FB Ads Audience Network - The Good and the Bad

We have a lot of placement options on facebook, Some of us do not care about this and we go with automatic placement, Some of us edit placement. In this post, we will talk about the audience network placements. Is it good to run ads on the audience network or not?

Facebook audience networks enable you to show ads on premium publishers via mobile apps and websites. You can use the same creative to reach audiences across a variety of publishers to engage target audiences across the web. These ads can be placed in a variety of formats depending on the objectives of your business. It’s a great way for brands to get as much inventory outside of the Facebook ecosystem while taking advantage of the granular targeting capabilities and premium ad space. However, brands should first analyze whether the benefits of audience networks outweigh the costs. This will depend largely on their own objectives.

According to Facebook: Audience Network allows advertisers to extend Facebook and Instagram campaigns across the Internet – onto thousands of high-quality websites and apps. People spend a lot of their time on Facebook and Instagram. But they are also spending time on other apps and sites. Audience Network helps advertisers reach more of the people they care about in the other places where they're spending their time.


In a Facebook ad campaign study, conversion rates were eight times higher amongst people who saw ads across Facebook, Instagram and Audience Network than people who only saw the ads on Facebook. Audience Network ads use the same targeting, auction, delivery and measurement systems as Facebook ads.

Objectives Supported By Audience Network:

  • Brand awareness (video only

  • Reach (video only)

  • Traffic

  • Engagement (video only)

  • App installs

  • Video views (video only)

  • Conversions

  • Catalog Sales


Whether you opt into Facebook’s Audience networks depends on what your objectives are: If you are looking to expand your reach far beyond Facebook, this is a great feature to capitalize on. However, we wouldn’t recommend this for brand awareness campaigns.


Audience networks is a feature that is beneficial for CRO (conversion rate optimization) because it optimizes towards purchase by remaining salient in the user’s mind outside of Facebook.


The audience network allows you to reach Facebook users when they aren’t on Facebook, and even allows you to reach people who are not even on facebook, because of the data Facebook has gathered from third-party sites and apps. This means it can expand the reach of your campaigns significantly, which makes it ideal if you have high reach objectives or a small niche audience that you need to reach because it provides you with additional opportunities to reach them.

Facebook claims that the Audience Network is virtually fraud-free and doesn’t have bot traffic, which if true, makes it a reliable ad platform on which to be spending your advertising budget. 80% of this placement is native - meaning people do not need to leave the Facebook app which makes it a great platform to reach your audience in a way that isn’t as intrusive as traditional banner advertising.


The Cost Per Click on the Audience Network is often lower than other placements such as Newsfeed, which means that if it does convert well for your brand or client, the conversions will often be very cost-effective. Facebook is constantly trying to improve the content on the Audience Network, through something called ‘Advertiser Outcome Score’. This is feedback that publishers are given about how ads perform on their content, compared to the Newsfeed. This is designed to encourage publishers to then work to further improve their content to make the network better for advertisers.

THE GOOD SIDE

  1. You can expand your reach far beyond Facebook. Advertising on Facebook’s audience network can reach up to 16% percent more people than on Facebook alone.

  2. Facebook yields an average of 6-10% more ad impressions per campaign.

  3. The platform is generally easier to use when you’re building ads because you can use the creative you already have.

  4. Facebook will render the size to fit each placement type you want to use.

  5. Different types of ad placements include native, banner, interstitial, rewarded video on mobile devices, in-stream video on desktop and CTV (CTV is not yet available to all advertisers).

  6. Facebook audience networks show: Brand awareness, reach, traffic, engagement, app installs, video views, conversions, and product catalog sales.

  7. Facebook audience networks have a reach of approximately 1 billion users.

  8. It’s a very affordable way to build reach against specific audiences (lower CPM, CPCs, CPLs) if executed properly.

THE BAD SIDE

  1. The quality of the publisher sites could below in its content and lack of Google indexing. This attracts fraudulent activity like bot clicks and impressions. This can cause campaigns to experience lower performance metrics like CTR and CVR.

  2. Facebook Audience Network does not show offline conversions (i.e. store visits) and lead generation.

  3. You have less control over how their ad is displayed—Facebook determines this. There is some control, like the ability to make block lists or category exclusions, but there is no guarantee your content won’t show up alongside content that does not align with your business.

TIPS ON HOW TO GET THE MOST OF AUDIENCE NETWORK PLACEMENT

  1. Keep an eye on the frequency of your ads (customize the columns in the reporting interface to include the frequency column)

  2. Split out the Audience Network into its own ad set if you have enough budget to do so. This is because the Audience Network is likely to convert at different rates compared to the other placements, and by having it in a separate ad set you can allocate it a separate budget based on its performance.

  3. Opt into the Audience network if you are targeting a very specific niche audience as this will help provide you with more opportunities to reach that small audience even when they are not on Facebook.

  4. Avoid audience network placement if your website is not fully mobile optimized

  5. Always review your campaign performance by network and analyze the performance of each network, including the Audience Network. You can then decide whether to opt-out of a network or split it into its own ad set to provide specific budget allocation


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