Facebook Makes Ads Prettier With Shutterstock Partnership To Offer Free Stock Images In Ad Creator

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When ads look bad, Facebook, users, and advertisers all lose. So Facebook today announced a partnership to bake Shutterstock into its ad creator, allowing marketers to select from millions of free stock images for their ads. Facebook today also started letting advertisers upload multiple images at a time to build ad variants for A/B testing. Both could make Facebook ads more interesting.

On the mobile side, Facebook updated its Pages Manager app to let admins edit who else controls their page, and publish multi-photo feed posts. Android Page Manager users can tag people in comments and browse a Page Feed of other relevant Pages, while the iOS app now allows for creation of new Pages and events.

So what’s the point of all these updates? To make marketing content on Facebook as interesting as possible so it’s not a turn off for users. No one wants to see bland ads shoved in between fun photos from their friends.

Previously, advertisers had to supply their own images for their creatives, and upload them one at a time. For big companies running lots of ads, that meant they might run out of images to rotate through their campaigns, making them get stale faster. Meanwhile, small businesses that don’t employ a designer may have been forced to use tired logos or other low-quality images that don’t entice users to click or remember them.

Now thanks to Shutterstock’s API, advertisers will see a “Stock Images” tab in Facebook’s Ad Creator. From their they can search through over 25 million high-res images to instantly pull into their ads. The option is rolling out now and will be available to all advertisers over the next few weeks. Advertisers will have to do smart searching with the tool, though, as Shutterstock contains plenty of generic images that won’t draw eyeballs.

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Advertisers can also now add multiple images to a campaign simultaneously, whether they’re uploading them or pulling from Shutterstock. This has long been an option in Facebook Ads API tools because it promotes A/B testing. By creating slews of ad variants, businesses can try them all out, see which perform best, and cancel the rest to maximize effectiveness. While comparing variants and choosing the top ones is still a bit cumbersome, multi-photo uploads is step in the right direction.

When you see a boring or irrelevant ad on Facebook, its not just annoying to you, it’s a waste of money or time for advertisers and drag on the social network’s popularity. Facebook has to make money, but it shouldn’t disrupt the user experience. Making ads pretty and relevant will help prevent sore thumb ads from sticking out in your feed.