Edit Facebook Ads: Link Thumbnail Image, Headline, Text, Description

How to Edit Facebook Ads: Link Thumbnail, Headline, Text and Description

One little nuisance that has irritated Facebook advertisers for quite some time is the inability to edit Facebook ads. What many don’t realize is that yes, you can edit ads!

For the past two years now, I’ve strongly suggested you only use Power Editor to create ads. It’s long had the latest features first, and it’s simply better than the ad create tool for creating and editing several ads at once.

However, one area where Power Editor lags is editing ad creative. Once you create an unpublished post, for example, it can’t be edited within Power Editor.

But have no fear: That typo in your ad can be edited!

How to Edit Ads in Ads Manager

Within Ads Manager, go to the preview of your ad. Then click the “Edit Creative” link…

Facebook Ads Manager Ad Preview

Next, you’ll be given a dialog that looks like this…

Facebook Ads Edit Creative

You will be able to edit the following:

  • Thumbnail Image: Upload a new image, browse library or reposition
  • Headline: Change the title of your link
  • Link Description: Change the copy that goes under the headline
  • Text: Change the copy that goes above your link

Facebook Ads Edit Creative

Other things like targeting, placement and bidding have always been editable. But few advertisers realize that creative can be edited within the Ads Manager.

Once you’re done, click the “Save” button at the bottom right. You’ll then get a prompt that looks like this…

Facebook Ad Changes Saved

Once you click “Continue” you’ll see the new, edited ad in the preview…

Facebook Ad Preview Edited

When You Should Edit Ads

You’ve undoubtedly been there. You spent quite a bit of time creating the perfect ad with the perfect targeting, bidding and placement. But you made one small typo in the creative that you thought couldn’t be changed. So you started over.

This is a good example of when you should edit your ads. Another would be because your ad isn’t passing Facebook’s 20% text rule, so you upload a new image.

Regardless, I strongly encourage these changes only be made in the early stages of the ad. Avoid making major changes long after the ad has run.

A Caution on Editing Ads

Some advertisers will use this feature to split test ads. An ad isn’t working, so they change the copy or imagery. I’d consider this a very bad idea.

First, Facebook will distribute your ad partially based on the response it is receiving. If you completely change the copy and imagery, people are bound to react to it differently.

Second, this messes up Facebook reporting. When was your change made? Was it the reason for the change in performance of the ad?

If you are completely changing your imagery or messaging, I encourage you to create a separate ad. Especially if the ad has already run for a while.

Your Turn

Did you know that you could edit Facebook ads in this way? How do you or will you use it?

Let me know in the comments below!

  • stefanspiess

    Hi Jon. I did know this, however: Since we use Text with more letters than the AdManager allows – it does also not allow us to edit the ads in the AdManager for the very same reason.

    • Marieke Hoefnagel

      I have the same problem Stefan! Facebook tells me to adjust the text as well, since it is to large.

    • http://okaymarketing.com/ Brian Jackson

      Exact same problem…

  • Kenneth

    I actually needed to change Ad creative on about 12 out of 48 new ads I created 2 days ago, but the one option you can’t edit (or at least I can’t find where to do this) is the Call-to-Action button. I wish they’d include this, at least for when the ad is only scheduled and not yet running.

  • Mare

    The problem is when your post doesn’t get approved by facebook, they take away the option of editing it. So you basically can’t edit a post that was disapproved by fb.

  • Mijke

    It seems it is only possible to edit ads made in the power editor. Ads created in f.e. Qwaya can’t be edited. Does somebody know anything about this?

  • Marieke Hoefnagel

    If I’m correct it’s not possible to change the content of an photo album post that I want to promote. If I change the picturen in the album, the post also changes…

  • Scott Linklater

    The only issue is if the ad is created in PE and you try to edit in AM then chances are you’ll get red text all over the place because the character limits are so much less in the AM.

    So yes you can edit ads as long as your power editor ads are created with ad manager specs.

    • Phil

      That’s just what I was going to say Scott :)

      • Lillian2365
      • http://careersreport.com Pattyfournier

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    • https://www.facebook.com/SocialCatapult Vanessa Lewis

      I had no idea character limits were less in the AM Scott! I usually use PE for all ads, but may be going on specs for AM. Do you have a link to specs for PE ads please?

