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Facebook Campaign Objectives: A Comprehensive Guide

Facebook Campaign Objectives: A Comprehensive Guide

Selecting the right campaign objective is one of the most important parts of building a Facebook campaign. You’re on the right track if you select the correct objective, and your campaign is dead before launch if you select the wrong objective.

Choosing an objective for your Facebook campaign should be as easy as asking yourself what type of results you want from your campaign, but sometimes it’s not that easy. I’m going break them down one by one to help you understand when to use which objective.

Brand Awareness

You’re not going to believe this, but you should use Brand Awareness ads when you want people to be more aware of your brand. The cool thing about Brand Awareness campaigns is that Facebook serves your ads to members of your target audience that are most likely to remember your brand. How does Facebook know that kind of stuff? They’ve been measuring “brand recall lift” for quite awhile actually.

You might be asking what “brand recall lift” is. Surprise, Facebook does a solid job explaining it:

“Estimated ad recall lift (people) is the estimated number of people likely to remember your ads within 2 days. This metric is available for ads using the brand awareness, video views and Page post engagement objectives… Estimated ad recall lift is an estimate only, and may be imprecise.”

How I use Brand Awareness: At Marketing Supply, we’ve had very good luck utilizing Brand Awareness campaigns for product launches. Rather than hard selling the product, I’ll use the Brand Awareness Facebook campaign to pique consumer interest by asking questions and sharing engaging content about the product at the top of the funnel. Branding is important here, as people will recognize it as you serve them more ads further down the funnel. I’ll usually follow up with the audience by serving them feature based ads that give more detail about the product.


Unoptimized tag team wrestling

He should have optimized his tag for reach.

The Reach campaign objective is best utilized when you want to reach as many people as possible. Unlike Brand Awareness campaigns, these ads will not be served to specific people that Facebook deems most likely to remember the ad after 2 days. But, that doesn’t  necessarily mean that they won’t though! Good messaging and imagery will always resonate with the consumer. The best part of Reach campaigns is the low CPMs they provide. Facebook will be optimizing your ad delivery for the maximum amount of impressions.

How I use Reach campaigns: Reach campaigns are a great way to reach your audience with a message that may not be actionable at that very moment. Using the reach objective is great for promoting an upcoming sale to your website traffic audience for instance.

Reach campaigns also let you use a frequency cap. Frequency caps allow you to set the maximum amount of times you want somebody to see an ad. Don’t feel constrained by a Reach campaign’s suggested use though; you can definitely use Reach campaigns to drive website traffic to your site if your ad stands out.

Just remember: everything is worth a test. Be creative!


Need website traffic? The traffic campaign objective will do the trick.

Facebook will serve your ads to people who tend to click a lot of ads. This is the ideal objective for getting people to read content on your site, but not necessarily the best objective for getting these people to take action on your site.

How I use Traffic campaigns: Traffic campaigns are perfect for driving a lot of people to a destination quickly. If I’m testing landing page variants and need data quickly, I’ll launch a Traffic campaign with accelerated ad spend. Traffic campaigns also work well when you need conversions, but won’t be sending at least 15 conversions a week in an ad set.


An engagement campaign gone right.

A successful engagement campaign. Bitches.

Engagement campaigns are best used when–wait for it–you’re trying to get more engagement. You can use this campaign objective for Post Engagement, Page Likes, and Event Responses. All three options are like micro conversions that users can complete without leaving the Facebook platform. Engagement campaigns are a great way to reengage people that haven’t interacted with your Facebook posts in a long time. They’re also a great way to help your preexisting website traffic to find you on Social Media.

How I use Engagement campaigns: I start by promoting a post using the engagement objective. Then, I’ll create a custom audience consisting of everybody that engaged with the post. I can then target that audience with ads or exclude them from future posts that may have similar content.

It can be very beneficial if the post is specific to a certain topic, especially if you’re looking to create a lookalike audience out of the engagement audience for further ad delivery. If you’re new to the lookalike audience concept, it’s extremely similar to Pinterest Actalike audiences.

App Installs

Looking for app installs? Just use the App Install objective.

