What are Facebook Ads? These Glossary of Terms Will Get You Started

February 10, 2013

What are Facebook Ads? These Glossary of Terms will get you Started

Whether you are a business owner or a social media professional who is familiar with the power of Facebook, chances are you have probably asked, “What are Facebook Ads?” You already may have been introduced to Facebook Ads through your social media training; they’re those ads that appear on the right-hand column of almost any page within Facebook, from your home page and news feed, to your profile and apps pages.

Facebook Ads attract fans of all demographics, reaching out to hundreds of millions of Facebook users. With Facebook Ads, you can raise awareness of your product or service to people who otherwise may not have known about it, and you can create ads to promote events as well as products or services.

When asking, “What are Facebook Ads?” it’s important to understand and become familiar with the terminology used with regard to the ads. This glossary of terms provides a solid introduction and a better understanding of Facebook Ads:

Ads Manager. This is where you can view all of your Facebook ad campaigns, revise bids and budgets, pause and restart ads at any time. The Ads Manager is your main hub for Facebook Ads.

Ads. When creating an ad, you are attempting to reach different target audiences by highlighting your products or services in an interesting manner. Use an interesting photo or a company logo, and then complete the ad by writing a concise description that cannot be ignored by those in your desired demographics. Each ad has a daily or lifetime budget.

Campaigns. Group your ads into “campaigns” based on whatever criteria you deem necessary. For instance, you may want to create a campaign from all of your ads geared to a specific demographic.

Ad Auction. This is the system that Facebook uses to decide which ads are best to run. They base this on the ads’ maximum bid and previous ad performance. The ads that Facebook decides are the best to show will be the ones most prominently featured.

Budget. The budget is the amount of money you are willing to spend on a campaign either each day or for the life of the ad. These two kinds of budgets are known as daily or lifetime budgets.

Bid. When you place a bid on the ad you’re creating, you’re indicating the maximum amount you are willing to pay per click (also known as CPC) or per thousand impressions of your Facebook Ads (CPM). The maximum bid determines your ad’s strength in the ad auction, giving it better chances of being displayed.

Suggested Bid Range. This represents the range of CPC or CPM bids that are winning the auction for the audience you’ve selected.
Clicks. When someone clicks through your ad to your website or a specific landing page on Facebook, you’re charged for the ad. Clicks are also counted when someone “Likes” your ad or RSVP’s to an event through your ad.

Impressions. Impressions are counted when your ad is shown on any part of the Facebook site, regardless of whether someone clicks on your ad.

Social impressions. Social impressions happen when an ad is viewed by a Facebook user who is friend of someone who has interacted with the ad.

CTR. CTR stands for “Click-Through Rate,” the number of clicks your ad receives divided by the number of times your ad is shown on the site during that time period. The CTR gives you an idea of how effective your ad is on Facebook.

Connections metric. This metric includes people who have “Liked” your page, RSVP’d to your events or installed one of your apps from seeing your ad on Facebook.

Reports. The reports give you all of the analytics information you need regarding your ads and campaigns. You can create and print out ad reports based on the parameters you wish to know more about, and you can export into an Excel or a .csv file.

Sponsored Stories. These are stories that are eligible to appear both in users’ news feeds and in the right-hand column with other Facebook Ads. Sponsored Stories respect whatever privacy settings a user has placed on their account, so if their activity is hidden it will not be used for Sponsored Stories.

Page Post Ads. This is one of the newest innovations for Facebook Ads. With Page Post Ads, you turn a post made to your page—a status update, picture, link or video, etc.—into an ad for your page. These are not subject to privacy settings and can be shown to anyone on Facebook.

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