If you intend to use Facebook ad campaigns to reach audiences who speak different languages from each other, then you’ll need to run ads in all such languages. Running ads in only one language just doesn’t make sense: at best, you might be able to engage one audience that speaks that language, but at the cost of alienating everyone else.
Facebook’s multi-language advertising feed feature is designed to meet this need, helping businesses set up Facebook ads in multiple languages. But if you aren’t well-versed in Facebook ad creation, the language targeting option that makes this possible can be a little difficult to find.
So follow along this step-by-step guide as we show you how to target Facebook ads by language, and explore ways of running effective multi-language Facebook ads.
(Language localization is one such tactic here, and you’ll learn more about this as you read on!)
Multi-Language Facebook Ad Feeds: An Introduction
Facebook advertising feeds are the channels through which Meta – which owns Facebook – distributes ads on the Facebook social media platform.
Facebook may seem a bit of an outdated platform now compared to newer counterparts like Instagram and TikTok. But don’t underestimate the number of people who use Facebook – and hence the number of people you could reach by advertising on the platform!
(To be specific, you could reach up to 2.9 billion users, based on this Statista study of monthly active Facebook users as of January 2023.)
Facebook’s ad feeds can deliver multi-language ads tailored to your target audience’s native language, as determined by their Facebook language settings. So, for example, an English-speaking user might see your Facebook ad in English, while a French-speaking user sees a French version of the same ad, and so on.
We’ll share the detailed steps for setting up your Facebook ads to be displayed in multiple languages below. Before that, though, you’ll need to prepare the different language versions of your Facebook ads – which calls for an extra step of language localization.
What Is Language Localization, and What Are Its Benefits in Facebook Advertising?
In the context of this article, language localization is the process of adapting your Facebook ads’ language for a particular geographical region or market.
Translation is a large part of language localization if your audiences speak different languages. For example, if you have prepared English-language Facebook ad copy for American Facebook users, you’d need to translate the ad copy into Italian if you intend to show the ad to Facebook users in Italy.
However, localization also involves adapting your ads to suit cultural nuances or societal preferences applicable to the target audience.
A simple example would be how English-speaking audiences in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia use unique slang terms to refer to certain things, or spell certain words differently – even though they all speak the same common language of English. So if you’re targeting potential customers from each of these countries, you’ll need to account for such differences when crafting your Facebook ads.
By localizing your ads and then serving them through Facebook’s multi-language ad feeds, you can reach your target audiences in their respective native languages. Users may also better relate to your ads as you’ve presented the latter in their specific language and cultural context.
In turn, your business may benefit from:
Enhanced targeting: You can set up ad campaigns that employ detailed targeting to reach your target audience – down to their precise location and language preferences.
Increased audience engagement: When they receive the ads you’ve specially created for them in their preferred language, your audience may spend more time browsing and interacting with them.
Improved ad performance: Think higher click-through and conversion rates as users engage with your ads more, click them to view your offer in more detail, and possibly even convert after that. Your ad campaigns can also help lower your cost per acquisition as you don’t waste ad spend on showing ads to users outside of your target audience (and who are hence unlikely to convert).
How to Target Facebook Ads by Language and Location
Now, let’s get into the steps for setting up language targeting for Facebook ads. We’ll also cover how to set up location targeting as it’s a big part of helping Facebook users see the right language versions of your ads.
For completeness, we’ll be sharing the full process of targeting Facebook ads by language and location – including the essential steps for creating the ad itself. If you’re already familiar with Facebook ad creation, feel free to skip to steps 4 and 5 of these instructions!
Click the “+ Create” button in the “Campaigns” screen to create a new ad campaign.
2. Choose a Campaign Objective
Select a campaign objective – in other words, your goal for running your Facebook ads. These objectives include “Awareness” (for increasing brand awareness) and “Sales” (for increasing conversions).
After that, click “Continue” to move to the next step.
3. Give Your Campaign a Name
Fill out a name for your campaign. This name is for your internal use only. It won’t be shown to Facebook users.
You can also set up the other options on this screen, such as special ad categories and campaign details, as needed.
Click “Next” when you’re done.
4. Set up a New Ad Set, Including Your Audience’s Location and Language
Now, you’ll create a new ad set. This is a collection of ads under your Facebook ad campaign.
Each ad set can contain multiple ads, but we’ll start with just one ad in your ad set for now. You can always create more ads (or ad sets) later.
Fill out your ad set’s name and choose a conversion location. This is the place to which your ad will send visitors, such as your website, mobile app, or Facebook Page. The available conversion location options will depend on your ad’s campaign objective.
Importantly, only some conversion locations in certain campaign objectives allow for ad targeting by language. These conversion locations include:
So when creating your Facebook ad, check that you’ll be able to set up a campaign that not only supports language targeting, but is also in line with your overall Facebook ad strategy. As long as you intend to send ad viewers to your website, you should be fine.
