Facebook Ad Photo Study

Using a real photo for Facebook advertising resulted in:

Facebook Ad Photo Case Study

When it comes to posting on Facebook, it’s essential to include a visual element whenever possible. According to Kissmetrics, photos get 53% more likes, 104% more comments, and 84% more click-throughs on links than posts that contain only text. The same rules apply to Facebook ads.

It makes sense that using an image captures a viewer’s attention more than a text alone, but 9 Clouds has found that not all images are created equal. In fact, the results might not be what you would expect. When given the option of a beautifully staged photograph of a vehicle and a real photo taken from the car lot, 9 Clouds recommends choosing the phone photo almost every time.

For example, 9 Clouds create a Facebook ad campaign to promote the new 2015 Ford Fusion for a client. The goal was to keep the concept simple and let the photo do most of the talking. The header simply read, “Powerful. Bold. Smart. Available now in Sioux Falls.” The body copy consisted of one sentence, “If you’re going to get a new car, get a smart one.”

9 Clouds created two ads using this same text but included a different photo on each. One photo was taken directly from Ford.com, the other was a snapshot taken by an employee of a Fusion on the dealership’s lot. The key difference between these photos is that one was clearly shot by a professional, while the other was not.


Regardless of their very slight differences, the ad featuring the photo from the dealership performed significantly better. It was 74% more successful with a total of 105 clicks, compared to the stock photo’s 27 clicks.

Because of its popularity, the local photo reached almost 2,000 more people and had a 19% better click-through rate than the professional photo. It also cost less per website click at $1.84, compared to the professional photo’s $2.45 per click.

9 Clouds continues to test variables in Facebook advertising in order to optimize results for our clients and continually improving the marketing and sales of each store.

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