Facebook Automotive Best Practices In 2020: “Drop The Text”

Social Media

Facebook is always looking for ways to improve ad engagement on their platforms; after all, that’s where that $70+ Billion in yearly revenue comes from. 

Part of their improvement process is constant research into what works and what doesn’t. 

Facebook’s latest finding?

Users are engaging much less often with ads that have text on the images and videos. To be exact, user engagement is down 20% when ads have too much copy. 

Facebook Can Decrease Your Reach If Too Much Text

If you’ve created ads on Facebook or Instagram lately, you might know the frustration of their new review process. 

All ads must be reviewed and approved, and now Facebook can disapprove your ads based on how much text is in the image or video. 

But say you get through that grueling process and your ads are approved. Victory, right?


Even for approved ads, Facebook can penalize and restrict your dealership’s Facebook ads so that they will spend the same budget, but they won’t reach your max audience potential.

Facebook may still approve your dealership’s Facebook Ads that have “too much text,” but they may not reach your max audience potential.

We Tested The Theory: Does Text On Dealership Ads Reduce Reach?

We decided to run a few tests of our own to find out once and for all if text on an ad’s creative would sacrifice its possible reach.

Garden City Mazda ran two variations of a CX-9 model line ad, one with text and logos, one without.

Both ads had the same creative, same ad copy, same targeting and budget…

…but the ad with the textless images reached almost TWICE as many people and had more than 5x the landing page views!

We ran a similar test with Steele Ford Lincoln. The version of their ad without text on the image reached 2.32x as large of an audience as the ad with image text!

These tests (and many others) prove that ads with less text indeed reach at least 2x as many people as ads with text. 

So what can you do to ensure that people are getting your message AND actually seeing your ads? 

3 Tips To Deliver The Best Dealership’s Facebook Ads Without Text

1.  Try video.

What better way to avoid text in images than just not using images at all! Shoot a video explaining your newest specials, or why dealerships should visit you (not the guy down the street). Not only do you avoid the text issue, but video is one of the most engaging ways to connect with your audience. But remember, Facebook suggests trying to keep your videos below 15 seconds to keep your audience’s attention. 

2.  Put your copy in the “Body Text” portion of the ad.

The body text portion of the ad is the description above or below the ad image (depending on ad placement). By putting your text in this section, you can get your message out without having to put text in your images. 

3.  Use Facebook’s free Image Text Check tool.

Facebook created a new tool so you can check if your images have too much text BEFORE you submit them for the review process. If you’ve ever been through an ad review and been disapproved, you’ll know how much time this tool can save you. 

Here is the link to the tool: www.facebook.com/ads/tools/text_overlay

With Facebook and Instagram constantly updating their best practices, it can really be a struggle to stay on top of what works best.

Thankfully, with a room full of Facebook Blueprint Certified experts, we’ve got you covered.

If you want us to take a look at your ads (or the ads of your top 3 competitors), click here to request a completely free “ad hack.” 

Blog Author - Drew Detweiler

Written By Drew Detweiler
Drew manages inbound and outbound marketing for Dealers United. When he’s not at work, he’s probably enjoying the outdoors, fishing, or eating.

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