In 2020, Facebook announced they had ten million active advertisers using the platform to promote their products and services, a three million increase from the previous year.
To better serve a wider range of businesses using the ad platform, Facebook continues to introduce new features which add to its complexity.
More complexity can lead to more Facebook ad mistakes that reduce campaign effectiveness. Ultimately, this makes advertisers conclude that Facebook ads aren’t worth their time or are unsuitable for their business — which isn’t true.
Keep reading to learn about some of the most common Facebook ad mistakes to avoid. These might be making you look unprofessional, causing inefficiencies, or slowing growth.
12 Common Facebook Ad Mistakes
- Not Using Clear Objectives
- Not Having a Clear Value Proposition
- Mismatch in Audience Targeting
- Using the Wrong Facebook Ad Type
- Running Too Many Ads
- Not Using Viral Content
- Considering Only the Bottom of Your Sales Funnel
- Forgetting to Optimize For All Devices
- Not Using Localization
- Not Leveraging Social Commerce Strategies
- Having a Mismatch in Content Versus Platform
- Forgetting the 80/20 Rule
1. Not Using Clear Objectives
A clear, measurable objective is important for any campaign to be successful. Is your advertising goal to:
- Boost website traffic?
- Get more leads via a lead magnet landing page?
- Do a one-off promotion for an instant sales bump of a specific product?
With a clear goal backed by an action plan, you won’t suffer a wasted budget at the end of the campaign.
2. Not Having a Clear Value Proposition
Another oddly common rookie mistake is overlooking your campaign’s value proposition. Your value proposition answers “why” someone should do business with you and not your competitors. Without this, you fail to convey the immediate “aha!” moment, which an ideal, impactful ad does.
For a clear value proposition:
- Crisply describe the unique benefits or results the user would get from clicking through to your landing page.
- Use relevant visual images, such as a happy customer using your product.
- Write concise copy that’s easy to understand.
Split test your ad type, visuals, and copy to understand the best way to get your value proposition across to your audience.
3. Mismatch in Audience Targeting
You can reach an audience of 2.14 billion people with Facebook ads. Having a mismatch can be a waste of resources and potential.
With a mismatch, all your effort in creating the ad is wasted on an audience who has little-to-no interest in what you have to offer.
You can warm up your audience through interesting content like blog posts and infographics, then target them with your product, such as through a free trial or demo. Finally, retarget visitors who showed interest, perhaps with a limited-time offer to ignite urgency, to close the sale.
This sequence aligns the right audience with your product-based ads and boosts conversions.
4. Using the Wrong Facebook Ad Type
Like an elaborate restaurant menu with way too many options, Facebook’s ad options can cause confusion and may lead to the wrong choice of ad type.
Facebook boasts various ad options, including:
- Photos (with size options)
- Carousel (multiple images or videos in one ad)
- Collections (a single ad to showcase multiple products)
You then have to pick your ad placement and positioning, and based on your goals, determine the type of ad. These include:
- Lead ads: use a pre-populated form to capture audience information.
- Link ads: link back to your website with a CTA, such as Sign Up, Download, Learn More, Shop Now, etc.
- Dynamic ads: use a template wherein the ad creative is automatically customized based on the products your audience viewed on your website.
For example, if you have a tiny budget, desktop ads are likely not your best bet as they can be expensive, killing your return on ad spend (ROAS). Mobile ads have lower conversion but are inexpensive for top-of-the-funnel content promotion.
Long story short, each ad type has its pros and cons. Find the right type for you.
5. Running Too Many Ads
You might be creating overly complex ad accounts brimming with campaigns.
In doing so, you reduce your creative efficiency and add to the confusion. It gets difficult to track how your overall advertising budget is being spent.
The simple and obvious solution? Tidy up your account. Reduce the number of ads, and have ample budget per ad so Facebook can efficiently power your ads for better ROI.
6. Not Using Viral Content
Social media lets you display the “human” side of your brand. For your ad visuals, creating original memes and funny GIFs can be a super-effective way to make your brand more relatable, approachable, and ultimately, clickable.
Memes and other silly, share-worthy content are your friends. If you’re not trying out such viral-worthy content in your ad creatives, you may be leaving a lot of money on the table.
7. Considering Only the Bottom of Your Sales Funnel
Make no mistake. Facebook ads are primarily a means to sell more, but nobody likes a brand that constantly pushes its product.
Just because you’re investing in a paid ad, it doesn’t mean it only has to be about the end of your sales funnel, a.k.a. the “ready to buy” or decision stage.
Aligning your campaign with your entire sales funnel is a better way to go about it.
So a 3-step ad sequence with separate creatives for the awareness (guides, videos, checklists, etc.), consideration (case studies, free trial, demos, etc.), and decision (limited-time discounts, retargeting abandoned carts, etc.) stages of the funnel works better.
In short, use your ads to make a connection with your audience, don’t just hard sell.
8. Forgetting to Optimize For All Devices
If you’re not optimizing your ad creative for mobile, you’re missing out!
Social media marketing success is synonymous with strong visuals. Ensure you’re not using low-quality images or stock photos that don’t match the ad messaging.
Only go for high-quality, high-resolution, super-relevant images that reinforce the central point of your ad and landing page. Use the right image size for the right placement:
- 1,080 x 1,080px: Facebook Feed, Facebook Search Results
- 1,200 x 1,200px: Facebook Right Column, Facebook Instant Articles, Facebook Marketplace
- 1,200 x 628px: Sponsored Message
- 1,080 x 1,920px: Facebook Stories
9. Not Using Localization
One of the common Facebook ad errors, especially for small businesses that serve in multiple markets but aren’t big enough for Facebook global pages, is failing to use the localization feature.
Instead, they communicate in two or more languages in a single post, which can cause confusion.
Using the localization tool is easy. You can restrict your ad to a specific location or publish the same ad in several languages, which appear as one post for everyone.
Ensure you know exactly where you’d like to serve your ads. Otherwise, you’re just squandering your budget on people you can’t do business with.
10. Not Leveraging Social Commerce
Social commerce refers to the process of selling products directly on social media platforms. For instance, you can browse and compare products on Facebook and then make the purchase on Facebook itself rather than going to the company’s site to complete your purchase.
On Facebook, users can readily share commercial information with their network by liking or sharing products and purchases.
You can take advantage of existing Facebook relationships to gain commercial benefits. This translates to more transactions (be it commercial information or actual sales) and customer loyalty.
11. Having a Mismatch in Content Versus Platform
Lookalike audiences help you find new leads similar to a source audience you control, such as a customer list, site traffic, or other engaged audiences.
You can base your lookalike audience on your most loyal customers, most engaged leads, or highest value subscribers, to deliver Facebook ads to people who are super similar to your offline customers. Ensure you have at least 1,000 people in your source audience.
For example, start with pixel purchase event actions using custom audiences. If you don’t have enough people, go down the customer value matrix and use your website traffic, video viewers, page likes, etc.
Do this until you find the lookalike source audience option that fits the actual customer profile you have in your business.
12. Forgetting the 80/20 Rule
Don’t make it all about you on Facebook. Tone it down to under 20%, and make 80% of it about your audience.
Upload helpful content that they want to see; stuff that benefits them. Don’t always be going on and on about your great features. Try to spark two-way communication and make personal connections with your ads instead of talking at your audience.
Time to stop making silly Facebook ads mistakes
So there you have it! These are some of the most common Facebook ad mistakes to avoid. When you avoid the mistakes described above, you’ll realize the true potential of Facebook ads in terms of a new influx of visitors and leads, more engaged customers, and greater revenue.
Are you currently making any of these Facebook ad errors? If so, time to set things right!