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ChipAds Guide to Learning Phase

When launching advertising campaigns, you always hope for the best outcome:

  • Outstanding performance
  • A below-average CPM or CPC
  • A massive number of impressions

Of course, you can only achieve that under the right conditions, such as ideal demographics, a great target audience, an incredible product, etc. But sometimes, even after giving your campaign a lot of time and dedication, your ads won’t exit what Facebook calls the “Learning Phase.” And why is that? We’ll tell you all about it below.

Here at ChipAds, we want to provide you with insight on what it takes to not only create a successful campaign but understand Facebook’s terminology as well. Remember, we’re here to guide you along your advertising way! Let’s dig in.

What’s the Learning Phase?

Facebook Ads have a very intricate way of working. It looks pretty complex, but it’s almost a fool-proof system, meaning they put a lot of effort into creating a platform that allows you to achieve your marketing goals with concepts or terminology that you can quickly learn. 

The Learning Phase is a period during which Facebook learns from your ads. Facebook uses this time to learn more about the people your ads will target, so things are constantly changing and evolving. Think of it as an internal test: Is this ad going to work? And with whom? What audience will be most interested in seeing this? 
It’s actively trying different audiences and placements, meaning your ad is running but it hasn’t found the “right” crowd yet. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing; it’s actually the best way for

Facebook to test out your campaign. It’s also the time when your campaign stabilizes, so it can yield the best results. 
Facebook’s guide to exiting the learning phase says, “Ad sets leave the learning phase as soon as their performance stabilizes. Typically, performance stabilizes after an ad set receives around 50 optimization events within seven days.”

How do ads exit the Learning Phase?

Not only is Facebook learning more about your campaign, but you are, too, by testing out which is your ideal target audience. As a result, there are things you can do for your ads to yield better results. Check out our tips:

  • Expand your audience. Normally, you target specific groups you think would be interested in your product. However, there are millions of audiences out there who might fit the bill, so expand your audience to reach those who might not be explicitly looking for your product.
  • Increase your budget. This might be self-explanatory, but raising your budget (especially during the holiday season when ads are competing against themselves) might be a great way to exit the Learning Phase.

What are the Best Practices during the Learning Phase?

You can’t avoid the Learning Phase - all ads go through it. But we can share some recommendations to get better results: 

  • Edit your ads only when necessary. Every time you edit your creatives, targeting, placements, etc., your ads must be reviewed again, forcing you to stay in the Learning Phase longer. We recommend editing them as little as possible! EVEN correcting a grammatical error, typo, a change in your audience, etc. counts.
  • Let your campaigns run. Letting your ads run without pausing them will allow them to exit the Learning Phase quicker! If you keep pausing and un-pausing your ads, it’s like you’ll start over again as if it were a new ad.
  • Have a small number of ad sets. Having three ad sets per campaign max is proven to be the most effective. Having more than that (the limit is 50) could be detrimental and cost you a higher CPM or CPC. Creating more ad sets or ads doesn’t equal more sales. On the contrary, the more ad sets you have, the longer it’ll take Facebook to detect what’s working and what’s not.
  • Use realistic budgets. Since you need at least 50 results within seven days to exit the Learning Phase, use a reasonable budget. How do you calculate a proper budget? Calculate the required ad spend based on the 50 event actions necessary to leave learning, the 7-day timeframe, and your current cost per purchase. A good tip is to designate most of your budget at the beginning of your campaign (but not all of it) while it’s in the Learning Phase. Then, if you see that it’s working and it has exited the Learning Phase, you could go ahead and increase it.

In summary, there is no way to prevent your ads from going through the learning phase, but take this as a learning opportunity! Use your learnings to bring more solutions to the table and decide what you can do to keep your campaigns performing exceptionally.

We know these terms are kind of tricky to learn, but that’s why we’re here for! You’re now ready to create fantastic and high-converting campaigns. 

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