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What's your results, Jason? C'mon, everyone else is sharing here. "Best type" means nothing unless you're sharing data.


I draw the same conclusions with Ads on Facebook and Google. Almost the same advertisement (OK, on Facebook you can upload a photo:-) had a CTR of 7,2% with Adwords and only a CTR of 0,06% on Facebook.



I'm not really upset by the low CTR I get on Facebook ads. I realize that the audience is otherwise engaged and may not be interested in shopping for my particular product while they are on FB. However, the fact that many FB users have clicked on our ads and our revenue is up the first week of our test shows that the ads are working. My measure of success is not CTR but rather ROI. At this point in the experiment, we are on the plus side of that equation.

donnella's closet

Thanks for the article.
This was extremely helpful as a small business owner.

Especially when so many free-lance "marketing pros" are offering their services to "optimize" your site for traffic.


hi Bob,

Thanks for the insight. Although you make good points, in statistical terms you're only basing your results on your single facebook ad experience. Maybe some products/services are more successful than others?

I'm trying to convince my boss to give facebook ads a try for our radio show. I'm expecting good results.. but all the reviews so far have concluded that their experience has been satisfactory or less.

Thanks again,

Steve Barber

As a Facebook user, I am appalled by the number of deliberately fraudulent ads that the company runs, especially the ones advertising "make money typing for Google". Facebook has so destroyed their credibility that I believe most of us expect ALL Facebook ads to be fraudulent. I've set up an informal network (outside of Facebook) to discourage these fraudulent ads by having people "click and close" on them repeatedly. Hopefully driving up the fraud artists' costs will cause these maggots to leave. I'd suggest that legitimate advertisers pressure Facebook to refuse obviously fraudulent and misleading ads; otherwise we will, as a group, continue to ignore them.

Jim Lee

I don't think it's a case of Facebook advertising being worthless...it's a case of you over estimating the popularity and draw of guitar hero and rockband.


Well I am using the 100$ coupons Facebook is giving away, but the CTR is unbelievable low...At least the conversion is allright, but overall I will not advertise after the coupon ist finished.

Bob Gilbreath

Thanks for the continued points and discussion to all.

Alisa, thanks for sharing your story.

Steve, you're hitting a key point - since no real advertisers see the benefit in Facebook ads, the only ones who are willing to waste their time are these cheesy bottom-of-the-barrel advertisers. Sadly for Facebook's revenue hopes, these poor ads only reinforce users' habit to completely ignore the ads they see when they log on.

Jim, the point is that I was targeting people who took the time to raise their hand and say that they are very interested in Guitar Hero and Rock Band, so you're point doesn't make sense.

Facebook Social Ads

I've had some limited success with Facebook Social Ads.

It's important to remember that people on Facebook are not there to shop or to research commercial products. I've had some limited success with my experiments. I'm currently trialling Myspace MyAds and will publish my results shortly.


Just to add some stats as I did a test today. 170k impressions and .03% CTR. i beat the poster. But going to Google analytics as to what they did when they got to the site. Aver time was 50 seconds up from 43 on mmy normal traffic. 100% new people which was nice. Bounce rate 87 which is higher then my normal 75%. But .03 hardly makes it worth our time to pursue as if we increase it 300% so what?

Bob Gilbreath

Todd, thanks so much for sharing your information. I'm glad to see so many people compare notes in this space.

You've nailed a key issue that many people have missed here: even at significantly better click rates the numbers are so small that it's not worth the effort.


Great insights. As many have stated, the ironic thing here is that Facebook is actually a fantastic marketing platform for those who know how to best exploit it. (Not necessarily thru "ads")

Having people who are interested in what you are saying/selling, and having a platform to invite, and share events can be more valuable than the actual advertising itself.


This doesn't seem to be close to a valid test. Did you run the same ads on other networks? Did you run targeted CPC? I've experienced CTR as high as .36% on facebook through doing many tests for ads. I believe your ads need work.

