Ah yes, the infamous “hero” ad..if you’ve been struggling with how to work with these in your ad account, this blog is for you! Last week we talked about how hero ads fall into the Facebook algorithm, so make sure to check that blog out here.
What is a Hero Ad Creative?
A hero ad is that ad that Facebook will spend the most time and energy on. This ad typically takes up all of the spend, traffic, and results. Sometimes what happens with these ads is that even though it takes up all of the spend, the results may not be favorable, so advertisers resort to cutting the spend which drops overall ad spend. This pattern essentially harms ad performance.
This can also be hard when you try to replace an ad due to a product or legal update, and performance drops significantly. So what do you do? How do you move away from the hero ad? We have 3 ways you can combat this!
Note: When you are looking to replace a certain hero ad, you have to understand that Facebook has 2 buckets – a video bucket or a static (image) bucket. When replacing these, replace them with their own kind.
Ex: Replace a hero video ad with another video OR replace a hero static ad with another static. Do not mix replacements! In general, we recommend running each creative with both a video and static option to increase your performance.
How to Combat Heros
1. Build up social proof. The reason most ads tested against the hero ad do not compare is because they usually lack the social proof to do so. Social proof is built into the algorithm as a priority, so no matter what, these posts will perform better.
To get another ad prioritized, you need to grow its social proof. You will need to throw your ads in a warm campaign like a retargeting campaign. You can aim for targeting lower in the sales funnel. You can even show it to a Site Visitors audience, an Instagram Engagement audience, and Video Viewers audience, if you are strict on which message you are showing to different groups. Past purchasers can also be a good strategy if you have customers that love you, but watch out for this if you are a one-time purchase product.
You can expect to see nice comments, likes, and more forms of engagement on the non-hero ads, which is great for social proofing!
2. Use the same hero messaging. Make sure you also use the same messaging in your hero ads, in your non-hero ads. You want to make it as similar as possible to your hero ads but use a different creative. This can make a huge difference and give you a boost.
3. Push creatives! This is the final method, the most intense, but most helpful way to combat the hero ad. This is, flooding the platform with creatives. When you have an account that is used to new creatives, without a ton of budget (because we know they won’t perform as well as the hero), there will be 2 or 3 overtime that gradually start catching up in performance. It is better to keep the algorithm constantly moving, and that will train it to not fixate on one thing. It will get better at giving time and space to different creatives.
We hope this gives you some new strategies to try to move away from your hero ads and into an overall optimized account. Any success stories? Let us know! We love to hear them.