Which images make the most successful Facebook ads?
Images are the cornerstone of successful Facebook ads. We look at how to find the best images to create more effective Facebook ads.
“A picture is worth ten thousand words” – Fred R. Barnard.
Images in Facebook ads are a huge factor in their success. In fact, images are probably the most important part of brands’ messaging on the platform, for a load of reasons.
On Facebook, posts with images have 37% more engagement than those without. But when it comes to picking those images, do you ever get the feeling that you’re relying on guesswork and ‘gut feeling’ rather than solid evidence?
A 2014 study by researchers from the City University of Hong Kong and Tsinghua University found that a number of features – including warmer colours, higher contrast, greater depth-of-field and more social presence – increase product favourability. So let’s chuck guesswork out and take a look at some types of images that are proven to create successful Facebook ads.
Images with people
Pictures of people – in particular happy people – have historically sent the CTR on Facebook ads soaring. This reflects trends on social media in general, where images with faces in them are 38% more likely to attract engagement, according to researchers from the Georgia Institute of Technology and Yahoo Labs researchers.
Now, this goes beyond us being simply nosey (or fancying the person in the ad): People provide a sense of scale, they help tell a story and provide context. But, most importantly, it makes it easier for us to relate to the image and therefore the product being promoted.
Images with limited (or no) text
Facebook just doesn’t get on with text in images. So, to the frustration of many marketers, it often limits the scope of ads containing images overlaid with what it considers ‘too much’ text. Or even stops them from being run altogether. The company says this is because it’s “found that images with less than 20% text perform better”.
To ensure you don’t fall foul of this rigid rule, keep text on images to a minimum – something likely make it more creative and engaging anyway.
Natural imagery scores better CTR
Turns out you aren’t the only one who drifts off into their beachy screensaver when it turns 4pm at the office. As per ‘The Attention Restoration Theory’, we are naturally programmed to feel more engaged when we’re in nature and even just images of nature have been proven to capture our attention.
Our own research of the general population found that images of nature, in particular nature scenes in warmer seasons, that inspire relaxation resonate more with people. Meanwhile, images with more concrete features, like wood and structure, registered a lower appeal with the same group.
Images with pets
This one’s pretty self explanatory. There’s currently a Pomeranian with 9.1m Instagram followers. People on social media like pets. A lot. So if you’re wondering how to create an effective Facebook ad, try including a furry friend.
Warmth and colour
Using colour and warmth in images doesn’t just make them ‘prettier’, it also results in higher engagement and more profitable campaigns. According to a recent study in the Journal of Consumer Research, colour advertising can influence consumers to pay more for products.
Interestingly, blue has consistently been found to be people’s favourite colour, regardless of gender or age. Although if you’re thinking of using this hue in your next campaign, be careful it doesn’t get lost in Facebook’s all-penetrating blue-and-white theme.
On this note, it’s worth editing your images so they are at their most striking before you add them to your campaign. There’s a load of tools out there, but one of our favourites is VSCO – check it out.
In steps Pomegranate
To prove we know what we’re talking about, we ran two images through DataSine’s AI platform, Pomegranate, to establish whether these sorts of images really do make for successful Facebook ads. Pomegranate uses insights rooted in psychology to establish how appealing images will be for the general population.
Firstly, we assessed an image of an incredibly happy-looking dog frolicking in nature. This image obviously ticked a lot of boxes.
Then, we did the same with a black-and-white image of office blocks overlaid with a significant amount of text. According to our earlier points, this image was likely to be ignored by the majority of Facebook users.
The results were as expected. Pomegranate found that the happy dog had a general appeal of 97% whereas the building block scored just 8%. The choice was obvious!
Questioning ‘gut feeling’
So, while it’s important to note that each campaign is unique, there’s always going to be certain images that resonate more. So, next time you’re using gut feeling to pick out an image without truly knowing what your audience wants, bear in mind the psychology behind images. Or better yet, get rid of lengthy A/B testing and use Pomegranate for free to assess the appeal of your images before you even hit ‘send’.
A new breed of marketing tools is here that leverages machine learning and psychology to pick high-converting creatives for your Facebook ads.
Growth Tribe’s Bernardo Nunes joins the conversation to talk artificial intelligence in marketing: how companies can leverage AI and cultivate tech talent.
Cutting-edge AI (artificial intelligence) research into how computers see marketing images is changing the way marketers build more successful campaigns.
Experienced Growth Marketer Mohamed El Hannaoui joins the conversation to talk growth marketing in startups and how AI is going to change marketing
Datasine talks marketing, AI and personalisation with Emily Miller, Head of Marketing at Ollie Quinn, ahead of her fireside chat at #SuperchargeMarketing.
Datasine discusses growth marketing, personalisation and AI adoption with Mitch Platt, UK Country Manager at Grow Tribe, ahead of his presentation at #SuperchargeMarketing.