      • Scott Linklater

        I think you have 500 characters or up
        To 6 lines of text before you will get truncated and the “see more” link will show.

        But beyond that truncation you can have the same as a Facebook post which is a lot. 5000 characters or something like that.

    • Terry D. Whalen

      Which they always are, at least for us.

      • Scott Linklater

        That’s interesting. Why is that the case Terry? I have the opposite. Because there is more opportunity to space things out and have much more text 90% of the time they will more that the ass manager specs. Plus the 25 character limit on the headline you don’t have often causes it to be outside the ads manager specs too.

        • Terry D. Whalen

          Well, I think we are saying the same – we almost always make our ads in the Power Editor, not the web interface, and so we typically go outside of the web interface-allowed specs.

    • carlosllub

      I knew it! I saw the Edit Creative option a month ago, and reading this post from Jon was confused. For me, this is a huge limitation, and honestly, this is reason why I haven’t used this function. Thanks Jon for sharing and Scott for the extra tip.

    • Maria

      Yes, I ran into the same problem. You can edit the ad using Ad Manager but the amount of space they give you is much smaller than the amount of space you used when you created the ad originally.

    • Jo5996
  • Emilia Newman Rice

    I did know this Jon thanks. What i would like to see is a way for us to edit the photo on a page post link ad in the PE. I know you can only edit the text but if your photo doesn’t look right or you want to change it, you have to create a whole new post. Very frustrating.

  • Stefan Borkowski

    Jon, is this option new? Or only available in US? I am outside US (but I use english US language version) and can’t edit not published post. I can only change page post and URL Tag in Edit Creative field.

    • Josef Buryan

      Same here :-)

  • owen

    I’m wanting to make a bulk image change to multiple ads – any ideas on how to do this in one stroke?

  • Cara Lynn Garvock

    Yes, knew you could edit using AM, however, the URL your ad links to still isn’t editable. Still have to re-create in this case :(

    • Grant Perry

      I figured that was the case Cara. I would also like to be able to edit the link – particularly for long running promotions where we need to change the internal coding and tracking, even though the rest of the page we’re sending them to is the same.

  • Michael Faron

    The thing I noticed with modifying ads in the ad manager is that less characters are allowed for headlines (for example). More characters were accepted for the headline using power editor, so when I go to modify it I got an error about too many characters. Is there a way around this?

    • http://marketingnate.com/ Nate

      I’m wondering the same thing!

  • Diana Baciu

    unfortunatelly i does not work for me. i’ve created the unpublished post with Power editor and when i tried to boost the post it got rejected due to the fact that the image had over 20% text on it. So i wanted to change the image but i can’t :(

  • Mathilda Wu

    Knew this a while ago, thanks though!

  • katie moffat

    This drives me crazy, I can’t think of a single reason why there is no option to edit using PE (apart from Facebook being Facebook). It’s so frustrating. And the issue Scott mentions below if you do use ads manager to edit, also drives me crazy.

  • Alex

    Will this edit the actual unpublished post or just the single ad from ad manager? What I mean is that, I might have many ads promoting a single unpublished post in PE. If I edit it in the way you suggest, will all the ads be changed or just the single ad? – I’m guessing just the single ad.

    • https://www.elance.com/s/scott-benson/ Scott Benson

      So much of the ad creative depends on that static Post ID#. I figure if you edit the ad and head back to download the changes to Power Editor, either all your ads with that post will change or it will generate a new post ID for the single ad with the changes.

  • http://www.antoniocalero.com/ Antonio Calero

    Quite annoying to need to use two tools from the same company to do our work. And this is not the only thing: recently I’ve been having some issues with the time settings too on Power Editor, that can be fixed only on the Ad Manager tool…

  • Mason Isabella

    I have been using the facebook from long time. we can not pass a single day without it. I also like the Social Media Blogs

  • mehedi

    Thanking, for your information. I like this kind of information. sometimes I read the Social Media Marketing

  • http://www.spiderworking.com/ Amanda Webb

    Hmm I just tried this and didn’t get the option to edit the image or the text in the unpublished post. Not sure what I’m doing wrong.

