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With room for up to five images and videos in a single ad, the carousel format is available on Facebook, Instagram and the Audience Network and gives you a larger canvas to tell your story and show your products.

Since Facebook launched the carousel format, businesses have been using the Facebook carousel ads format to accomplish a variety of goals. Lands’ End used carousel ads to increase online sales and attract new summer shoppers, boosting total sales by 4.4% in less than a month. Direct Energy used carousel ads to build product and service awareness, increasing engagement 2.5X over previous link ad campaigns.

Here I’ve compiled creative guidelines for designing the best Facebook carousel ads for your goal. Read on before creating your first or next carousel ad.

Tell a story with your facebook carousel ads

Showing products is one way to use the carousel format, but that’s just the beginning. What if you developed a narrative through each sequential image? How about linking images together in a panorama to share a bigger story? You could zoom into specific product features on each image, or you could offer multiple views of the product. One image could hide something revealed in the next. The possibilities are endless, so tell the story that works best for your brand.

Use thumb-stopping creative

The main image or video can be the first thing your audience sees. Capture their attention by using imagery that has a strong focal point, is well art-directed, use depth of space, is thoughtfully composed, and most importantly, evokes an emotional response. Choose something that will make people remember you and act.

Imply continuation

Capturing your audience’s attention is the first step, getting them to swipe through the rest of the carousel format is the next. Create a “need-to-complete” feeling with your imagery. For example, your first image or video can tease your second, or it can suggest that the narrative continues throughout each tile.

Develop creative consistency

A visual thread is key. If the creative feels disjointed, it detracts from your story. Make sure that every image within the carousel format has a similar visual style, including lighting, colors and composition.

Don’t forget the copy

While imagery tends to be what captures attention first, don’t underestimate the value of language. Copy can be used to imply the continuation that makes people want to swipe or click. Make sure your copy matches your brand’s tone, and experiment to see what works best for your business.

Demonstrate brand identity

To be remembered, your creative should incorporate your brand. For more established brands, this can come across subtly in the visual execution of the ad. If you’re creating an ad for a lesser known brands, consider making your brand identity more explicit. The final frame is often the destination of choice to showcase brand, however that’s not the only way. Consider incorporating your brand earlier in the carousel format or across all of your creative.

Get people to act from your Facebook carousel ads with a call-to-action

For campaigns with a direct response objective, include a prominent call-to-action. Keep it short and make sure it connects with your campaign, not just the individual image or video. On Facebook, you can use a different caption with each image or video. Make them strong.

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