Facebook’s Power Editor is what the pros use to manage ad campaigns.
As the name implies, it’s a powerful tool to be used in the creation and management of ads, and it’s used daily by the world’s top digital marketing professionals.
Unfortunately, Power Editor has always had some major flaws: it’s counterintuitive and complicated, and for these reasons the vast majority of Facebook advertisers tend to shy away from it. It’s also missing a guide that provides a simple explanation as to how it works.
This is that guide.
With a recent update, Facebook has made Power Editor very similar to the classic Ads Manager we all know and love. Still, many advertisers aren’t ready to make the switch as they fear it will create problems with their current ad campaigns.
Use this comprehensive resource to learn and recognize all of the benefits you’re missing out on.
What the Power Editor Is and How it Works
The Power Editor is the most effective way to create and manage Facebook ads, period. Unlike the classic Ads Manager, Power Editor provides a more professional interface that allows you to create and edit multiple listings at the same time, access advanced functions, and more clearly understand the structure and optimization opportunities of each campaign.
It’s especially useful for highly active advertisers without the time to optimize campaigns ad by ad and delivers the best view of their overall account activity.
How to Access the Power Editor
The Power Editor is accessible here – facebook.com/ads/manage/powereditor – from any browser.
Or from Ads Manager:
- Click the Facebook icon in the top left
- Click All Tools
- Under Create and Manage select – Power Editor
Note: Once you begin using it, Power Editor will show up in your Frequently Used column.
Also, there is no application for mobile or tablet. This tool is meant to be used on a desktop.
The Power Editor Interface
When you open Power Editor for the first time, you may feel like it’s not a very intuitive interface, and you’d be right.
However, once you begin to use it you’ll realize that it’s actually quite simple.
The interface can be easily understood by dividing it into three parts, as shown in the image below:
- The upper area is the control panel, from which you can perform common actions, such as creating a campaign, editing an ad, or the application of bulk changes.
- The central area is dedicated to reporting, and reflects the same functionality present in the classic Ads Manager.
- Below is the “work area,” from which you can view and edit the various campaigns, ad sets, and ads.
The Main Functions of the Power Editor
The main feature that distinguishes the Power Editor from the classic Ads Manager is the “local changes” feature: all changes are not automatically active, but are instead saved on your browser until you decide to upload.
For example, in Ads Manager you can simply activate or deactivate to see the change in real time. In Power Editor you can perform a multitude of tasks, make several changes, and they only go live once you choose to upload those changes.
Now let’s take a look at the various functions available from the top of the dashboard down.
1. Control Panel
The same menu with the Facebook icon that you find in Ads Manager is available in Power Editor.
In the top right corner we find the feature described in the example above. This displays local (unpublished) changes that are saved in Power Editor. Here you can upload these changes or cancel their implementation.
In order to upload the changes and have them take effect, you’ll need to
- Click the Review Changes button
This will open up a popup window with the summary of the changes you are planning to implement.
- Then click the Continue button if you are ready to upload
You’ll be able to see said changes go live in seconds and a final summary screen will confirm the actions have been implemented.
Ever present at the top of Power Editor are the following buttons (left to right):
- Create campaign, ad group or ad: Opens the Help procedure for the creation of one or more of these elements.
- Duplicate: With this function you can quickly duplicate one or more elements such as:
- An ad set: either in order change a variable for A/B testing OR to split the audience between the two ad sets.
- An ad: to create a similar ad and only change the image.
(Note: You can also use the Hotkey – Ctrl + D.)
- Edit: To open and edit campaigns in the workspace panel.
- Quick Edits: To activate or deactivate items quickly, edit budget in ad groups, edit names, find and replace text.
- Undo Changes: To undo the last change (locally).
- Delete: To delete one or more elements.
- Export/Import: Large advertisers who wish to export one or more elements to CSV file, or import them in bulk.
- Create Report: To quickly create advertising reports according to the selected items.
- Campaign Tags: This feature lets you create one or more labels to “tag” your campaigns, allowing you to group them and locate them more easily.
- Save Audience: To quickly create a saved audience (this button is only present when viewing ad sets or ads).
2. Search Filters and Statistics
Search filters allow you to search any campaign, ad set or ad, and allows you to filter the statistics displayed in the work area. These features are identical to those in Ads Manager.
- You can search for individual campaigns, ad sets, or ads within the Search dropdown.
- Additionally, you can filter the elements you want to view by a wide selection of variables.
This way, you completely avoid confusing the elements of one campaign with those of another. This is especially useful for large-scale advertisers who are running a significant number of ads.
Note: You can remove the filters by clicking on the X to the right of the item that describes the applied filters.
The workspace is also very similar to the interface you’re familiar with in Ads Manager.
- You’ll find your campaigns on the left, with all relevant information about their current actions to the right of them.
- Clicking on the campaign takes you to the ads sets within, another click allowing you to view individual ads.
To the far left you’ll see a stacked structure of icons with numbers next to them. This stack gives you a quick look at the exact number of campaigns, as well as the number of ad sets and ads within them.