    • https://www.elance.com/s/scott-benson/ Scott Benson

      I’m with you, I don’t get the “Edit Creative” option, just “Edit” with the same old options. Maybe everyone just noticed it the last month or so because they’re just finishing the roll-out? Or maybe we’re working with the wrong post types or something.

      • http://www.spiderworking.com/ Amanda Webb

        Hmm I got edit creative but when I clicked it I couldn’t change anything. The mysteries of Facebook :)

        • djforge

          I’m experiencing the same issue. I can click “edit creative” but then can’t really edit anything

          • http://cassiewitt.com/ Cassie Witt

            Hi Amanda, Scott, and djforge. Are you trying to edit a page post (that was boosted) or an offer? If so, those can’t be edited. Jon is talking about editing an unpublished post, which you would have needed to create in power editor.

            Hope this helps. :)

          • greg

            Last week I was able to edit the creative for an unpublished post in ads manager, now when I click edit in AM it does not give me the option to edit the text or image at all. I also noticed that even though I am very sure i created an unpublished post, when I go to edit it says over on the left hand side “Boosted Page Post” your ad will boost this page post. You can preview your ad on the right.

  • Bruce

    When setting up an ad you can include up to 6 images. Facebook then rotates those images and promotes more the image that their algorithm says is most effective. 2 questions – 1) do you recommend this approach and 2) can you ad more images after your ad is active?

  • http://www.signsofangels.com Karen Borga

    Thank you so much. I just got an ad rejected, and could easily go in and edit the creative. You saved me so much time, again. ~ Karen

  • Lynn

    Hello Jon,

    Thanks for the article. I’m new to Facebook Ads, and I was wondering if anyone could tell me how I’m supposed to enter in the “optional URL tag” field. After creating 2 different ads for 3 different geolocations (ad sets), my client asked me to add the different URL tags. I went into Power Editor but wasn’t sure whether to enter the entire URL (so website domain + url tag…like http://www.example.com/en/index.html?&utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=ASIA-A1 ) or just the tag (utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=ASIA-A1). Would really appreciate if anyone could help me! Thank you!


  • Rodrigo Santos

    Hello everyone! I need some help. I had my ads ( engagement goal) running pretty good. Then, I decided to modify the text just a little. It turned out that likes, comments and shares were zeroed out. However, the stats report shows number like it never happened, numbers are the same as before. That pissed me off! Did I do anything wrong? I am so down right now.

  • http://www.stephaniesammons.com/ Stephanie Sammons

    Hi Jon, of course you had an answer to this because you are the FB wizard! I found some of the same nuances that you can’t edit the url link and text limits come into play when you edit in the Ads Manager. Why on earth would they not allow pre-published editing of the ad in Power Editor? Very strange and annoying! Thanks for sharing this info, though. Good stuff as always!

  • Magida

    Ummm ok so this doesn’t help us at all if we are using PE specs…I just created an ad with one typo but as soon as I go into AM I can’t do a thing because my character limit is over. So is there a solution or not?!

    • http://cassiewitt.com/ Cassie Witt

      Hi Magida,

      I’ve also run into this problem before. My solution is to write out the posts ahead of time. You can do this easily in a word document or a spreadsheet and then proof before you create the post in Power Editor. Unfortunately, as you’ve noticed there’s not way to accurately edit the post once it’s created. However some work ahead of time can help.

  • Roger Pol

    Jon, I am running a page post engagement ad. This post is already published. I want to edit the text, but I don’t see the option. Is this editing option available only for Unpublished posts?

  • Oli

    Hi John, great blog – very useful! I was wondering if there is a way of saving your preferences when viewing reports on ads. E.g. page likes, placement, engagement, etc. At the moment I have to keep editing report to view my required options. Please advise? Thank you

  • Rion Haber

    Hey Jon, so when I go into “Edit Creative” I’m pulling up the dialogue box, but don’t get the option to edit copy, title, or image. I thought for a bit that it may be because the ad was active but then I deactiveated it and am still not getting the option to actually edit my copy. Supppper frustrated. Any thoughts here?

    • Tuấn Anh

      I run into exactly this. Any help?

  • Eric

    thank you!!!