How long should I run my Facebook Ads campaign for?

Facebook optimises your campaign over time.

And they’ve got some phenomenal software, code, and people building it and running it. They help your ads to be successful, because Facebook actually wants your ads to be successful! The reason? You’ll keep buying ads from them to achieve even greater results in your business.

Facebook depends on the advertising revenue to fund everything it does. So, the systems that they have in place once you start to place ads (the really clever stuff that goes on behind the scenes), makes a big difference to the success of your campaign. But it’ll typically take two or three, sometimes as long as four weeks, to conquer the Facebook learning curve so that you can properly optimise what’s happening with your ads.

Optimisation is getting the right people to click on your ad, targeting a particular type of person, then knowing, or guessing, what Facebook will do. What you can’t possibly know is what particular sector of interest or demographic is most likely to fit in a lead ad, for instance, or watch a video, or convert into a sale, but Facebook knows this because it has data on everything that all of its users do.

One minute in every five in the UK that’s spent on a mobile device is spent on Facebook.

Meanwhile, Facebook is collecting and collating all that information, and they’re able to use it to help optimise your ads. But it does take a number of days, let’s say 10, 15, 20 days, to fully optimise.

So, we perform that test cycle, that lead cycle, then we run another test cycle. This takes about three weeks and then, when we’ve stripped out all the ads that don’t work, as well as the two or three that work best, we scale up. We fire up the Quattro (as we call it) on those top two or three ads for you, and we will start to put all of your ad spending behind those two or three ads.

If you have a big audience, that single campaign, that single ad, can run and work very well; sometimes for two months, three months, or even five months! However, for some other audiences, the ad will start to fatigue, people become blind to it, they stop seeing it, and we see the number of clicks and the number of leads start to diminish and degenerate. When that happens, it’s time to change the ad.

Sometimes it can be as simple as changing the image, sometimes it’s a case of changing the wording, and sometimes it requires a complete overhaul and a new campaign altogether. What we found works really well is running the test cycle for the first two or three weeks, and then putting the ads into a monthly cycle. We then review the stats properly and fundamentally at the end of every monthly cycle.

Some ads only run for a single monthly cycle and we can start to see the ad fatigue in that fourth week of the month. We can see it in the reports and the progress, and the responses that we are getting. So, we go back to the drawing board and we create a new ad with new copy, and sometimes a new offer with new images, and we begin to run that in the second month of the cycle.

How long do Facebook Ads run?

It really depends, is the short answer to the question. We factor in many variables: be it from a small number of weeks to a small number of months is the standard range for run time. We also look at audience size, and what you are offering.

It often occurs that ads are run because they are very time-specific. If we are doing campaigns around Valentine’s Day, for instance, there obviously isn’t any point in running Valentine’s ads on 15th February, so the Facebook ad gets changed out. Similarly, there isn’t any point in running Valentine’s ads too late or too early in January because people just aren’t thinking about it. There is a sweet spot of timing with some ads, then spotting the ad fatigue, and turning the ad before the fatigue sets in. That is the key to getting a steady flow of leads coming through your Facebook Ad campaigns.