Meta discontinues use of dynamic creative for ‘political & social’ ads

I recently learned the hard way that Meta no longer permit the use of the dynamic creative format for ads that are in the ‘political and social issues’ category. You’re probably familiar with the hard way, if you’ve ever used Meta ads:

  1. I set up a campaign, ticked the ‘political and social’ category. The system permitted me to also tick the ‘dynamic creative’ option.
  2. As I built the ads, an error started appearing – ‘Additional optimisations not allowed with political and social ads. Remove additional optimisations option.’
  3. There was, of course, no ‘additional optimisations’ option anywhere on the campaign, ad set or ad settings.
  4. Contacted Meta support, explained the issue. They replied and told me ‘additional optimisations are not allowed!’
  5. Yes. I know. How do I remove these so-called ‘additional optimisations’ when there’s no setting anywhere that shows them?
  6. Automated responses saying they were looking into the issue. Some of these were in French. Do I speak French? No.
  7. I was lucky enough to ask the right question: is it that the entire dynamic creative format has been discontinued? I’d heard some news about this.
  8. Got a response confirming, yes, that’s it, the format is now not allowed for political and social ads

Any other system would have disabled the dynamic creative button, once the political / social button was checked. But not Meta! If only they could use some of their billions of dollars to make their platform usable and provide proper support. Ah well.

So now the very handy dynamic creative format, which allowed us to combine up to 10 images, 5 headlines and 5 primary text variations, is no longer available if you’re running ads on social issues. But it’s completely unclear, so I’m sure plenty of NGOs will waste time trying to get these ads approved and decipher completely inscrutable error messages.

What you can do instead

If you’re setting up a political and social ad campaign, don’t tick the dynamic creative box at Ad Set level: it’ll stop your ads from getting published. With the campaign I built recently, I was able to use the new ‘flexible’ format. This is basically a standard single image or video ad, with a new feature where you can add up to 5 primary text variations and 5 headlines. The option for political and social ads unfortunately only allows one image per ad though, so you’ll need multiple ads to test multiple image variants.

What’s happening to dynamic creative?

It’s really unclear! Meta Ads expert Jon Loomer has been sending some updates about it. First Meta said it was disappearing completely, then they rolled it back slightly and said it’s still available for ads with sales and app promotion objectives. It looks like one of those typical Meta changes, where it’s implemented in the clunkiest, most confusing way possible. The best thing to do at this stage is to get familiar with the new Flexible Ad format, as that will probably completely replace dynamic creative at some point soon.

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