If you’re running Facebook ads for clients, even if it’s just one client, there’s a right way and a wrong (very wrong) way to do it.

The wrong way is to use your own personal Facebook profile ad account to manage someone else’s Facebook ads. The very wrong way is to use your credit card to pay for ads and bill the client after, leaving you on the hook if they don’t pay.

In this guide, I’ll show you the right way to manage Facebook ads for clients, the same methods professionals with years of experience use to offer better service and limit their risk as much as possible.

Key takeaways
  • Use Business Manager to manage Facebook ads for clients, don’t use your personal ad account
  • Make sure ad spend is billed directly to the client, not your credit card
  • Lean on automation to save enormous time on routine ad management
  • Ask for ad creatives much earlier than you need them
  • Automate as much reporting as possible, and send weekly reports

The right way to use Business Manager for client work

Facebook has a tool called Business Manager that lets people invite guests to access and manage their Facebook Page and ad accounts, all while keeping billing information and other sensitive data separate and secure.

If you are the one managing Facebook ads for a client, you should request from the client to be invited to their Business Manager as an advertiser. If they don’t have Business Manager set up yet, ask them to have the owner of the business set up Business Manager (see below) before you do any ad management services for them.

Once they set up Business Manager, they can assign people a variety of user roles including admin roles for accessing billing information, managing accounts, making changes to assets, and inviting others to the Business Manager.

You don’t want access to things you don’t need so don’t request admin access which will open you up to unnecessary risk. Ask for employee access and then the appropriate access levels for the Facebook Page and ad account you will be working on.

Why should I not use my own ad account for clients?

Using the client’s ad account is considered a best practice for many reasons.

  • the client should be the only one in complete control of their ad accounts
  • you don’t want to open yourself up to unnecessary financial risk by paying for their ad spend up front
  • you don’t want to manage multiple clients in one ad account as a problem with one client can affect the entire ad account, which means other clients would be affected
  • it’s easier to part ways with the client when the time comes to end your relationship

Some people doing work for clients believe that the ads they make and the campaigns they set up for their clients are their property and if the client quits, they don’t get to keep the ad creatives or intellectual property. This is the wrong way to go about it and could have legal implications depending on your local laws. Instead, make sure you charge an appropriate fee for your services and consider a length of time obligation in your service agreement.

How to instruct clients to set up Business Manager

If your client needs help setting up Business Manager, I recommend jumping on a video call and having them share their screen so you can walk them through each step. Remember, they will have to be the ones who create the Business Manager on their account so they are the owner.

First, your client needs a personal Facebook account to start, then the process is simple: they need to go to the Facebook Business Manager page and click the Create Account button, then they must enter the name of their business and email address.

Then your client will need to add an ad account to their Business Manager. Once the ad account is added, it’s permanently moved to Business Manager.

To add a new ad account, the client needs to head to Business Settings in Business Manager, click on Accounts, and then click on Add Accounts. They should see a dropdown menu with three options, one of which being to add a new account. Then proceed to complete the process.

To add people to Business Manager, the client needs to go to Business Settings, click Add People, and type the email address of the person they want to invite. Lastly, your client will have to click Next and select the role they want to assign. Remember to also have them give you access to the appropriate Facebook Page and ad account.

Here you can see I've been assigned access to the Revealbot page and the Revealbot ad account with permission to manage campaigns, view performance, and manage creative hub mockups, but without admin access

If your client can’t add the current ad account to his Business Manager, they may not have confirmed their payment method yet. Business Manager also has an ad account limit. The number of accounts allowed is dependent on how much your client spent on Facebook ads. The bigger their budget, the more ad accounts your client will be allowed to own.

How automation can help with the managing Facebook ads for clients

One of the biggest mistakes I see people new at managing Facebook ads for clients make is spending too much time on a client’s ad account. They want to make sure they are successful and are willing to go above and beyond to achieve it, but it often leads to burnout and more stress.

There’s a better way to manage Facebook ads for clients than checking their ad account every 30 minutes or putting in late nights making adjustments to get clients the best results. Instead, take advantage of Facebook’s automated rules which can automate basic tasks like pausing and starting campaigns at certain times of the day and week or turn off unprofitable ads before they waste too much budget.

It’s possible to automate much more using Revealbot’s automated rules, which compared to Facebook’s automated rules, allows you to write much more flexible and dynamic rule conditions. This means you can automate most of your ad management routine allowing you the time to just focus on making ad creatives.

With Revealbot automation for Facebook ads, you can essentially clone yourself and make automations that replicate your manual ad management routine. Revealbot rules can run every 15 minutes around the clock and perform actions as soon as certain criteria are met. The power of automations is it’s working 24/7, never takes a break, and never slacks off so use that your advantage to offer better Facebook ad services to your clients.

