How to write Facebook Ad Copy that actually works
So, you've got high quality visual content for your Facebook Ads sorted. And you're clear on your Facebook objectives. The next step? Nailing your copy. If you're getting writer's block, don't sweat it. In this blog post we'll walk you through how to write effective Facebook Ad copy that actually works.
These are the best practices that our digital marketing experts use week in, week out to increase conversion rates for our clients. Once you know how to write a Facebook ad that converts, you'll be able to target your audience better, improve brand awareness and secure a higher return on ad spend.
Does Facebook Ads copy even matter?
Facebook and Instagram are highly visual platforms. When it comes to grabbing an audience's attention, images and videos have the edge over written content. So if you've already got banging visual content for your ads, does your copy even matter that much?
Absolutely it does.
Your visuals might draw people in, but the copy is what’s going to make them click through to your site or commit to a purchase. Great ad copy will show people what to do after seeing your ad and take them on a seamless journey with your brand.
Plus, good copy has the power to connect with people emotionally. Whether that's creating excitement around your product, speaking directly to their pain points or showing that your business is relatable. Whatever messaging you go for, good ad copy will help you deliver it in an impactful way.
Every written text your brand puts out into the world is an important part of your brand story. Creating a strong and successful brand isn't just about how you look, but also how you sound. Knowing how to write effective Facebook Ad copy will empower you to communicate your brand story effectively.
How Facebook Ads copy works
Understanding how Facebook Ads work can help you tweak your copywriting strategy for better success.
There are three parts to your Facebook ad copy:
- Primary text. This text shows near the top of your ad. It can be a single line or paragraphs. You can even use emojis here if it makes sense for your business and audience.
- Headline. This is the bold text that shows up below the ad visuals. Yep, your headline doesn't show at the top of the ad, so keep that in mind when composing your copy. Your headline should be short, simple and catchy.
Link description. This short line of text sits below the headline. Use it to display pricing, list your best features or showcase what value you're offering.
How to structure your Facebook ad copy for a conversion campaign
If you want to know how to write effective Facebook Ad copy, you've got to understand that it's both art and science. Having a good structure to your ads can give you the room to be more creative.
Here's a good recipe to follow:
1. Start with a hook
You want to grab the attention of Facebook users in the very first lines of your ad copy. This is called your hook. The best type of hook to use depends on who you're speaking to and what you're offering.
Here are some good strategies to hook readers in:
- Pain/solution hook – Speak directly to a pain point your customers might have, then offer (or hint at) the solution.
- Empathy hook – Show your audience that you know what they're going through or that you understand them.
- Logic hook – Use a rational argument, facts and figures and logic to draw people in.
The ad by WANDRD below is a great example of a pain/solution hook.
Facebook Ad “The PRVKE Pack” by WANDRD.
2. Offer a value proposition
When choosing what to include in the main body of your copy, try and see things from the customer’s point of view. Address their pain points, offer a solution, and show them how your offering is beneficial to them.
This Facebook Ad by Slack taps into a common pain point for working professionals – too many meetings. Using engaging copy and visuals, Slack positions themselves as the answer to less stress and better communication at work. It’s playful, to the point and emotionally engaging.
Slack’s “Make Work Better” Facebook Ad via Wordstream.
Don't forget to drive home your unique selling point (USP) or value proposition. This is particularly important in highly competitive industries. Ask yourself: what makes my brand stand out from competitors? Then communicate that in your copy.
3. End with a call to action
A clear call-to-action is the cream on the copy cake. It's what drives a customer to take the next steps, so it's very important to be direct, clear and easy to follow. Don’t confuse your readers by using multiple calls to action. "Shop Now" is much better than "Shop Now! Sign Up! Call us for more info!".
How to write effective Facebook Ad copy
Our top 10 tips for writing great Facebook Ads that convert.
1. Know your audience
All good copywriting starts with a solid understanding of who you’re writing to. Once you've got a strong understanding of your audience, their needs and online behaviours, you're ready to start crafting ads that speak directly to them.
Knowing who your audience is shouldn't be a guessing game. You can use data from your website tracking systems to figure out the demographics or your audience. Consider things like age, gender, location, job, interests and life events – all of these can influence the tone, vocabulary and expressions you use.
2. Run different ads for different people
Highly targeted ads convert better. So it makes sense to run different Facebook ad campaigns for different sections of your audience. For example, women may respond better to one type of ad you run, while men respond better to different ad copy.
It's good practice to create different ad campaigns for Facebook users at different levels on the sales funnel. Naturally, the way you write to your existing customers who already know and love your products will be different to the way you write to people encountering your brand for the very first time.
The Facebook Ad by I Love Ugly below speaks directly to previous customers. It doesn’t waste time educating the audience– these customers already know and love the product.
“The Black Slim Kobe” Facebook Ad by I Love Ugly.
You should always write for the specific audience your ad is targeting. Speak to their unique needs, wants and challenges, and use language that resonates with them.
Pro tip: running multiple ads with different headlines and descriptions can massively speed up the process of understanding which messaging resonates best with your target audience/s. Great ad copy is partly creative ability and marketing nuance, and partly data. You might be surprised at what works best!
