-34"
"UK Females 25-34" ...
Flight Dates, Lifetime Budget, Targeting. Placement, Bids   
Ads (testing different creative aspects) "Creative 1"
"Creative 2"
"Creative 3" ...
Images, Text, Buttons etc

Targeting Considerations

Targeting for engagement campaigns can be very flexible – you can utilize a combination of geographic, demographic, languages, interests, custom/look-a-like audiences, Facebook categories, partner categories, connection and mobile devices. 




Your targeting should be relevant to the content you’re posting. If you don’t know the best users to target, test different audiences and shift budget according to performance. Renew your content every few days to keep ads fresh.
Scalability Your target audience size should correspond to your budget e.g. targeting only fans within a particular city may limit your market too much; on the other hand, targeting all users in the USA may be too large and thus your content will lose relevancy.


As a rule of thumb, you should target ~1–2 million users for every $5,000 USD of ad spend in the USA over 3-5 day flight on mobile/desktop feed. You should also ensure you are bidding in the top half of the Facebook suggested bid range (i.e. above the median value). 


Placement Considerations

The following placements are available for Facebook advertising:

Placement Comments
Mobile newsfeed Typically the best performing placement for engagement campaigns as there is more inventory available on mobile devices.
Desktop newsfeed Tends to perform well on campaigns with open and flexible targeting.
Right-hand side Facebook is updating the right-hand rail with larger ad units; you should also test this placement to gauge performance.

If reach and frequency are NOT a concern, you should select all placements and let Facebook automatically optimize to the best one.


Bidding Considerations

Bid types on engagement campaigns should be chosen based on your objectives.

I want to maximize Recommended bid type
A particular social action (e.g. comments) oCPM - optimizing towards that specific action; you define the action when you select what is called your 'conversion spec' i.e. oCPM -> page likes (you will be charged per impression)
Reach CPM - this is oCPM optimizing towards reach (you will be charged per impression).
Page likes, link clicks or offer claims CPA - with the desired action specified (Facebook only charges once the user has completed the specific action).
All social actions without preference CPC - (Facebook only charges if the user clicks on or interacts with your post).
Post engagements or page engagements oCPM - optimizing towards either post engagements or page engagement; in this case you just want any kind of engagement, you don't care which action occurs

2. Create your campaigns and analyze your data

See How to Efficiently A/B Test with AdParlor


3. Refine your campaigns for smarter use of your advertising budget

Once your ads are uploaded, you will need to monitor the campaign to ensure it is pacing correctly and achieving the lowest possible cost-per-engagement.

Outcome Recommended actions to take
Under-pacing of delivery

This means that there is not enough inventory available.

Try: Expand your target audience size or test another placement/bid type to increase your market reach OR Increase your bids to be more competitive for what inventory is available.

CPEs are too high

This occurs in instances where the market reach is not large enough or there are too many advertisers seeking those users. In both cases the inventory has become expensive and you are paying too much per engagement. 

Try: Pause or reduce budget on ad sets with high CPEs, increase the bids and budgets on ad sets within your top performing CPEs. Use a conservative time window for your data analysis e.g. the last 7 days. 

Frequency is too high

This means that Facebook is serving impressions to the same users to achieve your budget.

Try: Expand your target audience size to allow new users to be served OR remove/pause RHS placement from your ad sets - there are no frequency restrictions in place (unlike Newsfeed).*

*As of 16/01/2015, the same Newsfeed ad can be shown to the same user up to two times per day. In the Newsfeed, brands can show up to four ads for followers of their page, and up to two ads for non-followers of their page. 


Powered by Zendesk