TikTok Ads vs. Facebook Ads in 2024

TikTok Ads vs. Facebook Ads in 2024

In an interview published on Strachery a couple of years ago, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg referred to TikTok as a "very effective competitor." He explained how he had failed to recognize the potential of what he called "a shorter version of YouTube" to change how people consume content. 


Now, TikTok is the fastest-growing social media platform, with over 1 billion monthly active users worldwide. It still has a long way to go before it can go neck and neck with Facebook in terms of reach, but it offers some lucrative advertising solutions that attract brands from all industries. 


That said, advertisers must understand that although Facebook and TikTok Ads share a few features, they are different services. Switching or diversifying may not always be a gainful decision unless backed with in-depth research and a tailored advertising strategy. 


In this guide, we'll discuss the differences between Facebook Ads and TikTok Ads in detail to help you decide where to put your ad money and how to optimize your ad campaigns in 2024. We'll explore variations in ad placement, metrics, costs, demographics, conversion rates, restrictions, and more.


Size and Growth


Size matters in advertising. Knowing where Facebook and TikTok currently stand, how big their networks are, and how fast they are growing can put things into perspective and help you weigh your options more wisely.


Facebook has over 3 billion monthly active subscribers, while TikTok has only about a third of that. However, TikTok is growing faster. Last year, its user population grew by 12.7%, while Facebook's only grew by 2.3%. Both numbers fluctuate, but it's clear that TikTok has the upper hand in this aspect. 


Now, let's talk about annual revenue. TikTok generated about $14.3 billion in revenue in 2023, a 52% increase from the previous year. Meanwhile, Meta had a combined revenue of $134.9 billion, an 89% increase. 




Recent stats show that 25% of TikTok users are teens, with content creators mostly aged 18 to 24. In contrast, Facebook is mainly used by the youngest millennials, aged 25 to 34. 


Both platforms, however, have users from all age groups. For example, while TikTok is seen as mainly for Gen Zers, 22% of its users are aged 20 to 29, 21% are aged 30 to 39, and 20% are aged 40 to 49. Contrary to popular belief, Facebook also appeals to Gen Zers, who comprise 23% of its users, but TikTok's user base skews much younger.


Product Type


Based on the above numbers, it's clear that TikTok Ads are more effective for promoting Gen Z-oriented brands or products, like skincare, water bottles, shoes, gadgets, and apparel. Because TikTok's primary advertising placements are videos, TikTok Ads work best for products that advertisers can demonstrate. 


Conversely, Facebook Ads are better suited for products that appeal to a slightly older audience, like streaming services, fitness devices, smart home solutions, and personal finance apps. While Facebook's lenient e-commerce policies make it easy to sell just about any product on the platform, precise targeting is crucial to maximizing Facebook Ads.  


If you have yet to pick a niche or products to sell and want to optimize your ads on both platforms, consider "mass appeal" products. These products appeal to a broad range of consumers, making them popular and successful in most marketplaces. 


Then again, it all comes down to tailoring your ads, no matter what you're selling. If you're open to more daring marketing approaches, TikTok Ads might be the way to go. If you prefer a more traditional approach, consider focusing your ad spend on Facebook Ads.


Content Consumption


TikTok is popular among audiences who are always in dopamine rush mode or can't stay on one video for too long. To capture their attention quickly, you must create a unique, scalable advertising structure. You cannot replicate the strategy you're using on Facebook, Google, or any other platform.


Facebook has its fair share of fast-paced users, particularly those who prefer consuming Reels. However, many of its ad placements appeal to audiences with a longer retention span. They watch Facebook videos as they would YouTube videos, making long-form videos still a viable ad placement option.


Targeting Options


Advertising platforms leverage data to enable brands to segment their target audience based on demographics, interests, behaviors, and other factors. It also helps its users personalize ad content and messaging to suit those segments' specific needs and preferences.


Being the newest in the block, TikTok's data is nowhere near as sufficient as Facebook's. Even though Facebook suffered a significant loss when Apple decided to restrict its data sharing, it still has enough data to offer advertisers diverse targeting options, given its current size and reach. That's excluding the data it has gathered over the years through WhatsApp and Instagram. 




The launch of iOS 14.5 in 2021 messed up Facebook's data tracking so badly that it had to come up with Aggregated Events Measurement. This drastic response limited conversion tracking to eight conversion events, slowing ad optimization and affecting insight accuracy. 


Despite this, Facebook's tracking capabilities outperform TikTok's by a mile. That's one of the perks of being an older platform with a broader reach. Now that Facebook has removed Aggregated Events Measurement after finding a way for advertisers to track more than eight conversion events, it becomes even harder for TikTok to catch up. 


