A Beginner’s Guide To Facebook Ads For Mobile Apps

Perfect. You want more people to install it, use it, and keep returning to your app over time. Right? (followers on facebook)  You’re in the right place. This complete guide to Facebook ads on mobile apps will show you how to:

  • Register your mobile app on Facebook
  • Choose your campaign goals
  • Target your audiences
  • Make exceptional Facebook ads to promote your mobile app

Let’s get started!

Register your mobile app on Facebook for Developers

Before diving into Facebook Ads Manager to set up our first mobile application install campaign, please register as a Facebook developer. This instructional link can be shared with your developer to help them set everything up in the App Dashboard.

This section will show you how to register your application, install your iOS Software Development Kit (SDK) or Android SDK, and add any important app events to your business goals. Although the SDK can be installed at your discretion, it is highly recommended by our clients. It provides more data and allows for better targeting. The more data we have, the better. We can use this information to make informed decisions and create custom audiences, optimize our app campaigns, and make informed advertising decisions. Although app events can be added at any time, we recommend that you set them up in a relevant way to your business. This allows you to target your ads to the most likely users and to create targeted audiences with this information.

Are you unsure if this has been done before? Do you want to ensure that you have registered correctly? Enter your Facebook App ID to check if your app has been registered and is ready for campaigns.

Set your mobile app campaign objectives

Once we have completed the previous steps, let’s get into the campaign setup. You’ll need to focus on two critical objectives for your Facebook campaign: App installs and conversions.

App Install campaigns

When creating a new campaign, choose the “App Installations” campaign objective if your goal is to increase mobile app downloads.

Campaign screen for Facebook Ads App Installation

This campaign objective will allow you to send mobile app install ads directly to your target audience. (More on that later). The campaign will meet this goal.

 

Conversion campaigns

You may be interested in reaching broader audiences who have already downloaded your app. To entice them to reengage with you, you can test other campaign objectives such as “Conversions” at the ad level. Select your app, the app store it is located in, and the ad set for this campaign (iTunes, Google Play). Then choose the app event you wish to optimize, such as in-app purchases.

Mobile apps campaigns: Target your audience

Once your campaign has been selected, you can go to the ad level to choose your audience targeting. (buy followers on facebook) Who are you targeting? Who is most likely to download and use your app? Learn from your mistakes!

There are many ways to target people at different stages of your funnel, and the options for targeting can be endless depending on your business goals and your target market. It would be best if you tried out different strategies to determine which works best for your audience. Here are some Facebook targeting options you might consider.

Broad targeting

You can target a wider audience if you are starting, don’t know who to reach, and have a budget. You can choose age, gender, or location to see which demographics perform best. Once you have identified the best demographics, you can scale backward to eliminate underperforming segments based on your results.

Targeting details

We recommend starting with a small audience if you have a limited budget or are just beginning. This is especially true if your app is targeted at a specific market. Scroll down to the level for Detailed Targeting, and start typing relevant keywords. You can search for common interests if you don’t know where to start. If you’re a food delivery company, you could target people who like pizza, food delivery, and eating out. Targeting people interested in your competitor is another option.

Lookalike custom audiences

A lookalike audience can also be created in Facebook Ads Manager’s Audiences tab. 

Facebook ads manage custom audiences.

To create custom audiences, you can upload any email list, including leads, subscribers, and customers.

An audience called a “lookalike” is one that looks similar to another audience. Facebook can take an existing audience and create a lookalike audience. This allows you to target people based on similar behaviors and interests. Facebook will create a lookalike audience from your app purchase custom audience. This will enable you to target new audiences for your app installation campaigns. We recommend that you test them.

Select a custom audience and click the dropdown as shown below to create a lookalike audience.

select “create a lookalike” screen

Next, you’ll see a new window where you can select the audience size and location. We recommend that you use the prompt for 1% lookalike to get started. This audience will closely match your custom audience. The more lookalikes you target, the higher the percentage. You can start with 1%, and as you grow your reach, you will be able to target new audiences.

Setting up a screen with a similar audience

Create killer Facebook ads for mobile apps

Let’s get started with the ad level. App ads have the same ad features as other formats, such as text above your creative and headline, call-to-action buttons, and text below. You can add a deep link to your website URL landing page.

These ad components can be use to create mobile-friendly Facebook ads.

1. Text

Write a text section that is relevant to the campaign goal. It should be relevant and interesting to your target audience. It doesn’t matter how long your ad copy is. You can create a few that are shorter and, if necessary, try out more extended versions to see which one resonates with your audience. Although more concise copy is more effective than its longer-form counterparts most of the time, we have seen some campaigns and accounts where it performs better.

2. Headline

Your bold headline will make you stand out. You should summarize your app and include the name to drive engagements and new audiences. You can also test promotion and detail a solution or something else to get users to reengage.

3. Creativity

Choose a creative to complement your ad copy. Facebook and Instagram allow both static and video images for app campaigns. Make sure to test them all. Ideas are great, but videos perform better. Videos leave less to the imagination and connect users more quickly to your brand and offerings. Our world is overstimulate. Anything detected as users scroll through their feeds can stop them from scrolling down and direct their attention to your brand.

Choose bright images that stand out against the white backgrounds of your feeds. Lifestyle photos are great if it is relevant to your app. If your app is for dog walking on-demand, you can use pictures of smiling dogs or people walking dogs of different breeds. You can test single-image and carousel ads to see if you have more ad space and increase the chances that your ad will resonate with someone who views it.

Use video to show your app in action. This could be a demonstration or someone using the app. The viewer will then better understand the app and visualize themselves using it. After a long day, show a person suffering from a swollen back or a sore neck.

4. Deep link

Deep links can make it easier for users to download your app. This will improve conversion rates and decrease bounce rates. Deep links will send users to your app via the ad. However, they can also direct them to specific content.  You can promote pizza in your ad by adding a deep link to a page. This will make it easier for users to view ordering options for pizza places instead of just sending them to the app and asking them to search for them manually.

To learn more about deep linking in-app ads, visit Facebook’s developer section.

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