Facebook and TikTok Creative Playbook 2023

Facebook and TikTok Creative Playbook 2023

July 31, 2023
Marketing Two Cents

Table of Contents (Click to show/hide)

Data Analysis Skills | DEANLONG.io

Active User Rate

Daily Budget

Campaign Budget

Click-through rate increase

Click-through Rate

an icon shows a lightbulb that indicates being creative | DEANLONG.io

Return on Investment

Data Analysis Skills | DEANLONG.io


Daily Budget

Prioritisation of
Limited Resources

Click-through rate increase


an icon shows a lightbulb that indicates being creative | DEANLONG.io


Facebook and TikTok Image & Video Best Practices

Facebook analytics report that the average person spends less than 2.5 seconds on a social media post before scrolling away (Facebook IQ, 2016). For marketing, you only have a moment to hook your audience and compel them to engage with your product or brand.

Effective Facebook and TikTok ads showcase products and translate engagement into conversions. Posts should be designed to focus on brand and product demonstrations yet creatively enhanced with sound, animations, text, and video content to compel buyers towards a purchase. 

This creative playbook will quickly introduce essential tips to improve your Facebook and TikTok marketing content. Use this information to structure posts, increase user engagement, and produce more conversions.

Create Facebook Creatives that Positively Impact Lower-Funnel Attributes

Your brand's Facebook advertising should primarily feature static images that showcase products and services. After all, images are a more effective form of media that can convey information in less than a second.

Tips for Creating Effective Static Images

The table is wider than the page. Scroll to the right to see the whole table.
Statics Image Ads
Maximum File Size: 30MB.
  • Feed
  • Right Column
  • Instant Articles
  • Search results
  • Messenger inbox
Primary Text: 125 characters (if there is no link)
Headline: 40 characters (any more will appear truncated)
Link Description: 30 characters (optional on Instant Articles)
1200 x 628
  • Feed
  • Instant Articles
  • Market Place
  • Search results
  • Stories
  • Audience Network
  • IG Explore
Video Ads
Maximum File Size: 4GB
Up to 30 secs
  • In-stream Video Ads
  • Stories
  • Video Feeds
Primary Text: 125 characters (if there is no link)
Headline: 40 characters (any more will appear truncated)
Link Description: 30 characters (optional on Instant Articles)
  • In-stream Video Ads
  • Instant Articles
  • Stories
  • Audience Network
  • Messenger Stories
Consider leaving roughly 14% (250 pixels) of the top and bottom of the image free from text and logos to avoid covering these key elements with the call to action.
1080 x 1350
  • Facebook Marketplace
  • Facebook search results
  • Instagram Explore
Primary Text: 125 characters (if there is no link)
Headline: 40 characters (any more will appear truncated)
Link Description: 30 characters (optional on Instant Articles)

Follow these guidelines to create engaging yet informative static images that capture your audience:

  • Keep it simple – Similar to Google Display ads, use close-ups to highlight key features and always make your product the subject of your ads.
  • Make the product the focal point – Avoid overly complicated backgrounds that distract from your product. Keep the audience's attention on the product, or they'll scroll away without engaging.
  • Play with perspective and layouts – Simple doesn't have to be boring. Shoot your subject from a high or low angle to make the post more exciting and engaging for your audience. Moreover, try different layouts like "left to right", "Z shape", and "break-out effect" (check the image below).
  • Drive urgency – If you're offering deals or time-limited offers, make it known by overlaying text to compel buyers to act. Keep the text simple, though. Consumers will disengage from anything longer than 280 characters.

design layout ideas for advertising images | DEANLONG.io
Some layout options I would usually use. I summarised these structures when I present to a gaming company

Static Doesn't Mean Still

You don't have to limit Facebook content to simple image posts. Mixed media campaigns that combine static images and video content are more impactful for DR activity than individual static images. Animate this creative by using the following tips:

  • Incorporate animations – Animate 1-2 elements with motion in the first 3 seconds. Animating aspects of a static image, such as brand logos, unique product features, product benefits, and deals, quickly highlight information visitors need to go from audience members to buyers.
  • Make short but direct videos to capture buyers' attention – Get straight to the point by introducing your brand in 3 seconds, deliver your message with the product on showcase, give a demonstration, and finish within 15 seconds. Wasting time will drive away buyers.
  • Shoot videos vertically – Most Facebook users browse their feeds using a phone, so frame all video content to fit a vertical mobile format.
  • Add sound to capture attention – Even a simple jingle or sampled audio clip can capture the audience's attention by engaging their auditory sense and encouraging them to stop scrolling.
  • Create a story – This story is not a well-known Facebook Story or Instagram Story. We need storytelling. A story built around an objective can deliver more information than a single post. Start with your brand and quickly transition using motions. Use multiple scenes that combine both static and video content, sound, and short text overlays to land main takeaways. Finish with a direct call to action without offering specific price inclusions.

Tips For Mobile Creative Design

Checklist for Video Mobile Design
Optimise For mobile Checklist
Capture [ ] Capture your audience in the first 3 seconds
Length [ ] Create short form video: less than 15 seconds with the main message up front (in the first 2-3 seconds). 
Design [ ] Design for sound off but better with sound on. My suggestion is always to attaching contextual lyric
  • [ ] Build for a vertical format. Recommend sizes:
    • 4:5 (1080 X 1350) - Video & Image
    • 9:16 (1080 X 1920) - just Videos
Play [ ] Play with all the sizes & formats. Check here for the Facebook Ads size guide. Try All Sizes! Don't be lazy :)

The human brain needs less than 0.5 seconds to engage with mobile ads and trigger a reaction (Cognition Neuroscience Research project, 2019

Considerations for In-Stream Video Ads

Most Facebook users view In-Stream video ads as necessary evils inter-spliced between the content they want to consume. Overcome this sentiment by creating content that's even more engaging and direct by:

  • If you want to promote Instagram Reels, ensure your Reel ad blends with organic reels. Save your Reels to your phone since you can't promote Reels directly on Instagram. Upload the video via the Promote feature when setting up your ad campaign. 
  • Using clear and readable supers that convey the vital information you can't present in a short time slot
  • Match sounds with Contextual Lyrics to make content more engaging and drive brand recognition. We recommend using original audio that corresponds with your brand.
  • Shoot tight or crop in. Keep your main subjects at the literal heart of your video to maintain connection throughout the ad.

If you have trouble strategise a video from scratch, how about using the ABCD framework from Google to start:

My Marking Criteria For Facebook Ads Video Creative

 Use the marking points table below

Marking Criteria for Facebook Creatives
Enhancement Design Mobile-First Basic Wrap-up
Begin with your brand Mix and match video and static Create for Stories-first Design with your objective in mind Pair text with focal point
Enhance with motion Keep attention with speed Instagram/Facebook Stories Avoid unnecessary sticker Call your audience to action strategically
Enhance with sound Use multiple scenes Test mobile shots depending on your objective Limit price inclusion Land takeaways with text overlaysce with motion


Create TikTok Content that Connects to Consumers

TikTok Best Practice

------Update as of 29 July 2023------

On June 12, 2023, TikTok has unveiled a set of data-backed creative guidelines to help advertisers craft high-performing ads. The newly released Creative Best Practices for Top Performing TikTok Ads offers valuable insights and actionable strategies to create compelling ad content that captures audience attention and drives significant impact. I've done the hard work of decoding TikTok's creative genius, and I am going to spilling the beans with my bite-sized table summarising the six essential Creative Codes! No more confusion or guesswork—simply follow these data-backed guidelines to craft ads that'll take TikTok by storm and leave your audience wanting more!

Bite-Sized Table, Maximum Impact!

