Creating ads from CSV using Bulk Creative

What is the Bulk Creative (CSV)?

The Bulk Creative (CSV) on The Next Ad enables users to create hundreds of creatives in just mere seconds—if you made the right preparations in advance, which we'll guide you through in this article. By enabling users to create new ads (link, image, video or Instagram Stories video type) through uploading a text-based CSV file containing all required information of the creatives and a reference to each targeting audiences, users/teams are able to effectively collaborate to create and publish numerous creatives at once.

How do I use it?

Using the Bulk Creative (CSV) requires a little bit of preparation, but that doesn't mean it's difficult to use. 

(1) Firstly, you'll need to gather the URL links of the assets (images/videos) you're planning to use for your upcoming creatives. These can be URLs stored on your own server, links to assets within your Wordpress Media Library, forced download URLs on Dropbox, or URLs to the assets stored in your The Next Ad Media Library.

The URLs to the assets stored in your The Next Ad Media Library can be extracted through the new exporting option in our Media Library (see details below). If you're planning to use new assets, it's advisable to first upload these to the Media Library before you continue. Once all the assets required are in the Media Library, you can proceed to the following steps:

  1. Select all required assets in the Media Library.
  2. Click on Bulk actions > Export selection to CSV. The downloadable file will contain all the metadata of the selected assets, including the URL to the asset's server location (you'll need this information later on to create the creatives).

(2) Now you can start creating a new campaign as you normally would.

  1. Click on the New campaign button, fill in the Campaign Settings, and, once you're done, click Next.
  2. In the Audiences step, create the audience(s) you're planning to use for your campaign. 
    1. Once you've created all the audiences needed, click the Select all button below the New ad set button. 
    2. Click on Export selection to CSV, which will create a report that will contain the audience_ID needed to use the Creative Generator. save image
    3. The CSV you can now download will include all the metadata of your audiences, including the audience_ID parameter. This/these audience_ID(s) are mandatory to complete the template(s) to create your ads, which we'll describe in detail in the following steps.
    4. After you've completed the CSV download, click Next to move forward to the following step in the campaign wizard.

(3) Now that you both the URLs to your assets and the audience_IDs, you can start completing the template(s):