3. Match your copy to your visual
Your copy and your ad visuals should be working together towards the same purpose. The medium is different, but both should be telling the same story. If your Facebook ad copywriting and ad visuals are handled by different departments, it's particularly important to ensure there's cohesion between the two.
4. Get to the point
Ad copy should be quick to read and to the point. That means cutting out the fluff, and sticking with a clear message.
First and foremost, this is so your copy doesn’t get cut off. Be sure to follow guidelines for the particular ad format you’re running, and make sure you check out what the ad is going to look like from the audience end. In a nutshell, you get 2 lines before the copy is cut off and ‘...read more’ appears.
Secondly, writing streamlined copy leads to better ad performance. It's more enticing to potential customers. They get all the info they need, without any hard work involved. In short, keep it simple.
A great way to do this is with punchy lists of features/benefits or USPs. Deceptively effective, simple lists often perform great in certain segments.
In the Facebook Ad by Canva below, there’s not much waffling going on. Two sentences is enough to get the message across. The copy is brief, but focused on all the benefits of the service.
Sometimes though, long copy CAN outperform short, in certain segments. Sometimes you’ll want to go long to reach a more cautious market, or to better convey your selling points. Think direct-response letters, but in Facebook form. The important thing to remember is to still be captivating, meaningful and adding value.
Canva’s “Pro design made simple” Facebook Ad via Ad Espresso.
Often overlooked is the call to action. This is critically important, people need to be TOLD what to do. Repeat yourself if need be, to really get the message across. Make sure your CTA is strong, clear and obvious.
5. Cut out the jargon
Use language that’s easy to understand and accessible. Don’t use big fancy words or industry specific jargon, unless it really makes sense for your audience.
Also think about your sentence structure. Keep your sentences short and punchy, rather than long and winding. At the end of the day, whoever is reading your ad should know what you’re offering, why it benefits them and what action they should take now.
6. Use social proof
Social proof psychology can help you convert more customers. Consider using tactics like star reviews, testimonials, endorsements and awards in your ad copy. When potential customers see that others are investing in your products or services, they're more likely to do the same themselves.
In the ad below, Singapore Airlines uses their award from TripAdvisor as a form of social proof. They don’t just think they’re the best airline, others think it too.
Singapore Airlines “Best Airline in the World”
7. Try including a price
Including an accurate price can improve your ad performance. It helps potential customers know what to expect. You’re telling them there’s no surprises here. Using prices when you're running a sale or special offer can also motivate your audience to buy.
8. Create a sense of urgency and scarcity
We all put off making decisions, it's human nature. But introduce a sense of urgency or scarcity and we're more likely to make a decision faster. Try using words like now, today, this week to motivate your audience to take action sooner. You can also use phrases like limited places or while stocks last to give your audience the sense that the offer might run out.
Facebook Ad “Save on Aputure” by Sun Studios.
9. Be recognisable
Your copy is part of your branding. So it's important to make sure you sound the same, wherever a customer encounters your brand. Whether that's on Facebook, Instagram, your website or print advertising, stay consistent with your tone and voice. It’ll do wonders for brand recognition and trust.
Not only does consistency make the audience comfortable and familiar with your brand, it improves recall. And these factors can drive up sales. Most people won't buy your product on first encounter. But improve brand familiarity and recall, and they'll be more likely to convert in the future.
10. Test your ad copy
Even if you’ve written amazing Facebook ad copy, you don’t always know how it’s going to perform. That’s why testing is so important. A/B Testing is one of the best tools to help you optimise your Facebook Ads. Essentially it involves running two ads that are very similar, but with a slight variation in your copy, visuals or call to action. Measure the performance of both ads to see which does better, and then use this information to improve your return on ad spend.
Measuring your results is one thing. Knowing how to interpret the metrics is another. Find out what to measure and how to apply that info in our guide: Are your Facebook Ad campaigns even working?
11. Consider Ad Placements
You also need to consider how your ad copy will look, read and feel on different placements. Think Facebook Feed, in Messenger, mobile, desktop and tablet. They’re all a little different, and you may need to write specific copy for each placement in order to have maximum impact.
A lot of people write fantastic copy for desktop, only to find that on mobile it’s cut o—
Make sure your copy can be read the way it's intended on every platform, or you might really hamstring its performance. We’ve seen people re-use long form primary ad copy on Instagram and Facebook stories, whereby the copy covers the whole creative. Not very effective.
Optimising your ads for all placements is a great way to give yourself the best chance at a stellar result. You’re already resizing or even redesigning your creatives, so make sure to do the same with the copy. The things to check for are readability, digestibility and impact. You can customise the Primary Text, Headlines and Link Descriptions individually for every placement, and you should!
More ways to improve your Facebook Ads
Knowing how to write effective Facebook Ad copy is important, but it's only one element of a successful Facebook ad campaign.
Check out our other guides to Facebook advertising:
- Determine the right objectives for your Facebook ad campaign
- Dispel the common Facebook Ad myths
- Take a free course to learn Facebook Ads
- Learn why 2022 is a good time to change you Facebook Ads strategy
Ready to take your Facebook Ads to the next level? Consider working with a Facebook Ads agency like Dilate Digital.
We help businesses big and small succeed in the digital space, and we're keen to help you too. Book a discovery session with our team of experts to see how we can help you nail every part of your Facebook Ads strategy, including your ad copy. Call us on to get started.