After selecting the conversion location, go on to set up your ad set’s:
Budget and schedule: This refers to your allocated ad spend, namely how much you’re willing to spend to promote your ad set, and when such promotion should begin.
Audience: The people who should see your ads, including details such as their location and age. Here, you also have the option of setting up the languages spoken by your target audience. Facebook recommends filling out this option if your target audience uses languages not commonly spoken in your target location.
Placements: The platforms on which Facebook will display your ad, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger. (Even though we’re creating a Facebook ad, you can set up your ad to appear on other Meta-owned platforms too.) You can also state precise placement locations for each platform, such as the Facebook news feed, Facebook Stories, and Facebook search results. However, some placement locations, such as Facebook Reels and Facebook Business Explore, currently don’t support multi-language ads. If you’ve enabled such placements, you’ll need to remove them before publishing your ad.
Click “Next” when you’re ready to proceed.
5. Create a New Ad in Your Ad Set – And Fill Out the Ad’s Language Targeting Settings
With your ad set created, set up a new ad for it.
Fill out the various ad settings, such as ad name, creative, copy, call-to-action text, and destination. You can also add multiple images or videos to create a carousel.
Just be aware that there are certain limitations on creating multi-language ads if you’re customizing your ad text and media across different placements. Learn more about these here.
Now, scroll to the “Languages” section for the all-important part of adding alternative language versions of your ad.
In the “Manage languages” window that appears, click “Select Language” to choose your ad’s default language. Viewers will see your ad in this language if you haven’t set up a suitable version of your ad in their preferred language.
Afterward, click “Add Language” to add more language variants of your ad. State a headline and primary text for each new language you add.
You can also replace your ad’s main image with localized variants. Doing so is helpful if, say, your images contain text that you want to present in your audiences’ native languages.
Placements, such as the Facebook feed and Facebook Stories, and
Language pairs, such as English to Spanish and English to Portuguese.
For certain campaign objectives like “Engagement,” “Leads,” and “Sales,” you can also set up different website URLs for your ad’s language variants. We’d recommend doing so for sending visitors to language-specific web pages or other destinations.
(And if you’re wondering how to translate your web pages, we’ll share a solution later!)
Repeat the language-adding process as many times as you need. You can add up to 48 more languages.
Click “Save” to save your ad’s language variants. Finally, click the “Publish” button to publish your ad!
Best Practices for Facebook Ads Language Targeting
When setting up language targeting for your Facebook ads, use these best practices to optimize your ads’ engagement and conversion rates:
Choose the appropriate alternative languages for your ads. You can do so by conducting market research into your target demographics and the languages they speak. You don’t want to spend time and resources on producing ads in one language only to discover that your target audience speaks a different one.
Create ad copy and images that resonate with each target market. Recall what we said about language localization above: there’s more to it than just translating text from one language into another! Engaging cultural consultants can help you get a deeper understanding of each market’s local context and how you can tailor your ads to suit it.
Track your ads’ performance as they run. Metrics such as reach, link clicks, frequency, and cost per click can offer valuable insights into how well your ads are performing. Use such data to inform your decisions for getting a higher return on investment from your ads. For example, if your Facebook ads have poor reach, your ad budget might be too low. You could then try increasing your ad budget to help Facebook serve your ads to more users.
Test and optimize your Facebook ads. Doing so regularly can help you identify winning ads and cull underperforming ones from your ad sets. Facebook’s built-in A/B testing feature makes it easy to test two versions of your ads (such as those in different languages or those with different images) to see which one your audience engages with more.
Drive Facebook Ad Traffic to Your Multilingual Web Pages
With this guide, you should be all set up to create multi-language Facebook ads that appeal to your target audiences and fulfill your ad objectives!
Just don’t forget that you’ll need to make the entire ad funnel multilingual to help users have a seamless experience interacting with your brand. This means creating different language versions of not only your ads, but also the destinations to which you’ll be sending Facebook users who click your ads.
And here, if you intend to direct Facebook users to your website, try using Weglot to translate your web pages! Using a mix of machine and human translation, Weglot effortlessly translates website content into 110+ supported languages, making websites multilingual in minutes. It gives you full editing control so you can refine your translations to suit your target audiences’ local contexts.
Weglot also displays your translations on your website for you in automatically-created language subdomains or subdirectories. So once you’ve finalized your translations, you’ll just need to add the URLs for your translated web pages to Meta Ads Manager to get your ads up and running.
Weglot integrates with all leading website and ecommerce platforms, such as WordPress and Shopify, and custom-built sites. Try it on your website today by signing up for a 10-day free trial here.
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