  1. Download the compressed ZIP file containing the 4 sample templates: Click here
  2. Extract the ZIP file and open/import the template for the type of ads you want to create:
    1. For creating Instagram Stories Video ads, use IG-Stories_Video_template_TNA_BulkCreative.csv
    2. For creating Link Ads, use Link_template_TNA_BulkCreative.csv
    3. For creating Photo Ads, use Photo_template_TNA_BulkCreative.csv
    4. For creating Video Ads, use Video_template_TNA_BulkCreative.csv
      NB: Any spreadsheet software (i.e. Google Sheets, Microsoft Excel or Apple's Numbers) can be used to work with the CSV file. 
  3. Now you can start updating the pre-filled template which will generate the ads you want to create. The first row of the CSV contains the header names of each column, these should NOT be changed. Each following row corresponds to a single ad; the templates each contain 13 ads. However, you can create any number of ads you need, just a single 1 or even 100 if you desire. 
    In the sub-steps below, we'll guide you through the purpose of each column for each type of template. 
    1. IG-Stories_Video_template_TNA_BulkCreativeCSV
      1. name: Optional field to determine the name of your ad, making it easier to track its insights later on.
      2. video_URL: Mandatory field where you need to add/paste the URL to the asset you wish to use for your ad. NB: You can use a link to either a video file or animated GIF.
      3. image_url: Optional field, here you choose to add a custom static thumbnail for the video/GIF that will be shown if the video hasn't started.
      4. call_to_action_type: Optional field to set a CTA button in your ad, each template contains all options available. If you leave this field empty, the NO_BUTTON value will automatically be applied. NB: By default, some placements, will by default use the LEARN_MORE CTA even if NO_BUTTON was set. 
      5. instagram_story_destination: Set this value to website if you want to link to a website, you'll also need to add a URL within the link field in the next column to enable this. NB: If you have selected NO_BUTTON as your ad's call_to_action_type value, it's best to leave both the website and link values empty.
      6. link: Mandatory field (IF link is set to the website value) to set the (Destination) URL (TNA/Facebook). This will be the URL which will be shown to people that click on your ad. NB: If you have selected NO_BUTTON as your ad's call_to_action_type value, it's best to leave the link.
      7. audience_ids: Mandatory field where you'll need to set the audience(s) you've created for this campaign. You can enter these manually or paste them from the audience_export_campaign.CSV you downloaded in step 2.2.2. If you want to link a creative to multiple audiences, you'll need to separate each audience_ID with a comma. NB: Depending on the regional settings of your operating system and/or spreadsheet application, you might need to change the number of decimals that are shown in the field prior to exporting the CSV.
    2. Link_template_TNA_BulkCreativeCSV.csv
      1. name: Optional field to determine the name of your ad, making it easier to track its insights later on.
      2. message: Optional field to set Your message (TNA)/Text (Facebook) field of your ad, primarily used to clearly tell people what you are promoting.
      3. picture: Mandatory field where you need to add/paste the URL to the asset you wish to use for your ad.
      4. title: Optional field that can be used to set the Title (TNA)/Headline (Facebook) field providing brief explanation your ad or the destination URL you are using in your ad.
      5. description: Optional field that can be used to set the Description (TNA/Facebook) to emphasise why people should click on your ad.
      6. call_to_action_type: Optional field to set a CTA button in your ad, each template contains all options available. If you leave this field empty, the NO_BUTTON value will automatically be applied. NB: By default, Facebook will apply the LEARN_MORE value for any Instagram, Messenger or Facebook placement, even if NO_BUTTON was set.
      7. link: Mandatory field to set the (Destination) URL (TNA/Facebook), the URL that will be shown to people that click on your ad.
      8. call_to_action_link_caption: Optional field to set the Display URL (TNA/Facebook). This URL will be shown to people who see your ad. This won't appear in all placements.
      9. audience_ids: Mandatory field, here you will need to set the audience(s) you've created for this campaign. You can enter these manually or paste them from the audience_export_campaign.CSV you downloaded in step 2.2.2. If you want to link a creative to multiple audiences, you'll need to separate each audience_ID with a comma. NB: Depending on the regional settings of your operating system and/or spreadsheet application, you might need to change the number of decimals that are shown in the field prior to exporting the CSV.
    3. Photo_template_TNA_BulkCreativeCSV.csv
      1. name: Optional field to determine the name of your ad, making it easier to track its insights later on.
      2. message: Optional field to set Your message (TNA)/Text (Facebook) field of your ad, primarily used to clearly tell people what you are promoting.
      3. picture: Mandatory field where you need to add/paste the URL to the asset you wish to use for your ad.
      4. audience_ids: Mandatory field where you'll set the audience(s) you have created for this campaign. You can enter these manually or paste them from the audience_export_campaign.CSV you downloaded in step 2.2.2. If you want to link a creative to multiple audiences, you'll need to separate each audience_ID with a comma. NB: Depending on the regional settings of your operating system and/or spreadsheet application, you might need to change the number of decimals that are shown in the field prior to exporting the CSV.
    4. Video_template_TNA_BulkCreativeCSV.csv
      1. name: Optional field to determine the name of your ad, making it easier to track its insights later on.
      2. message: Optional field to set Your message (TNA)/Text (Facebook) field of your ad, primarily used to clearly tell people what you are promoting.
      3. video_URL: Mandatory field where you need to add/paste the URL to the asset you wish to use for your ad. NB: You can use a link to either a video file or animated GIF here.
      4. image_url: Optional field where you can choose to add a custom static thumbnail for the video/GIF that will be shown if the video hasn't started.
      5. title: Optional field that can be used to set the Title (TNA)/Headline (Facebook) field providing a brief explanation of your ad or the destination URL you're using in your ad.
      6. description: Optional field that can be used to set the Description (TNA/Facebook) to emphasise why people should click on your ad.
      7. call_to_action_type: Optional field to set a CTA button in your ad, each template contains all options available. If you leave this field empty, the NO_BUTTON value will automatically be applied. NB: By default, Facebook will apply the LEARN_MORE value for any Instagram, Messenger or Facebook placement, even if NO_BUTTON was set.
      8. link: Mandatory field to set the (Destination) URL (TNA/Facebook), the URL that will be shown to people that click on your ad.
      9. call_to_action_link_caption: Optional field to set the Display URL (TNA/Facebook), this URL will be shown to people who see your ad. This will not appear in all placements.
      10. audience_ids: Mandatory field where you'll need to set the audience(s) you've created for this campaign. You can enter these manually or paste them from the audience_export_campaign.CSV you downloaded in step 2.2.2. If you want to link a creative to multiple audiences, you'll need to separate each audience_ID with a comma. NB: Depending on the regional settings of your operating system and/or spreadsheet application, you might need to change the number of decimals that are shown in the field prior to exporting the CSV.
  4. Once you've completed the CSV template for the ad type you required, you'll need to Download/Export it is as a CSV file. You can name the file to your liking, just be sure it's saved as a comma separated value (CSV) file.

(4)  The next step is to move forward to the Ads section. If you click Create from CSV button, a new pop-up will open where you'll be able to upload your CSV.

  1. The target campaign has been pre-selected, you won't need to change this setting.
  2. Choose the creative type you want to upload, which will need to correspond to the template you completed in step 3 of this tutorial
  3. Click Select a CSV file to upload the CSV you completed in step 3. 
  4. If needed, select another CSV list separator than the default "," (comma) value presented. NB: Although CSVs are generally saved using a "," (comma) as its list separator, regional settings of your operating system or your spreadsheet software can be set to use a ";" (semicolon) or a tab. During the upload of your CSV (step 4.6) the system will validate the values in your template, including which list separator is issued. If it finds a list separator other than "," (comma) used, the system will show you the header row is not recognised due. If that happens, you will simply need to click the Change import settings button, change the "CSV list separator" to another value (i.e. ";" (semicolon)) and your template will be validated.
  5. Click Import to start creating your ads.
    1. If validation of the template is successful, you will be shown a modal mentioned how the number of successfully created ads. After dismissing this message, you'll be presented with all the ads that you've just created for your review. If needed, you can change each ad individually.
      save image
    2. If validation fails, an overview of the validation errors will be shown. By clicking Change import settings you'll return to the previous screen to i.e. upload your updated CSV or change the CSV list separator if needed. If you can't find the source of the errors, don't hesitate to contact us via the chat or support@thenextad.com
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