When first starting out running Facebook ad campaigns, you just need to get spend and see what comes back. But once you've spent a good chunk of change on the platform, you'll have access to some pretty valuable data. This data can help you spend more efficiently, test new angles, and - to put it simply - get better results.
That's why today, we're going to teach you how to analyze Facebook ads data. This is one of the most important skills any media buyer can have. The ability to look at the data and come to conclusions that can improve performance is invaluable - and will be one of the major things that dictate the results you get.
You're going to learn what metrics to analyze and you'll learn what exactly they tell you. You'll learn how to assess performance at three different levels: the campaign, ad set, and ad. More importantly, you'll learn what your next steps after analyzing the data should be. First things first - let's explain what you can do by analyzing your Facebook ad campaign data.
What Can You Do With Facebook Ads Data?
You know that analyzing your data is going to help you improve your performance. What exactly does this mean, though? More specifically, what are you going to be able to do with this data?
There are three key ways that analyzing your Facebook ads data can help you improve performance. You'll be able to cut wasted spend and dedicate it towards other endeavors (or simply spend less on marketing altogether). You'll also be able to gain insights into new angles you can test as it pertains to audiences, copy, and creative. And, of course, analyzing data will help you scale up winning campaigns profitably.
Cut Wasted Spending
One of the biggest benefits of analyzing your results is finding areas where you're wasting spending. If you've got a lot going on in your Facebook ads manager, it can be tough to keep track of what specific campaigns, ad sets, and ads are bringing in a positive ROI. That's why it is so important to get into the data. You may find that while as a whole your Facebook ads are profitable, certain campaigns, ad sets, or ads are sucking spending without delivering results.
By cutting wasted spending, you'll free up the budget for higher-performing aspects of your marketing efforts. Or, you can simply enjoy higher profit margins by eliminating this wasted spending from your budget altogether.
Test New Angles
By analyzing your data, you can get a better understanding of what is working right now. And from there, you can start to form educated guesses about what else may work. This is how you can start to effectively test new angles for your offer. Whether it be new audiences, new ad creatives, new copy, or a new spin on your offering altogether.
Say for example you sell gym apparel. By looking at the data, you can determine which audiences convert the highest. While your brand is geared more towards diehard bodybuilders, you may find that general fitness enthusiasts are your most profitable audience. You can start testing new creative or copy that resonates with them better. This is just one example of how you can find new angles to test just by looking at what is working - and doubling down on it.
Scale Winning Campaigns
This one should go without saying - but by looking at your data you can start to slowly scale up on the most profitable campaigns you have.
But proper scaling takes smart data analysis. Just because a campaign gets you the highest number of results doesn't mean it's ready to be scaled - what if those results are at a cost above your breakeven ROAS? That's why you need to look at a collection of different metrics before determining what campaigns to scale - and how to do so.
How To Analyze Facebook Ads Data
Now that you know what you can do with this data, how do you go about actually finding the data? What metrics should you take a look at, and what exactly do they tell you? More importantly, what do you do with this data?
It's the moment you've been waiting for. We're ready to teach you how to analyze Facebook data. In the following sections, we're going to answer all the questions you have as it pertains to analyzing Facebook ad performance. The most important step is determining which metrics matter most to you. Let's start there.
Determine Which Metrics Matter Most To You
Everyone has their own preferences as to which metrics matter most - if you ask some media buyers, they'll tell you it's the ROAS. Others claim that the most important metric to track is simply the number of results - while many marketers stand by the cost per result as their preferred metric.
Our opinion? There is no "best" metric to track. You need to look at the Facebook ad campaign as a whole to get a good idea of what's going on and really get value from the data. We talk about this idea more in-depth in our guide to conducting a Facebook ads audit. If you haven't gone through this resource already, it's a worthwhile read. In summary, though, you want to rely on a combination of important metrics - some of which include:
Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) - This gives you an idea of what you get out of the Facebook ad machine for every dollar you put in. You'll gain a better understanding of how profitable your ads are with ROAS. We wrote a complete guide on what a good ROAS is for Facebook ads if you want to learn more about how to utilize this metric.
CPR (Cost Per Result) - Similar to ROAS, CPA - or cost per action - gives you an understanding of how much it costs you to get a user to take a certain action. That could be a click, it could be signing up for a newsletter, it could be making a purchase. It will help you understand how much a customer or a lead costs you.
Frequency - We see many marketers neglect frequency - and this is a big mistake. The frequency will give you insights into how fatigued your audience is. It's especially important as you run campaigns for longer periods of time. As frequency goes up, the occurrences of the same people seeing your same ads goes up. This leads to increased costs - and might indicate it is time to expand your audience or try new ads.
