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New Facebook Ad Format: Photo Link Ad

Get the engagement of a Photo Ad combined with the link clickthrough of a Link Ad.

LukeLuke

A few weeks ago, I started testing a “new” Facebook format that I am calling a Photo Link Ad.

I may not be the first person to ever use this ad format, but it is not commonly used on Facebook and it can definitely increase the exposure your ad gets and set it apart from your competition in the News Feed.

First, let’s take a look at the two most common ad formats, Link Ads and Photo Ads. Then, I will explain why this new ad format is different and even provide you with the code so you can set up one of your own.

Photo Ads and Link Ads

Photo Ads and Link Ads are not new to Facebook. Each type of advertisement format has it’s own advantages and it’s own disadvantages.

Photo Ads

Photo Ads are probably the ad format that I use most when advertising on Facebook. A Photo Ad is simply an advertisement featuring a photo and a description.

Facebook Image with Link in Description

The example above is a Photo Ad I ran for about a week on one of my Facebook Pages. If the user seeing this ad on their News Feed were to click on the big image that says Explode Your Social Media Reach, Facebook would just open the image in a window like this:

Facebook Photo Modal Window

I have included a link to the FPTraffic Blog (this blog) in the description of the photo so my hope is that many of the people who see this advertisement will click on that link and explore our blog.

The link clickthrough rate on these types of advertisements is typically lower than a normal Link Ad, but they usually get more overall engagement (Likes, Comments, and Shares).

Link Ads

The Link Ad format has a higher link clickthrough rate than a Photo Ad. Facebook will generate a link preview image, title, and description that is shown to the user that they can click to go to the link you are advertising.

Facebook Link Ad Format

In the example above, I have created a Link Ad for my blog and although there is no link in the description, if the user clicks on the link section of the advertisement, they will be taken to my blog.

This is the most common way to advertise a link on Facebook and typically you’ll see a fairly high clickthrough rate and a lot of traffic to the website you are advertising.

However, what if you could combine the larger image size of an Image Ad with the higher clickthrough rate of a Link Ad? Well, now you can.

Photo Link Ad

I am calling the new ad format that you can create from a few lines of code the Photo Link Ad format because it combines the Photo Ad and Link Ad formats.

Facebook Image Link Ad Format

In the example Photo Link Ad above, I am advertising this article on how to get more engagement by boosting your posts, but I am doing it through a special page I created that generates the giant link preview image you see above.

The photo in the ad is different than a normal Photo Ad because when you click it, it does not take you to the window on Facebook. Instead, it opens the blog article.

You can try the example post above for yourself here. Feel free to share it with your friends 🙂

How Does a Photo Link Ad work?

The Photo Link Ad format works by creating a preview image using Facebook’s Open Graph Meta Tags. By using those tags, you can tell Facebook what image to show as the preview for the link. Facebook will set that image as the preview and then you create a meta refresh so when the user clicks the link to view the image, they are redirected to whatever website you want them to go to (in the example above, the article on this blog).

That may sound complicated, but the code is very easy to setup.

Photo Link Ad Code

The HTML code below should be added to a new file in your website that you want to use as a redirect. This is the link that you will post on your Facebook Page to generate the large Photo Link Ad image.

Copy and paste the code below to a new file on your website and I will explain what each section means.

There are 3 different options to the entire code that you need to edit:

By default, I have set the image:width and image:height of the preview image to 800. I recommend you keep this and use a square 800×800 image for your IMAGE URL.

That’s it!

You can use Facebook’s Sharing Debugger to test what your link will look like when it’s shared before actually sharing it.

Facebook Sharing Debugger

I have had quite a bit of success promoting these new Photo Link Ads. Facebook has approved a bunch of different ads I’ve submitted using this format and my clickthrough rate has been great.

I recommend you give them a try as well. Let us know how they work for you in the comments below and if you’re looking to get more engagement on your Facebook Page, give FPTraffic a try 🙂

Photo Link Ads are great, but teaching you tricks to outperform your competition isn’t even what we specialize in. Let us help you grow your organic reach so those paid ads aren’t as important.

Grow Your Reach with FPTraffic – Sign Up Today!

Comments 40
  • Z
    Posted on

    Z Z

    Reply Author

    Hi Luke, great post but which type of ad should I select for this photo link ads? Normal PPE? Thanks again!


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      I’ve been using the Traffic option, but any of them should work. It’s technically a link ad.


  • Fred
    Posted on

    Fred Fred

    Reply Author

    Hey Luke,

    Is it possible to use a video instead of an image to get more engagement?


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      I have not tried a video.


  • John
    Posted on

    John John

    Reply Author

    Hi Luke, great post 🙂
    Btw , can i use this with shopify?
    Thanks


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      You can use it with any link.


