The Thumbnail: An Important Part of Every Facebook Ad

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It is very surprising that even some professional advertising agencies do not know that you can upload your own custom thumbnail for your Facebook ads. This only works for video ads (which everyone should be using), because obviously, you cannot have a thumbnail for a standalone photo ad, but the effectiveness of a custom thumbnail cannot be understated.

To understand why this is so important, we have to put ourselves in the shoes of a Facebook user. For the most part, when people are on Facebook, they are not looking to buy anything. It is not like they are on Amazon where their credit card is uploaded, and they are one-click away from buying something. They are on Facebook to keep in touch with friends and family, get the latest updates on things that are important to them, or just killing some time. 90% of people are not in the buying frame of mind, so we have to remember that. This means that we have to be even better with our ads.

Think of how you use Facebook. You scroll down your feed, probably pretty quickly too, until something grabs your attention and you stop to check it out. Bingo! That is exactly what we have to keep in mind with our ads, and why the custom thumbnail is so important.

Essentially, we have to create a thumbnail that is interesting enough to get Facebook users to stop scrolling through their feed to check it out.

Our thumbnail has to be compelling enough to get them to stop scrolling in a matter of milliseconds.

If you are looking for inspiration for your Facebook ad thumbnail, head on over to YouTube. YouTubers know the value and importance of thumbnails. They are what make their videos stand out in a sea of hundreds of different of options that YouTube users can click on, and many YouTubers put more time and effort into their thumbnail than the actual video. That is the kind of energy and focus that we need to bring to our Facebook thumbnails. It doesn’t matter what our ad says or what offer we are giving to potential customers if no one stops scrolling long enough to see it.

Here are some good guidelines to follow when creating a thumbnail:

  1. Make sure there is text in it. Your text will provide context to your ad, and should instantly let them know what the ad is about. Here’s an example: If you are a realtor in NYC, you should include text such as “Looking to buy a home in New York City?”
  2. Make sure that there is humans in the thumbnail. People like people. They want to see people. It ads more legitimacy and connection to your ad. Make sure there are people in your thumbnail, because after all, people is what social media is all about.
  3. Make sure it is the right size. Go make your thumbnail in Canva, download it, and simply upload it into Facebook. Canva will have all of the correct sizes for you.
  4. Test different thumbnails. You never know what people will respond to. It is good practice to test at least four different thumbnails with the exact same video, headline, text, and everything else. You will find that the results can vary dramatically, even with the rest of your ad the exact same.

We hope you found this useful, and hope that you find massive success using Facebook ad an advertising platform. If you’d like to have us run your Facebook ads, get in touch with us at We have pricing and plans available for businesses of all sizes.