If you want to seriously increase the likelihood of a Facebook ad’s success and impact on viewers in a social space already cluttered with multimedia, look no further than the good old ad image.
Facebook ad images serve two main purposes: to draw the eye of users and to reinforce or supplement the ad copy. Facebook ad images are small (110×80 pixels) and getting even smaller (99×72 pixels), which means advertisers have to work extra hard to make them outstanding.
We’ve noticed many Facebook advertisers have fallen short or cut corners when it comes to Facebook ad images. Marketers, what are you thinking? Skimping on the most important element of a Facebook ad?!
It’s time to pay these crucial ad elements the TLC they deserve. In this post, we’ll examine tools, tips, and strategies to create winning Facebook ad images.
Inexpensive to Free Image Processing Tools
First, get started with the right tools that are appropriate for your budget. Free tools are great, but you get what you pay for; often, it’s worth the little investment in the end to buy a paid tool.
- IrfanView (PC only) – This was my favorite when I had a PC because it opened up in a SNAP.
- Image Tricks (Mac)
Super affordable image processing tools:
This list barely scratches the surface of image processing software out there, but I’ve had great personal experiences with these platforms in particular.
First and foremost: The XS sized images will absolutely be large enough for Facebook ad images. Try to keep images three credits or less. Don’t waste money on an expensive image, unless you have to, because it will eventually be cut down to the size of a stamp.
- Fotolia (from $0.74-$1.30 per credit). Fotolia is my go-to for images. Trolling through the thousands of photos Fotolia stocks can be incredibly fun, but before you know it, you’ve lost an entire afternoon that should have been spent on production. Cut down on waster time by being keyword-specific, using the expression or emotion you want to convey as keywords, and sort by “recent” to find truly fresh gems.
- Veer (from $0.78-$1.41 per credit or buy individual images starting at $2.25). Very similar to Fotolia, but you don’t have to buy credits if you don’t want to. You can buy images with “real money,” and if you register for an account, you’re entitled to some freebie credits.
- iStockphoto (from $1.67-$1.38 per credit). iStock is a bit more expensive than Fotolia, but not without its perks. For example: There’s a free photo of the week!
Choosing the right images from stock photo sources is the first key in creating Facebook ad images that will be successful. Facebook images for ads are landscape oriented – making portrait-style images are difficult to adapt to a small landscape image. Steer away from buying portrait-style images, even if you love them.
The expression on the child to the left’s face is totally priceless, but because the image is too portrait-style, the true essence of this image is lost when trying to capture the body language. Compare this to the baby image on the right, where the essence and emotion is all about the face and expression.
Tip: before you buy images, do a rough test with a screen-capturing tool by cropping the image similar to how you would in the ad to see if it will work for your purposes.
Crop for Emotion
Capturing emotion is essential when processing images for Facebook. Everyone knows what a head looks like, cropping from eyes to mouth to capture the most feeling.
Emotion enhances your ad text by conveying what the advertiser wants the user to feel about the product, or conversely about the consequences without it. As Tyra Banks would say, they need to “SMEYES” – smile with their eyes. Pick the most attractive model from stock photos and it will mean nil if he or she is dead in the face.
That couple in the top row is totally in to each other and it shows, even in a tiny image!
Images of beautiful women work, but advance beyond the atypical pretty girl images for variation and potentially better ads. Below are some suggestions for creating more variation for images:
Choose a blend of ethnicities in your stock photos. Variety is the spice of life!
Remember, not all Facebook users are young!
People want to smile – cute and funny images work.
Mirror images if necessary so the character in the image is facing towards the ad copy text. This can be tricky, occasionally an image will look quite right if it’s mirrored or if there’s text within the image it wont work.
Capturing the Essence of Objects
If the image you’re using is a product or perhaps a food item, crop them close because a zoomed out image of any whole-product or food doesn’t look like much of anything at 110×80 pixels. Cut your losses and just make it stunning.
Best Colors for Facebook Ad Images
ORANGE! Truly, just about any color that contrasts Facebook’s blue, white, and grey design will stand out, but tones of orange tend to work best in ad images. Orange is less alarming and less common than red, warmer and brighter than yellow, and not as gender-specific as pink.
Cranking Colors & Contrast
Users share lots of images, videos, even links pull up thumbnail images- this all means Facebook ads need to compete, hard, for user’s attention. A best practice is to crank the saturation and contrast so that your teeny tiny image practically glows on the page.
The image of young people above has a lot of great colors that will pop off the Facebook page, but enhancing the colors even a little bit makes a big difference.
Get Your Money’s Worth
Make your images go the extra mile by creating various images from one stock photo. Take the image of the group of young people and cut it up in various ways.
Add Text Elements to Your Facebook Ad Images
Include the logo in images as much as you can for an extra branding punch. Scale the .png of the logo down to fit in your Facebook ad image and layer it over the image, or have it line the top, bottom or side of the image.
There’s no one right answer to the perfect Facebook ad image. However, the user response data from the ads will tell you what images your audience responds to. Take these tips and ideas for Facebook ad images, after all, better images quite often translates to higher CTRs. It’s that simple.