Is My Facebook Ad Successful?

In this episode, we talk about the data we look at in order to determine if our Facebook ads are successful.

Grow with Angie and April: A Podcast for Teacherpreneurs
Grow with Angie and April: A Podcast for Teacherpreneurs
Is My Facebook Ad Successful?

How can you tell if your Facebook ads are successful? Join us in our Facebook group where we will further discuss this and many topics related to our Teacher Pay Teachers businesses.

Disclaimer: We are not Facebook experts. The information that we are sharing is from our personal experience. Please remember to test and analyze your own data to see what is working for you and your audience. You need to do what’s best for you and your business. It’s really all about trial and error once you have learned the basics. 

The importance of trial and error

Back in Episode 9: Our 3 Goals for Facebook Ads, Angie and I discussed how we feel about Facebook Ad courses. Angie hasn’t taken any courses. I took one course a few years ago and wasn’t really that happy with it. The person teaching the course had a different style to their page and I ended up feeling like I wasted my money.

A course on how to use ads manager might be worth a small investment, $10 or $15. But, ads manager changes on a regular basis so it can be hard to find a course that is current and showing you what the ads manager looks like at that time. So, with that said, let’s jump in.

Traffic ads

We are going to focus on traffic ads in this episode because both Angie and I have had the best luck with these types of ads. With TpT you can’t really run a conversion campaign. I wish that we did have the ability to do that with TpT after running a campaign for my webinar recently. They allow you to see the whole funnel and it’s a lot easier to tell if the ad is working. However, with TpT a conversion campaign doesn’t make sense, so we are sticking with traffic ads for now.

The process that we are going to share with you will be specifically for Teachers Pay Teachers sellers that have access to limited data. Most podcasts and trainings will talk about gauging the success of an ad by looking at the direct sale or conversion, which we just aren’t able to do.

The process of checking the success of traffic ads

1. Give it some time

This can be hard to do, but you need to give your ad time to run. The data that you are receiving from Facebook and TpT can be somewhat lagging and you want to get a good picture of what it’s doing before you start making changes. I like let my ad run for two weeks and Angie makes sure hers have run for at least a week.

2. Look at spending

Once the ad has run for the time period you decide to go with (remember, try to stick to at least a week or two) it’s time to look at your spending. Go to Facebook and make sure to figure out the exact date range that your ad has run. Then, find out how much you spent on the ad.

3. Look at sales

Now that you have your date range and spending head over to your TpT dashboard. Look at the specific UTM link that you are using on that Facebook ad and look at the sales period during that same time range.

4. Compare spending and sales

Compare your sales to your spending to see how well your ad is performing. It’s also helpful to look at the sales that you had the week before on that specific product to see if there was a jump in sales when you started running the ad.

This is really the most accurate way you can judge if your Facebook ad is performing well. It’s very similar to how you look at the data for promoted pins on Pinterest.

Important note on cost-per-click 

It’s easy to get caught up in cost per click. It is important because you want to make sure that the cost-per-click (CPC) is low. But I’ve had some ads that I have almost turned up because the cost per click is almost 25¢ a click. But, once I looked at the TpT side I was making around 3 times as much. This just shows that CPC isn’t the only thing you should be looking at when judging the success of an ad.

Optimizing your Facebook ad

There tends to be an issue with our ads bombing once we notice an ad is doing well and we go in to increase the budget. Then we end up paying more for the same result. We have found that it’s more effective to just set your budget a little higher from the start. When you do that you don’t have to go in and adjust the budget later.

When you are in the ads manager creating your ad you need to always check the delivery optimization. The ads manager frequently changes so you need to pay attention to the defaults that it is giving you. For example, you may want to do a CPC option, but the default might be set to impressions or engagement. If you don’t pay attention then you might be paying for something you aren’t trying to do.

Another, thing to mention is that under “Optimization and Delivery” you want to choose “link clicks” for your option under “when you get charged” when running traffic ads. We have both noticed that it was defaulting to impressions. You don’t want to pay for impressions and it tends to run better when set to “link clicks”.

A little about conversion ads

As I mentioned above, you can’t run conversion ads for TpT because we don’t have our own pixel on the TpT store. But, if you are working on building an email list or selling something a webinar or on another platform like Thinkific, you could benefit from them.

The cool thing about conversion ads is that you know how much you are paying when someone signs up. I think that people can get scared by them because it feels like you are spending more money. For example, if you are running ads to build your email list you may be paying 10¢ per click on a traffic ad and $1 for the conversion ad. But, with the conversion ad, you are only paying when you know that someone has signed up. With the traffic ad you are paying for the traffic, but you are paying regardless of if they take the action you want them to.

I’ve tested and found it’s actually cheaper with a webinar to do a conversion ad. I was getting around 20% conversion once they got to the landing page for my webinar. When I looked at the final numbers I had been paying more to get traffic to the site with a traffic ad, then I was with a conversion ad. And, since it only matters if people sign up, you don’t want to pay if people aren’t taking the action you want them to take. That’s why data matters so much.

Ad target audiences

You don’t want just one audience to use for all your ads. Angie and I both have a lot of different audiences on ads manager. It’s always about testing to see what will work the best for you. It’s important to have a warm audience as well as a cold audience. You don’t want to just jump on and start selling to people immediately. It can be really useful to run an ad that offers a free product or tip first to built trust. If you do this and people start to recognize your name they could be more likely to buy from you when they see our ad that is selling them something.

Most TpTers that do really well with Facebook ads have an audience they have built by giving away free resources. You probably hate the idea of giving things away for free, but it’s a great way to build rapport with people. Your warm audience may be small, but you can use them to run a Look-Alike campaign. This is when Facebook looks at an audience that you have and then finds others that fit the criteria. I find that ads work the best when you have an audience of at least 200k people.

Give it a try

And again, it really all boils down to trial and error. Continue to play with your audiences to see if they improve as you adjust the age, gender, location, or other metrics. We spend a lot of time on ads manager and that’s what it takes to be successful with Facebook ads. You really just have to jump in and start trying it. It took us years to reach this point and we don’t always feel confident. But, we are always working on it to see what’s currently working and what’s not.

Join the group at It’s a great place to continue the conversation, share what’s worked for you, and find out what’s worked for others when it comes to Facebook ads.





Written by April Smith

April runs her business Performing in Education, LLC full time. She lives in Arizona with her husband and twins.