App aims to simplify Facebook ad offerings, lets advertisers visualize ‘premium’ units

Facebook now offers a tool for potential premium advertisers to see mock-ups of how their ads will look and where they will appear.

The “Facebook Demo Tool” app is intended to help advertisers understand the complexities of the social network’s new ad offerings. With Sponsored Stories and page-post ads, advertising on Facebook is becoming increasingly different from traditional search and display. To appeal to big brands and agencies, the company has to make its platform easy to understand.

Last month, Facebook announced a number of changes to its premium ad products, which are those that are run through an insertion order instead of from the self-serve dashboard or through the Ads API. Premium ads are required to be in the form of page posts, and they can now appear in News Feed on desktop and mobile. There are 19 iterations of these homepage ads, many with names that are foreign to most advertisers: “Page Post Comment Sponsored Story,” “App Shared Sponsored Story” and “Domain Sponsored Story,” among others.

With the demo tool app, advertisers can upload images to visualize their page’s Timeline, posts and ads. They can also view a sample demo, which we’ve shared below. In the app, hovering over certain areas provides more information.

The cost of premium homepage and News Feed ads — upward of $500,000 for a single day — make these units an unlikely option for any business besides major brand advertisers or entertainment companies. Resources like the demo tool are necessary to help sell to top tier clients, but it’s important for Facebook to continue to support small- to mid-size businesses that make up the long tail of the company’s ad revenue. These advertisers would benefit from a similar tool to explain Facebook self-serve ads.