How to organize multiple campaigns with Facebook Ads Manager

Apr 1, 2013 · 5 min read
Facebook Ads Manager screenshot
Facebook Ads Manager screenshot

Facebook Ads Manager provides advertisers granular demographic, psycho-graphic and interest-based targeting capabilities. Its campaign management features, however, while rapidly evolving, are still some steps behind those of more mature ad networks and media buy platforms.

If you manage multiple Facebook advertising campaigns at the same time, each rotating several creatives, with a mix of different objectives (e.g. conversions, impressions, page likes, post engagement, etc.), and different targets (e.g. Married women 35–44, people interested in romantic movies, friends of my page fans, etc.) things can get very complicated very quickly. If your budget does not justify using one of the many campaign management services out there (here’s a list), you can still keep things organized.

First let’s have a look at the basic organizing elements in Facebook Ads Manager:

  • Accounts Groups: Account Groups allow you to grant and manage admin access to multiple accounts at once. The feature is designed for agency managers who manage ads for multiple clients and need to manage employee access to client accounts. It is also useful if you manage a lots of ads for different business units at your company.
  • Accounts: Any Faceboook user has at least an Ads Manager Account. Accounts roughly correspond to funding sources so that you can essentially attach a different credit card to each account you manage.
  • Campaigns: Campaigns are containers of Ads. Each campaign must have a preset daily or total budget and can be time bound or can go on indefinitely as long as it is funded.
  • Ads: Ads are individual advertising units within Facebook. Each ad in Facebook can have different target audience, creative content, placement and bidding levels per click, impression or action.

Facebook’s structure does not feature ad groups, a management layer Google Adwords advertisers are very familiar with, so you need to essentially manage all your work with Campaigns and Ads.

Targeting, first.

We recommend that you group all ads that are targeting the same demographic segment within a single campaign and, conversely, that you create at least as many campaigns as the demographic segments you plan to advertise to. The reason is that, all else being equal, changing demo targeting criteria can dramatically change the performance of your ads. If you want to compare performance of different ad creative versions, it is much easier if you don’t mix different targeting criteria within the same campaign.

For example let say we want to run a Christmas Holidays launch campaign for a men’s accessories online store selling ties, targeting “Women living in the UK age 35 to 54 who are married”. We recommend that you group all ads targeting those Facebook users in a single campaign. If you also want to target “Anybody living in London who are married” then you should create a separate campaign for that target.


The second important thing to keep in mind when setting up campaigns is your objectives. Setting aside for a moment Promoted Post, Mobile App Ads, Fan acquisition ads etc., Facebook “traditional” display campaigns can be designed

Since the performance objective greatly influences how your campaign budget is spent, we recommend to separate CPM, CPC and oCPM ads in different campaigns. That also makes it easier to compare ads performance among ads that are optimized for the same type of metric.

So looking at the example above, let say we want to run a mix of CPC ads as well as action-optimized ads to get users to claim an offer on our Facebook page (i.e optimized CPM ads). We would then setup 4 campaigns:

  • Campaign SEGM01_CPC: Women living in the UK age 35 to 54 who are married, CPC
  • Campaign SEGM01_oCPM: Women living in the UK age 35 to 54 who are married, oCPM
  • Campaign SEGM02_CPC: Anybody living in London who are married, CPC
  • Campaign SEGM02_oCPM: Anybody living in London who are married, oCPM

Ad = Image + Copy

Once target segments and ad delivery optimization parameters are defined you can start creating your ads. Without getting into the details of different types of Facebook ads, the essential creative elements of an ad are an image and the copy (i.e. the title + the text body). It makes sense to test and rotate multiple images and copy versions, potentially across multiple campaigns. We recommend that you keep all of the image and text assets organized in a file and use naming keys to uniquely identify them, so that each ad copy is identified as the combination of a specific image and a text.


For example id you want to rotate 3 different images and 2 versions of the text you could potentially have 6 different ad versions:

  • Ad version IMG01_TX01
  • Ad version IMG01_TX02
  • Ad version IMG02_TX01
  • etc…

Note that you can run the same ad in different campaigns, for example SEGM01_CPC_IMG02_TX01 and SEG02_oCPM_IMG02_TX01. The naming convention makes it easy to keep track of the many permutations of targeting, optimization criteria and ad creative.

Placements and Ad Creative

Placements enable advertisers to choose “where” a certain ad should be displayed. For example, they allow you to limit an ad to only show on Facebook mobile app feeds on an Android device. Obviously this is a very useful feature if, say, you want to show an ad that is specifically designed to “talk” to users when they are using Facebook on a specific device.

For example, let say that we want to show a different version of an ad creative — e.g. a different image — when our target users are using the Facebook iPhone app, the Facebook Android app or the Facebook website. In that case we recommend that you incorporate those three placement variations in the name of the ads:

  • IMG03a_TX02_iOS
  • IMG03b_TX02_AND
  • IMG03c_TX02_WEB

It’s just the start…

We purposefully did not discuss Power Editor features, different ad types, advanced placement and targeting options, and the many options for bid optimization. If you start with a logical organization and a consistent naming convention of your campaigns and ads, it should not be too difficult to expand on your system. Have fun!


Technology. Innovation. Markets.


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Silicon Valley’s market entry, business development and technology scouting partner for international corporations.


Technology. Innovation. Markets.

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