A Guide To Measuring Brand Lift On Facebook

So you’re running a campaign to increase your brand awareness and you want to understand the effectiveness of your campaign. That seems reasonable enough. Should be pretty simple, right?

Wrong. Aside from conducting a survey, measuring an increase in brand awareness—commonly referred to as brand lift—isn’t as easy as you may think. In the digital age, where performance marketers install tracking pixels and measure online conversions with ease-to-generate, solid ROI calculations, brand marketers have always faced a much tougher challenge.

How do you measure whether your lovingly crafted advertising campaign actually made a person more aware of your brand? How do you measure that “lift”?

Well, luckily you’ve decided to run campaigns on Facebook, as it has a couple of metrics in place that help you do exactly that. In this blog we’ll run through the key components of a Facebook brand awareness campaign, how Facebook helps you measure brand lift, and the various ways you can use this information.

But, first, let’s take a quick look at just what brand lift is and why it’s a key metric.

What is brand lift?

Brand lift is the increase in the success of meeting the main goal of your brand advertising campaign. What’s the main goal of your branding campaign? That depends what stage of the marketing funnel you are targeting with your campaign:

If you’re running a campaign to increase brand awareness, then you’re right at the top of the marketing funnel, and the metrics you measure must reflect this.



This is a measure of advertising effectiveness with the aim of determining whether someone exposed to your ad remembers it at a later date. Traditionally this is done through a survey—a fairly cumbersome form of measurement. The good news? Facebook has built a metric that estimates the ad recall lift.

So why should you focus on ad recall lift, instead of looking at the increase in clicks, CTR or other more common metrics? Well, firstly, because people can remember your advert without clicking or liking it! But, more importantly, because ad recall lift is a metric that goes much further towards defining somebody’s relationship with your brand. And that’s what building brand awareness is really about.

How to run Facebook brand awareness campaigns

Facebook brand awareness campaigns sit right at the top of the funnel, with the aim of increasing your brand recall. To run a brand awareness campaign, select the corresponding option from the campaign creation screen.

From here you go through the same process of campaign creation that you do with other objectives, such as Traffic or Conversions. The core difference is the two options you have for optimizing your campaign.

  1. Brand Awareness: This optimization consists of a combination of reach and attention to target people more likely to remember your ads.
  2. Reach: This optimization lets you maximise the number of people who see your ad in a given period of time. If you choose to optimize for reach you will be given the option to set a maximum number of impressions of the ad an individual is allowed to see.

So, setting up a brand awareness campaign on Facebook is pretty straightforward. Now you need to know how to measure and interpret the results of your campaign.

How to measure brand lift

As mentioned earlier in this post, the key brand lift KPI to measure is the increase in ad recall. While usually measured through a survey, Facebook has a metric that measures estimated ad recall lift within its platform. For all those without the time or money to run a survey, this is a great place to start.


This metric provides Facebook’s best estimate of the number of people likely to remember your ads, if asked, within 2 days. This number is calculated by the attention and the reach of your ads being compared with historical data about the correlation between attention and ad recall. This is based on over 300 Nielsen Brand Effect studies.

When running a brand awareness, post promotion or video campaign, this metric can be selected from the Customize Columns options under the Columns drop down menu on the Ads Manager dashboard.

It’s important to note that factors not included in this metric can also affect ad recall, such as the quality of your creative, existing awareness of your brand and the audience you are targeting.

There are plenty of ways you can use this metric to understand more about your brand awareness campaigns:

  • Compare the effectiveness of different creatives in generating ad recall in your target audience.
  • Discover how your brand performs with different target demographics to understand what resonates with what group.
  • See which kind of ad placement provides the best lift: Facebook mobile, Facebook desktop or Instagram?
  • Monitor your ad recall lift over time to understand the long-term impact of your branding campaigns.

For larger campaigns—and bigger budgets—a brand lift survey is recommended for more accurate results.


When you run a brand lift survey with Facebook, a poll with questions about your brand is delivered to two groups of people, one which sees your adverts and another that doesn’t.

An example of a poll question could be: Do you recall seeing an ad for YOUR BRAND online or on a mobile device in the last 2 days?

Only certain campaigns are eligible for a brand lift study and you need to reach out to a Facebook Sales Representative to find out if your campaign is.


Brand awareness is vital to any business. It’s what underpins who you are. It’s what makes people want to “Google” something rather than just search for it.

Look back at the marketing funnel at the top of this blog. Without growing Awareness no one’s ever going to make it down to the bottom of that funnel. Unfortunately, most companies aren’t like Google and can’t count on the majority of the world’s population already knowing their name.

That’s why investing in brand awareness campaigns is so vital. Without them, there’s no point in investing in all those performance campaigns further down the funnel.  Or, at the very least, those performance campaigns will become a lot more costly.

So understanding whether or not your brand awareness campaigns are producing a lift in the recognition of your brand—and growing your awareness—is vital. Traditional digital metrics such as clicks, CTR or likes won’t give you the results you need.

Focus on your ad recall and brand lift to really understand just how your brand awareness campaigns are resonating.