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2019 Best Practices on How To Run Facebook App Install Ads

2019 Best Practices on How To Run Facebook App Install Ads

Have you recently launched your mobile app? How many downloads is it getting? How high is it ranking in the App Store or Google Play? If the numbers don’t impress you yet or maybe you just want more people to download your app, you need to get help from your pay-per-click expert specializing in Facebook ads for app installs.

But why Facebook? It’s no secret that it is the most popular social media network in the world today with 2.41 billion active users every month. Can you make them install your app? Yes, targeting this high number of users and eventually your app installers is possible and achievable when you partner with the best digital marketing agency in the Philippines.

If this concept is new to you and you need expert advice on how to do mobile app ads correctly, keep on reading. Listed below are the best practices you can do for a successful mobile app promotion on Facebook.

What are app install ads and why are they important to your business?

App install ads are advertisements from outside the marketplace that hook people to download and install a mobile app. You normally see them in social media networks and other mobile apps. It usually consists of an app name, short description, image/video, and a call-to-action button to download the app. Other developers use playable ads that allow players/users to try the game/app before they download and install it.

Using mobile app install ads is very important for your business because it is one way to generate leads for your app’s installation, boosting your app’s online presence in the process. It can also help your business gain additional exposure, generate sales, as well as build a fan base and customer loyalty. You can also use the data gathered from the ads to improve future campaigns and apps.

Best Practices for Mobile App Installs

So, are you getting all excited to learn more about using Facebook mobile app install ads for your business? Before you log into your social media account and start posting, do take the time to apply these best practices for Facebook mobile app ads, be familiar with it, and learn how it can benefit you in the long run. Check out the list of Facebook app install ads best practices below, and you can use it as your guide to start increasing your Facebook app installations.

1. Proper Tracking of Facebook App Install Ads

Before you start your ad campaign, you need to make sure that you have prepared what you need for proper tracking. Without it, you won’t be able to gather data, which you will use to measure the campaign’s success or its key performance indicators (KPI). Although it’s automatically enabled in most platforms, allot a few minutes to double-check if the proper tracking is enabled. In case you don’t know how to set up proper tracking for Facebook mobile install ads, here are some tips.

2. Audience targeting

Who are the most likely to install your mobile app? You need to know your target market for your ads to get the most out of your money. The best thing about the Facebook ads app is that it allows you to target custom audiences easily.

  • a. Start with high-level targeting using interests.

    facebook app install high level.png

    Do you want travel buffs to try out your travel app? Facebook’s advanced targeting has the most extensive data sets on people’s hobbies and interests. Through this strategy, it is now easier for marketers to use this data, including demographics such as age, gender, and location, and filter people who are most likely to download your app.

  • b. Create lookalike audiences based on users who installed your app

    lookalike audiences

    Do you have fans who absolutely show their love for your app on your Facebook page? Do you want to increase the number of followers for your app? With a Facebook lookalike, it’s possible. It’s a new way of audience targeting that searches from your custom audience. It identifies common qualities of the people such as demographic information and interests to target a new audience from your existing market.

  • c. Create custom audiences

    A custom audience is a type of audience you can create from your existing market. You can also form this audience from people who have interacted with your marketing campaigns via Facebook page, mobile app data of pixel data. These are the tools you can use in searching for lookalike audiences or for targeting ads.

    • c.1. Audiences that engage with your page

      Did someone like your page, send a message, or saved it for later? Facebook’s custom audience is so versatile that it can target people who have engaged with your page through these methods. Marketers can even target those who simply dropped by your page or clicked the call-to-action buttons.

    • c.2. Audiences that engage with posts on your page (e.g. video watches)

      audience engage

      According to Oberlo’s video marketing statistics, videos are a consumer’s favorite type of content to see. This type of content can reach a wider audience than an image, witty captions, or a website link. Just imagine having a viral video reaching millions of people organically.

      The good thing about this is that a custom audience can target people that have engaged with posts on your page such as viewing a video, as well as liking, sharing, and commenting on a post. This gives you a higher chance of reaching high-level targets interested in learning more about your mobile app or your brand.

    • c.3. Audiences that engage with your ad but didn’t install

      In case you have audiences that engage with your ad but didn’t install, you can also group them in Facebook’s custom audience. You can use it to re-engage them with a rerun of the ad or with a re-targeted ad. You can also try to upsell them with an irresistible offer.

3. Creatives

How do you create a powerful ad? Do you use video or an image? What caption should you put? We answer these burning questions so you can make ads like a pro digital marketing agency.

  • a. Measure text ratio using a Facebook overlay tool

    facebook text ratio

    How much text can you put into an image for an optimal ad reach? Why is this important? Facebook says that an image with a high amount of text may create a lower quality experience for people who see it. Facebook’s text overlay tool works, then, by letting you know if there’s a need to reduce the amount of text in your image ad and provide better visual content on social media.

  • b. A/B Testing

    facebook ab ads testing

    A/B testing in Facebook ads is basically testing two versions of an ad to see which performs better in improving future campaigns. Facebook Ads Manager has its own A/B testing tools, allowing marketers to see, which variables such as target audience, delivery optimization, placements, creative, and product sets can perform better. You can, then, measure results based on traffic, app installs, lead generation, and more.

    facebook ads

  • c. Text Caption

    Do you want to learn how to write creative captions? You need to know how to write a key value proposition in your captions in a subtle manner. It’s basically a statement or a caption that explains what are the benefits you provide for whom and how you will deliver it uniquely. It explains how your app will solve your customer’s problems in a quantifiable value. It can also include why customers should install your app instead of your competition.

