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Unlock Success with the Ultimate Facebook Ad Format in 2023

Published on: November 17 2023 by Ben Heath

Unlock Success with the Ultimate Facebook Ad Format in 2023

Table of Contents:

  1. Introduction
  2. The Myth of Video Ads
  3. Poll Results: Which Ad Format Performs Best?
  4. The Importance of Testing Different Formats
  5. The Role of Carousel Ads
  6. The Truth About the Best Ad Format
  7. Differences Between Audience Data and Agency Data
  8. Matching Ad Format to Offer Complexity
  9. Guidelines for Choosing the Right Ad Format
  10. The Impact of Choosing the Right Format
  11. Conclusion

The Myth of Video Ads

When it comes to Facebook and Instagram advertising, many advertisers have been led to believe that video ads are the only way to succeed. They've been told that using the video ad format is the key to seeing great results. But is this really true? In this article, we'll dive deep into the world of Facebook and Instagram ad formats and uncover the truth about which format produces the best results. We conducted a poll among our audience to get their insights, and the results may surprise you.

Poll Results: Which Ad Format Performs Best?

In our poll, we asked our audience which Facebook and Instagram ad format performs best for them. We provided options such as video, image, slideshow, Carousel, and others. The most popular ad format that produced the best results for the majority of respondents was video, with 53% of the votes. This may not come as a surprise, considering the widespread belief in the power of video ads. However, what's really interesting is that almost half of the respondents (47%) did not see their best results from video ads. This data debunks the myth that video always works best. It indicates that there's a need to test different ad formats to find the one that delivers the best results for each individual advertiser.

The Importance of Testing Different Formats

Based on the poll results, it's clear that relying solely on video ads may not be the most effective strategy. To maximize the performance of Facebook and Instagram ads, it's essential to test a variety of ad formats. Aside from video, other formats like image, slideshow, and Carousel can also yield positive results. By testing different formats, advertisers have a better chance of finding the one that resonates most with their target audience and drives the desired outcomes.

The Role of Carousel Ads

One ad format that deserves attention is Carousel ads. According to our poll, 9% of respondents found Carousel ads to be their best performing option. While Carousel may not be the first choice for many advertisers, it's worth considering as part of their optimization strategy. Carousel ads allow advertisers to showcase multiple images or videos within a single ad unit, providing an opportunity to tell a more compelling story or highlight a range of products or services. By testing Carousel ads, advertisers may uncover a high-performing format that brings exceptional results.

The Truth About the Best Ad Format

The truth is, there's no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of which ad format is the best. It ultimately depends on the specific products or services being advertised. Different businesses will experience varying levels of success with different formats. The key is to match the right ad format to the nature of the offer. While video may be the best choice for services that require a significant commitment or investment, simpler offers can often be effectively promoted with image ads. Finding the right ad format for your business requires understanding your target audience, the complexity of your offer, and conducting thorough testing.

Differences Between Audience Data and Agency Data

As an agency specializing in Facebook and Instagram advertising, we have access to data from running hundreds of campaigns for our clients. While there are some differences between our data and the poll results mentioned earlier, they are not significant. For example, slideshow ads received only 2% of the votes in the poll, but in our agency data, slideshow ads have proven to be more successful, accounting for 15-20% of the best performing ad formats. These discrepancies may be attributed to the overlap between video and slideshow formats, as some respondents might categorize slideshow ads as videos.

Matching Ad Format to Offer Complexity

To determine which ad format is likely to deliver the best results, it is important to consider the complexity of the offer. Ad formats can be viewed on a complexity continuum, with image ads being the simplest and video ads being the most complex. When the ask from the audience is significant, such as requiring them to schedule a meeting or commit to an expensive purchase, video ads tend to be more effective. The additional information that can be conveyed through video format aids in selling the action. On the other hand, for simple offers like impulse purchases, image ads are often sufficient to capture audience attention and drive conversions.

Guidelines for Choosing the Right Ad Format

While it is helpful to match the complexity of the offer to the ad format, it is not a strict rule. Testing different formats is crucial for all advertisers, regardless of offer complexity. Even if a complex offer may seem best suited for video, there may be instances where an image ad performs exceptionally well. Each industry operates differently, and finding the best ad format requires experimentation and data analysis. By adhering to guidelines based on offer complexity, advertisers can better navigate the selection process and increase the chances of finding the winning ad format that maximizes results.

The Impact of Choosing the Right Format

Choosing the right ad format can have a significant impact on the success of Facebook and Instagram advertising campaigns. Even a 20% improvement in return on ad spend can open doors to profitable scaling opportunities. The data from our poll clearly demonstrates that video ads are not always the best performers. Adhering to misinformation can limit advertising success. Therefore, it is crucial to dispel myths and explore alternative ad formats that may work better for specific businesses. Testing different formats can lead to breakthroughs and unlock new levels of campaign performance.


In conclusion, the belief that video ads are the only way to succeed with Facebook and Instagram advertising is a myth. While video ads can be highly effective, they are not guaranteed to produce the best results for every advertiser. It is essential to test different ad formats, including image, slideshow, and Carousel, to find the one that resonates most with the target audience. Matching the complexity of the offer to the ad format can serve as a helpful guideline, but flexibility and experimentation are crucial. By debunking myths and making informed decisions, advertisers can unlock the full potential of Facebook and Instagram ads.

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