How to use the automated rule creator in TrustAds
Welcome to the rule creator! This is where you set up the rules you want to run on your Facebook and Snapchat ad accounts.
In this article, we're going to get you thinking about what you want from your rules, and talk you through setting up a basic notification rule to help you get to grips with the tool.
First things first, consider your objective
With any rule, you need to ask yourself: What do you want it to do?
This might be:
- Protect campaigns from poor performing ads or ad sets
- Identify and act on scaling opportunities
- Quickly replicate past success
Next, consider your current process
By considering what you currently do to achieve these objectives - and when - you can then build out your rule creation.
Questions you might ask:
- What metrics are most important to me?
- When do I usually take action?
- What exceptions would I make to this rule? Are there campaigns, ad sets/squads or ads I wouldn't want to be impacted?
- What limits would I set?
- How aggressive are my strategies?
These will help you to fine tune your rules and ensure you get the results you want, fast.
Let's take a look at an example objective
We'll use a very basic example.
We're a busy agency who currently wait until our Facebook Campaigns hit £500 before reviewing performance. We're constantly checking our campaigns to see if the limit has been hit.
Rather than keep checking whether our Campaigns have reached our chosen review figure (and potentially missing them) we can set up a rule to notify us instead.
We'll set up a rule that will automatically notify us (via email) when any of our active Campaigns reach £500 in lifetime spend, so we can review their progress.
N.B. This is a very basic rule. If you're new to automation, something like this is perfect to help you transition from manual ad management, as it involves part automation and part manual input.
Now we have our objective, let's walk through each field and build our rule!
This is where you select which ad platform you want you rule to run on:
- Facebook (inc. Instagram, Messenger and Audience Network)
Our objective is based on Facebook Campaigns, so we'll select Facebook.
N.B. Both platforms have different metrics and naming conventions, so you can only select one. Your choice here impacts what metrics are available below.
Once you've selected either Facebook or Instagram, you'll be presented with a list of your available ad accounts for that platform.
This is where you choose the ad account(s) you want your rule to apply to.
In our agency example, we want to cover all available Facebook ad accounts, so have selected all our available ad accounts.
N.B. If you select multiple ad accounts, TrustAds will create one rule for each ad account selected.
This is where you select whether you want your rule to run on your Campaigns, Ad Sets, Ad Squads (Snapchat) or Ads.
In our agency example, we're interested in Campaign spend, so this is what we've selected.
N.B. You may only select one ad level
This is where you select the status of your chosen ad level (above) that you want your rule to run on.
In Facebook you can choose:
In Snapchat you can choose:
In our example, we're interested in live Campaigns, so we'll select a status of Active.
N.B. The majority of rules are run on a status of active and paused.
Next up, we need to tell TrustAds which time period our rule should be considering when taking action.
This field has automatically populated based on our selected ad account timezone settings.
N.B. You may change this if you wish, however it is not recommended, as it will make reports harder to reconcile.
Here you'll select what time period you want the rule to consider when applying your chosen action:
- Predefined date ranges
Your selection here will influence the fields available in the next section.
N.B. Predefined date ranges is the most popular selection here.
Predefined date ranges will allow you to choose common date presets such:
- Last X days
- Last Quarter
- Last Year
If you select Days, Weeks or Months as your time period, this field will populate with the number you can choose, e.g. 1-6 days, 1-4 weeks.
With our objective, we want to be notified as soon as our Campaign spend reaches £500, so we've selected a Predefined Date Range of Lifetime.
N.B. Your rule will consider your chosen fields and metrics during this time frame only. Your chosen action will only be taken if your criteria is met during this time.
Your metrics and your action are the beating heart of your rules. It's why you're running them, and what you want them to do on your behalf.
Metrics are the key performance indicators you're looking at to decide what action to take. For example you might want your rules to run based on ROAS, ROI, Number of Purchases, Number of Adds to Cart, CTR, Spend and so on.
With our objective, we're concerned with Campaign Spend. We'll therefore select Spent as our metric, with greater than or equal to as our operator, with a value of 500.
We've selected greater than or equal to rather than equal to £500. You can see why in the two scenarios below:
Rule is run > Campaign Lifetime Spend = £499.99 > Criteria not met > No action
Rule runs again 15 minutes later > Campaign Lifetime Spend = £500.10 > Criteria not met > No action
Result = we are never notified that our Campaign has hit our limit
Greater than or equal to:
Rule is run > Campaign Lifetime Spend = £499.99 > Criteria not met > No action
Rule runs again 15 minutes later > Campaign Lifetime Spend = £500.10 > Criteria met > Action taken
Result = We are notified as soon as spend hits or exceeds our limit
We've also added in a second Spent metric of less than or equal to 520. This is so we'll stop receiving notifications about Campaigns we've already checked once they've passed £520 in lifetime spend.
This is where you define what action you want the rule to take, based on your chosen metrics and time frame.
Available actions are:
- Notify me by email
- Pause advertising (for active status)
- Activate (for paused status)
- Bid change (ad sets/squads only)
- Budget change (ad sets/squads only)
- Duplicate (ad sets/squads only)
- Add tag
- Add tag & pause advertising (for active status)
We just want to be notified once a Campaign fits our criteria, so we'll select a simple Notify me by email action.
This is an optional field in the rule creator, and allows you control over how often your rule is run.
By default, this is set to run As often as possible, which will be either every 15 minutes or every 30 minutes (depending on your plan).
If however you want your rule to run at less frequent intervals, you can choose a different time period from the dropdown - choose from minutes, hours, days, weeks, months and even years!
As we want to be notified as soon as possible we'll leave this set to the default.
This is another optional section, allowing you to set a custom schedule for your rule.
Custom Schedule Settings
By selecting blocks of time, you can set your rule to run during specific hours or days of the week.
Custom Date Range
Here you can set a start and/or end date, if you only want your rule to run from, to, or in-between specific dates.
Run Count Limit
This allows you to set a limit on the number of times your rule can run, after which it will disable.
We don't need this section for our objective. We need the rule to be running 24/7 so we're notified as soon as our Campaigns reach our chosen spend limit.
N.B. This section is most commonly used for aggressive scaling rules, or replicating custom strategies that take place at specific times or days.
Rule Name and Description
Naming your rules appropriately is important to enable you to keep track. It means you can easily keep an eye on rule activity, as well as to quickly identify existing rules you want to turn on/off or edit.
We like to this of the rule name as the What: What your rule is doing.
In our case this can be simply: Notify when Campaign Lifetime Spend > £500 and < £520
The rule description is perfect for that extra bit of detail if you want to remember the purpose of the rule.
We like to think of the description as your Why: Why your rule is taking the action you asked for.
In our case, we can say: Notify by email when Campaign spend reaches £500 to allow for manual review
You can now hit the preview button to see which of your Campaigns, Ad Sets or Ads already fit your rule criteria (if any)!
How to gain confidence
Rules are most effective in reducing manual labour and error when taking action on your behalf.
If you're new to ad management automation, handing over the reigns to a piece of technology can be scary.
Notification rules are a great way not only to get started, but to test out rules created for other actions.
By replacing whatever action you want (e.g. pause) with 'notify', you can ensure your rules are running the way you want them to, before allowing them to take action.
Once you're confident things are working as they should be, you can then simply switch to the real action you want TrustAds to take!
If you're more of a visual learner, you can check out our Creating your first rule video here.
Or why not start with a rule from the Rule Library?