For example, here's a Revealbot automation that will prevent you from wasting budget by pausing ad sets with a ROAS below 1 after spending half the daily budget - all done automatically without you having to keep a close eye on your clients' ads.

You can start a free trial and get the above automated rule by clicking the Revealbot Strategy below:

And if you want to learn more, here’s some essential Revealbot automated rules you should set up to save you time, save your client’s budget, and scale your client’s budget profitably.

When and when not to talk to clients

Some clients want to know everything down to the very last detail, others just want a high-level update every month. The second kind of client is not a problem, but the first one is. Those types of clients can take up a lot of admin time you didn’t expect to spend, dragging down your pay per hour.

That’s why it’s important to set expectations before signing a contract or agree to work. Here’s a list of items you should establish and agree upon with your clients before starting work:

  • Ad creatives - who will be responsible for ad copy and creatives?
  • Relationship with other employees - who will be your main point of contact if you want to propose a new campaign?
  • Budget - how much is the client willing to spend on ads in the first three months?
  • Reporting - how often would they like to see reporting, who should be sent reports, what would they like the reports to include?
  • Goals - what does success for this engagement look like?
  • Communication - what is the best method for communication, what are acceptable hours for communication, and how fast should each party be expected to respond to each other’s questions?

The answer to these questions may affect the price you want to charge for your services, so make sure all these topics are cleared up and established before sending a proposal and signing a contract.

In regards to goal setting, look at your client’s website, products, and offers and see if there are any red flags that might hurt the performance of their Facebook ad campaigns and provide some recommendations if necessary on their website design that might be hurting their conversion rates for your campaigns.

Remember to underpromise. You may be confident in your abilities based on your past experiences, but you’ll also want some cushion for the unexpected.

Always ask for ad creatives far in advance before you need them

My biggest piece of advice when managing Facebook ads for clients is to always, and I mean always, ask for creatives from your clients far before you need them.

If you have to rely on the client to provide the creative, you never want to be stuck waiting for them to provide creatives while your current creatives are already suffering from ad fatigue. Not only do you never know for sure when the client will provide the creative, but you also never know if you need to send it back for revisions or have to wait for approval on any changes or copy you make on your end.

Then, you’re going to have to wait up to 24 hours for Facebook to approve an ad and start delivery. And during the busy times like Black Friday and the holidays, when many advertisers are running much higher volume than usual, it could take even longer to get your ads approved.

Lastly, your ads could be rejected due to some violation of Facebook’s guidelines, whether legitimately or not, so if you have the time, upload your ads into Ads Manager ahead of time to make sure they’re good to go.

By getting ad creatives from clients and preparing them for launch ahead of time, you can both be more confident in reaching your goals and also increase the client’s confidence in you through great communication and project management skills.

Send weekly reports to keep clients informed

The most important thing to consider when managing Facebook ads for clients, other than actual performance, is how you provide reports to clients and how often.

Reporting is a vital component of building trust with your clients, but it can also be a huge time sink. I recommend automating reporting as much as possible and sending them to clients weekly.

Here’s three ways you can quickly make Facebook ad reports for clients. The first, is to create reports in Ads Manager by customizing the columns you want to show to clients and then exporting the views when sending a report. Another option is to use Google Data Studio to report on Facebook ad performance through Google Analytics. A third option is to use Revealbot’s Facebook ad reporting tool, which not only can make beautiful reports clients will love, but it can also automatically send the reports to your clients on the schedule you choose.

Example of a report made in Revealbot
Example of a report made in Revealbot

Check out our full guide on Facebook ads reporting to learn how to set up each one of the options for client reporting.

Also, most clients aren’t sure about what metrics matter the most, so it’s your job to set expectations with regard to what metrics they can expect to see improvements in.

In your Facebook Ad Reports, you should at least report on the following:

  • Reach (how many people saw your ads?)
  • Impressions (how many times did people see your ads?)
  • Frequency (how many times did people see the same ad?)
  • Link clicks (how many times did people click through on your ads?)
  • Conversions (how many conversions were generated?)
  • Revenue (how much revenue was generated?)
  • Cost-per-reach, cost-per-click, cost-per-conversion
  • ROAS (how much was the return on ad spend?)
Adjust the metrics based on the type of businesses you’re running ads for and any particular metrics the client may have mentioned they liked to see.

The last thing I’ll mention about managing Facebook ads for clients and specifically about reporting, is sending your client any learnings that they could apply to other parts of their business. You’re going to be discovering what approaches to creatives work the best, what copy works the best, what audiences work the best and more. This is valuable information the client will really appreciate receiving from their engagement with you, which means they’re more likely to keep using your services.