Creating an Ad Campaign with Power Editor
To create an ad campaign with Power Editor you’ll use the button “Create Campaign” in the Control Panel.
Clicking the Create Campaign button opens a window that allows you to quickly and easily move through the campaign-building process.
You’re able to choose:
- the name of your campaign
- the objective for your campaign
- auction vs. set prices for your ads
You’ll also be able to create and name a new ad set and individual ads to place within it.
Note: You always have the opportunity to switch the look of the interface back to that of the classic Ads Manager if you prefer.
Clicking the Create button builds out the campaign and you’re ready to move on to the next step of building your ads.
Here is a video that shows the process.
The creation of ad sets and ads should be familiar to anyone who has used the classic Ads Manager before.
Once you have created your campaign and built your ad sets, it’s time to upload it.
- To do this, click on the button at the top right, Review Changes
At this point you’ll be presented with a window asking which changes you want to apply. Facebook runs a check for errors in your changes and will automatically notify you when they find something that needs your attention.
Note: In the case of an error, hovering the mouse over the exclamation mark will pop up a description that explains the error so that you can correct it.
Once everything is correct, simply press the Continue button. The changes made are now online and visible from Ads Manager.
Editing Campaigns, Ad Sets, and Ads
Just as in Ads Manager, ads, ad sets, and campaigns can all be edited during their creation, as well as after they have been published.
To edit an existing item, simply click on the Edit button.
This will open the editing panel in the work area that allows you to fully edit each element of the item you’ve selected.
The true power of this feature lies in your ability to perform bulk edits to several items. This feature makes it possible to select entire groups of ads, for example, and change one or more elements instead of going through them one by one like you would in Ads Manager.
For instance, if you want to edit the audience for multiple ad sets:
- Select the ad sets you want to modify
- Make the audience change
- Click review changes
- Click continue
Those changes will be applied to every ad set you had selected.
Advanced Features of Power Editor
As I mentioned above, Power Editor is really designed for large-scale advertisers who need a fast and efficient way to create and edit ads. It’s especially helpful for those managing multiple accounts.
In addition the features I’ve mentioned above, there are several features that are exclusive to users of the Power Editor, such as:
The duplicate button can save you lots of time when trying to replicate ads, ad sets, or even entire campaigns that you’ve already created.
Imagine being able to duplicate an entire campaign, including the ad sets and ads inside, in order to modify a single element for testing and optimization. You can duplicate several versions, modify each of them, then put your budget behind those that perform the best.
The ability to quickly split test identical campaigns to different audiences is a game changer for serious advertisers. Select Split Audiences in the Duplicate tab to run these tests.
Export and Import
One of Power Editor’s most advanced features is the ability to export (and import) all of the elements.
Using the Export button, you can export selected data (or your entire account) to a CSV file, or as text.
You can also choose what to export by selecting Custom Export Selected.
Finally, you can import campaigns, ad sets and ads in groups from a CSV file using the template found by clicking Download Template.
Nomenclature (single and bulk)
One of Power Editor’s most valuable features is that it allows you to change ad copy far more quickly than you might in Ads Manager. The way it does this is by giving you the option to change the title and descriptions copy in multiple ads at the same time (called bulk edits).
Power Editor gives you the ability to tag each of your campaigns in order to find what you’re looking for more quickly.
For example, if you’re managing campaigns for different clients under the same account, you can tag each campaign by client name. A quick filter would bring up all of the campaigns associated with a particular client and allow you to organize your workspace.
Find and Replace
Another advanced option available only in Power Editor is the “find and replace” feature. You’ll find it within the Quick Edit dropdown menu.
This handy feature allows you to quickly replace various text in the name, URL, or title text of one or more advertisements (by selecting them).
Troubleshooting with Power Editor
From time to time, one or more functions may not load properly on the browser. Whatever the error, the best way to solve your problem is to restore the settings of the Power Editor by clicking the cogwheel icon in the upper right.
Note: Another way to avoid errors is by using Google Chrome, as recommended by Facebook.
When to Use Power Editor Over Ads Manager
As previously explained, Power Editor is designed for more advanced, high-volume advertisers.
If you’re planning on starting long-term campaigns that involve lots of ads and variations of those ads, I highly recommend taking the time to learn it. This is especially true for those managing multiple clients under a single account, or multiple accounts.
Power Editor will likely become a major asset that saves you valuable time and helps you to manage your advertising like a pro.
Take it from me…
I personally use Power Editor for everything I do in the creation or modification of campaigns, then revert to Ads Manager for management and optimization, as I find it to be more practical.
Using Power Editor doesn’t mean you have to give up your Ads Manager, instead I highly recommend using both based on the task at hand.
If you still need more convincing to start using Power Editor, consider this: most of the new (read: cool and exciting) features that Facebook releases for advertisers are released in Power Editor first. They want their advanced users testing out all of their new features first, so if you want to be among the first to test and put new features into action, be sure to start with Power Editor today!