TikTok's tracking is still developing and might not work well for large-scale advertising. That's why TikTok Ads are better for smaller brands focusing on highly specific market segments.


Product Pricing


Considering that TikTok's audience is much younger and its marketplace has just been launched, I wouldn't recommend advertising products worth above $100 on TikTok Shop. Facebook Ads is a much better option for products within this price range.


So, to maximize your advertising budget, only use TikTok Ads to promote products under $30. If you're selling high-ticket products like jewelry or designer clothing, opt for Facebook Ads.


This isn't to say you won't see items worth more than $30 advertised on TikTok—there are many. However, these products are primarily accessible on different platforms, such as Shopify or Amazon. Most ad placements linked to products on TikTok Shop are affordable for a young audience.


Organic Growth


Driving organic traffic to your products is challenging when you run ads using a single account. All you can do to diversify your reach is to manipulate the targeting and content pair available for that account. But that's Facebook. TikTok is slightly different because it allows you to create multiple branded accounts.


You can reach various markets and demographics beyond your main account's scope when you advertise with multiple branded accounts. Creators and affiliate marketers also have more choices for content creation, helping your brand expand naturally, even if you mainly rely on paid ads.


Advertising Cost


Let's compare the costs of Facebook Ads and TikTok Ads to determine which suits your budget.




 Cost Per Click (CPC): $0.26 – $0.30 per click

Cost Per Mile (CPM): $1.01 – $3.00 per 1000 impressions

Cost Per Like (CPL): $0.00 – $0.25 per like

Cost Per Action (CPA): $0.00 – $5.00 per download




Average cost per mile (CPM) = $10

Average cost per click (CPC) = $1


Minimum budget required at the campaign level = $50 per day

Minimum budget required at the group level = $20 per day


Hashtag challenge = $150,000 per week

Brand takeover = $50,000 per day


At first glance, TikTok Ads cost more, and in many cases, they do. However, the average CPM on Facebook is $14.40, thanks to high competition. TikTok's CMP is expected to increase as it grows in popularity. In fact, a CPM average of $10 is already expensive for a platform that has only recently launched.


Ad Placements


Facebook's business model offers various ad placements, allowing you to target audiences with different preferences. For instance, you can target Facebook users who prefer watching Reels over swiping stories or images. 


Because Facebook owns Instagram, and the two platforms sometimes share content, you can maintain omnipresence even with an audience that bounces between apps. This can even help you channel traffic to your Instagram account and vice versa using the same set of content.


Here are some of the ad placements available on Facebook Ads:


  • Images
  • Slideshows
  • Carousels
  • Stories
  • Videos


Another fantastic thing about Facebook Ads is you can create content in different formats without compromising the algorithm. You can post square or rectangular images or videos in vertical and horizontal orientations and still get equal distribution, which you cannot do on TikTok.


Only one type of ad placement works on TikTok—video. And it's not just any video format. It must be short-form, vertical, and fill the entire phone screen. You can use a different format, such as square or rectangle, but your content won't sway TikTok's algorithm.


TikTok's ad placement format and style have several benefits compared to the long-form videos on Facebook and YouTube:


  1. Short-form videos deliver massive amounts of value within a short period.
  2. You can create a viral video without spending a fortune on production.
  3. You can create raw and authentic content that rivals well-produced ones.


Facebook, although late, realized this and made its version. But with a slightly different audience, who have a somewhat different intent for visiting the app, it's difficult for content creators to make Reels that go viral fast. Most of their videos either flop or take time to gain organic views.


Here's a tip: If you have content that is doing well on TikTok, post it on Facebook, too. Most top-performing videos on TikTok tend to perform well on Facebook. If you have content that is doing well on Facebook, don't migrate it to TikTok immediately. Edit the video first to make it TikTok-friendly. Most viral videos on Facebook tend to flop on TikTok because of format differences.




Advertisers applaud TikTok for its excellent customer support. If you encounter any problems, such as ad rejection or account suspension, you can contact them for assistance. They'll respond immediately, provide clear explanations, and suggest effective solutions.


Facebook, on the other hand, is infamous among advertisers for its poor customer support. While it offers many tutorials, articles, and videos, there's no direct way to speak with a representative. It doesn't provide detailed explanations for rejected ads or locked accounts. Only higher-status partners receive 24/7 support, assigned representatives, and training.




More brands competing for presence means higher CPM. Currently, there are over 10 million advertisers on Facebook, each willing to pay extra to get their ads in front of their target audience. 

The intense competition is primarily due to the many creative choices and ad placements available on the platform.


