This article explains how Facebook uses automatic rules and what they mean.
This tool has been around for a long time, but not many UA managers use it. We have described the functionality of these rules for industry peers and provided examples of parameters that AdQuantum has successfully used.
What are “automated rules” and why are they needed?
The Help says that “Automated Rules” is a tool that automates the verification of your assets – campaigns, ad sets, or ads. In other words, this is an opportunity to automate traffic buying and optimization.
The campaign process itself looks like this:
- We’re starting a campaign.
- We’re spending X dollars.
- After that, optimization begins: – Deactivate placements, GEO, change bids and switch on / off ads, ad sets and campaigns. If the UA manager understands the target metrics, the rules that can enable / disable ad sets and ads every 30 minutes will work.
The tool has obvious advantages:
- Save time optimizing assets
- Lack of opportunity to spend the budget at night
- The ability to run many tests at the same time and turn them off at an early stage
But there are also disadvantages:
- Sometimes Facebook falsely switches on what should not be switched on, or vice versa: it does not switch off what should be switched off.
- Creating segmented automated rules takes a lot of time (if the rules don’t work for all campaigns, but in TIER1 countries, for example) because automatic rules cannot be duplicated.
When creating automated rules, keep the following restrictions in mind:
- You can create up to 250 automated rules for a single ad account. This includes active and inactive rules.
- You can only add one condition per rule.
- You can only assign a single rule to objects on the same level. For example, you can apply a single rule to 3 campaigns or 3 ad sets, but you cannot apply a single rule to 3 campaigns and 3 ad sets. Instead, you should create one rule for your campaigns and another rule for your ad sets.
- Automated rules can’t be served for social, election, or political ads. To promote the integrity of the elections, these types of ads must be created and edited by real people who have verified their identities on Facebook.
Due to the fact that UA managers in AdQuantum manage multiple projects at the same time, their time and attention is focused on multiple advertising accounts at the same time. Hence, this tool is of great importance.
To open the rule settings section, open the Facebook Ads Manager drop-down menu and select Automated Rules.
You will see a table showing rules. It has several columns:
Rule name – the name of the rule.
Applied – What the rule applies to (campaign, ad set or ad).
Action & condition – Description of the control parameters (what is used where).
Rule results – A column where you can see the automatic rule logs (go to the Activity tab).
When the rule is executed – the frequency of the automated rule.
Created by – Creator of the automated rule.
Actions – an action that can be performed with a rule. There are four of them: previewing the rule, modifying the rule, executing or deleting the rule.
To create an automated rule, you need to click the Create Rule button.
Then the creation window is displayed. Now let’s talk about custom parameters:
Apply rules to – Selection of assets (campaign, ad set, ad).
action – Selection of the action (activate / deactivate assets, increase / decrease the budget and the bid, send a notification about the triggered rule).
conditions – parameters of assets. This setting works under the condition that all selected parameters are TRUE.
Period of time – the period for which an evaluation of the conditions is required (today, yesterday, last 03.02.17.18.28.30 days + last 03.02.7 … including today, last 14.30.60 / 120) / 180 / lifelong days to 7 days. Last 60/120 /… days to 28 days).
conditions – Conditions (CPI, ROAS, installations, clicks, impressions, etc.) Under Conditions, you cannot select some standard events (subscribe, test started). So make sure you add these events to others and are already optimized for them.
Attribution window – This allows you to keep track of the actions taken as a result of your ad over a given period of time. By default, the window of your account will be used, but you can change it to another one (view / click none / 01/07/28 days)
Time schedule – Control trigger frequency. By default, a check is performed every 30 minutes. In the custom option you can choose some windows to review your assets (the time to review is the same as the time from the advertising account).
notification – Notification of the triggered rule. Comes either by email (optional or in a Facebook notification)
Examples of automated rules
All of the following automated rules are used for hypothesis testing or active campaigns. They can conditionally be divided into those who turn assets off and those who turn them on. Examples of automated rules are impressions for a mid-core game and specifically for announcements, while they are easily transformed for your product.
Turn off rules
1. If we have no attitudes and spending continues to rise, then:
With such an automated rule, you can deactivate an ad for which there are no settings and output = 2 * CPI. Usually this rule rarely works, but it will help you avoid unnecessary costs.
In this case = 2 installation prices are given because Facebook has to perform a temporary backlash if the settings are not changed and then it is displayed in the ad manager.
NB. The exact same rule must be created for the lifetime range, as the ad may spend less per day than the fixed cost. In this case the first rule doesn’t work.
2. There are installs / purchases, but the price is too high
We turn off ads where the price for promotions (in our case installation) does not fit.
The same rule can disable ads if the CPA is higher than required.
NB. The exact same rule should apply to periods of 3 or 7 days, including today. Now I’ll explain why.
Buying traffic on Facebook can lead to chaotic values during training time and sometimes after. This is especially true for actions like purchases, subscriptions, and anything the user does after installation. The further a user is from completing the event, the more chaotic and unpredictable the purchase can be (until Facebook learns and understands what audience your project needs).
Purchases – 10
Cost per purchase – $ 34.50
10th of May
Purchases – Jan.
Cost per Purchase – $ 69.11
To compensate for this situation, your automated rules should look at the purchase price in two time frames: today and for the past 3 days, including today. That way, you can turn off expensive ads and offset the jumps in purchases.
3. Bad creative payback
To use this rule, you need to understand product metrics. The example in the screenshot above shows that you can also opt out of ads that make multiple purchases with no sufficient amortization. This rule also works well when applied to a campaign.
These were 3 categories of shutdown rules. You can also disable ads by click rate, CPC, result rate (IPM if optimized for installations is a good option to test), etc.
Turn on rules
1. The installation / purchase price started to get into the KPI
There is an effect on Facebook if a user now see an advertisement, click on it, install it, but cannot open the application immediately. This means that the user did not install the application. Therefore, the CPI of the ad at one point was higher than the KPI, and in the middle of the day it became normal. The above rule only includes such ads.
A similar story can occur with your purchases: they may not be during the day but appear in the evening. In this case, the rule returns them to the stream.
2. The installation price has become expensive today, while the price has fit into the KPI in the last 2 days
Because of the constant changes discussed above, there are days when the CPI grows multiple times. Such an announcement of the picture via Facebook will stop. At the same time, no installations reach the announcement.
To include this ad in the ad the next day (after all, it worked just fine in previous days) this rule is used.
An important difference from the previous rule is that this rule is only applied once a day. This rule also works for CPA.
Having a tool to automate traffic buying is a useful thing. If you apply the rules correctly, you can save a lot of time and turn off ads, ad sets, or poorly performing campaigns in automatic mode.
With proper knowledge of product metrics, you can configure automated rules and remove mechanical on / off clicks from your work, as well as making sure the budget is not too high.