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Understanding the Different Facebook Ad Objectives

What are the difference in objectives and which ones are right for your goals?

Once you have setup your Facebook Business Manager and properly connected your Facebook page, Instagram and Facebook Ads Manager, you're ready to create your first ad campaign!

The first question Facebook will have, when setting up your campaign, is what your campaign objective is. The campaign objective tells Facebook how to properly showcase your ad campaigns for maximum results. Each ad objective has different success metrics and goals.

Facebook organizes campaign objectives into three sections: Awareness, Consideration and Conversion. Each section hits your target audience at different parts of the sales funnel. Awareness ads are the beginning stages of the funnel, consideration being the middle stage and conversion ads at the last stage of the funnel. Within each section, there are a variety of objective options.

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Awareness objectives are the first steps of the funnel. The awareness stage teaches people about your brand and its value proposition. Awareness is a critical stage in the branding process by focusing on recognizability and memorability.

Brand Awareness Ads:

Brand awareness ads are just that. You are trying to make a specific group of people, who would possible buy what you're selling, see your ad to learn about your business. Brand awareness ads use the amount of impressions as the success metric.

Reach Ads:

With reach ads, you're trying to get your ad in front of as many eyes as possible. The success metric for reach ads are, believe it or not, the amount of reach!


Consideration objectives are goals that hit the middle part of the sales funnel. You've already warmed up your audience with awareness ads and now you want to start driving the consideration part of the buying process by showing them more information through different strategies.

Traffic Ads:

This is the type of traffic you want more of. Traffic ads have a goal of sending people to your specified URL (link/website). I like to measure success metrics of traffic ads by the amount of unique clicks your ad gets and the amount of traffic your Google Analytics is seeing from that ad acquisition source.

Engagement Ads:

When someone engages with your ad, they are more likely to buy. Types of engagement come in many forms, but the best thing with engagement ads is that it's most likely to encourage others to do the same. People want what other people like!

App Installs Ads:

Is your business in app form? Then app install ads are the perfect objective for you. You want as many of the right people to download your app as possible and this objective goes after that goal.

Video Views Ads:

Video ads are a great way to continue to warm up an audience. Video ads can tell your brand story, show more about a product or service and explain your value proposition. The success metric of a video view ad is pretty simple, it's based on how many people watched your video ad.

Lead Generation Ads:

Lead generation ads are one of our favorite ads to run! They help grow your list, which means you can build your own data. They also generate engagement and excitement.

Messages Ads:

Message ads encourage your target audience to engage with you by sending a message. Generally, message ads require a strong CTA (call to action), but can be useful if you're looking for a goal of strategic engagement.


Conversion objectives are goals that hit the bottom part of the funnel. You've warmed up the audience by showing them your brand, getting them to engage and now you're going to get them to BUY. Conversion ads are undoubtably the most strategic of all the ad objectives.

Conversion Ads:

If you're looking to get people to buy, add to cart, or take other actions on your website then conversion ads are it. Conversion ads need a Facebook Pixel (code that let's Facebook talk to your website analytics) embedded in your site. The important part of conversion ads is constantly monitoring and tweaking your ad creatives, copy and audiences. It's also important to know how to retarget audiences at this stage.

Catalog Sales Ads:

Catalog sales ads are another way to get people to buy or take action, but instead of sending them to your website, you're getting them to shop within Facebook or Instagram. As the same with conversion ads, catalog sales ads require top-notch product listings including images and descriptions.

Store Traffic Ads:

Store traffic ads are the only Facebook ads that don't have a digital outcome. Store traffics ads get people nearby to step into your physical storefront.


Like with all other digital advertising there are pros and cons. Facebook advertising is great because you can target strategic audiences and get data, allowing you to determine your ROAS (return on ad spend). However, all ads require a significant budget and timeframe to make them worthwhile. And while anyone can setup a Facebook ad campaign themselves, Facebook Business and Ad Manager can be extremely confusing which is why hiring a professional who knows the system is important. Plus, if you're going to invest in social media advertising, you should pay someone who knows what they're doing to get the most bang for your buck.

Have you been thinking about running Facebook ads? Schedule a call with us to talk through if it's the right choice for your business and the different strategies we think you should run.

Keep STAKing,

Michelle Johnson

Owner & Founder, STAK Marketing

Michelle Johnson is the owner, founder and Chief Marketing Guru at STAK Marketing. Our passion at STAK Marketing is to create beautiful STAKs of marketing strategies that help small and mid-sized businesses grow and reach their goals. STAK Marketing's expertise ranges from SEO to branding, e-mail marketing to website design, PR to advertising and much more - making STAK Marketing a one-stop-shop for all your small business marketing needs.

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