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Losing Your Reactions?

One of the most common complaints we hear from Facebook advertisers is that they really hate how some ads seem to be impossible to edit. Few things are more frustrating than diligently working to create and a post only to discover a simple mistake in the text. In the past, when you when you edit the post to correct this mistake, you would do so at the risk of losing all of your comments, reactions, likes, and shares.

Earlier this week, Facebook Software Engineer Rotem Druker (twitter linkedin Facebook) announced in a post on the Facebook Marketing API blog that this behavior was soon to become a thing of the past.

When you make an ad on the Facebook platform, particularly if you’re using the API’s object_story_spec feature, you are creating a handful of different Facebook “objects.” This makes a certain amount of intuitive sense.

Your post includes three types of objects. Your post could contain some text, images or videos (creative) and directions for the platform to determine what type (or creative spec) of post to create. Some posts use the canvas format, others use the video views format. The third “object” is the combination of those two elements turned into a completed ad post.

Some advertisers call this a dark post. Facebook refers to your post as an inline unpublished page post.

It’s also possible to create an ad using an existing piece of ad creative. A common example of this that many advertisers are familiar with might be what happens when you promote an existing post. In that case, you make two objects. The existing post and a new ad post.

In the past, after you had completed these steps your ad post would be shared across the network where it would collect reactions from Facebook users in your target audience. If you were to make a change to your ad creative (say by updating a typo in the text) Facebook would create a brand new ad post. In so doing, you would lose all of the reactions you had previously acquired. This is because to Facebook, the edited post was a new object!

Now, if you create your new post inline (a fancy way of saying at the same time you create the ad or ad creative) Facebook will carry forward your social reactions. This allows you to edit your ad after it has begun to serve, and have it appear with all the reactions, comments, likes and shares it had received before you made your edits.

However, there are a few situations where this won’t happen.

If you change the image or video in a single image or video ad, your reactions won’t carry forward.

Similarly if you change the image or video of a card in a multi-image or video ad, your reactions will not carry forward.

Further, if you make any changes to Dynamic Ads you will have to start over without the benefit of your previously generated social proof.

Once you edit your post, your new ad post and your old ad post will share the same social feedback.

As a result of this, there are some things you will still be unable to do. Many of these limitations are designed to stop advertisers from abusing this powerful feature.

For example, once you edit your ad you cannot publish or schedule new or old ad posts. You will also be unable to retrieve post insights for your old or new ad posts. You cannot reuse old (or new) ad posts. You also will find that you are unable to boost old or new ad posts. Finally, you will find that you unable to read said ad post utilizing <PAGE_ID>/promotable_posts.

There is one other important thing to remember when experimenting with this feature: If you delete the old ad post, you will also be deleting the carried forward social reactions.

This is because of technical limitations that occur when multiple ad posts share reactions, likes, comments and shares.

This change should give your team a greater degree of flexibility when it comes to making posts. While the limitations can be irksome, there is a tremendous amount of opportunity to be found in the ability to propagate social signals across different ad posts. The change took place immediately and should available in all ad accounts.

You can read the original blog post HERE for more information.

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