How to do Facebook Carousel ads right

Jenifer OoiFor advertisers in Southeast Asia, Facebook’s Carousel ads are an increasingly common way to reach mobile users. Jenifer Ooi has five tips for how to get them right.

Facebook Carousel ads have been a favourite of advertisers since their launch in 2015. For brands in Southeast Asia, the mobile-friendly ad unit is especially interesting as it is specifically designed for mobile viewing, an important feature for Southeast Asia’s increasingly mobile-first population. Here are some design tips for creating effective Carousel ads.

Start with a strong first visual. Consider the first visual in three ways: 1) how to ‘stop thumbs’ and capture viewers, 2) how to influence audiences to continue to swipe left to complete the sequence, and 3) how to convey our brand message efficiently, even if the viewer chooses to not swipe to completion. Keep in mind, you are bidding for your viewer’s attention as they are waiting in line at a coffee shop, or scrolling their newsfeed during their morning commute.

Facebook Carousel ads

Bring to life with video.  Carousel ads present an opportunity to build a narrative through multiple visuals. For extra oomph, consider sequencing using video to tell a complete story, as seen with the Marimekko for Target Style Carousel ad below. As viewers watch, the actress floats from visual to visual seamlessly as she shares with viewers different products from the collection.

Maintain a strong focal point. No matter if you create a wide-angle visual sequence, or create a single visual per ad sequence, or use video – this advice still applies. You’ll notice in the example below, each frame points to a single focal point – the product.  This is important. For the mobile viewer, the visual on screen will still be a single Carousel square. It’s key to focus in this single unit space to convey the brand message.

Facebook ads

Keep it simple. Make sure ad copy is kept short and sweet. Viewers are already taking in a lot of information, possibly spending more time with your ad than they would a simple page post ad unit. To make sure your brand’s message shines through, keep copy as to the point as possible. As with most social ad text, less is more.

Facebook Carousel ads

Close the loop. With Carousel ads, you can guide your audience directly to your e-commerce site or website for more information. To make the experience seamless, make sure the look and feel of your campaign is the same as your landing page. Optimise your content by considering what information your potential web visitor will need next; store locators, pricing information, product specifications? You may need to create a bespoke landing page for your campaign sequence. As always, think of the full user journey (and not just the media experience).

Facebook Carousel ads

Test and learn

As with any social mobile ad unit, cracking Carousel ads is about capturing viewers within seconds, and keeping them engaged until the end of your ad sequence. For Carousel ads to work, the entire sequence must be compelling and useful, from first scroll to landing page. And you need to test different creative executions and sequences to understand what combination works best. And, of course, don’t be afraid to think outside the box – or in this case, boxes – when coming up with your creative strategy.

Jenifer Ooi is creative director at digital marketing agency Lion & Lion


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