Since TikTok is relatively new, there's less competition, yet their average CPM is already high. Because advertisers use user-generated-style content, they get a better click-through rate (CTR). This means you can reach more people, generate higher traffic, and transition out of the ad-testing phase to drive conversions faster.


Click-Through Rate


CTR shows how well your social media ads are doing. The more clicks your ads get, the more likely you'll make sales. However, CTR isn't dependent on how you optimize your ads. In most cases, the nature and overall status of the social media network you advertise on affect your CTR.


Facebook's average CTR is 1.07%, slightly higher than TikTok's average CTR of 0.84%. This means that Facebook users are more inclined to click on ads than TikTok users, thanks to Facebook's extensive targeting options, diverse ad placements, and high engagement levels. It's important to note, though, that these values vary from industry to industry.


Conversion Rate


As an advertiser, your ultimate goal is to influence your target audience to take action, whether to inquire further, fill out a form, or make a purchase. Collectively, we call this conversion rate (CVR). Like CTR, this also measures how well your ads are doing. 


If your sales aren't increasing despite running multiple ads, it means your CVR is poor, and you need to improve your optimization. Review your copy and targeting and immediately apply relevant and data-driven changes to maximize your ad budget.  


Facebook Ads currently has an average CVR of 8.25% across all industries. This is incomparable to TikTok Ads' average CVR, roughly 1.1%


In addition to targeting and ad copy, factors like value proposition, consistency, and ad testing impact an ad's conversion rate (CVR). Differences in formats and placements between these two ad platforms are crucial reasons for the significant gap in their average CVRs.


Ad Fatigue


Ad fatigue occurs when audiences become less responsive to an advertisement after repeated exposure. As people see the same ad repeatedly, they may start to ignore or tune out the message, leading to a decline in engagement, click-through rates, and overall effectiveness of the ad campaign. 


Due to the nature and format of the ads they're exposed to, Facebook users tend to experience ad fatigue faster than TikTok users. Most ads on Facebook are well-produced and unrelatable, which many viewers frown upon. TikTok ads, on the other hand, are shorter and more engaging. 


Ad fatigue can be alleviated by targeting specific audience segments with relevant and engaging ad creatives, regularly refreshing ad content to maintain interest, and carefully managing ad frequency to avoid overexposure to individual ads.


Advertising Policy


Facebook and TikTok both have clear rules about what ads they can and cannot show. They agree on things like drugs and drug paraphernalia, weapons and explosives, tobacco products and smoking, discriminatory content, and intellectual property infringement.


Before running Facebook Ads or TikTok Ads, review their advertising policies to avoid account suspension or termination. Similarly, ensure that your creatives and affiliate marketers understand the dos and don'ts of posting on these platforms. Here are TikTok's policies, and here are Meta's.


Conclusion: TikTok Ads vs. Facebook Ads in 2024


Let's quickly review what we've learned. Facebook Ads work well for brands targeting older audiences, while TikTok Ads are better for reaching younger audiences. Facebook Ads provide more ad placement and format options than TikTok Ads, enabling more targeted advertising.


Products over $100 are best promoted using Facebook Ads since Facebook's audience typically has greater financial means to afford expensive items. However, when advertising on Facebook, expect to navigate the process independently, as their customer support may not assist you every step of the way.


TikTok's responsive customer support draws in small brands and startups aiming to tap into the platform's rapidly expanding market. Also, TikTok Ads' simple format makes it fair game for both small brands that use raw and genuine content and big brands that can afford polished ads.


Simply put, either platform suits specific advertising needs. In fact, diversifying ad placements and utilizing both platforms can benefit your brand. However, if you're planning to focus your ad budget and strategy on just one, ask yourself these questions:


  • What is your business model? What do you offer? How do people buy your products? How do you ship them? Do you offer discounts?
  • What resources are available to you? What does your team look like? Can you consistently create videos and other content types? What types of content can you create?
  • What are your competitors doing? What did you find out after conducting competitor research? Are they spending a lot on ads? Which platform do they use the most?
  • What is your target audience? What age group or demographic are you going after?


Select an advertising platform based on your answers to these questions. For example, if your business offers complex products or services like training programs or tech solutions requiring lengthy and detailed explanations, Facebook Ads might be a better choice. Facebook has audiences with longer attention spans, making it suitable for content that lasts longer than a minute.


If your ads work well across various platforms, consider diversifying. However, ensure each ad campaign is optimized for either TikTok or Facebook Ads to maximize algorithm performance. If you're using TikTok Ads, be prepared to invest in the infrastructure needed to meet its high demand for creative content. 

Back to blog