Facebook Introduces ‘Learning Phase’ For Ads Manager
As complex and difficult Facebook has been to get started for businesses of all sizes, Facebook revealed an exciting, new addition to their ad platform (no, it’s not another profile photo change). The change, called the ‘Learning Phase’, is now an ads status within Facebook Ads Manager that helps the advertiser identify when the campaign is fully optimized.
This Learning Phase of an ad launch is a small, but enormous update to help advertisers keep a bit of their sanity. Now we know we’re not just looking for 15 to 25 purchases, but Facebook will actually list this status to indicate that an ad or campaign is fully optimized to deliver the results for your campaign objective. Learning Phase shows on the Ad Set view next to the Delivery Status where the ad typically says Active, however the ad will now say “Active (learning)”.
When we start delivering your ad set, whether at the start of a campaign or after you make a significant edit, we don’t have all the data necessary to deliver it as stably as possible. In order to get that data, we have to show ads to different types of people to learn who is most likely to take the action you’re optimizing for (your “Optimization for Ad Delivery” choice). This process is called the “learning phase.”
Once we have the data we need, the learning phase ends and your ad set should experience fewer performance fluctuations. (That said, it’s useful to keep in mind that delivery will get even more stable as we collect more data beyond the learning phase.) At this point, you can make an informed decision about your ad set. If you’re satisfied with your results, you can let it keep running or increase its budget. If you’re unsatisfied, you can edit the ad set to try to improve its performance, or pause it.
According to the new delivery status, Facebook shows the learning phase needs 50 purchases instead of the recommended 15-25 in the past. However, this is nothing new, as we all know the more purchases your campaign gets the more optimized your ads become. One early bug we’ve found shows that even with old ads running up until today, the learning phase needs more data even with a well-oiled campaign (second screenshot to the right) that has 474 purchases. Its important to note that any changes to an active campaign will reset this learning phase.
Clearly, there’s pain points in Facebook Ads Manager that make optimization difficult or even making the right call on shutting down the ad. Facebook advertisers will surely see this as a great step towards better decision making within their campaigns. As Facebook officially states there’s no change in their algorithm or how Facebook Ads work:
Important: The learning phase is a normal part of the lifecycle of an ad set. It’s always existed, we’re now just letting you know it’s happening. It doesn’t indicate that your ad set is experiencing any sort of unusual performance issue.
Will this help you better manage your campaigns?