Facebook advertisements are becoming more creative by the day so it’s important as an advertiser to be aware of what other brands are up to. Over the past few weeks we’ve seen a few advertisements that truly stand out among the competition (meaning the ad space competition). A few of our favorites are outlined below along with lessons we’ve learned from them that we can use for our own Facebook advertisements.
Experiment With Video
Video Facebook Ads are becoming more and more popular every day. And yet, brands can still use video in surprising, new ways. Unfortunately I didn’t grab a screenshot of this one, so you’re just going to need to have faith in me this one time. You may have heard of the TV show Superstore, it’s an NBC 30 minute comedy that is “a look at the lives of employees at a big box store” (it mimics stores like Best Buy).
Superstore’s marketing team could have easily utilized promo photos and videos from the show as Facebook ads, but they went one step further and did something I had never seen before: They uploaded the entire first episode and paid Facebook for people to watch it. It’s insane, I know! The full 30 minute (OK 22 or so minutes without the commercials) episode was right there in their target audience’s News Feed. They kept the headline simple, something like “Watch the full first episode of Superstore for free right here.” and then let the ad/episode speak for itself.
I’d be interested to see the insights on this ads to know how many users watched the episode and how that affected whether they began to watch the show live and/or began interacting with the show on Social Media. It looks like now they’re promoting their NBC streaming app so they’re not likely running this add anymore, but it was still neat to see in my News Feed for a short while.
Simple & Obvious Coupon Code
First, let’s acknowledge that Loot Crate knows its consumers well and made a great decision at choosing the ad creative here – fan artwork of Deadpool, the main character in one of the hottest movies out right now. Of course, this reflects the attention to detail that their business is known for. Each month they come up with a theme and collect knick-knacks, toys, games, and more to send in their themed subscription boxes. Loot Crate is usually spot-on when it comes to pop-culture references and appeasing their nerdy/geeky following.
Then also paired this advertisement with a coupon code consisting of 3 characters. While some advertisers utilize custom URLs so that the user is lead to a page with prices reflecting the discount or coupon, Loot Crate opts for the user to insert the code themselves. While that may seem like an additional step for the potential customer, which some experts say may drive away customers, involving the customer in the discount process can actually place more value on the discount (and in this case a $3 discount needs all the help it can get).
With a simple coupon code like that, users can even text or call *gasp* their friends to tell them the code for use directly on www.lootcrate.com. Doesn’t get more simple than that. It’s not a requirement to share the ad or tag a friend when you can easily communicate the simple code so many other ways.
Quiz Your Audience
Facebook quizzes are all the rage right now… in fact quizzes on Social Media have been a hit since long before Facebook even took off and they don’t seem to be going away any time soon. Want to know which Harry Potter house you belong in or what your fate would be in the Hunger Games? Well, there’s a quiz for that!
Buzzfeed has been one of the pioneers in the world of Facebook quizzes and other useless information. However in this case Club W, an online wine club, is combining a “scientific” algorithm with everyone’s love for taking silly Facebook quizzes. Paired with the simple imagery (which almost anyone could have taken using an iPhone and a handful of delectable wines) this ad is clearly successful, just look at the amount of likes, comments, and shares! I’ll be honest, I don’t drink much wine but I took the quiz, that just goes to show you how addicted we are to Facebook quizzes!
In addition to quizzes, lists are also a successful way of grabbing hold of your target audience. When you throw out a list of “top 10” or “worst 5”, this will pique the interest of your audience and you’re more likely to achieve conversions or at the very least clicks.
Use Sliders, Be Casual
Slack is taking advantage of the slider feature and… well… their bold use of color and photography is certainly eye-catching. This ad certainly achieves a balance between cheesy and adorable which seems to work well with their target audience. Even though I may not be interested in their product, I have to say that I scrolled to see all of the slides at least twice when this came up in my News Feed.
Another great thing about this advertisement is that they didn’t seem to overthink it or overcomplicate the graphics or text. Theres one, simple sentence for the body of the advertisement while each slider has a sentence focused around a percentage.
The only thing I would have done differently when creating this Facebook ad would be to customize the captions below the photos (next to the Learn More button). I’ve seen this a few times lately, advertisers aren’t bothering with this customization. Of course, this may be intentional as Slack could be choosing to focus on their tagline “Slack: Make Work Better”, however since text space on the image itself is limited, it would make sense to utilize the text areas as much as possible.
Talk to the Cam
Again, video makes its way onto our short list of creative ways to advertise on Facebook. This time, the videos feature in-the-face marketing where there is one person talking to the camera and a very direct message being conveyed.
The first video, featuring Jason Swenk, features some text as the video begins, but primarily the video is a man talking directly to the consumer. The second video, advertised by Kimra Luna, also promotes the audio that accompanies the advertisement.
These two videos are rather simple – a camera on a tripod, a single speaker, minimal video editing (honestly the text on the video for Jason Swenk is stock iMovie text effects). We point this out to say: basically any business can make an ad/video like this. You don’t have to have fancy, expensive camera equipment or 10 years of experience with video editing, you just need a bit of time and the dedication to making a video your customers actually want to see.
While the one-on-one approach of these advertisements certainly draws the user in, our one suggestion here would be to accompany the video with captions or heavier use of text. This would allow users on mobile in public places to digest the message without having to plug in headphones or wait to watch until later.