The table is wider than the page. Scroll to the right to see the whole table.
TikTok Reveals Creative Best Practices for Top Performing Ads
Creative Code Description Essential Factors Benefits Tools & Resources
TikTok-first Create ads that embrace TikTok's unique style and features, such as text overlays, voiceovers, green screen, and duets. Partner with TikTok creators to ensure a TikTok-first approach, resulting in higher viewer attention, improved brand outcomes, and 3.3x more actions compared to other platforms. - Text overlays
- Voiceovers
- Green screen
- Duets
- 74% of viewers say TikTok-first ads catch their attention¹
- Experience a significant lift across brand outcomes²
- Drive 3.3x more actions such as clicks, likes, and shares compared to other platforms³
- TikTok Creator Marketplace
- Auto captions feature
Trends Utilize trends, memes, or challenges to connect with TikTok's community of over one billion users. Explore real-time trends on the Creative Center's Trends page to capitalize on storytelling templates created by the community, leading to better customer engagement and connection. - Trending templates created by the TikTok community - 77% of users like it when brands use trends, memes, or challenges on TikTok to create new content⁵
- Connect with new customers through trend-based content
- Creative Center's Trends page
- TikTok Academy trends module
Production Follow production principles, such as shooting content vertically, using high-resolution footage, and considering UI-friendly "safe space," to enhance ad efficiency. Regularly refresh ad creative to prevent creative fatigue and explore TikTok Creative Exchange for high-quality ad creation. - Vertical content shooting
- High-resolution footage
- UI-friendly "safe space"
- Efficient ad spending and targeting with proper production principles
- Prevent creative fatigue through regular ad creative refreshes
- TikTok Creative Exchange
- CapCut templates
Structure Craft ads with a three-part structure: a compelling hook, an engaging body with additive branding cues, and a strong call-to-action close. This storytelling approach increases ad recall, brand affinity, and likeability, leading to better audience guidance and engagement. - Hook: suspense, surprise, emotion
- Body: additive branding cues
- Close: strong CTA
- 90% of ad recall impact captured within the first six seconds⁶
- 65% increase in brand affinity and 25% uplift in recall with ads showing the product on screen⁴
- 45% lift in recall and 19% increase in likeability with CTA cards⁷
- Top Ads Dashboard
- Video Templates in the TikTok Creative Center
Stimulation Use editing techniques like music, transitions, movement, text overlay, emojis, and branding to stimulate attention, capture interest, and enhance ad memorability. Faster scene changes draw viewers in early, increasing the chance of making a positive impression. Leverage CapCut for seamless video editing and TikTok Academy for insights. - Music, transitions, movement, text overlay, emojis, branding - Editing techniques enhance attention and ad memorability⁸
- Faster scene changes draw viewers in early, increasing the chance of making a positive impression⁸
- TikTok Academy course
- CapCut video editing app
Sound Sound is vital to the TikTok experience, with music making content more uplifting and entertaining for users. Leverage voiceovers, sounds, or music to set the mood and uplift your ad's story. Explore TikTok's Commercial Music Library or create original sounds to enhance your ad's impact. - Voiceovers, sounds, music - 88% of TikTok users find sound vital to the TikTok experience⁹
- Music makes content more uplifting, energizing, and entertaining for 50% of TikTok users¹⁰
- TikTok's Commercial Music Library
- Create original sounds

ADVERTISING Techniques in TikTok Videos | DEANLONG.io
ADVERTISING Techniques in TikTok Videos

The average TikTok video is between 21 and 34 seconds, offering a short window to capture engagement and translate views into conversions. Maximize your time by creating videos that:

  • Get to the point – 63% of effective TikTok ads introduce brand or product messaging within the first 3 seconds, or the average time users engage with social media posts.
  • Use sound effectively – 100% of TikTok ads use songs or audio clips to relate to their brand directly. This drives engagement and makes branded ad content more entertaining and memorable.
  • Partner with trendy creators – Influencers already have a large platform and an eye for what's on-trend. Partnering your brand with theirs will increase mutual brand exposure and translate to an explosion of conversions.
  • Stay grounded and relatable – Consumers engage with brands they can relate to. Shooting natively, incorporating humour, and directly speaking to your audience breaks the fourth wall and closes the gap between your brand and the consumer, helping to drive connection and conversions.
  • Drive urgency – Whether using text overlays or direct calls-to-action, your TikTok content should encourage buyers to act by highlighting deals, offerings, sales, and time-limit product lines.
  • Break the fourth wall - Address the viewer directly and look them straight in the eye or take it even one step further and pose questions to the audience.
  • Use informative text overlay - Don't think I need to say more on this one.