  • Goncallo
    Posted on

    Goncallo Goncallo

    Reply Author

    how would you use it on shopify ?
    cant get the html correct


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      I have never tried it with Shopify. You need to setup a separate HTML file for it probably.


  • Brad
    Posted on

    Brad Brad

    Reply Author

    I tried this and failed as Facebook still crops the image even if I add the og:image:width and og:image:height meta.
    I also used FB’s sharing debugger with your post http://blog.fptraffic.com/boosting-engagement-fans/ and it cropped your image also, so Im confused how you go this to work.
    Thanks


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      Did you use the code I showed below? You want to make an image that is 800×800 to use as the image in the code. I recommend using Canva (free). You can see an example here.


  • Brad
    Posted on

    Brad Brad

    Reply Author

    Thanks Luke. I was using a WordPress Open Graph Plugin. Didn’t notice the code was using the image url. Works great, thanks.


    • Brad
      Posted on

      Brad Brad

      Reply Author

      * code I was referring to is the og:url meta using an image url instead of the page url.


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      Awesome!


  • Ren
    Posted on

    Ren Ren

    Reply Author

    How can I integrate this for WordPress post?


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      I am not sure how you would do that. You would need a separate file more than likely.


  • Soti
    Posted on

    Soti Soti

    Reply Author

    Is it not against fb tos ?


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      No, it does not appear to be.


  • Rahul
    Posted on

    Rahul Rahul

    Reply Author

    Thanks, Luke, but have one question
    How to work on multiple posts with this single code??..Do I have to add this code to every single post or only one code can be used for all the image post.?


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      You would need to update this code for any different image/link you want to use, but you can post the one link on as many posts as you want.


  • mehul
    Posted on

    mehul mehul

    Reply Author

    any tutorail of setting up this ?


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      I provided the code. All you have to do is setup a blank file on your server with it 🙂


  • Mehul
    Posted on

    Mehul Mehul

    Reply Author

    How ? That the issue


  • mehul
    Posted on

    mehul mehul

    Reply Author

    am trying if you provide me how to setup it its vry helpful to me coz i trying , you suggest me any tutorail send me in my email id thanks or screen shot any thing. coz thrugh html code i dont know to to use its and where


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      You’ll need to research that on your own.


  • mehul
    Posted on

    mehul mehul

    Reply Author

    thanks for your help 🙂


  • Brent Dunn
    Posted on

    Brent Dunn Brent Dunn

    Reply Author

    Luke, this is a sick share man, props!

    I’ve been using this on a few niche sites and the CTR is MUCH better than previously.

    It’s one of those things that I really wish I thought off lol.


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      Good to hear!


  • alin
    Posted on

    alin alin

    Reply Author

    Very helpful topic…thank you man for this


  • Robert Vajda
    Posted on

    Robert Vajda Robert Vajda

    Reply Author

    But the preview on facebook mobile app is still cropped, isnt it?


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      Some devices are cropped.


  • Jed
    Posted on

    Jed Jed

    Reply Author

    Hi Luke, tried this but the image is cropped. How do I make it so that the whole square image appears?


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      Some mobile devices will crop the image. There’s no way around that unfortunately.


  • Robert Vajda
    Posted on

    Robert Vajda Robert Vajda

    Reply Author

    Are you sure its a device problem ? Because I found some websites that look like they´re using photolink ads, but the image isnt crop e.g. here : http://prntscr.com/etwgxv, but my and yours photolinks are cropped 🙁


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      That appears to be a photo post, not a link post.


  • Robert Keating
    Posted on

    Robert Keating Robert Keating

    Reply Author

    Just tried this following your instructions exactly and used an 800×800 picture, copied the file to the server, then pasted the URL to the file, Facebook cropped the 800×800 image to it’s standard landscape aspect ratio. Are you sure this strategy still works?


  • Robert Keating
    Posted on

    Robert Keating Robert Keating

    Reply Author

    tried on desktop btw


  • antweb
    Posted on

    antweb antweb

    Reply Author

    This is an awesome post and tutorial, on something pretty unknown from what I can see, thank you!

    Are you still using this technique and its working for you as of September 2017? If yes I must be doing it wrong! I’ve create a page using the HTML and if I share it or use the sharing debugger it shows up with a nice large (square) image preview. So far so good…

    When I go to create an ad though, my image always gets cropped to landscape. Whether I do this as a dark post and insert the post id when creating the ad, or create a post on my page and then insert that post id when creating the ad, at this stage of ad creation the image gets cropped. In the end I tested creating an ad using this post instead of my own (lukepeerfly.com/boost.php) and that got cropped.

    Any ideas how to fix this?


    • Luke
      Posted on

      Luke Luke

      Reply Author

      This does not seem to work as well anymore.