CTR (Click Through Rate) - This metric will help you understand how enticing your ad is to your audience. A good click-through rate means users are seeing your ad, they're interested, and they're getting to your site to learn more. If you have a lower CTR it may indicate a boring creative, poor copy, or even improper targeting.
Amount Spent - All the metrics above mean nothing if they don't have ample spending behind them. What conclusions can you confidently arrive at after only spending $10? That's why before you take any metric into consideration, consider how much money has been spent on the area in question - whether it be a campaign, ad set, or ad.
Keep in mind that these are just 5 of our personal favorite metrics to keep track of. You may have a few others you rely on. And your unique business will dictate which metrics matter most.
For example, maybe you're trying to build that snowball effect for your brand - and you're ok with spending unprofitably in the present time period because your customer LTV is so high. If so, you'll only care about volume and results. On the other hand, a mature brand spending 7 figures or more on ad campaigns a year may rely more on profitability metrics like ROAS. Just be sure that you're assessing a variety of data points to make informed decisions.
Analyze Facebook Ads Data At Three Levels
We see so many marketers making the mistake of analyzing results just at one level - be it the campaign level, ad set level, or ad level. This can lead to killing a winning ad that just needs proper targeting - or turning off an ad set that wasn't set up with the proper campaign objective. The point is that you need to be sure you're walking through all three levels of the ad campaign to make an informed decision.
Analyzing Campaign Data
To effectively analyze the data of your Facebook ad campaign, you should start at the broadest level - the campaign itself. Here, you can ask yourself a simple question - is the campaign profitable? If yes, you can then turn your attention to figuring out exactly how profitable (or unprofitable) the campaign is. The metrics you'll want to examine here are ROAS and cost per result.
Analyzing Ad Set Data
You will arrive at one of two conclusions by looking at your campaign data: the campaign is either profitable and ready to scale, or it is unprofitable and needs optimization. Whatever the case, you will move on to looking at the ad set level. This will help you determine which audiences/targeting options are your most profitable. You'll find areas where you're wasting budget here, too.
You'll still look at profitability metrics here, such as cost per result or ROAS. But you also want to make sure an ad set has actually been tested effectively - so look at impressions as well. Assuming all three ad sets have adequate impressions and amount spent, you can turn off the losers and double down on the winners.
Analyzing Ad Data
Of course, there is still one more thing to look at - performance from the ad level. Here you'll want to pay close attention to frequency. If your audiences are being hit with the same ad at a high rate of frequency, they're going to get burnt out. This will drastically affect results. So, if you see frequency rising it is time to start filtering out old ads in favor of new ads.
You can also gain insights into which types of creative/copy combinations achieve high click-through rates - helping you optimize your overall ad creation strategy. If you find that UGC has a low CTR compared to professional photography, you can invest more in that area. If you find that emojis lower your quality ranking, consider ditching them. Split testing ad variations goes a long way in helping you get clean data - so make sure you have a solid testing strategy in place. Comparing data from drastically different ads will only tell you so much.
A Few Helpful Tips For Analyzing Your Facebook Ad Campaign Data
We've given you a pretty simplified explanation of how to analyze Facebook ads. Now, we want to wrap things up by providing you with a few more tips to get proper insights from your analysis.
Set Up Your Custom View For Easy Analysis: If you haven't already, organize your ads manager in a way that makes analysis more efficient. You should always see your most important metrics first in the ads manager - at all three levels. So, play around with your custom view and make analyzing Facebook ad performance as simple as possible.
Create Specific Testing Campaigns: One thing we encourage all Facebook marketers to do is create specific testing campaigns. You can have an audience testing campaign, a creative testing campaign, etc. Once you've let your tests run a few days and determined they are ready to scale, you can copy them into your main Facebook CBO or ABO campaigns for each step of the funnel.
Come Up With An Analysis Schedule: One question we get all too often is - how frequently should I analyze my Facebook ads results? The answer is not one size fits all. You'll drive yourself crazy monitoring performance by the hour or day - but it doesn't hurt to stay on top of your campaigns with daily check-ins. However, a full-fledged analysis only needs to occur every so often. It's a good idea to do a quick weekly analysis to give you the next steps for the coming week. Then every month, you can assess performance as a whole and come up with the next steps for the following month.
Final Thoughts On How To Analyze Facebook Ads Data
There you have it - you now know how to analyze Facebook ads data. We've explained why this is something you need to master. It's essential to help you optimize and scale your marketing efforts. While you may not love sifting through data, you're going to have to get used to it - or, hire someone to do it for you.
Want to gain more insights into running profitable ad campaigns on Facebook along with other channels? Do you want to learn more about entrepreneurship and digital marketing in general? If so, join the Utopia today. In our digital marketing community, you gain access to thousands of individuals just like you. From complete beginners to some of the most well-respected entrepreneurs in the game - you'll learn stuff you can't find anywhere else. See what it's all about - you won't regret joining!