Let's have a look some TikTok trend inspiration:

Let's have a look some popular hooks:

Creative Strategies for Young and Small Businesses

Young and small businesses may lack the resources needed to produce TikTok-specific content, but that doesn't mean they should ignore or neglect the platform. Instead:

  • Start by repurposing existing content – If your brand already has video content from Facebook, don't reinvent the wheel. Recycle it onto TikTok to increase brand exposure and user engagement.
  • Slowly build an in-house TikTok team – Outsourcing video ads to influencers can be costly and unnecessary, especially as your business grows and generates enough resources to create in-house content.
  • Partner with a TikTok Creative Agency – Only after your business has grown and TikTok has become an essential part of your marketing strategy should you outsource to a creative agency. These agencies use data points and analytics to produce targeted content up to 10 times a week. 

Tips to Bring in New Consumers and Drive Conversions

Last but not least, incorporate these tips into your TikTok marketing strategy to increase the size of your consumer base and produce more conversions:

  • Track new leads over output quantity – Producing a high volume of content wastes resources if it doesn't produce new leads. It's always better to post high-quality, low-quantity content than waste time and money on ineffective ads.
  • Showcase what makes your brand unique – You don't have to create high-production-value content to convey what makes your brand better than others. Show off the user interface, functionality, product features, and anything else that makes you stand out.
  • Maximize app features – Using built-in TikTok features such as sounds, text overlays, breaks, slideshows, reactions, and duets makes content creation easier and encourages interaction and connection to your consumer base.
  • Use incentive-based creative – Offering rewards to new consumers encourages visitors to take the leap from browsing to buying.

The Bottom Line

Remember, you only have a moment to make an impression on social media. So follow the tips in this playbook to produce high-quality, creative content that'll hook your audience and compel them to engage with your product.


  • https://visme.co/blog/the-psychology-of-images-and-infographics/
  • https://buffer.com/library/the-ideal-length-of-everything-online-according-to-science/
  • https://www.facebook.com/business/news/insights/capturing-attention-feed-video-creative
  • https://econsultancy.com/science-of-sound-how-music-makes-advertising-more-memorable/
  • https://www.wired.com/story/tiktok-wants-longer-videos-like-not/#:~:text=(The%20company%20declined%20to%20participate,between%2021%20and%2034%20seconds.
  • https://www.tiktok.com/business/en/blog/kantar-report-how-brands-are-making-noise-and-driving-impact-with-sound-on-tiktok
  • https://www.tiktok.com/business/en/blog/real-tok-re-thinking-influence-in-the-age-of-tiktok
  • https://blog.hootsuite.com/tiktok-tricks/
  • https://www.tiktok.com/business/en/blog/creative-best-practices-top-performing-ads
  • TikTok Marketing Science Global Creative First Study 2022 conducted by Ipsos.
  • TikTok Marketing Science Creative Coding Analysis based on 3,500 TikTok ads that ran from 1/1/2021 - 10/1/2021 representing all major verticals, conducted by Kantar, 2022
  • TikTok Marketing Science Global Entertaining Ads Study 2022 conducted by Marketcast
  • TikTok Marketing Science US SMB Creative Effectiveness Study 2021, conducted by Lumen
  • TikTok Marketing Science Global Community and Self-Expression Study 2021 conducted by Flamingo
  • TikTok Creative Guide: Driving Brand Equity", 2020 (TikTok "Value of View" Analysis)
  • TikTok Marketing Science, Top-Performing BLS Creative Analysis 2020
  • Marketing Science Global Information Density 2022 conducted by Neuro-Insight
  • TikTok Marketing Science US Cross-Platform Sound On Research 2022, conducted by Kantar
  • TikTok Marketing Science EU Consumer Empathy Research, 2020; Base UK TikTok users in the past 7 days, 138 respondents; 148 respondents

Best Practices
Brand Communications
Marketing Strategy
Paid Social
Dean Long | Expert in Growth MarketingHongxin(Dean) Long

Dean Long is a Sydney-based performance marketing and communication professional with expertise in paid search, paid social, affiliate, and digital advertising. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Information Systems and Management and is also a distinguished MBA graduate from Western Sydney University.

Related Posts