Bob Gilbreath

Marv, take a step back and look at your comment with a fresh mind. Try reading it this way, "I've had as many as 36 out of 10,000 people click my ad." That's what .36% CTR is: still such a small number, Marv, that even if I was an expert ad-maker like you, it's essentially meaningless. That's the whole point of this post!

Brands rely on getting 1 million people or more to do something. By your CTR rate, I need 278 MILLION impressions to get 1 million website visits. And of course, not every website visit leads to a sale, so I actually need a lot more than 278 MILLION impressions.


Low CTR is irrelevant for the advertiser, who only cares about cost per click.
Facebook makes up for the low CTR by massive user base.

Bob Gilbreath

Wrong, Dominik.

Marketers only care about selling product/service, actually.

A massive user base is irrelevant for the advertiser if it doesn't translate into sales.

Low CTR suggests that no one is paying attention to the advertising. If an ad is placed on billions of screens but no one sees it, the ad it not successful.


Whoa. 12 clicks is AWESOME! I think you're in the wrong business! lol I pay 500 bucks to have 10 people live transferred to me. For that same 500 bucks on facebook (bidding is at 67 cents right now on the high end) I'm looking at, what like 900 people coming to my site? People don't click on ADS because ads suck it. You have to brand yourself and who YOU are. That's what people want to invest time in -- especially on social networking sites. All of my branding goes to married women in their 30s. I've had no problems and have no complaints with facebook ads. Thay ARE worth all the hype.


I read your article and I want to share my personal experience with Facebook Ads. I started a campaign a few days ago to promote my website about sugar gliders. Well, yesterday I spent $5,01 and I got 410 click to my website (232.824 impressions, CTR 0,17%). For me it's not so bad! The only problem is that people on Facebook get used to your ad and after two or three days the CTR% goes down.
Ciao! Alessandro, www.petsugargliders.eu


You have based your analysis on 2 small a sample size.

The similar CTR could have been coincidence.

I would think you cant judge the effectiveness of Facebook over 12 clicks.

Facebook has been doing very very well for my clients.

Agreed its not as eed based as Google but it's cheap traffic.



I realise this is an old article but here goes anyway;

You had waaay to much text in your ad - too hard to read. I have recently started FB ads and have found that a tiny amount of text and getting straight to the point have helped go from poor results like 0.03% CTR to 0.33% CTR.

I can suggest maybe should have done "Non-Stop Rock" as title, "Bridge Worldwide playing Guitar Hero all night. Watch now." and a more visually attracting / pleasing image.



I think the targeting does work, but it is not hugely effective. I recently did some ads for my band. With a non-specific ad aimed at the general population in the UK, i got a 0.021% CTR. I then made a new ad with targeted at people who said they liked "indie" music and made the ad more specific to these users. This was more effective at around 0.05-0.06% CTR. Still not great, but the conversion of clicks to fans was good.

Nathan Taber

I disagree with your conclusions. The first major flaw in your ad was that the photo says exactly what the same thing as your title. More so, in FB ads, it seems that the photo is what people look at first. So boring photo, little result.

For promoting my book and website http://www.survivetheib.com, I have a few ads running. With an audience of about 10,000 I have a CTR of .498%

Additionally, by becoming a "fan" of my product, I have a "string" on my future customers that lets me directly contact them and pull them into my product and promotions whenever I want.
You should try your experiment again before dismissing Facebook.

Ever heard of affiliate programs? These are forms of Internet advertising that rewards the affiliates for driving traffic to the advertiser or for other transactions. The advertiser pays the affiliate to place a link on their website, and the affiliate sends traffic to the advertiser in return. Simply put, it’ s about paying commissions to people[...]


There is some truth here. My Facebook visitors doesn't spend as much time on my website as my Adwords visitors. Same ad. Same areas. Just the pic is added. I do like facebook more than adwords - which is a pain in the a - quality score and that doesn't cater for small advertisers that want a really low low cost PPC price - say 0.01 cents per click.

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