Datasine’s CEO Igor Volzhanin outlines his MAD//Fest presentation, explaining why using content data and AI leads to a steep increase in ad performance.
Got your attention with the picture above? Great! I’m sure you’ll love the rest of this article. It probably doesn’t come as a surprise to you that we live in the age of visual culture. Ten percent of all photos ever taken by humankind took place in the last 12 months.
Serial Entrepreneur and Co-Founder of The Goat Agency, Harry Hugo, joins the conversation to talk social media, influencer marketing and founding Goat.
Datasine talks to Mack Grenfell, Biddable Lead at Babylon Health about falling into the industry, and how AI is helping marketers optimise spend.
Personalisation means connecting with your audience on a deeper level. Our Head of Psychology, Jergan Callebaut, looks at its many forms.
Head of Content & Product Marketing at Attest, Meagan Healey, joins the conversation to talk data-driven marketing and why aligning sales and marketing is a game changer.
Discover the benefits semantic content analysis brings, and how to utilise data, psychology and AI to predict the highest-converting content for your brand.
Facebook Ads A/B testing is crucial to understanding what marketing content works best. Datasine’s PPC Manager outlines how Facebook Ads A/B tests work in this simple guide.
Check out our top nine Mailchimp integration picks for empowering marketers to increase campaign metrics and improve customer experiences.
Data-driven marketing is a key focus for marketing teams today. I spoke with Alessio Pieroni, Head of Marketing at Mindvalley about how to practice it successfully.
Datasine discusses the tools that make marketing work, and finding the right balance when personalising communications with Karla Rivershaw, Head of Marketing at Turtl.
Datasine looks at the five of the best – and most affordable – tools on the market for creating and optimising Facebook Ads.
Growth hacking Facebook ads sends engagement skyrocketing and there are many ways to optimise paid ads to drive brand awareness and sales.
The data boom has driven focus on areas such as targeting, brand and reach for Facebook Ads, yet the creative remains the most impactful factor in successful Facebook Ads
Datasine talks about personalising marketing communications and marketing tools with Emma Wynne, Head of Growth Marketing at Pasta Evangelists.
Datasine’s Marketing Director, Cornel Lazar, shares the questions each brand must ask before rebranding, and Datasine’s journey to change its look and feel.
Email is one of the most effective marketing channels and Mailchimp has long been a favourite amongst marketers and growth hackers. Learn how to up your Mailchimp newsletter game with our growth hacks.
Datasine’s Performance Marketing Manager gives 3 simple steps for building better Facebook Ads, including optimising creatives and using AI
Datasine sits down with the two guest speakers of Marketing 20:20, Becky Simms, Founder and CEO of Reflect Digital and Social Media Expert Kieran S Lawler
While artificial intelligence (AI) has had little impact on the creative sector so far, AI has huge potential to optimise ad creatives
I sat down with our Marketing Director to discuss what a rebrand is, what goes into a rebrand and how Datasine approached the project.
We look back on our first day at MAD//Fest with presentations from Burger King, Virgin Trains and our own CEO Igor Volzhanin.
Adtech and martech are terms that are regularly conflated. Let’s put aside misconceptions to define adtech and martech – and their differences.
How mirroring can help you level up the impact of your one-to-many communications, offering personalised content and customer experience.
Data-driven disruption is sweeping through creative industries. We sit down with Wayne Deakin, Executive Creative Director at Huge EMEA to talk about facing it head on.
Brand Manager and Founder of Maxtractor.agency, Magda Urbaniak, shares her best practices for brands paid and organic social efforts
Artificial intelligence (AI) is increasingly used in email marketing, learn how machine learning enhances personalised email campaigns.
Datasine sits down with Lemlist CEO Guillaume Moubeche to talk about delivering personalised email marketing experiences and building relationships.
Datasine Connect, Datasine’s AI platform, analysed the 12 official art posters for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic games to discover which was the most engaging for the UK population
A McKinsey report has concluded that marketers who use creativity and data together achieve a much higher performance for their brand
Data and AI are becoming more vital to the role of the Creative Director. Datasine sits down with Alex Colley, Creative Director of ikon, to find out more about the impact tech is having.
Datasine looks back at the five things we learned at Supercharge Marketing, from data-driven marketing to investing in learning new skills.
Facebook dynamic ads, or Facebook product ads, let you remarket to your audience. Find out how to use them in this simple guide to DPA ads.
Segmentation in marketing allows marketers to place customers into groups for targeting. We take a look at the types of market segmentation.
Datasine sits down with Flavilla Fongang, Creative Brand Strategist and Founder 3 Colours Rule to talk branding, neuromarketing and the future of the industry
Artificial intelligence (AI) should be taking marketing by storm, but its lack of interpretability for most marketers is holding back innovation and adoption.