Use the app install campaign to drive app installs at the best price. I don’t recommend launching an App Install campaign until you have the Facebook SDK installed in your app. This will allow you to track further down the app funnel.

How I use App Install campaigns: I typically run App Install campaigns at the top of the funnel alongside a retargeting campaign targeting people that installed the app but did not register it.

Lead Generation

Trying to get some leads? I happen to know of a Facebook campaign objective that’ll help with that.

I always recommend split testing Lead Generation and Conversion Optimization when launching a campaign designed to generate leads. Lead Generation ads can perform a lot better for two main reasons:

1. The user never has to leave Facebook to fill out the form. Clicking the ad will result in a lead form popping up in the Facebook app. Keeping users onsite is a great way to increase conversion rates.

2. The form fields will auto-populate with a user’s information when they open the form. Facebook uses the information that users have provided to fill in all applicable fields.

Lead Generation ads have been an extremely beneficial Facebook campaign objective for insurance companies (or other such companies) that require longer forms. This is because users are far less likely to abandon a long form if the form fields are already populated with correct information.

Facebook has been known to reward Lead Generation campaigns with lower CPMs than conversion optimization campaigns. Any campaign that keeps users on the Facebook platform are treated favorably by the Facebook algorithm.

Last but not least is the ability to retarget users who opened a lead form and didn’t submit their information. Perhaps they were busy at the time, perhaps they got sidetracked, or maybe they just needed an extra little push to complete that form. Who cares, really? We’re going to retarget them either way!

Conversion Optimization

Want more conversions? Of course you do; we all do.

These Facebook campaigns are going to be your best source of cheap conversions on Facebook. The more data a campaign collects, the smarter your Facebook campaign gets. Simple.

Let’s say you’re running a conversion optimization campaign to get more email subscribers. Facebook will learn more about the type of person that converts every time you get a new email subscriber conversion. Facebook will begin serving your ads to the segment of your target audience that is most similar to the people converting.

As I stated earlier, conversion optimization campaigns are your best bet if your Facebook campaign is getting at least 15-25 conversions a week. If you’re only getting 3 purchases in a campaign but you’re getting 40 Add to Carts, you should optimize your campaign for the Add to Cart conversion rather than the Purchase conversion. Facebook will have more data to optimize ad delivery using the Add to Cart conversion event in this instance. The cheaper your Add to Carts are, the cheaper your purchases will be.

Product Catalog Sales

Have a product catalog you’re looking to promote? If so, Product Catalog ads are what you want to be doing.

These powerful campaigns can be used to automatically serve people ads with the products they have viewed on your website without purchasing. Not only that, but they can be used to upsell or cross sell products that users may like based off of the products they have viewed on your website. These ads can be served in multiple formats including individual images, carousels, and collections.

We’ve seen amazing results utilizing Product Catalog ads to automate retargeting efforts. Cross Sell campaigns have also been a great way for our clients to get return customers at a very low price. If you have more than a few products, product catalog ads are a no brainer.

Store Visits

The store visits objective is a great way to drive foot traffic to brick and mortar locations.

Facebook can track and optimize ad delivery for actual store visits by using your location’s physical address. Everybody has Facebook on his or her phone, and Facebook uses the GPS signs to track when a user has visited a location after seeing an ad you served.

The ads are actually pretty cool, too. You can create a carousel that includes a map people can use to direct them to your location. Store Visits aren’t currently available in the majority of Facebook ad accounts unfortunately because it’s a relatively new Facebook campaign objective. If your account doesn’t support Store Visit conversions yet, Facebook will optimize your ad delivery for daily unique reach too.

You’re a Facebook campaign master now! 👏

Stone Cold Beer Celebration Facebook campaign

Time to celebrate!  You deserve this.

That’s about it for Facebook campaign objectives. Not too difficult, right? Next time you’re building a Facebook campaign, just ask yourself what your goal for the campaign is and align it with the campaign objective that’s closest to what you want. Feel free to reach out to Marketing Supply if you’re stumped or if you’d rather pass on the torch. We’re here to help, and we love what we do.

Okay, I’m going to go pour beer on me now. Wish me luck.

Michael Bagozzi


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