  • d. Headline

    A headline is a great way to grab a Facebook user’s attention and persuade them to install your Facebook app. When you use Facebook Ads, you will only have 25 characters to send your message across (at least for mobile ads). It will be best to keep the text short and clear to the point.

  • e. Image Copy

    There’s a saying that goes, ”A picture says a thousand words.” But in Facebook Ads, you’re limited to just 125 characters to tell your audience what the image can do for them or what it’s all about. You need to create a sense of urgency in your copy and make sure that it’s relevant to the visual you use. Do take that your image also needs to be at least 600 pixels wide or have the recommended dimensions of 1200 x 628 pixels.

  • f. Call-to-action

    Call-to-action is the haymaker of the ad. It’s designed to prompt immediate action or encourage a sale. Choose from the many call-to-actions like “open link,” “use app,” “watch now,” “shop now,” “listen now,” or “send a message.” Make sure it fits your app’s functionality to increase the chances of people clicking your ad.

  • g. The use of custom thumbnail for Videos

    Video thumbnails are as important as the video itself. It acts like a book cover for your videos. A well-designed thumbnail will more likely gain more views than a video with a random snapshot. You can change your Facebook ad’s thumbnail on Ads Manager. It is recommended to use the thumbnail size for YouTube of 1280 by 720 pixels for your ads.

4. Placement

Where does your Facebook ad appear? There are several places where it can make its appearance, such as the News Feed, Facebook Messenger, or on videos. Here are a few nuggets to help you know where to place your install Facebook application ad.

  • a. Choose Automatic placements

    Don’t know where the best place to show your Facebook ad? The social media network now allows you to select automatic placements or choose from both the News Feed and Facebook Messenger. With the introduction of the Audience Network, advertisers can now post cross-platform, increasing conversion rates to as much as eight times higher than those posted exclusively on Facebook.

  • b. Choose the best aspect ratio for each of the placements

    Whenever posting an ad on Facebook for your mobile app, make sure that your target audience sees every bit of it. You can then maximize the digital real estate on Facebook ads and choose the best aspect ratio for each of the ad placements. Facebook has guidelines set for the aspect ratio to help you out.

5. Budget

facebook ads budget

Every marketer who needs to run an ad must work with a budget. This means prioritizing and allocating funds for a specific campaign. If you are running multiple ad sets, use Campaign Budget Optimization (CBO) to distribute the ads budget dynamically. Facebook Ads’ algorithm will optimize your budget in real-time, taking every opportunity to get the best results for the entire campaign.

6. Format / Ad Type

What is the best format or ad type to use for getting people to install your mobile app? A great way to find out is to do A/B testing. Since you will be running on automatic ad placements, it will be best to have a static image version and a video.

Aside from simply using static images and/or videos, Facebook also offered different kinds of ad types for different needs. You can use video, images, or combine both, and try carousel and canvas ads for a more interactive user experience. Don’t forget to take a look at the Facebook Ad’s technical requirements for each format/ad type so you can maximize the space.

  • a. Carousel ads

    facebok ads carousel

    The carousel ad is a type of Facebook ad that lets you showcase up to 10 images/videos in one ad. What’s unique about this is that each one of them can have its own link. Creative marketers can use carousel ads on Facebook to highlight different aspects of the app such as, story, characters, or features.

  • b. Canvas ads

    facebok canvasPhoto courtesy of Facebook 


    If you want to paint a clearer picture of your mobile app to your audience, you can use an interactive ad like canvas or as Facebook now calls it – instant experiences. With canvas, your target audience can watch videos or look at images, swipe through carousels, tilt and pan to explore your mobile app. What’s great about this is that it is mobile-optimized and designed to capture the complete attention of your audience.

7. Analyze your data

If you want to paint a clearer picture of your mobile app to your audience, you can use an interactive ad like canvas or as Facebook now calls it – instant experiences. With canvas, your target audience can watch videos or look at images, swipe through carousels, tilt, and pan to explore your mobile app. What’s great about this is that it is mobile-optimized and designed to capture the complete attention of your audience.

Key Takeaways

Getting your audience to download and install your app can be a tough task. With Facebook ads, however, you can easily increase the app installs. Here are the key takeaways that you should remember before you start putting up ads on Facebook.

  • Knowing your target audience will help you come up with a more efficient ad.
  • There are plenty of ad types available at your disposal. Use it wisely.
  • Maximize the ad space given to you by Facebook. Make sure to check the recommended aspect ratio and dimensions for optimal visibility.
  • The Facebook Ads Manager is your best friend. It’s an all-in-one tool that you should maximize. Best of all, it’s free!

Now that you know the best practices for generating mobile app installs using Facebook ads, it shouldn’t be too long until your app makes it to the top charts or at the very least, earn from it. In case you’re still having trouble with your mobile marketing, we highly suggest getting the help of a professional, top-notch digital marketing agency in the Philippines like us.


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